It was a normal day, much as any other when my owner tied a rope around my neck and walked me down the road. I was excited, but soon I realised that something was wrong. We were walking too far, and I was getting tired. When were we going to go back home?
We arrived at a place I did not recognise. There were many dogs with their human companions and many people in uniforms with large smiles on their faces. We waited in a large room until we were called to see ‘the doctor’.
I heard my owner saying that he had brought me to be euthanized. I did not know what that meant, but could tell that it was not something good. The ‘doctor’ looked at me with sad eyes, stroked my head and gave me a kiss. “We will look after him,” he said. He took me from my owner who left without saying goodbye.
That was probably what Magnum was thinking when he ended up at IFAW’s Mdzananda Animal Clinic in Khayelitsha, Cape Town.
This big, pit bull boy with a huge heart was in good condition - only a small eye infection that healed quickly with some cream - and quickly assimilated into our community.
He was in no way a candidate for euthanasia.
Our vet neutered him and pretty soon he was ready for applications for a new forever home.
As expected, many community members wanted to adopt him, as he would be a perfect guard dog. Because of Magnum’s breed type and the popularity of fighting dogs, we would insist on only the strictest adoption procedures.
The search for his forever home started and Magnum soon gathered a large following on Facebook. Many people applied but over 10 adoption applications either fell through or were not able to offer homes that would meet his needs.
Three months passed!
With Magnum having some issues with dogs on leads he had to spend a lot of time in his kennel instead of running freely outside. He simply didn’t like dogs on leads, and showed dominant behaviour to our patients when they were led into the clinic on the leash. We believe this might have been due to having some dog fighting training. Apart from that, he loved playing with the other dogs in the yard and was extremely friendly to humans.
As time passed, and application after application fell through, Magnum became deeply depressed in his kennel. We were becoming hopeless. Then, some wonderful supporters read about his plight and unhappiness on our Facebook site and offered to take him on weekend beach walks. Even more people arrived to visit Magnum and to play with him and give him some attention.
After many months of searching and much frustration, an adoption application from Nico and Sharon came through.
They lived on a farm, had lots of space and yearned to love him forever. It was the perfect match. A week later they came to fetch him. It was love at first sight and they connected immediately. We could see that this was the perfect match for Magnum.
Magnum, the pit bull with a huge heart and after a long journey, is now a part of a family where he will be loved forever.