When Florian and Katrin, a beautiful young couple, lost the child they were looking forward to very much, they were simply heartbroken.
To distract themselves from their pain, they thought adopting a furry friend would be a good idea.
After looking through the animal shelter photos, they came across the photo of Fausto – a dog with a sad facial expression that just screamed ‘please, help me’.
They ended up visiting Fausto at the shelter and connecting with him instantly, so they eventually adopted him.
As far as they know and have been told, Fausto was brought to the shelter by a family who did not want him anymore. He was just a little puppy who probably did not have enough time to bond with his mother.
Fausto spent many months in his kennel at the shelter before being transferred to a different shelter, where Florian and Katrin found him.
“We started recognizing very quickly that he has just a tremendous fear of practically everything. So, lights, bicycles, definitely cars, airplanes, construction sites, everything. Pretty much anything that man has constructed, he can be afraid of. Yes, he was afraid of water,” Florian told GeoBeats Animals.
Poor Fausto had spent most of his puppyhood stuck between the four walls of his kennel, and sadly, he was extremely fearful of everything outside and everything man-made.
He was incredibly trusting of other dogs and other humans, but anytime he went to the outside world, he was like a completely different dog.
For the first couple of months, the couple had seen a lot of professional dog trainers, as they were quite overwhelmed.
“We had trouble just getting him to leave the apartment. We said, well, we need to get out of this mode of constantly stressing out about this dog and worrying, so let’s go on a vacation,” Florian said.
That was the first time they saw Fausto get out of his shell and explore the world without being terribly afraid of everything.
The Cutest, Smartest, And Bravest Dog
It really took four or five months of hard work and learning how to help fearful dogs such as Fausto, but finally, their hard work paid off.
“Practicing loose leash walking and working on Fausto’s fear of traffic. Not long ago, that would have either lead to a flight reflex or he would pancake on the road.”
Since being adopted, Fausto has grown so much. He is a very thoughtful, active little dog, and he takes feedback really well, according to his parents.
Now, Fausto generally has his fears under control.
He goes swimming, accompanies them to a restaurant or a bank, and even goes on walks on the streets, which previously were completely off limits.
In hindsight, they both needed each other to fully heal.
Fausto needed them to come out of his shell, and they needed him to come out of his dark place. By taking the focus of their own heartache to help Fausto, they all healed.
“I tell him every night that he is the cutest, smartest, bravest, bestest, funniest little dog,” Katrin said.
Follow Fausto and all his adventures in conquering his fears on his official Instagram account, @fearless_fausto.
This is his full story for GeoBeats Animals: