(WIVB) – When Western New York native Maureen Cattieu met Sol, the whippet mix puppy was so skinny that her ribs were showing.
She was terrified of people, closing her eyes in fear when she was picked up.
“She’s from La Boquilla- it’s a really poor community in Cartagena, Colombia where we do a lot of our education programs,” Cattieu, founder and director of Cartagena Paws, said.
Now, Sol is about to step into the spotlight when she makes her debut in Animal Planet’s Puppy Bowl at 3 p.m. Feb. 2. She will be playing for “Team Fluff”, a one-hour event dubbed as the “world’s cutest sporting event on television”.
Cartagena Paws is a nonprofit animal rescue group that rescues animals in need in Colombia and helps to get them adopted. They also offer education about compassion and empathy for animals.
Cattieu and her volunteers hadn’t been planning on doing an animal rescue in La Boquilla when they ran into Sol.
“She was just this emaciated little pup- we saw her and we were like, “okay, we can’t leave her here,” Cattieu said. “We just ended up scooping her up and taking her with us.”
After a few months of care and vet appointments, she was adopted by a family in Key West, Florida. Now, she spends her days playing with her new human brother, River, sharing French fries, and cuddling.
If you’re interested in volunteering or getting involved with Cartagena Paws, click here.