Wacku the rescue dog has lived an amazing life. He’s proof that a happy ending is possible. Wacku used to be a guard dog living in the Philippines, according to PEOPLE. While at work, he was attacked by a man with a machete.

Luckily, Wacku was rushed to the hospital and was cared for by veterinary staff at the local university. Wacku was later given to the Philippine Animal Welfare Society (PAWS). The dog’s story was used to amend the Philippine Animal Welfare Act of 1998.

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Liesl Wilhardt, the founder and executive director of Luvable Dog Rescue in Eugene, Oregon, worked tirelessly to find Wacku an adoptive home after finding out about him through SPCA International.

“They knew that I could offer Wacku a home with human and animal friends in an environment where he could be himself,” Wilhardt told PEOPLE. “When Wacku arrived, he was cautious but curious about everything. I’m sure it was a huge transition for him in every imaginable way. A different climate, different people, different natural environment, different language, different animals around him … but he is also incredibly smart,” she added. “He figured out quickly that life was pretty good here! Different but good!”

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Now that Wacku has found his forever home with Wilhardt, she’s sharing his story. “I love Wacku so much! I admire his courage and resilience. Despite what happened to him, he loves and trusts people and has found joy in living. I am amazed at his ability to forgive. He’s a true survivor,” Wilhardt said.

We encourage everyone thinking of getting a pet to adopt instead of shop. Read more resources about adopting animals on One Green Planet, including 7 Reasons to Adopt Your Next Furry Best Friend, 5 Reasons Why Everyone Should Adopt a Pet, and These Heartwarming Before and After Pictures of Adopted Rescue Animals Will Make Your Day! Read tips for pet adoptions and what to consider before adopting an animal. We recommend using these apps to find shelter dogs near you!

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