Saturday, July 26, 2008

ANIMAL PLANET - ANIMAL SHELTERS UPDATE



On July 1, 2008 I posted an article on the impact Animal Planet's Animal Cop shows had on my life. I am pleased to say that the outcome of one of those shows has now happened in the real world of one of the largest animal shelters in the nation. Actually, good outcomes happen every day in shelters all across the country, but I took this outcome a bit too personally.

Jimmy the Dog was adopted on Thursday. He was neutered Friday morning and was picked up to go to his new home after the surgery. I was at the shelter yesterday afternoon and I scrambled out of there an hour into my stay due to my tears of joy and a few tears of sadness. I am thrilled he will have a happy, healthy and safe home, but I didn't get to say goodbye to my buddy.

I met the woman who adopted him and she was a seemingly wonderful woman who had adopted a lovely female German Shepherd six weeks ago. Jimmy met her dog and the dog intro went well. I saw Jimmy for the last time (although, I didn't know it would be the last time) on Tuesday evening as we went for what would become our last walk together. He escaped out of his cage on Tuesday night prior to my departure and I chased him around the shelter. The thought of it had me laughing. He wanted his freedom! I had named him Jimmy (after my dad and kid brother) and I think his new owner liked his name, so hopefully he will spend the rest of his life as Jimmy. Jimmy has a terrific personality and a sweet spirit.

I mentioned in the original post that I had prayed for Jimmy to get a good home, so I have to be thankful my prayer was answered. I am thrilled that the system did indeed work. My only sadness is that I will never see Jimmy again. He recognized my voice. When he would hear it he'd come to the side of the cage before he could even see me. He knew I'd walk him and let him graze in the grass. He always had that look on his face that said "hey, let me lay here a bit longer." I'd give him his bacon strip and his big dog bone. I petted his neck (he loved it there). I made up his bed after I walked him.

When I saw his empty cage yesterday (the note I had written about how great he was and the shelter's note on his history were gone) the only things that remained were the now empty water bowl and the bed I made up for him when I left on Tuesday. There it was - the purple pillow upon a blue sheet and a soft cream towel.

I was told that his new home has a big fenced-in yard. I hear the house is big too! Hopefully, he will have a big and comfy bed as well. Jimmy had been in a cage 24/7 (outside of a walk or two a day, if he got lucky) for almost six months. He now deserves a great life!

I will miss him, but I hope he never misses me.

The animal shelter deserves lots of kudos. Their volunteer coordinating staff is wonderful and caring. The guy who originally trained me (Joe) deeply cares about the animals at the shelter. They did a house check to make sure that Jimmy would indeed have a yard to run off his energy in.

Thanks again to Animal Planet for providing me with an outlet to serve in some way. Without Animal Cops, Animal Precinct and the network's heroes I would never have gotten involved with volunteering at an animal shelter and would never have met Jimmy. My life is better having served him. Buddy, I enjoyed our time together. May you live a long, healthy, happy, safe and secure life. May the food be good, may the walks be fun, may the grass in summer be green and pleasant and may the house be warm in the winter, may your life be wonderful!

This was the note I had posted on his cage for potential adopters to see:

Hello there, My name is Jimmy and I'm a sweet boy who loves to lie in the grass and have my neck petted. I also love a cozy bed. I've been here awhile, so I need a real home. Love Jimmy

He has now been adopted and I will be a bit sad for awhile, but the sadness will leave every time I visualize my boy laying comfortably on his big, soft bed in that big house with that big yard. Who knows, maybe I will see him again one day.

4 comments:

Jane said...

Thank you for posting this wonderful happy ending story for Jimmy the Dog. It is so heartwarming when people rescue a homeless animal. I am inspired to get moving on doing some sort of volunteer work with animals, now that I'm settled in my new home. I'm leaning towards something with horses, since there are hundreds of them up here in the high desert. By the way, I've posted some pretty Pitt Bull pix, compliments of Dogster.com. Dogser (and Catster) are wonderful websites and an excellent resources for finding and adopting pets of all kinds.

Anonymous said...

I was glad to see there was an update on this dog. I felt like I knew him too. I love Animal Planet as well.

Dean Treadway said...

God bless you, Judith, for the work you did on Jimmy's behalf, and for all you do for animals. They have a champion in you, and I know they know that. ANd kudos to Animal Planet, too.

Wanted to let you know I'm working on a big article as a response to your Rock and Roll Hall of Fame piece. Look for it Monday or Tuesday. You'll find it very enlightening and entertaining, I'm positive.

Natalie and my american staffordshire terrier dog said...

Your amstaff is adorable and I could imagine how sad you are losing him to someone. Anyway, as long as he's treated well, then I guess, all should be all right.