It's not just people who can sometimes be read like an open book—even animals can betray their emotions on their faces. When Lisa Reilly saw Meatball the Pitbull's face for the first time—on the website for the animal rescue organization Fresno Bully Rescue—it happened exactly like that. She immediately drove to the shelter to meet him.

As soon as he was found in California's Central Valley, Meatball's rescuers were charmed by his smile—a smile that didn't fade even when he came down with a case of kennel cough. A smile that charmed thousands on the internet. And ultimately, a smile that led the adorable, happy-natured dog to his new home with Lisa. When the young woman saw him, she was completely smitten and knew they were meant to share each others' lives. His beaming face immediately comforted the experienced dog owner from the recent loss of her Pitbull Kitty.

After Meatball had recovered from his cough, Lisa brought him home, where he was immediately welcomed into the pack: the two Pitbulls Punky and Ricardo Tubbs as well as the Dachshunds Bitty and Dappe formed an instant friendship with the cheerful Meatball.

Meatball got his name not so much from his winning smile, but rather his physical presence. “It’s hard to really tell just how short he is in person, but he’s so low to the ground and wide like a Mack Truck. And he would just barrel into you like a bowling ball of dog fat when we first got him. Thus, he became known as 'The Meatball,' Meaty for short,” she laughed.

Neither human nor animal can resist this little casanova. He also captured the heart of Lisa's boyfriend (now husband) in the process of being rescued and adopted.  


Meatball's owners are so enamored with their hunky tub of love, they made him his ownInstagram page. It didn't take long before Meatball became a global star.

Meatball allows himself to be properly spoiled by his new family. Stare into this beguiling face long enough and you won't begrudge him this enviable position. He has surely spread enough smiles around the world to have earned the good life!

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