A six-year-old Keeshond named Kasey who spent most of her life in a puppy mill has found a home with a family who spoils her with kisses and treats. And that’s not all — People magazine even named her the World’s Cutest Rescue Dog of 2019.

Kasey bested more than 7,000 dogs this year, and it’s easy to see why. The Keeshond has such a bright and cheery smile that one can’t help but fall in love with her!

That’s precisely what happened when Kasey’s fur mom, Sheila Cosgrove, and the rest of her family first laid eyes on her. Sheila first learned of the Keeshond through the Facebook animal rescue network she has been a part of since 2010.

Sheila, her husband Bob, and their children Gabby and Jack found out about a puppy mill in New York that housed more than 100 Keeshonds at one point. The rescuers from the group persuaded the owner to give up a few canines at a time.

Kasey spent four years of her life stuck in the puppy mill, repeatedly used for breeding. Finally, in 2016, the Keeshond was free.

Sheila volunteered to foster Kasey while she waited for an adopter. However, as soon as the Keeshond stepped into their home, the fur mom realized they wouldn’t be letting her go.

The family had their work cut out for them. Kasey had suffered cruelty, so she was understandably terrified of humans.

The Keeshond kept to herself in a corner, shunning her new family’s touch. For several weeks, Kasey would even sleep sitting up; that’s how distrustful she was.

Sheila’s heart broke for Kasey, but she knew they had to take it slow and let the pooch process the situation at her own pace. Eventually, the Keeshond decided to open her heart and accept her family’s love.

Today, there’s no indication at all of the nervous canine Kasey had once been. She’s now a cheerful, outgoing dog who’ll even walk up to new people and charm them with her smile to get a few pets and scratches.

It’s no wonder People chose Kasey as 2019’s cutest rescue dog. Her transformation from a scared puppy mill survivor to an adorable fluffball is nothing short of incredible.

Sheila hopes that the Keeshond’s story encourages pet parents to adopt dogs rescued from abuse and neglect. The road to earning their trust may be rocky at first, but the first happy wag of their tail in the middle of the journey is worth all the hard work. Watch Kasey here:

Source: TODAY on YouTube and People

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