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MONTEREY, Calif-An eight-year-old pit bull named Red, who was once a part of Michael Vick’s infamous dogfighting kennels has died after a short battle with cancer.

Red, an eight year old pit bull arrived at the Monterey County SPCA with scars on his face and chest. Though he had a violent past, Red filled a vital role by helping SPCA Pet Behavior Specialist Amanda Mouisset with her behavior consultations.

Red was trained to fight other dogs but he found his calling helping to calm aggresive dogs. True to his gentle nature, Red would sit relaxed in the training area, serving as a calming agent while Mouisset and her client eased the other dog’s aggression by redirecting focus and energy.

Red shared a home with Mouisset, her husband, two children, two dogs, and a cat. He went from Vick’s fighting kennels to playing with other dogs, cuddling on the couch, and letting kids play dress up with him as their willing model.

Last week, Red was diagnosed with two cancerous tumors, one in the center of his brain and one in the neck inside his spinal cord. Veterinary specialists felt that aggressive treatment would only extend Red’s life by a few short months, so Mouisset and her family chose to keep him comfortable with medication to give him a few days or weeks of quality life. Sadly, Red’s condition worsened and he died Monday night.

“Red truly shows that dogs are amazing and resilient,” says Beth Brookhouser, SPCA Director of Community Outreach. “Red was born into a life that no animal deserves. But he overcame his past and showed us all what a dog like him can do with a little love and affection. He was a true ambassador for his breed and we will all miss him.”

To help rescue other abused animals, please share Red’s story with your friends or donate to The SPCA for Monterey County in memory of Red.