Solo has lived a life that no dog deserves to live. He spent nearly a decade alone on the streets of Los Angeles, fending for himself. As the years went on, Solo grew sick and was too old to keep up with other dogs.
Eventually, he was too tired and weak to walk anymore and plopped down on a woman’s porch. When the woman discovered him, she named him Solovino (Spanish for “he came alone) and called up Rocket Dog Rescue for help.
The rescue flew him out to San Francisco where he went to live with a foster. Sadly, Solo was adopted out multiple times, but returned time and time again through no fault of his own.
Until one day, Carol Messina saw a picture of Solo online and knew right away that she had to save him.
“When I met him and saw how sad he was, I knew he was going to stay with me forever no matter what,” Messina told The Dodo.
Because of Solo’s past, he was very timid and still didn’t fully trust people. He didn’t react to those around him in a typical fashion and he would flinch anytime someone pet him.
But Messina soon learned that this was less of a trust issue and more of a hearing problem. It turns out that Solo’s hearing was way worse than anyone thought – he was practically deaf. This explains why he would flinch when anyone would touch him; he didn’t feel comfortable with people sneaking up on him when he couldn’t hear them coming.
His teeth were also very bad and causing him a lot of pain. Thankfully, Messina got him the surgery he needed to fix his teeth, and after that, he acted like a whole new dog! It was obvious that the pain had been affecting the way he acted as well.
Today, Solo is a very happy dog and enjoys running around outside and even meeting new dogs to play with. Messina has also learned new ways to help his anxieties caused by his deafness.
Whenever they go for a walk, he wears a harness that reads “deaf dog” so that people won’t pet him without asking. Messina also flickers lights on and off when she goes into a room so he knows that she is coming and doesn’t startle him.
Although Solo is getting older, he has so much life left in him thanks to Messina. He will now get to live out the rest of his days in a loving home and never has to worry about living on the streets ever again.
“I’m very proud of his progress,” Messina told The Dodo. “It is the best thing I have ever done with my life, and he has inspired me to get more senior dogs who need hospice care.”