Gage, a small, black, mixed-breed dog, arrived at the Humane Society of South Mississippi three weeks ago with third-degree burns covering 60 percent of his body.
His injuries aren't done healing yet.
But Gage remains playful and mischievous and has quickly become a staff favorite, HSSM officials said.
HSSM staff don't know how Gage sustained the burns, though they speculate it was through an act of animal cruelty. When he first arrived at the facility the team there began administering pain medication and evaluating his injuries.
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Jennifer Griffin, a veterinarian with Happy Tails, performed laser and hydrotherapy treatments.
During his first week at HSSM, a volunteer could only cradle his head in her hands -- that was the only part of his body that could be touched without causing pain.
But Gage willingly let staff members care for his injuries.
By the second week, his appetite and activity level had increased.
During the third week, Gage had three treatments and was sleeping in a chaise lounge chair in the manager's office. One day -- apparently deciding it was time to explore the rest of the facility -- he snuck out of his room and found himself in the clinic lobby.
"While Gage has shown tremendous progress since his arrival, he still has a long road to recovery," said Jill Mollohan, the executive director of HSSM. "I'm so thankful to be part of a community that supports an organization such as ours, enabling us to offer refuge and medical treatment for abused and abandoned animals like Gage."
Gage remains in recovery but will eventually be ready for adoption. He is house trained and is working on leash skills.
He'll have to wear a shirt for sun protection but otherwise should lead a normal life.
Anyone who wants updates on Gage's recovery or to donate can visit sunherald.com for a link to the Humane Society Web site.