|Me and Jervas at the shop - 2002|
Jervas found himself incarcerated at Sangamon County Animal Control when his owner found himself incarcerated at the Sangamon County Jail. It was there that my wife found him. He was thought to be between two and three years old. He appeared to be half chihuahua and half pug. We told folks he was a chug. The wife often volunteered at the center and adopted more animals over the years than I can count. Most were brought back to good health, and then a permanent home would be found. Jervas found himself in a home with cats, dogs, fish, and two teenagers. From the minute he crossed the threshold he made it clear; this would be his permanent home. He settled right in. He was smart and well behaved. He got along with every animal he was ever around. We had a shop dog that no one could get near but me and the wife. Anything in his area was fair game, and he made that apparent anytime he was challenged. Jervas was the exception from day one. No explanation to be found; it was Jervas. He was the same with people. He greeted each customer when they arrived at the shop. Each was greeted with a wagging tail and that goofy grin. His smile was undeniable. Jervas went everywhere that the wife did. He loved to ride in the car with her. A few blocks or a thousand miles, it didn't matter as long as he got to go. He spent his evenings in someone's lap and slept with me and the wife. He was a constant source of love and devotion.
He was with us for five or six years before moving to his last home. By this time Jervas was part of the family. We were not seeking a new home for him, but his services were needed elsewhere. My wife's parents, John and Carol, had recently lost their longtime companion. John had always liked Jervas, and when we offered him to them, they gladly accepted. Their last dog had really bonded with John, and Jervas was to help fill the hole that loss had caused. Jervas did a magnificent job in doing that, but Carol was his favorite. He settled in with them like he had always lived there. He also continued his insistence of going everywhere they did. This included wintering in Florida. John and Jervas visited with many neighbors and friends on their walks both at home and in Florida. Many kept treats handy for Jervas; their walks almost became a trick-or-treat route for him.
As the years passed he lost a few teeth and had to go on a special diet, but he continued to enjoy life. He began to lose his sight and hearing a couple of years ago. In the last year he lost both completely. He began to have a seizure every now and then this summer. At an estimated age of 16 - 18 years, he had lived a long, full life. He saw the doctor last month to confirm what we already knew in our hearts. His body was beginning to fail him, his time was drawing near.
This week the seizures have become more frequent and his organs are failing. There is nothing more to be done, but to help him pass pain free to the rest he has so greatly earned. Today is that day.
Thank you Jervas for your years of love and friendship. You touched more lives than most, and left each one better for it. See you at the Rainbow Bridge.