When TAF first came across Auden, he was in a cage at an open access shelter. He was sad, scared and nervous for people to handle him.

After weeks of working with Auden, one day he just decided to smile. I guess he finally decided that we were pretty cool and meant him no harm… our senior boy finally found his happy.

With that, we thrilled to announce that Auden has found his forever home! Auden’s new family knew that they could provide him with everything that he could possibly need in his senior years and they are absolutely adore him! Any family that adopts a senior dog is pretty awesome in our book. Have a wonderful life Auden!


We have wonderful news... after hospitalization and weeks of medical care, Dearly has found her forever home!!!

When TAF first met Dearly, we were told that she was pregnant and we knew that we needed to get her out of the open access shelter. Our first priority was to get Dearly medical care for a nasty upper respiratory infection. Dearly was hospitalized to receive breathing treatments, fluids and antibiotics. When Dearly was feeling better, an ultrasound was performed to see how big her babies were getting. Sadly, the pregnancy was not viable, likely from the stress of being at the shelter and also from getting sick.

Once out of the hospital, Dearly perked up and her smile finally shined through.

This past weekend, Dearly went to visit her future forever home and it was love at first sight. Dearly's new mom and dad fell head over heals for her, as she did for them. Dearly will never be behind bars at an open access shelter again and will only know love the rest of her life. She has received her second chance. A big thank you to everyone that helped to sponsor Dearly's medical care!



On November 6th, TAF received a call from the 012th District of the Chicago Police Department after an emaciated senior Chihuahua was found near death in a garbage can. It was only 45 degrees outside and this 18 year old had barely any fur. With garbage stuck to her bare skin she was barely moving and her body was starting to shut down.Maxine needed emergency medical treatment and the CPD did everything that they could to save her. In particular, Lt. Mike Rigoli, Sgt. Menoni and Police Officer Laura Agin went above and beyond to help Maxine. When TAF picked Maxine up from the police station, she was lifeless. We took her straight to the ER Vet where she was rushed to the back and worked on immediately.

Through the almost 2 months of recovery, Maxine stopped eating at one point, was vomiting and became lethargic. As it turned out, the 6 remaining teeth in the back of her mouth had become so infected that her cheeks actually started to puff out. Even though she was still extremely underweight, and suffering from a secondary skin infection and yeast overgrowth, Maxine needed to go in for emergency surgery.

With the fighting spirit of a little warrior, Maxine persevered and beat all of the odds. Our 18 year old did not give up and she deserves a standing ovation for that. From the day she was found, nothing was going to take her down… not even her abuser.

In the true spirit of Christmas, a wonderful woman asked if she could be Maxine’s mom… for however long that might be. Maxine’s future mom understood that she most assuredly would have accidents in the house, not be a big fan of some people and have a mighty attitude. With all of this knowledge, this wonderful woman said that she would be honored to be Maxine’s mom. We honestly couldn’t have asked for a more loving and caring home for Maxine’s twilight years. This will be the best Christmas ever for our 5.6 pound miracle and boy does she deserves it… she truly will have a wonderful life.



At the beginning of May, TAF was contacted about a pregnant pitbull at an open access shelter. Clara already had some grey on her muzzle and it was obvious that she had been used as a breeding machine most her life. When we met Clara, the shelter thought that she was about to give birth. Her body was showing all of the signs but something seemed terribly wrong. After we examined her more closely, it was obvious that her belly had no movement inside and the discharge coming out of her back end was not her mucus plug. This, along with how lethargic she was, earned Clara an emergency trip to the ER.

It would be determined that Clara was suffering from a critical case of pyometra that would likely take her life. The infection in her uterus was so advanced that emergency surgery was necessary if there were to be any chance of survival. Clara would go on to survive her surgery and be hospitalized for a week to undergo blood transfusions, ultrasounds, x-rays, along with IV fluids and medications. Soon after, all of Clara’s other medical issues became apparent… she had persistent bladder infections, terribly painful ear infections, an abdominal hernia, and her bloodwork was all over the place. Clara was anemic and nothing seemed to help her fully bounce back.

Once again, Clara needed to be hospitalized but this this time it was for six weeks. During this time, Clara often went home under the watchful eye of someone on her medical team. This helped to keep her socialized and made her feel special. At the end of six weeks, everything normalized except for Clara’s kidney values. Clara was started on a special diet and new medication. As a result, her health started to improve and for the last two months she has been doing really well.Finally… our senior girl was given the green light for adoption. As you can imagine, finding a home for a senior pitbull, with medical issues, who is iffy with dogs and might not have that long to live is almost impossible. We honestly thought that Clara was going to be spending the time she had left on this earth with us.

In an often cruel world, THIS is when the goodness of humanity shines through… Last week we received an email inquiry asking about Clara and her special medical needs. Six months ago, this adopter lost her beloved dog to kidney disease, along with a variety of other medical issues. Even though the pain of her loss is still crushing, this adopter knew that her knowledge of the disease, and all that comes with it, could change Clara’s life forever. Monique and Clara met each other over the long weekend, and we are VERY VERY happy to report that it was love at first sight! One look at Clara’s adorable, greying muzz and sweet eyes and Monique knew she had found the pup that needed her most.

We are BEYOND grateful that Monique is going to give Clara everything she needs for the rest of her life. It might be 2 months, it might be 2 years…but she is home with her mom. When it was time to leave us, TAF’s Medical & Rescue Director, Bridgid, was pretty choked up. If it had not been for Bridgid’s constant care of Clara, she never would have made it. When Clara jumped in the car, she looked back at Bridgid with the biggest, loving smile. Bridgid kissed Clara all over her face and told her how much we all loved her. There is no question that this special dog deserved everything we could do for her… and all of TAF’s supporters helped us provide every single thing she needed. Without your amazing support of TAF, Clara’s fate would have been very very very different. So thank you, from TAF… and thank you, from Clara! It may have taken most of her lifetime to find her happy ending but here it is and it is beautiful.


FROM RAGS TO RICHES… HOLLAND THE WONDER DOG! On September 27th, Holland was dropped off at an open access shelter in deplorable condition. Knowing that she needed immediate medical attention, TAF was called and we acted right away. Once in our care, we worked on trying to free Holland from the vice like matted fur that encased her body. The width of the matted fur on her legs was over 2-3 inches thick. A shell like casing of matted fur covered most of her back and it looked like an exoskeleton from behind. Holland’s matted ears dragged the ground and were at least 6 inches long… they should have been more like 2. The wet matted tendrils on her face wreaked and she rubbed her face incessantly trying to itch her irritated skin. For over two hours we tried to cut off some of the matted fur that enveloped Holland’s body. Grooming scissors could only cut through the very thinnest layers of dreadlocks around her eyes and face… we might as well have been using a child’s safety scissors. At this point, Holland was exhausted and beginning to get stressed. At this point, we arranged to have her sedated for a surgical groom at the vet. This was the only safe way to free her from the prison of her own fur.

Amazingly enough, Holland had no major health issues besides trauma to her skin. She was bruised, had cuts in many areas and some of her skin actually started to split because it was so thin from lack of cell turnover and circulation. Because of her new shape, Holland had a difficult time walking at first and she was in a tremendous amount of pain. She was started on antibiotics and pain medication to help keep her comfortable and heal from the inside out.

Once healthy, we had to focus on Holland’s emotional stability. The lack of human contact and socialization, in her prior life, had greatly affected Holland. It would take TAF’s therapy dog, Miller, to eventually bring her out of her shell and bring a smile to her face… she was mentored by the best.

After weeks of TLC, medical treatments and emotional rehabilitation, we are so happy to announce that Holland has found her forever home! Holland immediately bonded with her new mom and dad and they were head over heels for her… just look at the smile on her face! For that matter, look at the smile on all of their faces! TAF would like to thank everybody that donated towards Holland’s medical care and kept her in their thoughts and prayers… this is a win for everyone!



On 8/16/17, TAF came across a little 4-pound injured senior pup at an open access shelter. Curtsy was estimated to be around 14 years old and had actually been dropped off at this particular open access shelter by another open access shelter in the city. In all honesty, due to the severity of her injuries, coupled with her age, it was realistic that she would have been humanely euthanized. Curtsy’s back leg was lame and was tucked almost underneath her. It looked like it might be an old injury or have been recently broken. In any case, it smelled and maggots were present underneath the matted fur that was wrapped so tightly around her leg like a vice grip. In addition to this, Curtsy’s teeth were so rotten that 2 actually fell out while her mouth was being examined. At this point, we thought that humane euthanasia would be the best option until we let her out of her cage. This little peanut started running around so fast that we could barely catch her. Maybe she knew her potential fate and wasn’t having it.

At this point, we agreed to take her to the ER Vet. We would have her fully evaluated and if it were deemed that she would have poor quality of life after treatment, than we would do what was most humane. Long story short, Curtsy was hospitalized at the ER Vet for days and her leg could be saved. Curtsy’s next big obstacle was a horribly infected mouth full of rotten teeth. After going in for surgery, she would end up having 18 teeth pulled. After this, her spirits lifted and it was obvious that her mouth had been more painful than her injured leg. Once her infections cleared up, she was like a whole different pup with a new lease on life.

With that being said, we are thrilled to announce that Curtsy has found the perfect forever home! Curtsy has her very own playmate and the two couldn’t be cuter together. Curtsy has the personality of one the Golden Girls and isn’t afraid to let her new family know when she wants to be held or wants anything else for that matter. TAF would like to thank Curtsy’s new family for giving a senior girl a chance to live out her twilight years in peace and happiness. She is going to know love until the very end of her beautiful little life. TAF would also like to thank everybody that donated towards Curtsy’s medical care and kept her in their thoughts and prayers. There is no way that Curtsy would have made it without you!


On 5/12/17, TAF was contacted about a female dog that was in pretty bad shape and needed medical attention. Rosie had been brought into an open access shelter suffering from advanced skin issues that ranged from mange, secondary skin infections and yeast infections. She was painfully thin and so raw and itchy skin that she was living her life in misery.

It would take four months of non-stop medical care (both traditional and holistic), supplements, medicated baths, a special diet and a lot of TLC before we started to see a change in Rosie.

As all of her skin issues were playing out, it was impossible not to be a bit alarmed that Rosie was not putting on more weight. When Rosie initially came into our care, X-rays were taken and everything looked all right. Since Rosie had never vomited or showed any signs of abdominal/intestinal distress, we assumed everything was ok. When it came time for Rosie to be spayed, her doctor noticed an odd thickness in her intestines. An ultrasound was performed and it was discovered that Rosie had prongs of a plastic rake, bigger than the average size of a pen, stuck in her intestines. It was nothing short of a miracle that the rake didn’t perforate through Rosie’s intestines or abdominal wall. To put things in perspective, Rosie was brought in on May 12th and her abdominal surgery was on August 31st.

After a month of rehabilitation and relaxation, we are so happy to announce that Rosie has found her forever home! In fact, she has found it with another TAF alumna… Alma! Alma’s mom and dad initially came to adopt Clara but Alma decided it wasn’t a good fit. When we brought Rosie out to meet Alma it was love at first sight. The two instantly hit it off and Alma’s mom and dad knew that Alma had just chosen her new sister. Two rescue dogs that survived unthinkable abuses now share a mom and dad that love them unconditionally and would do anything for them… life will be good. TAF would like to thank everybody that donated towards Rosie’s medical care and kept her in their thoughts and prayers!


On 8/10/17, TAF was contacted about a senior maggot-infested dog with urine scalding and severe eye trauma that had just been dropped off at an open access shelter in a cardboard box. When we went down to the southside of Chicago to pick Grohl up, the description provided did not do the severity of Grohl’s abuse justice. The shelter manager had tears in her eyes and pretty much everybody was speechless. Upon picking Grohl up, you couldn’t tell where his face began or where it ended. When you lifted up the matted fur around Grohl’s eyes, maggots were feeding off the infected skin on his face. In fact, they had already bore a hole through his sinus cavity.

Once at the ER Vet, Grohl’s medical team could only shave his belly and groin area. His heart rate was so erratic that they couldn’t risk him going into cardiac arrest. Grohl’s doctor believed this was due to the high infestation of maggots. Besides his face, the damage caused by the urine scalding on Grohl’s belly, groin, testicles and backside made for a maggot feeding frenzy.

An Ophthalmology Specialist would go on to diagnose Grohl with a stromal corneal ulcer in his left eye, which left him with no vision. In the days to come, his eye would go on to rupture and needed to be surgically removed. At the time, Grohl’s right eye had limited vision and it appeared that he had suffered with chronic ulcers for quite some time. With medicated eye drops, multiple times a day, Grohl’s right eye was saved. However, he will need to continue on this treatment protocol for the rest of his life. In critical condition, Grohl would go on to be hospitalized for days receiving IV antibiotics, topical antibiotics, fentanyl pain medication, Dextrose (for low blood sugar), facial ice packs and medicated baths. It would take a dream team of ER Doctors, Ophthalmology Specialists, a Surgeon and a Cardiologist to put Grohl back together again.

Once Grohl was back in TAF’s care, we worked with him, nursed him back to health and introduced him to our team of therapy dogs. Before long, he began to flourish and learned what it was like to be loved and feel safe. With that… TAF is thrilled to announce that Grohl has found his forever home!

Never again will he go without or wonder what it is like not to feel pain. Grohl’s new owners are going to keep up with his daily eye drops and are 100% on board with all of the responsibilities and expenses that come with his medical condition. A truly selfless family will now pick up where we have left off…Grohl is a very lucky boy. It is ironic that Grohl’s unthinkable abuse would be the very thing that led him to his forever home, unconditional love and a happily ever after. TAF would like to thank everybody that donated towards Grohl’s medical care and kept him in their thoughts and prayers. There is absolutely no way that we could have done it without you!


Once beaten with a baseball bat, Holden has now received his 2nd chance at a new life...

Just thirteen days ago, TAF was contacted about a dog that was in immediate need of medical care. Holden had been beaten by three teenage boys on the southside of Chicago with a baseball bat. Luckily a mailman intervened and our friend Katie went to pick him up. Holden immediately underwent and was hospitalized for days.

Luckily for Holden, his future dad was part of the medical team that would go on to save his life. With that being said, we are so happy to announce that Holden has found his forever home with the man that helped save him… the worst day of Holden’s life might just have turned out to be the beginning of his happily ever after.

To date, a police report has been filed but no one has come forward with the names of the boys that beat Holden. TAF would like to thank all of the generous donors that helped to sponsor Holden’s medial bills. We couldn’t have done it without all of you!



On February 20, 2017, TAF was contacted about an emaciated dog that had been found near death in the grass. It would take our friend Frank to bring him to safety. Tom needed to be carried into the ER Vet because he was too weak to stand.

He weighed in at 35 pounds and should have been more like 75. At that point we thought that his organs had already begun shutting down due to starvation and severe dehydration. For those that have asked why Tom was given a name that might not be fitting for him, we actually never gave it much thought when we walked through the front doors at the ER because we didn’t think that he was going to make it. That might sound harsh but it was the reality at the time and a form of self-preservation… sometimes seeing all of this abuse it just too much to handle in such a short period of time. It would take weeks of a slow re-feeding regimen to prevent re-feeding syndrome. If food is introduced too fast, serious and potentially fatal metabolic derangements can occur. In this time, since he was so hungry, Tom would scavenge for food nonstop when let out of his kennel. He would try to eat his blankets; towels and we even had to buy him a special mat, to sleep on, that he couldn’t eat.

In the week to come, it became more and more obvious that Tom had little human contact in his life and the world had not been kind to him… he was terrified, hand-shy, growling and just couldn't seem to settle down. Tom had zero interest in us unless we were feeding him. We offered Tom food put his leash on, to lead him in and out the door, to get him back into his room, to get his sweater on, etc. Even then, he took the food and then tried to get back to his room and away from us. He tolerated us to get what he needed to survive and then wanted to get back to the safety of his kennel.

As time went on, with the help of food and positive reinforcement, Tom learned that we were there to help him and he started to trust us. He knew that he was safe and that his meals were always coming. Once at a healthy weight Tom was neutered and introduced to a variety of dogs. He didn't love being in a large group, as he seemed overwhelmed. However, with smaller groups or one-on-one, Tom loved to play and was very happy.

Now for the good part… we are so happy to announce that Tom has found his forever home!!! Tom’s new mom and dad have rooted for him since the day he came into our care. When Tom was ready for adoption, they filled out an adoption application and reached out to us to see if they would be a good fit for Tom. In the end, the decision came down to Tom and his future brother Bear… when Tom play bowed, lay down and then stretched out on the floor in front of his tiny brother; we knew that a new family had been made. Even with such a traumatic past, Tom was able to open his heart and be happy once more… he is one of the lucky ones. A big thank you to everyone that was able to donate towards Tom’s medical care and those who kept him in their thoughts and prayers!