Dog

Dоg Whо Was Abandоnеd Bу Hеr Familу Nоw Spеnds Thе еntirе Daу With Firеfightеrs

Ashley’s previous owners rarely fed her, rarely took her outside, and eventually abandoned her.

Thankfully, the 1-year-old pit bull was rescued in January 2017 by Erica Mahnken, cofounder of No More Pain Rescue, and her fiance Michael Favor.

“We got a phone call from someone saying there was a couple living in an abandoned house with no heat or electricity and a dog,” Mahnken explained to The Dodo shortly after the rescue.

The couple apparently left when a snowstorm hit. “I guess they went looking for somewhere warm to stay and left the dog behind,” Mahnken speculated. “So we ran and got her as soon as we got the phone call.”

Favor ordered Mahnken to remain in the car while he went inside to look for the dog. Later, he’d tell Mahnken how bad it was. “There was no power in the house — it was freezing,” Mahnken explained. “There was no food or water for her, and the house was a disaster, with broken windows and feces all over the place.”

Ashley, on the other hand, was unharmed, and she looked like the happiest dog when Favor led her out.

“She came running down, overjoyed,” Mahnken explained. “She ran right into my car.”

Ashley was underweight and malnourished. “All you could see were her ribs — she was so thin, and the vet later told me she was 25 pounds underweight.”

Ashley also had cigarette burns on the top of her head, which they noticed.

Because No More Pain Rescue does not have a physical shelter, Mahnken and Favor needed to place Ashley in a foster home right away. They knew there used to be a dog at the Fort Pitt station because they had friends in the New York City Fire Department (FDNY). So Mahnken and Favor asked if the firefighters could keep Ashley until they could find her a suitable home.

Ashley appeared to be content with the arrangement.

“Her tail was wagging as soon as she walked into the firehouse, and she was licking and greeting everyone,” Mahnken said. “She was super happy, which you wouldn’t expect from where she came from; you’d think she’d be a little skittish, but she wasn’t at all.”

Not surprisingly, the fire department called Mahnken a few days later and asked to keep Ashley.

“They said, ‘We’re going to adopt her because we love her so much, and she’s at home here,’” Mahnken explained. “So I was overjoyed, and as soon as I walked her in there, I knew she belonged there.”

Ashley now works full-time at the fire station.

“She’s always on the move – she goes on smaller runs with them, she rides on the fire truck with them,” Mahnken explained. “They walk her about 30 times a day. They bring her up on the roof to play. She’s constantly in the kitchen watching them eat. She has an endless supply of treats.”

According to Mahnken, Ashley even has a seat in the fire truck.

“I’m so glad we got her into a home where she’ll get nothing but love and won’t turn into the pit bull that people love to hate so quickly,” Mahnken said. “It was an incredible feeling to know she belonged there.”

Ashley is still enjoying her life at the firehouse four years later — and the firefighters adore her.

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