**Video contains graphic footage: viewer discretion is advised.**
Even Tia Torres of “Pit Bulls and Parolees” could hardly stand to look at poor Curtis as he struggled to stay alive. Someone had shot him—presumably as he was running away, according to the nature of the bullet’s entry wound—and left him for days to die. The Villalobos Rescue Center immediately went to retrieve him when they got the call and rushed him to safety.
Curtis was so exhausted when he arrived at Cypress Lake Animal Hospital that he didn’t even need to be tranquilized. He simply fell asleep on the table, probably knowing he could relax in the medical team’s capable hands.
The moment the team began spraying his wounds with disinfectants, hundreds of maggots came pouring out. Unpleasant though it sounds (and looks), the bugs probably saved his life by constantly debriding the tissues and preventing infection.
In addition to the gunshot wound, Curtis also had a broken shoulder and tested heartworm positive. Rescuers would later discover Curtis would also have a paralyzed foot as a result of the bullet’s damage near his spine. None of that was reason enough for this big boy to quit fighting, however, and he managed to pull through with nothing more than a bandage to protect his foot from dragging on the ground.
Requests to take Curtis home came pouring in after the episode aired. Despite viewers’ obvious attachment to him, the rescue center assured everyone in a Facebook post that he would need a lot more time to recover before leaving their care. As it turns out, he didn’t even need to do that to find a family.
One of the vet techs who helped save his life is now officially Curtis’s new mom, and his home comes complete with a little boy to play with. With additional rehabilitation and all the affection he could ask for, rescuers expect Curtis to bounce back completely and live a true dog’s life.
Curtis found his forever home, but there are still plenty of loving dogs available for adoption at the Villalobos Rescue Center. Not looking for a new best friend? Dogs like Curtis still count on donations to provide shelter and care during their stay; to donate, visit the rescue’s page here.