An abandoned dog, tied to a tree, is filled with joy as rescuers draw near, his tail wagging nonstop in a heartening exhibition of renewed hope.

When it comes to saving dogs, Stray Rescue of St. Louis’ (SRSL) rescue team is used to traveling far and wide. They drive countless miles a week combing the city for dogs in need. But one rescue mission earlier this month happened unusually close to home, and its proximity left the entire team stunned.

While walking along the sidewalk outside of SRSL, lined with memorial bricks and benches for visitors, staff found a four-legged friend tethered to a tree.

“This pup was tied up outside,” SRSL wrote on Facebook.

The group of workers was shocked by their discovery. Families typically stopped by the memorial sidewalk with their dogs, but this pit bull mix was sadly all alone. The team rushed over to help him, and they could tell right away how happy he was to see them.

“As we approached him, he seemed to say, ‘Oh, thank goodness, yes, come help me! I’m all by myself! I’m just a baby boy!” SRSL wrote.

The dog, later named Professor Plum, jumped with gratitude when he realized he was finally being saved. He welcomed his new friends with enthusiastic tail wags and endless face kisses. They reciprocated with gentle pats and loving affirmations.

You can watch that moment here:

Once freed from his post, the team led Professor Plum back to the shelter and gave him a thorough evaluation. They cleared the sweet boy for foster care and found the perfect temporary home for him almost immediately.

“He’s so sweet that he actually left for a foster home the same day!” Natalie Thomson, SRSL’s chief communications officer, told The Dodo. “I didn’t even get to meet him!”

Professor Plum left SRSL a few hours after he was initially discovered, feeling eternally grateful for the staff that saved his life. When he arrived at his foster home, he had no idea he’d be reuniting with a familiar face from his early puppy days.

“I fostered him and his sister at 10 weeks old, and both got adopted,” Barb Kumar, Professor Plum’s foster mom told The Dodo. “Now, at 16 months old, he is with me.”

Professor Plum covered his beloved caregiver with kisses and settled right into her home again. This time, a new pack of dog siblings was waiting to greet him, and he clicked with them instantly.

It’s been a few weeks since Professor Plum’s rescue, and he is doing better than ever. When he’s not going on walks with his two siblings, he can usually be found cuddled up next to his foster mom, dreaming up his next big adventure.

Profession Plum is in the process of being adopted by another loving family, whom he’ll soon spend forever with. With a personality like his, Kumar is confident that the best is yet to come for the boy.

“Professor Plum is quite amazing!” Kumar said.

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