Far too many people are under the impression that abused animals are a lost cause. Animals have literally lost their lives as a result of their terrible misconception. Lots of abused animals are put to sleep because people are under the impression that the animals in question will never be able to trust humans again, and they will always be a threat to anyone that they work with for the rest of their lives. Countless success stories involving rehabilitated animals have demonstrated that this is not the case, and yet this misconception persists.
It is easier for a lot of people to just put down the abused animals in question than it is to actually help them get better, which is largely the reason why this happens in the first place. However, there are plenty of eager volunteers who want to help abused animals. There are plenty of families who are also willing to adopt abused animals who have been rehabilitated. Abused animals are by no means a lost cause.
In many cases, abused animals just need to learn to trust humans again. Animals are not capable of differentiating between generalizations the way we are. When one human is cruel to them, all humans are cruel to them in their minds. When one human is kind to them than all humans are kind to them in their minds. Animals who are abused become aggressive towards humans because they have been conditioned to feel that this is the way that they are supposed to be, and they are going to react to those stimuli in the same way for a long time as a result. The humans who try to rehabilitate them are simply going to need to break that pattern, which is more than possible for people who have the time and the funding to do so.
Animals tend to form a bond with the people who are feeding them even at the worst of times. They will certainly form a bond like that at the best of times. They will become positively predisposed to the care workers who are showing them affection. Dogs that get brought in and get cleaned up will feel happier and healthier automatically. They will be in a different environment, and their pasts and their presents will start rewriting themselves automatically.
One of the reasons why dogs and cats can be rehabilitated so easily is the simple fact that they do not have an ability to dwell on the past in an intellectual sense in the manner of a human. Dogs and cats live in a world that is very immediate and physical. They tend to update their models of the world very easily, since their models are so simple and their responses to those models are so simple. People can use these characteristics to their advantage when it comes to making dogs and cats happier and healthier.