A dog so covered with mange, fleas and ticks, that I did not want to touch her. She did not want to be touched. Someone dumped her and she was afraid of people. My compassionate son urged me to take care of her. Afraid she would contaminate my house pets, I left her for my coworker who had better facilities to quarantine a mangy dog. After a week or so, I adopted her.
She was so afraid of people, if anyone said anything in even a semi-harsh tone, she was out the doggie door, hiding, huddled against the fence, as far as she could get from the house.
Again, my son played a huge role in her life. One day he was trying to get her to response without fear, and play-bowed to her. She barked playfully, and bowed back, inciting him to interact. She understood from then on, that people were to love on.
A few months later, Leala became my very first therapy dog, She has been a therapy dog since 2009. You can read her story in Chicken Soup for the Soul, Volunteering & Giving Back (2015) Silly Me