When Kayla Filoon, a student who volunteers as a dog walker at an animal shelter in Philadelphia, saw Russ the pit bull for the first time, she knew there was a special connection between them. “He came in as a stray, and he was really beat up,” Filoon told The Dodo. “He was missing fur on his tail and ears. He was also terribly skinny.” The 20-year-old woman added: “He was just sitting there calmly, staring at me… And I thought… I need to take him now.”
Filoon knew she needed to act fast, as recently the shelter had to put 15 dogs to sleep. “Any dog had a chance of being put down, especially the ones who were sicker, and Russ was definitely one of them,” said the woman.
So, the next day, she went straight to the shelter and sorted out the adoption papers. “One night I’m sitting there on the chair, doing my homework, and he’s trying to find ways to cuddle with me,” Filoon said. Her friend snapped a photo, put it on social media – and it went viral. “He’s such a love bug, honestly.”
Filoon hopes the photo will inspire others to adopt shelter dogs.