A Band Of Rescue Angels Came For Jelly

She was a diving dog. She loved nothing better than to launch herself off a dock or a rock, stretched full out in a perfect dive, chasing after a stick.

The winter that puppy Jelly was rescued was one the worst for snow and cold, and we knew that Jelly was shivering in her cage with no blanket to keep her warm on the cold, cement floor. Icicles hung from the roof of her cage. She lived the first months of her life on a concrete slab with no toy, no blanket and no one to pat her and tell her she was a good girl. She didn't know what love was as she had never experienced it but it was there inside her just waiting for the chance to come out.

Jelly was one of a litter of pups who were being kept in a dark, damp, cold, filthy cage by a backyard breeder. The breeder controlled the pups by hitting them with a shovel when he let them out to do their business for a few minutes twice a day.

But puppies eliminate many times a day and so they still had to lie in their cage in a thick layer of slimy feces and urine.

Neighbours were desperately distressed by having to hear the crying of the shivering, frightened pups, but when they tearfully begged the Animal Welfare Society to help the pups, the Animal Welfare Society said that there was nothing they could do unless they themselves witnessed the beatings. As far as anyone knows they didn't even speak to the breeder or look at the squalid cage. So the neighbours called Animal Advocates and begged for help. We came to verify what we had been told and came back with bolt cutters to break the padlock and rescue the trembling and terrorized pups.

The breeder reinforced the cage with a stronger gate and a stronger padlock and put another three pups in the cage. The rescuers got a bigger bolt cutter and rescued those ones too.

Then the breeder hired a contractor to reinforce the cage with concrete and a steel gate and two huge padlocks and put four more pups in the cage. That meant that the rescuers had to get the biggest bolt cutters that money could buy. Jelly was one of the last of his puppies to be rescued. After that, the breeder put garden tools in the shed instead of puppies.

AAS found terrific homes for all the pups. We only adopted them to people who would take them swimming because Retrievers are swimming dogs. Some new families had summer homes on the coast; one had a sailboat and all made sure their dogs could swim almost every day.

Jelly's new family told us...

Jelly loved kids more than anything. She would stand for hours and be hugged and patted. They always loved it when we told them her name.

Over the years, Jelly had her moments of fame. She posed as Miss September in the Animal Advocates calendar. We debated over letting her pose naked, whether a photo of her in just her fur and nothing else was appropriate. But as they say, "fur only looks good on its original owner", and Jelly's modeling career was born.

And she was famous at Ambleside beach dog-park for going up to every single person. She would stand there and look at them with her sad, Jelly eyes until they patted her, then move on to the next person. My husband said that one day there was a young couple sitting on a bench. Jelly went to the young, pretty girl, leaned on her and looked up at her with those eyes. The girl just melted. The man asked my husband if he actually trained her to do that to help him meet girls. No training needed, she was a natural!

We never thought Jelly would live as long as she did considering her start in life. She was a small Golden, stunted probably from being in a small cage at the time when she would grow the most. But she was with us until one week before her 15th birthday. She was never sick a day in her life and was the happiest, healthiest dog right up to the end.

I've had a lot of dogs in my life but there has never been, nor ever will be, another as special as Jelly. It was almost as if she never forgot that first year and was determined to live each day since, to the fullest. She was always smiling and happy and full of life. We miss her dearly but are grateful that Animal Advocates chose us to be her family and to have her love for over fourteen years of her life. She is a true rescue success story and the ultimate happy ending.

This is one of the last pictures of Jelly, swimming at Ambleside as she did every day right up to her last, the happiest little girl in the world. Her white face may have aged but her spirit never did.

We're an animal rescue, humane, and advocacy society. Animal Advocates Society assists in animal rescue in BC and all over North America. We have helped dogs, cats, rabbits, birds and horses.

AAS is now so well-known for its high standards and experience in all animal welfare and rescue matters that we are asked for advice and help from all over BC, Canada, the U.S. and the world. For years I have answered each and every appeal with detailed advice that I have learned from 25 years of rescue, advocacy and animal law.

AAS ethical standards are simple and straightforward, but a lot of work: Every rescued dog is given the exact same love and care that we give our own dogs. Anything less can't be morally justified. To weigh the costs, to kill if it will cost money to help the dog, whether it be for health or behaviour, or to rehome the dog without paying to make the dog well in body and spirit is not true animal welfare: it's moving as much product as fast as possible and to demand money for unwell product is a business, not a calling.

- Judy Stone

Restore your faith in humanity. Read our heart-warming stories of brave people and their rescues of chained and abused and neglected dogs from extreme suffering and cruelty. We have many happy ending stories too. Many happy ending stories and video too: http://www.animaladvocates.com

Please donate if you want to help us help more needy animals: http://www.animaladvocates.com/donate

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