Rescue Journal

jerry's story

Carol  ·  Mar. 24, 2015

when jerry first came in 5 years ago, I felt sorry for him. he had been thru the ringer of life..his life was filled with drama and chaos, he had been passed around like yesterdays newspaper..i was able to count 5 different people he had been with in those last few months. he was sick with rotten teeth and bladder stones, he was partially blind and more than a little bit pissed.. I think he sustained some brain damage thru carbon dioxide poisoning while being hauled around in the trunk of the car of one of his previous owners. jerry really was nothing more than a pawn to be shifted and used and traded without any consideration for his needs and feelings by everyone who ended up with him in their hands. it left him damaged, not quite right in the head, not utterly broken..just not all that easy to live with.

jerry has bitten me more times than all of the other dogs combined. most times he didn't mean it..i think. most times he was just being over reactive like when I accidently moved him while shifting my position. but sometimes he did mean it like if something was pissing him off.

today was a perfect example..he was peacefully resting with his head against my chest at the vets until he got poked with a needle, then he was ready to kick butt. he bit my forearm but luckily I was wearing a sweatshirt and he only had 4 teeth left so no damage was done.

for 5 years I have done my best to prevent jerry from biting the other dogs, visitors and me. we had this great bedtime routine where I would pick him up and put him in the corner of the bed behind my back..that was jerryville and all of the dogs knew not to go back there and disrupt the beast.

jerry loved was the time when he would snuggle up against my back, sigh deeply and rest in peace. sometimes he would get frisky and play catch carol's hand with me, sometimes he would roll and groan, stretch and rub his face into the bedding before he would fall off to sleep. I think that was his happy place..tucked up safely against me. not that it stopped him from biting me if I happen to move the wrong way and disturb his sleep.

anyway..when you live with a dog like jerry, you really only have 2 or hate. and I loved him...the real him..not the him i wanted him to be, not the him I thought he should be...just the real live him that was jerry..i loved every part of him...even his teeth.

and I know that jerry loved me. when I finally come home at night..jerry was anxiously waiting, I am his safe place, I am the soft hands that he trusts, I am the place where no matter what..jerry is safe and loved.

I always felt sad that I could never give him the opportunity for a home of his very own. because of his biting I doubt many would have been interested in him anyway and then there was that thing with the unsuccessful lawsuit from a previous owner..i was always afraid he would try it again and that would not be fair to jerry's new home...I didn't give a shit about the lawsuit..we had insurance for that. but lawsuits freak out most people so jerry was better staying here because of that.

so maybe I loved him so much because I was morally obligated to become jerry's safe and loved forever home because I couldn't offer him something more.

whatever... a promise to love, protect and care for forever is a commitment and once it is made, its just do whatever has to be done.

jerry passed peacefully from this world today (after he got over being pissed off over the initial sedation needle.) he fell gently back to sleep with his head tucked up next to my heart.

5 years his warm little poodle body has been tucked into the small of my back as we slept..for five years he has lived loved in my heart.

I have watched him these past few months as his dementia progressed, this week to the point of not really remembering how to eat or used to be so easy, but it was no longer easy for him any more. he had a seizure yesterday and another one today, the vet thinks that given his very advanced age of 19 years, it was probably a brain tumor messing him up even more. but whatever it bed, my back ceased to be his safe spot...his anxiety followed him every where that he went.

jerry was sometimes an asshole and sometimes he was as sweet as they come. but jerry was my friend and I was his friend and that meant something pretty damn special to both of us. I am so sorry to have lost him and so glad I was here to love him, this little old neglected and passed around angry dog.

I will always love you my little messed up friend.



Debra in Malaysia

Rip Jerry.
Sorry to hear about your dear bed buddy carol . Jerry was a cutie and I didn't realize he was a biter. He was always a good boy when I saw him


I am so sorry to hear about Jerry. I knew him in his first home and his name was Joshua. I emailed you when you were being sued and offered to testify against owner #1. I'm so glad he found a safe haven with you.


So sorry. I am glad I made a visit into the bed buddies last week-end & was able to give Jer-Bear a tasty treat.

RIP Jerry, love travels with you.

laura b

My dear Jerry, my little old man, my friend......when you volunteer at Saints a long time you get the privilege of meeting many great animals....even though you care & love them all you sometimes connect with a favorite....some of those favorites you end up bringing home and some you know wouldn't fit and you are thankful they have a home at Saints. Jerry was that special guy for me....he was a character...a bit of an a-hole but also a great cuddle buddy(as long as no other dogs came near us) In his younger years he would always come with me on tours, as he aged he was my special stop in the bedroom for hugs, kisses & nips.
Thank you Carol for being there for him and fighting the battle for his right to be cared for, respected and loved! I love Jerry and will miss you deeply.......

lynne arnason

i will really miss jerry he liked for me to hold him and give him snuggles. i am so glad he passed in your arms carol. you really were his safe place. the bed wont be the same without him his little tottering around and getting too close to the edge. rlp jerry love you

Lenore Henry

Sorry for your loss Carol. Jerry's story really touched my heart. Thanks to your kindness he knew care and compassion.


Ohhh Jer bear. Such a little character. So sorry for your loss Carol. He will be missed by many.


Didn't know Jerry well, just by sight really, but your story had me in tears, Carol. Jerry knew your unconditional love, how special is that. To be loved and accepted for what you are, nothing more or less. Don't we all wish for that in our lives. He was one very lucky boy over the last 5 years. Hopefully your love and caring made up for what he suffered before, and erased it from his memory. So sorry for your loss.

Mary Kaminski

We all have friends, both 2 and 4 legged, that have quirks of behaviour that are not always what we would wish them to be. But we love them all the same, they are our friends, they live in our hearts and we look past these problems.

Thank you, Carol, for loving Jerry & being his friend.

Carol A.

Oh., Carol. I am so sorry for your loss. There are no words to express my deepest condolences. Even knowing this was coming with all your experience, loving him with all you had In spite of, because of, all his little issues You were his safe haven. Holding him close, even as you helped him on his journey. At least there are no scary places where he is now, only safe cozy spaces where he can find forever joys promised to these little saints.


Oh Carol, thank you for taking the time to tell us Jerry's story - You have such a wonderful way of speaking to the heart thru your writing.I sit here in tears, but very grateful to have known Jerry. I remember the day he arrived with hardly any fur on his back - worn off from being in that damn trunk. Thank you for being his safe harbor, and for loving him thru everything. Another special Saint gone....but only from sight.