When Darlene went into a nail salon in California, she expected to come out with a fresh manicure — not a rescue mission.
But her manicurist told her about a family dog her son refused to feed. Darlene assumed that the woman was at least helping to feed and take of the dog, but she was wrong.
The manicurist admitted that she really just wanted to have the dog put to sleep, but didn't want to pay for it. Darlene asked to see the dog's picture — and as soon as she did, she knew she needed to save him.
She went to the manicurist's house, where she found Smokey alone in the backyard. The poor dog was severely emaciated, and it was clear that without Darlene's intervention, he wouldn't survive for very much longer.
"I couldn't believe my eyes. It made me ill," Darlene said in a video about Smokey's rescue.
The son let her take Smokey, and she quickly got him out of there — and told off the son. "You could have taken care of this animal, you jerk," she said in the video.
When Smokey was first rescued, he didn't even have the strength to eat. He had been starved for so long, he had forgotten what it was like to even be fed at all.
Smokey was taken to the vet and put on an IV drip to save his life. He was diagnosed with food deprivation that appeared to have been going on for weeks — maybe even months. His digestive system was in shock.
Forte Animal Rescue heard about Smokey and stepped in to help. Soon, Smokey had a new backyard to play in — this time with a family who would never, ever hurt him.
Months after his adoption, Darlene was able to visit Smokey in his new home. His new forever family could not thank Darlene enough for saving Smokey's life and giving them the greatest new family member they could ask for.
"I have so much gratitude, and I really mean that," Smokey's new mom said in the video. "He's so part of our life."
Check out the full video of Smokey's rescue below: