Phoenix is a yellow Labrador retriever alive today thanks to Lucky Labs Rescue.
Phoenix, abandoned after his owner died, lived in a wooded area of a neighborhood in Montgomery County, and struggled to survive.
When he was found, he weighed 51 pounds, half of what he should.
Because of his lack of nutrition and muscle tone, he was too weak to move and had to drag his hind legs.
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When a resident saw him, she took him in and began calling friends and services to find help. A friend suggested she contact Lucky Labs Rescue.
“Our mission is to help rescue and re-home as many Labs as possible,” said Wendy Adams, 47, a Piper Glen resident and one of the founders of Lucky Labs Rescue. “The shelters are full. We get on average 250 calls and emails on a weekly basis from families and shelters that need to re-home dogs.”
Phoenix’s case was special. Due to his health issues, he has remained in foster care while he has received acupuncture and electrical stimulation treatments.
“For three months, we had to carry him around. Within the last two months, he has started walking,” said Adams.
Lucky Labs Rescue was created by Adams and her friend, Kelly Eubanks, of Winston-Salem.
“I volunteered for a local rescue group and while spending time at local shelters, I couldn’t believe how many Labs there were in need of help,” said Adams. “There were more Labs and Lab mixes than any other breed.”
Eubanks introduced Adams to Donna Norcross, 44, of Rock Hill, who shares a passion for Labs and rescuing animals. She is now secretary and treasurer for Lucky Labs Rescue.
“For the second year in a row, we received a grant from Wells Fargo Community Partners,” said Norcross. “We have a great base of volunteers and some amazing fosters that help us.
“Lucky Labs Rescue is run solely by volunteers,” she said.
Lucky Labs Rescue does not have a facility. They rely on foster homes because they want the foster home families to better represent the dog to adoptee families. The foster parents can tell Adams and Norcross whether the dog is house trained or can interact well with children.
Since 2008, through the help of volunteers, donations and grants, they have placed more than 650 dogs into new homes.