Upon first glance Hooch appears to be a normal, happy dog. Which no doubt he most definitely is, but what makes him different than any other dog is that when he opens his mouth to smile you will notice he has absolutely no tongue. He didn’t start out that way; his missing tongue is a horrendous act of animal cruelty.
Hooch’s story begins at a high-kill shelter in central California where he waited out his impending death sentence in a medical kennel. Exhibiting an upper respiratory infection, pneumonia, severe lacerations to his face and ears, and what the shelter staff assumed was a broken jaw he was discovered by Zach Skow. Having gone through his own near death experience, founder of Marley’s Mutts Rescue and avid dog lover, Zach knows a thing or two about second chances.
What became clear was how absolutely horrific Hooch’s life almost was, with his ears and tongue cut off he was intended to be used as a bait dog. Lucky for him a hero arrived just in time. Despite being severely underweight and in dismal condition, this giant hearted Dogue de Bordeaux was still somehow happy.
Over the past few months under the patient and loving care of Zach Hooch has made incredible progress. He has began to eat and drink on his own, and despite any prior abuse he is incredibly loving and gentle with people and dogs alike. He has already attended many rescue events and is a spokes dog of sorts spreading hope and awareness wherever he goes.
How Marley’s Mutts Came to Be
Today, Zach and his Marley’s Mutts team of heroes save dogs on a regular basis, but in the beginning it was really a dog named Marley that saved Zach. At the age of only 28 Zach found himself battling liver disease, in desperate need of a liver transplant and fighting for his life. With little will to live his biggest fan was his dog, Marley. No matter how sick he got, Marley stayed right by his side and became a source of strength. And then somehow, through a miraculous act of fate, Zach's health began to improve and the rest is history.
Marley’s Mutts Rescue has committed their efforts to saving shelter dogs in Kern County because these dogs essentially have no one and are closest to death.
Hooch’s story is one of survival and a true testament to the resilience of dogs and their innate ability to love unconditionally. Marley’s Mutts came to be through healing companionship and in turn will continue to heal and find companionship for down-on-their-luck canines. Visit their Facebook page to see the awesome dogs they are helping.