FORT WORTH (CBSDFW.COM) – She’s been abused and is missing an ear but a spirited dog named Little Gracie is getting a second chance at a good life.

The five-month-old puppy owes it all to a Fort Worth family who found her.

“She deserves not to be hurt again,” said Kathy Childress, whose daughter Sierra found the dog. “I can’t put her in a shelter, a one-eared little pup. She might get passed up for one that looks very cute and has both ears.”

Little Gracie’s left ear was severely infected and nearly detached when the Childress family found her earlier this month.

“It was lacerated all the way through to the center,” said veterinarian Dr. Karen Barger, “and in center we found a rubber band that was wrapped around it.”

Dr. Barger had to remove the ear. She suspects someone tried to crop the pup’s ears at home, possibly to raise the pit-bull mix as a fighting dog.

“I don’t know why anybody would want to hurt something young and innocent like a puppy,” Dr. Barger said, “but  it happens all the time and it breaks my heart.”

The abuse hasn’t broken Little Gracie’s spirit.

“She was abused. If anybody has a reason to be aggressive it would be her, but she’s never been like that,” Dr. Barger added. “She’s always been really sweet and happy and loves everybody!”

Childress has spent nearly $2,000 her own money to help nurse the puppy back to health.

“She deserves it, there’s a hundred million others out there who deserve it,” Childress said, “but she’s the one that happened to be in my path.”

Childress would love to keep Little Gracie, but already has two rescued pit bulls of her own, so she and Dr. Barger are hoping someone else gives grace to Gracie.

Childress has even created a Facebook page and a blog for Gracie, and is hoping someone will come forward to offer the energetic puppy a good home.

“That’s really my ultimate goal,” Dr. Barger said, “to find somebody who can look past her missing ear and see how sweet she is.”

“She is absolutely 100 percent the sweetest little girl who is willing to give humans another chance so why can’t somebody else,” Childress said.

Those interested in adopting Little Gracie can email Dr. Barger and Childress at