Vet climbs into crate to comfort scared dog

Posted at 8:55 AM, Feb 18, 2016
and last updated 2016-02-18 08:57:41-05
A Georgia veterinarian is hoping a video of him climbing into an abandoned dog's kennel to make the pooch feel more at ease with humans, helps land her a new home.
Dr. Andy Mathis of Granite Hills Animal Care in Elberton, Georgia, told ABC News that he shot the footage with the pit bull mix, named Graycie, last week.
"We’ve had dogs in the past that took up to six weeks to feel comfortable getting outside and then, they love to play, they love other dogs and they love me," Mathis said. "It doesn’t make me sad to see [dogs] broken and withdrawn because with time, I know what's possible."

Mathis said Graycie, estimated to be two years old, was brought to Granite Hills on Jan. 29 after a Good Samaritan discovered the pup on a dirt road.
The pup was spayed on Feb. 11, since Mathis believed most of her health issues were related to her reproductive organs.
"She was dumped in the middle of nowhere," he said. "She had a collar, so she was owned by somebody at some point. Whoever was feeding her wasn’t feeding her enough. She was 20 pounds when we found her and probably should have weighed 30 to 35 pounds."
Graycie has already gained five pounds since being under the care of Mathis, who hand-feeds her and occasionally joins the dog in her crate when she's eating, to gain her trust.
“She’s still quite timid around me,” Mathis explained. “I’m spending time with her so she’s not scared of me.”
On Feb. 13, Mathis recorded a heartwarming video of himself sharing a meal beside Graycie.
"I said 'I'm just going to sit here with you while you're eating,'" Mathis said. "By getting her out of her comfort zone a little bit we hope she’ll get used to people."
The video has been viewed 5 million times since being shared on the hospital's Facebook page, and shared by many animal lovers.
"There's a lot of dogs like her out there, so by sharing her story it brings awareness to other pets who need homes," Mathis said.
Mathis believes that Graycie will be ready for adoption in a few more weeks, after she gains weight.
Not surprisingly, he said, dog lovers across the country have already inquired about adopting Graycie.