Innocent Dog Survived Gunshot, Now Faces Euthanasia Because No One Wants Her

Today we’re deviating from our typical cat rescue stories to give the spotlight to a dog that desperately needs all of us to be her voice.

Sugar is a sweet pit bull terrier mix that was abandoned in a gas station parking lot with a gun shot wound. 

After spending a year in foster care, this innocent pup with a clean bill of health and heart of gold is scheduled to be euthanized on November 23, 2022.

Please read and share Sugar’s story in hopes that we can prevent such a tragic fate. If you have a heart for animals, be her voice and help bring her justice.

After all Sugar has been through, she deserves to live happily ever after.


A Tragic Start

When Sugar was roughly 1 year old, she was shot and left to die in a gas station parking lot in Durham, NC.

Thankfully, someone called the police and from there she was rushed to an emergency vet. 

The bullet had hit her in the neck/shoulder area and broken some of her ribs, causing lung damage.

However, Sugar made a full recovery much faster than anyone anticipated!

Once heard the news, they kindly took her into their care. 

Little is known about Sugar’s past, but they believe she was a young mother and kept chained outdoors for most of her life. 

Love at First Sight

Once Sugar recovered, she went into foster care with one of Hope’s new volunteers, Josh. 

“She was very sweet and snuggly from the beginning,” said Josh. “She acted like she knew me as soon as she met me.”

Despite how bubbly and affectionate Sugar was, she struggled with self control.

She was either bouncing around the house or laying on the couch in a cuddle puddle. 

She was never aggressive and has no bite record to this day, but she was easily excited and reactive to non-neutral stimuli. 

It was clear she had no previous training or guidance, but over the next several months, she’d work hard to turn her life around.

“She’s very smart and picked up training quickly,” said Josh. “She’s super food motivated and could learn just about anything with a little treat.”

Because of how poorly she’d been treated in the past, being loved and cared for was something Sugar had never experienced.

Overlooked & Uninvited

“She behaved in a way that said ‘I’m on my own. No one is going to look out for me’,” said Josh. 

Once she started to trust Josh and get comfortable leaning on him for support, she started to relax. 

Her anxiety and reactivity slowed down while her training progressed fast!

Hope Animal Rescue even hired professional trainers to work with her and put her in a board and train program for a few weeks. 

“She’s come such a long way and is able to regulate herself much better,” said Josh.


Despite all the obstacles she’d overcome, she still wasn’t ready to join the other dogs and puppies at adoption events because of her reactivity. 

She was never aggressive, but she was very excited to see other dogs and people.

This made the rescue worry that she’d be misrepresented or be off-putting at adoption events. 

That meant Sugar wouldn’t have the chance to meet potential adopters like the other dogs did.

Months passed and Josh’s heart broke for Sugar as she continued to be ignored and overlooked while puppies and other dogs found their forever families.

Instead, poor Sugar remained in foster care for almost a year. 

Suddenly, Josh was faced with devastating news: If Sugar isn’t adopted by 11/23/22, she will be euthanized. 

Mistreated & Misunderstood

“There’s no reason a dog with no bite record and no history of aggression should be euthanized, especially after all the progress she’s made,” said Josh. “She was never given a chance to meet potential adopters.”

If Sugar had the opportunity to meet potential adopters 1-on-1, we’re confident she’d be adopted in no time.


All she needs is for someone to believe in her.

She’s been on Hope Animal Rescue’s website for a year without a single adoption application or attempt to meet her. 

We believe she’s being overlooked because of 3 reasons. 

1. She’s not a puppy; she’s roughly 1.5-2 years old. 

2. She’s a black dog. There are dangerous superstitions about cats and dogs with black fur that not only them less adoptable, but also make them targets of animal cruelty.

3. She’s a pit bull terrier mix, a breed despite the overwhelming amount of data that proves otherwise.

 The data reveals that , the most aggressive.

To make matters worse, the longer she was up for adoption, the less people wanted her. 

We urge fellow animal lovers to advocate for Sugar and prevent her from being euthanized. 

The clock is ticking and her time is running out fast.

She desperately needs to be adopted or find another rescue to take her into their care. 

Sugar’s Dream Home

The ideal home for Sugar is one where she’d be the only dog (for now) and have a backyard to run around in. 

Her adopter would need to get to know her well enough to learn what kinds of dogs she’d do well around and facilitate a slow introduction.

Because of her energy levels and excitement, it’s best she’s adopted into a home with no children under the age of 14. 

There’s a good chance she’d do well with younger children once she’s older, calmer, and has more training. 

Sugar is very adventurous and would do great with someone who likes to go outdoors, hike, and watch TV.


She loves snuggling up on the couch with you, laying on your lap or chest. 

“She’s the full package. Bubbly, goofy, athletic, and very affectionate,” said Josh.

Sugar is spayed, fully vaccinated, and healthy.

All she’s missing is a forever family.

How to Adopt Sugar

There are still pieces of the bullet left in her shoulder, but her vet doesn’t anticipate this will cause any long-term health issues.


Sugar is currently stationed in a boarding facility in Durham, NC. 

Her adoption fee has been reduced to $150. If you’re interested in adopting Sugar or setting up a 1-on-1 meet & greet, to start the process. 

If you don’t hear back from Hope Animal Rescue within 24 hours or simply want to learn more about Sugar from the person who knows her best, please email her previous foster, Josh Wharton, at and he’d be happy to help. 

Justice for Sugar

The clock is ticking and her euthanasia date (11/23/22) is quickly approaching.

Please share Sugar’s story online and with your community to help this sweet girl live happily ever after. 

Despite how cruel humans have been to her, she has so much love to give and shows no sign of distrust.

Her story started as a nightmare, but we’re doing everything we can to give her the fairytale ending she deserves. 

After all she’s been through, she deserves to be loved unconditionally.

She’s counting on us to be her voice and bring her justice.

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