SASKATOON - The story of a puppy who had been left to die in frigid cold weather touched the hearts of people across Canada and now it has a happy ending in North Vancouver.

That's where a couple have agreed to adopt Raider, as the terrier-mix puppy from Prince Albert, Sask., has come to be known.

Raider was rescued from the back of an abandoned truck in mid-January by three members of the Prince Albert Raiders, the city's Western Hockey League team.

Players Josh Morrissey, Shane Danyluk and Carson Perreaux heard the little guy whimpering in the -40 C temperature and said they just couldn't leave him there.

Raider needed a lot of treatment as he suffered from mange, a disease that causes hair loss, but despite that the Prince Albert SPCA fielded about 30 inquiries about adoption as the story spread.

In addition, a veterinary company in Ottawa donated all the medicine required to nurse Raider back to full health, free of charge.

"He's been spoiled rotten," said Leanne Roberts from the SPCA. "The couple that has adopted him are fully aware of his medical conditions and the ongoing care that is going to be required.

"They saw his story and they thought, `This is the dog that we can help and we want to make a difference in one dog's life."'

Veterinarians at Park Range Veterinary Clinic have been keeping a close eye on Raider and provided one last check-up Tuesday before he left. Tests showed that he had no signs of mange and was on the mend.

The hockey players who rescued him also visited to say goodbye.

The young men say they've been receiving a lot of positive feedback from people in the community.

"It's nice to see he's grown. He's in a better place and he's got a good family taking care of him now," said Morrissey. "It's nice to see a success story out of it all."

Roberts said the support from the community has been amazing and thanked those who donated toys, treats, and jackets for the young pup.

Raider was to leave from the Saskatoon airport on Tuesday night. There was to be a quick stopover in Calgary, and then he was to arrive in Vancouver on Wednesday.