03/07/2013 04:28 EST | Updated 05/07/2013 05:12 EDT

Dog shot in head and left for dead gets new life as animal-cruelty spokespooch

COWANSVILLE, Que. - A dog who was shot in the head and left for dead will have a new home at an animal shelter and will become a tail-wagging warrior against animal cruelty.

Orville the dog was found immobile in a ditch on Feb. 24 in Brome Lake, a community in Quebec's Eastern Townships region.

After a few difficult days, Orville stunned his shelter handlers by recovering most of his functions. They have called his progress a miracle.

The shelter's management has announced in a brief post online today that it wants Orville to tour schools and homes for the elderly.

The shelter in Cowansville, Que., says Orville will become a symbol of the fight against animal cruelty.

Orville is "living proof that cruelty exists and that it must stop" the centre said on its Facebook page.

The shelter's director filed a complaint with police after an X-ray showed that the dog had been shot behind the ear with a .22-calibre weapon.

The shattered bullet can't be removed and will always remain lodged in the head of the two-year-old Australian shepherd.

Quebec provincial police say an investigation into alleged animal cruelty is ongoing.