Get the tissues ready! A heartwarming new dog movie, Rescued By Ruby, is coming to Netflix this week. It’s based on the true story of a shelter puppy who gets a second chance at life when she is adopted by a state cop who needs a search and rescue dog.
Ruby is an Australian Shepherd/Border Collie mix who has been at a Rhode Island shelter since she was a puppy. She had been brought back from five families because of her high energy and behavior problems.
Patricia Inman, a shelter volunteer and dog trainer, is credited with saving this pup from euthanasia many times. She saw something in Ruby that maybe no one else saw.
“She was a total moron. She jumped and bit her leash. She didn’t want to sit or lie down. She just never stopped moving. She was special and she needed someone special.”
At that point, a state police officer, Daniel O’Neil, needed a search and rescue dog and adopted eight-month-old Ruby from a shelter in 2011. She was then on her way to training to become a K-9 police officer.
Then, in October 2017, Ruby showed that a rescue dog can do anything a purebred K-9 can. A teenager disappeared while hiking for 36 hours, and while a search party couldn’t find the boy, Ruby did. She found the unconscious boy in serious health. In a grand plot, the boy Ruby saved turned out to be the son of Inman, who saved the dog’s life several times.
In an interview, O’Neil told the story of coming to Inman’s house to tell her that Ruby had found her son.
“I said, ‘Pat, that was her thank you for saving her life — she saved your boy’s life.’ And we both started crying.”
The film will premiere on Netflix on March 17 to tell this touching story about the pup who just needed one more chance.
Ruby is played by dog actor Bear, who happened to be a shelter dog who was saved from being euthanized by the film’s dog trainers.
O’Neil now oversees an 18-dog K-9 unit. He knew taking in the shelter dog and training her to be a K-9 was a risk. Most K-9 dogs are trained from birth and cost departments between $15,000 and $45,000.
“It’s like divine intervention. She was given a chance and she did everything she could to repay it,” he said. “You have this dog that was abandoned and she changed the lives of so many people.”
As someone with dyslexia and hyperactivity, O’Neil immediately felt a connection to Ruby. He hopes this film will show people that every dog deserves a second chance and hopefully encourage people to adopt a dog.
“When you show them love and compassion and give them some stability, they show their true colors,” he said.
O’Neil and Ruby have now been partners for 11 years. They’ve performed multiple rescues and even convicted two murderers based on evidence Ruby sniffed out.
“It represents something true and beautiful: We can achieve great things no matter where we start in life.”
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