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There was no Good Samaritan for the mangled yet still beautiful long-haired German Shepherd that lay forgotten in a gutter of L.A.'s worst area.

Those who had stolen him had cut off the tattooed part of his ear and poured acid on his body where they thought the chip was, so he couldn't be identified.

No one helped him for days. Ford ended up in a kill shelter. If he held hope that there remained some good in humans he wasn’t disappointed, for his Good Samaritan - Westside GSD Rescue – found him.

He spent a long time in the hospital; the acid had left a big hole through which his muscles and tissue could be seen. Droves of people came to visit, bringing money they had collected from friends or at the office. Ford somehow understood: he would graciously sit and give them his paw but then would check back with his rescuers to make sure they didn’t feel forgotten.

When Westside asked for donations to pay for Ford's expensive medical care they found themselves in the middle of an international event: people from all over the world sent money. Stacks of letters were coming in: people felt compelled to write something to him, not just send a check - among them, an 80 year old lady, sent him $100 as a birthday gift to herself.

Along the years, Ford's sweetness and gentleness has been an agent of healing to humans and animals alike. He has stepped between fighting dogs, dispelling the conflict. When he lived in a National Park he protected campers and their dogs from snakes. The rangers would even call his mom to see if Ford could help in an emergency. Nowadays Ford flies in a private plane with his mom everywhere, always by her side.

Aurora Franz
Newcastle, WY

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