When Melissa Shapiro first brought Piglet home, she had no idea he would make such an incredible impact on her life — and thousands of others!
Born blind and deaf, the tiny pink dog has become a beacon of love, acceptance, and resilience. These days, his story is encouraging children to embrace their differences and take on challenges with a “Piglet mindset.”
In 2017, the dachshund Chihuahua mix was rescued from a hoarding situation in Georgia. At the time, he weighed just 1 pound.
Melissa, a veterinarian, agreed to foster the fragile puppy, and it turned out to be the best decision she’s ever made!
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As one can imagine, life for Piglet is more stressful than that of a typical dog.
He suffered from severe separation anxiety and cried constantly in his new environment. The poor thing felt alone and afraid, but thankfully, he had Melissa, her husband Warren, and six new canine siblings to help him adjust.
“He screamed his way through the first few weeks of our ‘foster project,'” Melissa told People. “We held him, taught him tap signals, and reassured him with a comfortable, reliable routine. In turn, Piglet connected with his human and dog family, gained confidence, and started to settle down.”
Once Piglet began believing in himself, he realized there was no problem he couldn’t find his way around! All it took was a little creativity — and encouragement from Mom!
Seeing how far Piglet came each day, Melissa couldn’t help but fall in love. It only took her two months to realize that Piglet was right where he belonged, and she welcomed her seventh dog into the family that May.
Since then, Piglet has become a social media star, inspiring his thousands of fans with how he handles everyday life.
One third-grade teacher even used him as an example of how a positive mindset, or a “Piglet mindset,” can help her students overcome obstacles. When Melissa caught wind of these lessons, she turned them into a wonderful initiative.
The Piglet Mindset Educational Outreach Program provides online learning materials to classrooms around the world to help children think more like Piglet!
Next year, the pink pup will encourage even more people with his very own book!
Written by Melissa, “PIGLET: The Unexpected Story of a Deaf, Blind, Pink Puppy and His Family” covers the dog’s life, from rescue to role model. It will be released in August 2021, so keep your eyes peeled next summer!
What a special dog! It’s no wonder Melissa couldn’t let him go. Piglet may not see or hear, but his ability to touch hearts is extraordinary.
Share this sweet pup’s story to help spread the Piglet mindset!
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