Hope appears to us in different ways. For me, hope is best personified by the purely forgiving nature of a dog. As any pet owner knows, animals don’t keep score, and that’s certainly true in the case of one particular rescue dog named Hope.

Hope came to Palmetto Animal League in January 2013, her body literally skin and bones and filled with parasites. She had fear in her eyes, and it was clear that she was suffering both physically and emotionally from whatever had taken place in her past.

One of our staff members named her Hope because, in heartbreaking cases like this, it’s what gets you through.

As Hope started gaining weight, she also began the process of healing emotionally. Our staff spent countless hours earning Hope’s trust. In just four months, she transformed from a fragile, malnourished dog into a charming companion who was quickly adopted.

We were thrilled to see her find a forever family … or so we thought.

Fast forward four years. I was at my desk a few weeks ago when I received a call from a Virginia shelter informing me that Hope’s owners had dropped her off. How could they give up Hope?

My heart sank, and I knew immediately we had to bring her to PAL. I contacted one of my rescue friends, Judy Spooner, who organized a “freedom ride” out of the Virginia shelter and back to PAL’s No Kill Adoption Center.

After the 10-hour drive, Hope arrived at PAL just as sweet and delightful as the day she left four years back. Once again, hope graced PAL in the form of a dog.

It wasn’t long before a new adopter was touched by Hope’s beautiful spirit. “In the short time I have been so lucky to own her, she has filled an empty void,” said Hope’s new owner, Abby Riccobene, who had recently lost a beloved dog. “Hope has been a Godsend. She is so loving, smart and a savior.”

Through all her physical and emotional pain, Hope never gave up on humans. Her ability to adapt to new people reaffirmed what I already knew about this special dog – her forgiveness knows no bounds.

Wherever life finds you in this instant, this can be the moment you give hope. This can be the day you save a life. What a powerful thought!

PAL is working to save 1,000 lives, and today you can have a powerful impact by saving an animal like Hope.

Visit www.PalmettoAnimalLeague.org and donate $9 a month to save a pet’s life or make a one-time gift of $99.

Amy Campanini is the president of Palmetto Animal League.