Thousands of people are flocking to try and adopt this tiny, three-month old puppy after he was abandoned at an airport along with a gut-wrenching note.
Chewy is a little baby Chihuahua mix who was found in a Las Vegas airport bathroom after his owner was a victim of domestic violence and was forced to give him away.
The heartbreaking note reads:
“Hi! I’m Chewy! My owner was in an abusive relationship and couldn't afford me to get on the flight," the anonymous woman wrote in the note. My boyfriend kicked my dog when we were fighting and he has a big knot on his head. He probably needs a vet. I love Chewy sooo much please love and take care of him xoxoxo.”
You can only imagine how hard it must be to leave a pet you clearly love so much because of circumstances in your life beyond your own control.
But thankfully, whatever happens, Chewy will go to a good home, and there’s even a chance he could be reunited with his owner.
The employee at McCarran International Airport who found him also happens to be a volunteer at a local animal rescue centre, and they asked Linda Gilliam, president of Connor and Millie's Dog Rescue in Las Vegas, if the shelter could take him in.
She agreed, and the centre has been taking care of Chewy all week. As soon as they shared his story on social media they were flooded with applications to adopt the adorable pup – more than a thousand people responded – but the centre’s priority is still to try and get him back to his owner, if at all possible.
"You could tell this wasn't something [the owner] wanted to do," Gilliam told CBS News. "This isn't how she wanted this to end, but she did the best she could to try to save herself and him at the same time. Abusers – they have no limits."
The centre have given Chewy’s owner four weeks to come forward to reclaim her puppy, but if she cannot, they will give him to one of the other families keen to care for him.
"A lot of people want to reunite the dog with his owner, but she has not come forward and I don't really expect her to ever be in a position to ever come forward," Gilliam added. "She did a very brave thing and hopefully she'll see that he's OK. He'll have a great life."
The centre’s Facebook post about Chewy has been inundated with comments supporting Chewy’s owner and also offering to take care of him.
Diana Strode-Wilson wrote: “I just want to say (to the mama of the puppy,) you are very brave to make such a difficult decision. Your heart must have broken to just walk away from that beautiful little puppy. Know that you did the right thing to leave. Thank God the person that found her was a good person and transported her to a good place.”
And Melissa Stringer said: “Oh Chewy!!! I hope your Mom comes forward and is found. So much outpouring of help for her to be able to get you back free of charge. Your Mom has such a big heart. It took a lot of bravery for her to leave her situation and even more to leave you somewhere safe so you could be taken care of. She deserves to have you back.”
Hopefully now both Chewy and his owner can go on to live safe and happy lives, even if it means they have to be apart.