Eldad Hagar, one of DogTime.com’s Petties 2013 Unsung Hero finalists and co-founder of Los Angeles, Calif.’s pet rescue Hope for Paws, is known as much for giving underdogs a chance at a wonderful life as he is for creating poignant videos of all of his miracle rescues. Take Fiona, a blind Poodle mix Hagar and his wife Audrey found living in a pile of trash, for example, whose amazing rescue video has been viewed on YouTube more than 2 million times; Fiona’s rescue and recovery has inspired people all over the globe and has drawn much-needed attention to the plight of homeless dogs. Since her rescue, Fiona has arguably become the most recognizable face of Hagar’s Hope for Paws organization.
Now another of Hagar’s sweet rescues is making headlines, and because of her new owner’s career it looks like she won’t be leaving the limelight anytime soon.
A YouTube video posted August 29 shows Hagar and his friend Lisa Arturo walking through South Central L.A. Not long into their trip, they spotted a small stray dog standing in the middle of the street. Showing interest in the camera, the little dog walks right up to her rescuers, giving the viewer a chance to see her long, matted fur up close.
Using a few treats and a lot of patience, Hagar and Arturo slowly lead the dog away from the busy road, and soon the pooch all but slips the lead around her neck herself. Scared but sweet, the dog gives Arturo a couple of small kisses on the hand, and from then on the dog, now named Scout, starts to trust the people who brought her in off of the street.
As it turns out, Mike Daniels, a producer and writer for the acclaimed FX network television series Sons of Anarchy (SOA), was on the hunt for a new canine companion after the recent passing of his dog, Alaskan Malamute mix Andy. When she received Daniels’ adoption application, Bill Foundation Executive Director Annie Hart tells the Huffington Post she couldn’t wait to introduce the TV producer to Scout.
“Mike and his wife Michaela [McManus] had recently lost one of their dogs and wanted to adopt a companion for their other dog, Sully. I knew just from reviewing [their application], something magical was going to occur through this adoption,” Hart writes in an email.
Sure enough, it was love at first sight for Scout, which was a surprise to everyone involved, especially Daniels.
“When I went to look at Scout, Annie at the Bill Foundation told me she was skittish around men and not to expect her to warm up right away,” Daniels says. “I sat on the curb, the two of us made eye contact and then she just climbed into my lap, curled up and fell asleep.”
Daniels says he and Scout seemed to forge an instant bond.
“I think she picked up on my heartbreak and knew I would understand hers,” he says. “It was enough common ground to get us started.”
A quick meeting with Daniels’ wife and his other dog, Sully, and Scout’s adoption was approved. The little dog who once roamed the streets of South Central alone now had the happy ending she deserved. But the happy news doesn’t end there.
Inspired by Scout’s journey, the rest of the Sons of Anarchy team decided to pay it forward, spreading the word about the Bill Foundation and Eldad Hagar’s Hope for Paws on the show’s Twitter feed. Members of the SOA crew have also started rescuing homeless animals themselves, taking in two stray dogs from the street in recent weeks.
“A week or so after Mike and Michaela adopted Scout, I received a call from someone on Mike’s writing team. Mike had given them my number because they had found a scared, stray dog and they had taken the time to gain his trust and ultimately were able to rescue them,” Hart says.
“If Sons of Anarchy has a long run on TV and continues rescuing with us, we may end [up] with a whole SOA cast of dogs!” Hart jokes.