She was found tied to a post with a piece of rope near the road in the Ridglea section of Fort Worth for an unknown amount of time before a woman passing by stopped to check on her.
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This is how the story of a dog named Summer begins. To this day, no one has been able to find out where she came from or how she ended up alone on that hot street. What is known, however, is that if it weren’t for this good Samaritan stopping to check on her, she may not have made it through the very season she is named after.
Steve Keys, a Fort Worthian and animal advocate who took Summer in as a foster parent for a short time, says after he’d seen the condition Summer was in on a NextDoor post, he decided to become involved.
“She’d been picked up by an animal control facility, so I immediately, after seeing the post, contacted the lady on NextDoor,” he says. Keys was quick to act knowing full well she may be put down due to overcrowding and the fact that Summer is a Pit Bull. “I mean, we just have a big pet overpopulation issue here. So, I went the very next morning and called Animal Control in Fort Worth.”
But no one could locate Summer when he went to inquire about her. “They have five facilities total. So, I went to the Fort Worth facility, they couldn’t find her. they were doing a search and just as I got ready to leave, they said, ‘Wait a minute, I think we have a picture, is this her?’ I said, yep. Turns out she was in Haslet,” he says.
With his mission clear, Keys drove to Haslet to see if he could foster this yet unnamed Pit Bull who was down on her luck. When he finally arrived, Keys says Summer weighed about 26 pounds, which for a dog of her size is well under weight. She was in such bad shape in fact, Keys says the animal control center waived the usual three-day holding period for her, in an attempt to save her life.
Soon after getting Summer back to his house, Keys says several people on the NextDoor platform began inquiring about her health. This is when the idea of setting up a GoFundMe page for Summer was born. “We raised just short of $2000 in about three days to help get her back on her feet,” he says.
But the story doesn’t end there.
Shortly after Keys brought Summer home, a lady who had been inquiring about the abandoned pooch asked if she could swing by his house and meet her. Soon after the two met, the lady asked Keys if she could take Summer home for one night to see if she would be a good fit to foster.
“After that one night’s stay, she asked if she could keep her for a few more days to make sure Summer got along with her daughter,” Keys explained. “It wasn’t even three days before she started texting me that she and her family fell in love with Summer and wanted to adopt her outright.”
Keys, who has many years’ experience working with rescue animals, says this scenario is anything but normal, especially for a Pit Bull who has already born a litter or two of puppies.
“Space for these animals is critical,” he says. “Most animal shelters don’t have the space, which drives up the euthanasia rates.”
Since this incident, which occurred in mid- August, Summer has made a complete recovery and is at the healthier weight of 45 pounds.
“This is why I use the word resilient when I talk about her,” Keys adds. “Given everything she’s been through, it’s a miracle she’s made it to where she’s at.”