A pitbull mix named Riona, affectionately called the “Warrior Princess” after suffering from horrendous abuse, has been adopted following her remarkable survival.
In June of last year, Riona was discovered fleeing down a street in Memphis, Tennessee, engulfed in flames after her previous owner had doused her in petrol.
Luckily Riona was found by a good samaritan and taken to the Tails of Hope Dog Rescue, where she needed constant monitoring and extensive medical attention.
The horrifying ordeal left Riona with severe burns covering 60 percent of her body and resulted in the loss of part of her left ear. The amount of work needed to keep Riona alive and well resulted in a whopping £72,000 vet bill.
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But despite enduring such significant trauma, Riona’s warm and gentle nature were not damaged in the ordeal.
Memphis Commercial Appeal reporter Nich Schinberg said: “She warms quickly to strangers, licking hands and nuzzling her face into legs, revealing the sweet puppy underneath the blistered skin and singed fur.”
In a heartwarming turn of events, recent reports confirm that Riona has now found her “forever home” with a loving family.
Her new adoptive family, comprising four children to frolic with and two fellow canine companions referred to as her “doggie sisters,” eagerly welcomed her into their home.
Ginger Natoli, co-founder of Tails of Hope alongside her husband, expressed her joy, stating, “Riona will have playmates in the form of other dogs and children, a spacious yard to romp in, and a family equipped with medical expertise and a deep understanding of her past injuries.”
On a sunny Tuesday, Riona bid farewell to her rescuers at the shelter, departing with suitcases brimming with donated toys and various items.
Her new owners greeted her arrival with heartwarming “Welcome” signs decorated with paw prints and hearts.
Natoli said: “It was like she’d known them forever.”
On the Tails of Hope Facebook page, Natoli and her husband Rob Natoli revealed they took a long road trip in order to take Riona to her new family.
Natoli wrote:” We have been planning this road trip for Rionna for quite a long time, and yesterday, which also happened to be [Rob’s] birthday, we hit the road. He drove for hours and hours before we finally stopped.”
Despite the fact that he had not been feeling well, he did it anyway…We have all taken her under our wing and are extremely protective of her.
“And if that meant an extremely long drive to personally deliver her to her new family well that’s what we did.”
Riona’s went viral online, causing people across the world clamouring to adopt her.
Her story inspired Tails for Hope to name her ‘Riona’ which is an Irish name meaning “Queenly.”
Riona has also become something of an internet celebrity, and she now has 400,000 followers on her TikTok, @justice4riona.
Fans of Riona have rejoiced in the good news of her recovery and adoption.
One popular comment said: “I love this little girl SOOOO much!!! I hope she gets the best life and she’s treated like the princess she is.”
Another person said: “I’m so happy for her but this makes me sad at the same time. I loved watching her journey”
Someone else said: “Welcome to the life that you’ve always deserved sweet girl!”