When the staff at an animal shelter in Oklahoma heard about Phoenix the pitbull, they immediately took him in and vets began working on treating him and trying to find out just how his face had become so disfigured.
Many people initially assumed Phoenix had been abused, however, vets suspected it could actually be a medical issue, worsened by him living without proper shelter, water and food.
Eventually, it was found that Phoenix has a rare auto-immune disease called Systemic Lupus Erythematosus (SLE) and vets were able to find a way to manage the disease.
Road to recovery
Gradually, Phoenix began to show signs of improvement. He started to gain weight and his skin began to heal. However, his skin will always be sensitive to the sun, so he has to wear special doggy clothes to protect it. He will also never get back the muscles on his head and will always have a ‘sharky’ looking grin.
Now he's feeling much better, Phoenix can concentrate on just enjoying life like any normal dog. He loves nothing more than to run around, chase balls and play tug-o-war while looking forward to finding a loving home.
Phoenix has even become quite the social media star with his very own Instagram account. An incredible 193k followers keep-up-to-date with photos and news about the brave pup's road to recovery.