Update - dresser before and after photos...
This is overdue but I said I'd post some photos of the finished dresser since you all were kind enough to help answer my questions along the way. I appreciate all the advice we received.
My last post was about the drawers having a perfumey smell and I'm happy to say it faded and isn't a problem anymore. I'm glad to know shellac will work wonders to eliminate smells in the future.
This was bought second hand and I have no idea what was done to the poor thing. To my surprise we ended up not needing the wood filler and were able to get all the marks out by sanding.