September Pet of the Month: Jayden

by Guest Writer

Jayden is a rescue dog, and was about 2 years old when he came into his owner’s life. “While I was walking through Union Square on my way to dinner one night, I stopped to give a donation to a rescue group. They had all big dogs – mostly Pit Bulls. While I love dogs and had one most of my life, I had no intention of getting a dog. I commented to the person from the shelter that all I saw were big dogs and she said it was funny I mentioned it, as they usually don’t get small dogs, but there was one and he was on the other side. I walked around and there he was cowering in the back of a crate curled up in a small ball.  His hair was dirty and long – he had stopped eating and was only about 10.5 lbs and was petrified.  His previous owners dropped him off at the shelter and just handed him over and walked away stating “our new building doesn’t allow dogs”.  He came to me – licked me.  They asked if I wanted to hold him (a sucker born every minute).  When I did he curled up in my arms – let out a big comforted sigh.  That’s when I knew he was mine.  In fact, I always tell people he chose me.  A few days later he was home.

We had some rough times because he was abused and neglected and I came to find out that he also suffers from a digestive issue that makes it difficult to eat anything but a vet prescribed food.  Initially he didn’t know how to walk outside, was afraid of every noise and every person who approached him.  With a lot of work, he has made tremendous progress.  Fast-forward about 6.5 years and it just keeps getting better.  He is a happy dog that loves to play with other dogs and now enjoys his time outdoors.  A keen sense of hearing and smell, he is alert, energetic and fun.  As a single owner, he is my buddy and a smart, obedient and a loyal companion … not to mention a “Green” – Environmentally conscious one as well.  Due to a stomach condition his only snacks are carrots and apples.  I also use biodegradable doggie bags when on walks and bathe him with an all-natural shampoo.  With a little help from his human friend, Jayden does his part for the planet.

Name: Jayden
Breed: Shih Tzu
Age: 9
Size: He weighs 13 lbs and his body is 14 inches long so he is a small guy.
His favorite thing to do: Play with other dogs, the bigger the better … Jayden is a big dog trapped in a small dog’s body.
Cool trick: Jayden has only one trick – he will sit up on his hind legs and wait patiently for a carrot.
Favorite toy: While he has a basket full of toys – and will play with many of them – his favorite is a small stuffed bear that he has had since I adopted him 6 years ago and his nylabone.
Weird habits: He gets into the strangest and funniest sleeping positions – literally makes me laugh out loud sometimes.
Diet: His diet consists of a prescription vet food that is a blend of fish, soy and potato. He has a digestive issue that makes it impossible for him to eat any other food or any “normal” dog treats.  No rawhide, biscuits etc for him – only treat (and his absolute FAVORITE) is carrots.  He will sit quietly with a look of anticipation on his face in front of the refrigerator when he wants one.
Things that make him happy: Sleeping in the sunshine that comes in the living room during the day.
Dislikes: Thunder – it makes him very frightened.

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