The Dog Returned After 419 Days in a Texas Shelter Has Moved to a New Rescue to 'Decompress'

After more than 419 days at the Humane Society of Central Texas, Rusty, the rescue dog, is getting a change of scenery.

The shelter pup went viral on Thursday after news of his bad luck spread. Rusty was surrendered to the Humane Society of Central Texas in Waco as a puppy. From there, the dog matched with a foster home, a different rescue, and a potential adopter, none of which worked out. Then, in March, after 419 days in the shelter system, Rusty was adopted from the Humane Society of Central Texas but was returned the following day because he wasn't a good fit for his new family.

Rusty's string of bad luck caused many animal lovers to reach out to the Humane Society of Central Texas to ask about the German shepherd/Catahoula mix. On April 1, the shelter posted a video update on their adoptable dogs and Rusty's status.

"We are not at all upset with his adopters. They did the right thing bringing him back because he is a lot of work, and he did nip at them," a shelter employee shares in the clip while the camera is on Rusty in his kennel. "Not every dog is right for every family. We know there's a lot of judgment going on about the family that returned him. But, you know what, they didn't let him go in the street, they didn't let anything happen to him, they acknowledged he wasn't the right dog for them, and they brought him back."

"When animals get returned, this is not necessarily a bad thing. It gives us another opportunity to find them the right home," the shelter employee continues in the video. "We want to thank everyone who has reached out to us about Rusty. People have reached out from all over the country."

In the clip, the employee adds that Rusty is an energetic dog that would do best with a big yard to run in — since he does not do well on a leash — and that Rusty likes the company of other large dogs.

Rusty has not found his forever family yet, but he gets a few items from his wish list with his next move. On Monday, Pearl's Place, a rescue in Temple, Texas that helps harder to adopt dogs find homes, announced on Facebook that they are now caring for Rusty.

"Rusty has spent over 400 days in the Humane Society of Central Texas in Waco, and we can't commend them enough for their dedication and hard work in the quest to find him a forever home," reads the post, which also includes a photo of Rusty smiling with the rescue's staff. "We are very honored and privileged to have him in the dog house, and we will be working with him to decompress, and he will be looking for his forever home."

"Welcome to the house Rusty!" the post ends.

The Humane Society of Central Texas shared their own video of Rusty's move, which shows the dog exploring Pearl's Place's large dog park.

In the clip, Lisa of Pearl's Place explains that she has experience training working dogs — like the breeds that make up Rusty — that have "a lot of drive."

"We just got to find something for him to do," she adds.

The dog will also get the opportunity to easily befriend other canines at Pearl's Place, socialization that should enrich Rusty and make him an even better dog for his future family.

To learn more about Pearl's Place and how they help dogs, please visit the nonprofit's website.

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