Dear Tug only ever wanted to be a lover. Tug was rescued from the property of NFL quarterback Michael Vick (and from a life of being forced to fight). Through the years, we’ve watched this dog's confidence and kindness grow. Since Tug is so strong and athletic, his favorite pastime is, well, tugging. But a close second is riding around the Sanctuary in a golf cart. Because much of Tug’s time is spent with people rather than other dogs, caregivers make extra sure his days are happy, full and enriching.

His traumatic past means building those relationships with his caregivers takes time. With his caregivers’ help, Tug is slowly learning to trust and to work through some of his lingering issues. But Tug has no problem showing his fondness for the people he loves, wiggling with affection or leaning right in for up-close-and-personal contact.

Becoming more comfortable around other dogs is a big part of what Tug is currently working on. Leashed walks with another human and a dog is part of the process, and the exercise is helping him feel secure and at ease.

Your sponsorship of this great dog will help him receive the care he needs to continue healing.

Tug's Progress Journal

Rest in peace sweet Tug
Rest in peace
June 30, 2016

We are so sorry to let you know that your sponsored dog, Tug, has passed away. He had babesia, anillness from bite wounds that afflicts a lot of former fighting dogs. Though he lived comfortably with it for many years, it later reached a point where it was causing him suffering that could no longer be controlled medically. He was humanely euthanized, surrounded by the caregivers he loved.

Tug was one of the happiest dogs you could ever hope to meet. That’s astounding, given what he’d been through at Bad Newz Kennels, on the property of NFL quarterback, Michael Vick. But once he reached Best Friends, he was really a cheerful and grateful fellow. He loved his golf cart rides. He loved his friends. He would do a terrific welcome dance when he saw you coming!

His kind and chipper spirit was part of what made him a “Vicktory” dog – a dog who had not only survived terrible abuse in a dog fighting ring, but proved that any dog can revert to a sunny disposition, if given the love, care and compassion they’ve always deserved. He didn’t know it, of course, but he and his fellow Vicktory dogs made a huge impression on the world, and helped change perceptions about what’s possible for dogs of any breed who are rescued from terrible violence.

Everyone here is so sad to say “goodbye” to Tug. We know that you are, too. But we’re so grateful to have known him, and so glad that he spent the final years of his life happy, and thoroughly enjoying his days. That’s what you made possible, and we thank you.

Chillin' out
Chillin out
June 24, 2016

Tug is just like summer. He brings smiles and friendship, caregivers look forward to his arrival, and he always leaves a little too soon. Tug’s health has improved this summer. At the end of winter, he had some surgery and his spleen was removed. He’s better now, and he’s gained a little weight and feeling good. This cheerful boy loves hanging out with staff friends, sitting on their lap, munching on cookies and generally chilling out.

Thank you so much for sponsoring Tug!

Happy boy
Happy boy
January 7, 2016

Tug is a happy, winter-loving guy. Golf cart rides (one of Tug’s favorite activities) are a little chilly right now, but that just gives him an excuse to snuggle up even closer with his favorite people. Tug loves treats, and he’ll convince you he is starving if he senses any weakness in the person handing out the goodies. Every meal is eaten like it’s his last — but of course, it’s not, thanks to generous sponsors like you. Tug and all his friends never have to worry about food again. That doesn’t take any fun out of his mooching antics though! We thank you so much for being a sponsor to this special dog.

August 1, 2015

Tug and his funny little origami ears are doing fabulous! He’s been in wonderful health as of late and he’s been making great progress with his manners and overall behavior. 

True to form, Tug continues to be happiest when rollin’ in his golf cart. Recently, he even met a couple of visitors taking a Dogtown tour with John Garcia, who commented on how fabulously behaved he was when he was in his cart. When they’d walked by earlier, he was a loud, blustering goofball behind his fence, but when the same people approached him in the cart, he was relaxed and quiet. 

On that note, Tug is petitioning to get a fleet of golf carts painted in his honor so that he and a few select friends can drive around the Sanctuary begging for treats and toys. We’ve told him we’re not quite sure how to make that work but that we’ll look into it for him. It’s hard to say no to Tug. 

When he’s not cruising in his golf cart, Tug spends his free time lounging and schmoozing with Sanctuary interns, who of course think he’s all that and a bag of chips. 

Thank you for sponsoring Tug and for allowing this golf cart lovin’ fool to enjoy the good life.

Happy Dance
January 14, 2015

A day in Dogtown is never complete without Tug’s “happy dance,” which he enthusiastically performs for his caregivers every time he hears them coming. 

And Tug’s got even more reason to be happy these days. While recovering from some surgery, his home underwent a  maintenance makeover to spiff things up and reinforce the old fencing in his yard. And now he’s happy dancing in a new and improved space. 

During the maintenance work, Tug took up shop in a smaller enclosure next to the kitchen. And this proved quite beneficial to Tug because it meant extra socialization, extra walks and extra golf cart rides! But as much as he loved all the doting and special attention, he was just as thrilled to stretch his legs again in his own play yard. 

Some dogs are only happy doing their happy dance in their special, happy place! Thank you so much for sponsoring Tug and for keeping this boy movin’ and groovin’ the way he loves to do.

Going Strong
April 23, 2014

Tug is still going strong! His caregivers have been working with him on his dog-reactivity issues. He has gone on many parallel walks with other dogs (they don’t get close enough to touch each other), and he’s done great. Considering the horrific circumstances from which he was rescued, he has really come a long way.

Tug had an ultrasound in November, and everything checked out just fine. Tug’s favorite activity is golf cart rides with caregivers. Those are on hold now due to the colder weather, so he mostly spends his days playing with toys and blankets, and relishing all the attention he can get from his human friends.  

We thank you so much for being a sponsor to Tug. Your support gives second chances to Tug and many other animals like him.