Abandoned Puppy Rescued From Criminal’s House Gets A New Chance With An Unlikely Family

Erica Mahnken (far left), along with her fiancé, Michael Favor (far right), are the co-founders of the No More Pain Rescue in Staten Island, New York. Together, they’re committed to helping the animals in their community.
When Erica heard about a dog who’d been found in a local crack house in January 2017, she instinctively felt that the responsibility fell on her and her team to find a way to help the poor animal.

Erica and Michael were used to re-homing pups in desperate need of love—like Benji, pictured here—but this new dog was clearly going to require some special assistance.
The pit bull puppy was in especially awful shape. She’d suffered injuries from several cigarette burns; she was also seriously malnourished and she was living in horrible conditions…

Erica and Michael weren’t fully aware of this ailing pit bull’s full history at the time. All that mattered was that she needed help—and they were ready to provide it as soon as possible!
Ashley, as the sweet pup became known, had spent at least two days in a frightening setting—an alleged crack house—without power, food, or water. There’s no telling what could have happened if Erica and Michael waited any longer…
Not only that, but it was the middle of winter, and Ashley was all alone in a building that was absolutely freezing in the harsh January weather. It wouldn’t have been a stretch to say that her days were numbered.

Fortunately, Erica and Michael were able to drive to the alleged crack house right away to rescue Ashley. There was no time to waste, and the pit bull herself must have felt incredibly relieved to come across kind humans.
The couple ran into a roadblock, however, when they realized they didn’t have a foster home lined up that could take in Ashley. They weren’t sure what they would do, but what happened next was something no one saw coming…

Erica and Michael thought long and hard about what they should do with little Ashley, and they came up with a brilliant solution. They called their friends at the fire department and hoped they could work something out…
The firefighters at “Fort Pitt,” an FDNY station on Manhattan’s Lower East Side, were happy to welcome the puppy, at least temporarily. After all, who could say “no” to spending some time with such a sweet dog?
What no one had anticipated was that everyone who worked at that fire station would absolutely fall in love with the sweet dog… and quite quickly, at that! She seemed to fit right in.

Just three days after the stray pit bull puppy initially arrived at Fort Pitt, the firefighters called Michael and Erica to ask an important question: could they adopt Ashley permanently?
Naturally, the couple was thrilled that this once-stray dog, who’d suffered so much abuse, had finally found a loving home… even if it probably wasn’t the kind of home they originally had in mind!
Now, Ashley was officially a happy and proud firehouse dog. Where she was once living in a frigid, abandoned building and suffering heartless abuse, she was now a valued and beloved part of the firefighting team!
Not only did Ashley enjoy spending time at the station with all of the firefighters she befriended, but she was even allowed to come on ride-alongs when they responded to emergencies around the community.
Employing dogs at a fire department in order to help perform special tasks and offer companionship is not unprecedented, but this job was usually associated with Dalmatians. Ashley didn’t seem to mind, though!

It also helped that the firefighters helped Ashley heal physically, not just emotionally. She weighed just 25 pounds when they adopted her, but now, at 50 pounds, she was doing better than ever. And it was all thanks to their love and support!
Perhaps the most remarkable part of this story, however, was the fact that after she received a second chance at life, Ashley was now enthusiastically saving others’ lives!

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