When Marissa Belcaster met Cooper the dog at the Tauranga SPCA, she knew he was the one.
Little did she know that several months before the Tauranga puppy had been victim to the worst case of animal abuse the SPCA had seen in 2018.
Cooper was just months old when he was severely beaten with a broom handle, crushed by his owner and swung around by a rope.
He was beaten so hard the broom handle broke.
The case was top of the list on the SPCA's annual List of Shame, that outlined the worst animal abuse cases nationwide over the year.
The abuse was caught on CCTV and Cooper's owner was charged with ill-treatment of his dog and disqualified from owning animals.
At the time, the 10-month-old pup was taken in by the SPCA and put up for adoption.
Belcaster said as soon as she laid her eyes on him she knew "he was going to be the one for her".
At the time of adoption, the 24-year-old Tauranga woman had no idea the extent of abuse that Cooper had been through, just that he had come from a "really bad background".
She said it was because court proceedings were happening at the time of adoption.
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Cooper was "extremely timid and protective" and would bark and shake when new people came around, she said.
She said he was "petrified of brooms, vacuum cleaners and could not even face stairs".
Although these things seemed strange at the time, Belcaster said she had hated to think about what happened to make him so terrified.
It wasn't until six months later, when the animal abuse case popped up in the media that she realised it was her beloved pup who had been the victim.
She and her family were "absolutely horrified" to find out and whenever she thought about it she "hugged him that little bit tighter".
She said Cooper was so loved and such a big part of their family that it was "so horrific to think someone could do that to him".
Cooper was now a full-grown two-year-old with a bubbly and affectionate personality.
He was a fast runner and was very agile, constantly keeping Belcaster active with daily runs and walks.
She said he could easily spend his day chasing his beloved ball.
He had become well-known in the Tauranga community and had become a staple of the Welcome Bay dog community.
He loved the water and spent most weekends swimming at the beach, in the river or at the dog park, she said.
"He is such a happy dog... people are always commenting about how happy he looks."
Belcaster said she was so thankful that she could give him another go at life and he would come with her wherever she went in the future.
"He makes me so happy and we have such a bond... I will never hurt him."