Abandoned in a trash can and struggling with illness, this 8-month-old Chihuahua discovers the genuine essence of love.

Thor the Chihuahua is everything an 8-week-old puppy should be: curious, likes to eat, and especially enjoys cuddle time and playing with his new foster sister.

His life was radically different just a week ago.

Animal control officers in Dickinson, Texas, responded to a complaint last Tuesday night about a waste bag sitting on the side of the road — and it appeared that something was moving within.

Thor, a tiny 3-pounder, gazed up at them as they opened it. He was crawling with fleas and coated in blood. His right eye was out of place in its socket, and he shivered from the cold. Despite the fact that he was wearing a collar and appeared to have had an owner at one point, it was clear that he had been discarded there.

The officers rushed the puppy to Animal Kingdom Pet Hospital and immediately stabilised him, but his right eye was so seriously inflamed that vets decided it had to be removed. While no one knows how his eye was wounded, the puncture scars on his tiny body indicate that he was most likely assaulted by another dog.

“We had no idea if he would survive the surgery to remove his eye,” Kristin Smith, a clinic vet tech, told The Dodo. “Luckily, he pulled through and everything went better than expected.”

Thor, who was just 8 weeks old at the time, was rescued just in time. Smith believes that at his age, he would not have survived another night alone inside the sack.

Smith got to spend some time with Thor while she was recovering, and he immediately won her heart. Smith chose to take him home with her so he could heal in a safe environment and to assist the local shelter, Bayou Animal Services, which offered to pay for his care.

“The shelter has already been stretched thin with so many pet surrenders this holiday season, so I knew it would be better for him to recover in a home,” she added.

It didn’t take long for her to realise just how desperate the little dog was for love. Thor is always on the lookout for his foster mum, waiting for her to sit down so he can cuddle up with her.

Thor enjoys cuddling time and naps because he has plenty of soft blankets to keep him warm.

“He’s very affectionate and likes nothing more than cuddling,” she remarked. “He’s such a sweet, tiny baby and everyone who meets him falls in love with him.”

Thor is healing well from his surgery and is being treated for several parasites, despite his difficult start in life. Because he is so young, he is fast adjusting to life with one eye, and it does not appear to bother him, according to Smith. The stitches across his eyelid will be removed in the coming weeks, and he will continue to receive puppy vaccines as he grows.

Smith anticipates that he will be ready for a permanent home soon after the New Year.

But for the time being, he’s not leaving his foster mom’s side – or his cuddly blankets.

“Thor is sleeping soundly tonight with not a care in the world,” he remarked. “He really is the perfect little puppy.”

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