Optimistic future for puppy rescued from burning trash bin

The canine with the rough beginning is doing well.

"He seems to be doing fantastic, given all that he's been through, and we're optimistic that he will one day have a normal life," said Dr. Judith Feldsien.

Dr. Feldsien said Phoenix may still need more surgeries, but things are looking good so far.

Authorities say Phoenix was set on fire and tossed in a garbage bin on the edge of the Red Lake Indian Reservation. He was pulled from the flames by a passerby, but suffered several burns. He has burns on about a third of his body. The red track suit both covers and keeps him from touching and possibly infecting the injuries on his back, legs and feet.

In addition to his burns and singed fur, when veterinarians first saw him, Phoenix was severely under-nourished and his growth was stunted. Since then, he's had two skin grafts to cover some of his worst wounds and he's doubled in size over the past three weeks.

"He's pretty happy for the most part but he's a little leery about people touching him, as you can imagine," Dr. Vicki Schulz said.

The Humane Society is offering a $5,000 reward to find the person who hurt Phoenix. The Red Lake Police Department is investigating, and anyone with information is asked to call 218-679-3313.

In the meantime, the 6-month-old is adjusting to his new surroundings, even though he doesn't seem to know his own strength. It won't be long before phoenix is ready to spread his wings and find a permanent home.

The nonprofit rescue group ACT V Rescue and Rehabilitation has undertaken the cost of the Phoenix's care. Anyone interested in supporting ACT V can visit http://bit.ly/1xfq662

Report via KMSP