“He doesn’t know he’s deformed. He thinks he’s the most handsome thing there ever was and we just let him think that.”
Jamie Hulit took one look at six-year-old Beaux’s crooked, smooshed face and fell in love.
Hulit, a longtime dog lover, came across Beaux Tox (whose name was Lucky at the time) about a year ago when her friend shared a photo of the unique looking yellow Labrador online. His owners—breeders who were having trouble selling him because of his facial deformities—were looking for a foster or forever home for him.
“I called my friend and said, ‘I want that dog. I don't even want to foster him. I want him,'" Hulit, who lives in Austin, Texas, told Today.
That same evening she drove out to his owners’ house to pick him up, and was horrified by what she found. Beaux was emaciated, and had been living in the backyard for five years without any love, attention, or even a bed. The poor pup weighed just 42 pounds and had never been treated for fleas or heartworm.
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Hulit immediately took him to a vet, who told her that Beaux was suffering from an advanced case of heartworm disease, and would most likely not make it. She was given the option of trying to save him anyway, or putting him down. Hulit decided to fight for him. “I said I would feel horrible if we did not attempt to give him a life and whatever it takes; let’s do it,” she recalled to Today.
Beaux was on an oxygen tank for most of the first month of his recovery and too sick to even start his heartworm treatment. It even looked like they were going to lose him multiple times, but Beaux refused to give up.
After three months, he finally weighed enough to go through heartworm treatment. And even though he lost hearing in his left ear and is blind in his right eye, he was finally given a clean bill of health this past November.
Since finding his forever home with Hulit, Beaux, who now weighs a healthy 108 pounds, is “happy about everything”—even going to the vet. “The only thing he’ll get sad about is if he doesn’t get belly rubs on demand,” she joked.
Beaux’s sunken cranium and too-close eyes are the result of sharing his mother’s womb with six other puppies, and have no effect on his health or mental capabilities.
“He just kind of got pushed out of the way, and formed how he formed,” Hulit explained to The Dodo, “but it has nothing to do with his intelligence.”
Hulit told Today that people were initially scared of his face, so she started making ties for him “to soften his look.”
“He doesn’t know he’s deformed,” she noted. “He thinks he’s the most handsome thing there ever was and we just let him think that.”
It’s been a year since he was rescued, and Hulit said that Beaux loves his life with her and his two fur siblings. “I would do it all over again because this dog has taught me so much,” Hulit said. “I mean, I’m broke, but that’s OK.”