Sal's Story

The Dogist Fund Recipient, December 2021

Love at First Sight

Our team visited the St. Hubert's Animal Center campus back in October to volunteer one day, and our Director of Partnerships, Jacquie, fell in love with a three-year-old Pit Bull named Sal. Jacquie immediately emailed the staff at St. Hubert's to let them know she wanted to foster him – little did we know that would be the beginning of our story with Sal.

Roaming the Streets

Sal first came into St. Hubert’s on August 26th as a street dog. They don’t know the length of time that he was homeless – he was one of many dogs roaming the streets in this particular town. Eventually, the staff at St. Hubert’s got a call from the police department about him, and he was completely emaciated by the time he was rescued.

He was so skinny but afraid to eat – he seemed scared to be in a new place. Slowly but surely he began to bond to some of the medical staff and started eating his food and taking his vitamins. They weighed him every few days and monitored him heavily – everything had to be done gradually. Eventually he allowed them to do a more thorough exam, and they saw the growth on his eye. He was hesitant to let anyone near it, so it was clear the trust had to be built first.

An Absolute Angel

After Jacquie took Sal home to a warm, comfortable home with her other two dogs, Artie and Brody, Sal truly started to open up. "He was an absolute angel – didn't beg, didn't bark and he was completely housebroken. He was great with other dogs and really didn't care much about the cat. He loved to cuddle up on the couch and fall asleep with his head in my lap – he was a great work from home companion and could usually be found laying by my feet.”

A More Extensive Surgery

The mass on Sal's eye continued to be a concern – it was growing in size. St Hubert's intended to operate on it during his nueter, but it turned out to be a more complicated surgery than they imagined. "When he went for his neuter, they were hoping that they would be able to do his eye surgery the same day. However, they discovered that his eye mass was attached to his cornea and would require a more extensive surgery. A veterinarian friend reached out after I shared the update on Instagram and connected us to The Animal Eye Center of New Jersey. They were fully booked through January but they managed to squeeze us in the next day."

Dr. Holmberg looked at his eyes under the microscope, and performed various tests to check his eye pressure, and make sure there were no scratches or abrasions. Overall, his eyes were healthy but he had birth defects called ‘dermoids’ in both eyes – three on the left eye and one on the right. A dermoid is a mass of skin growing in an abnormal location – they are not cancerous, but they can cause permanent damage to the cornea and lead to vision loss over time, so it’s important that they’re removed. They were able to fit him in for surgery the following day, and everything went according to plan.

Thank You to The Dogist Fund Donors!

Thanks to The Dogist Fund monthly donors, Sal was able to have his eye surgery! That’s right, Sal’s eyesight was repaired because of YOUR donations and is now one step closer to going to his forever home! Thank you to everyone who helped make this happen! Sal has a VERY long waiting list of adopters and is looking forward to meeting his forever family, hopefully soon.

Testimonial from the St. Hubert's Team


"Thanks to The Dogist, their supporters and Animal Eye Center of NJ, Sal recently had eye surgery and his eyesight was repaired! We can’t thank them enough. Many thanks as well to his awesome foster Jacquie who has been taking such great care of him."

– St Hubert's Team