It’s time once again for our Throwback Thursday edition of our Because Of A Big Fluffy Foster series. This week’s post was a little hard to write. This is Jasper Jameson, or JJ as he is lovingly referred to now. This dog has quite the story, so I will try to be brief in its telling.
He had an “owner” for 8 years, until the owner passed away. He was most likely kept outside, as he was completely matted, had horrible ear infections, was listless, had a horrendous odor, skin infections, and had despair in his eyes. After his owner passed, the family dumped him and another dog at the pound. That dog bullied JJ every single day. Another rescue came to the pound, and pulled the dog JJ came in with, leaving JJ behind, alone and sick. He was far too old and too ill to be considered by them. So, Big Fluffy Dog Rescue stepped in and placed him with an incredible foster that was willing to rehabilitate him. This woman takes on some of our hardest cases, and JJ was no exception. The rest of his story is hers to tell:
“JJ came into my home (and heart). He was the most complacent, gentle, loving dog I have ever met. He got along with every single animal he met, was happy to be with people, and failed to hold a grudge for all the wrongs done to him previously. Upon our initial vet visit, it was found his ear canals were inflamed and had to be painful, yet he never made a peep as he was poked and prodded. He had thyroid issues, alopecia, and skin infections. We patched him up over the course of a few months, and his ears were being managed with a combo of washes and drops. He was adopted out, just a few minutes down the road from me actually, and was set for forever, I thought. I got a call from his adopter, saying her vet was recommending he either come back to the rescue or be euthanized due to his ears. The vet refused to do a Total Ear Canal Ablation, saying JJ was a lost cause essentially. I picked him up that night and took him back to my vet. They said he was a great candidate for the surgery and was otherwise healthy, aside from his known issues. JJ traveled down to Tennessee, to see the esteemed vets at Animal House for his surgeries. He had 2 wonderful foster mommas to see him through this transition while he was there. He recovered (and I am happy to say has minimal trouble with his ears today!) and while deaf, was happy, smiling, and lovable. While he was waiting to come back to me (I adopted him!) he started having nosebleeds. Sinus cancer was suspected. We finally welcomed him back home this January, 8 long months after he got out of that pound. He was on 30 pills and 15 ear drops a day. We have since added medicated shampoo, RX food, and Metcam to this daily regimen. Last week, we finally confirmed he does have sinus cancer when a tell-tale tumor presented itself. I was crushed, as it had been 4 months already and he had been fine, aside from some skin issues. I cried, I dry heaved, and I mourned the dog that was sitting right beside me still. Although our time will be cut short, I know he has really lived this past year. We made new friends. I have never met his TN foster mommas in person, but feel so connected and so close to them because I know they mourn with me. He ate cheeseburgers, robbed trash cans left unattended, chewed through gates, counter surfed, slept on beds, met donkeys, alpacas, goats, and chickens. We went shopping, on road trips, car rides to nowhere, and for ice cream. We celebrated birthdays, stuck it out through long grooming sessions, and he grew a magnificent coat. I know we have so much to do still, to accomplish before his time comes. When it does come, he will be surrounded by love, like always. JJ taught me about unconditional love, forgiveness, and to always have an open heart. I only want him to know he matters. He matters to us, to Big Fluffy Dog Rescue, and to everyone who has met him. I hope the last year has made up for his first eight.”
We have learned that over the past few days JJ’s tumor has grown noticeably, and his time here is growing shorter. His foster mom, turned adoptive mom, who is also a BFDR coordinator, has decided to take some time off to spend what could be JJ’s last weeks with him. This is a dog that she poured her heart and soul into. Who she helped to bring back from the brink of death… only to see him arrive on death’s door once more. And yet, her only thoughts are of his continued happiness, not her own sadness. To say I admire this woman is an understatement. To say that I grieve for her and for JJ is inadequate. Fostering is HARD, and sometimes the story doesn’t have a happy ending. And yet, we do it anyway. We do it because without Fosters, dogs like JJ don’t stand a chance. We do it because it allows us to focus on the fact that his last year has been filled with love and with life that he would never otherwise have known. We do it because it is worth it… because the dogs are worth it. So, Kraken, I ask you to help me support JJ and his amazing Mom by offering whatever prayers, well wishes, and good juju you can send their way. And I ask you to honor JJ’s life by getting involved. Sign up to foster. Adopt a senior or a special needs dog. They have just as much love to give. Donate, if you can, to help us help more dogs like JJ. Spread the word about BFDR and our “No Dog Left Behind” mission. And hug your fur babies today, kids, because life is short. They live in the moment, they don’t linger in the past or stress about the future. Try to be there, in the moment with them, as much as you can.
If you are interested in joining our Family of Big Fluffy Fosters, please go to this link for more information or to fill out a Foster Application: http://www.bigfluffydogs.com/foster-faq.php
If you would like to donate to help us help dogs like JJ, you can click the “Donate Now” button at the top of our Facebook page (in the cover photo), or you can visit our website at http://www.bigfluffydogs.com/pay-online.php.
We need you, but more importantly, the DOGS need you.