17 abandoned cats and dogs that found a loving forever home

Life can be tough for many cats and dogs. Thrown out on the street or taken to a shelter, their future doesn't always look bright...

People who rescue and foster these animals in distress or look after them when they are in an animal shelter are real life-savers, but can only offer a temporary solution. Shelter and foster homes quickly become overcrowded, so the search for a forever home is an on-going priority. And the change in these four-legged friends is incredible once they settle down with their new family.

Here are 17 heart-warming photos that show just how well cats and dogs do once they've been adopted by loving owners.

1. This guy adopted a senior dog so it could spend its twilight years in a comfy, loving home

© Apt_213 / reddit

2. When emerald eyes twinkle with happiness

© egrk / reddit

3. Meatball, another senior dog to find a forever home

© boostykaka / reddit

4. This cat lost its sight, but found a loving owner

© JustStayYourself / reddit

5. The first time this rescue dog celebrated his birthday

© InLynneBo / reddit

6. Brothers that were put up for adoption and were adopted together

© Unknown / imgur

7. This little "pirate" quickly settled in

© lesterous / reddit

8. This little guy had health problems, but found an owner who was happy to get him all the treatments he needed

© ThatQuil91 / reddit

9. Love and gratitude

© breeisfree / reddit

10. The day he was adopted vs how is he is today

© TimeFlew / reddit

11. Another first day followed by a snap taken a few years later

© Other_Situation / reddit

12. This cat has a broken jaw, but that didn't stop it from finding a new home

© ???_my_bubbles / reddit

13. When you end up in a loving home that also has a super-comfy sofa!

© vrecka123 / reddit

14. This alley cat became a pampered cat!

© Octoberbaby85 / reddit

15. A tiny rescued kitten

© caitell_ / reddit

16. A rescue dog becomes a pampered pooch

© Ignorantmillenial92 / reddit

17. The transformation is incredible!

© Lu**phyr729 / reddit