Little guys with big hearts

Published 10:49 am Friday, June 28, 2024

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I am partial to larger dogs, especially the Boxer, but I make no bones about it; I love them all.

That being said, over the years, I have noticed that there is something special about little dogs and how they bond, often with large men.

Years ago, a dear friend who was a massive man (Big Jim) had a little Yorkie as his number one companion. When Jim and Pete (his Yorkie) went for a walk, it was almost comical. But not to Jim; Pete was his boy.  

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When Pete passed on, Jim was devastated. I pulled some strings and helped Jim get a replacement, though Pete would understandably always be in Jim’s heart. His new Yorkie, who Jim named Repeat, filled the hole in Jim’s heart.

While working at Foothills Humane Society, I made friends with a big construction worker and Earl, his little Boston Bull. Earl rode on his motorcycle, went to work with him, and had every amenity for his comfort and pleasure. A person couldn’t help but smile seeing them together; they were most definitely a team. When Earl passed on, my friend went into a funk. We pet owners and lovers understand the feeling.  

“If you find a Boston Bull who needs a home, please call me,” my friend asked.

The very next day, a female brindle Boston Bull came into FHS. She was a young female who had been rescued from a bad situation. I asked the staff to hold her aside and called my friend, who came to the shelter within an hour. When Molly was brought out, my friend’s eyes lit up like the sun. Somehow, Molly sensed his emotion and literally ran and jumped into his arms; there wasn’t a dry eye in the house. To this day, whenever we run into each other I must say hi so Molly can give Uncle Lennie a kiss.

My newest big and little team is Keith, a handyman, and Quiver, his 11-year-old long-haired Chihuahua. This bond is just as palpable as the others I’ve mentioned. Little Quiver has stolen my heart; he loves giving people nose licks. Keith is a good-hearted Christian man who has had some hard times health-wise. Quiver is having heart murmurs and needs major dental work.  

“He needs to get images to see the extent of his problem and then his dental work. Can you help?” Keith asked. “I don’t know what I’d do without him.”

I had Keith and Quiver over to my house, and I did my best to ease Keith’s anxiety and get my Quiver nose kiss. Quiver will be brought to Upstate, and they will send me the bill for the exam, $800. Then, Quiver will go to Bonnie Brae for dental work, estimated at $1,800. 

With the Good Lord’s help, we will see that this bond between Keith and Quiver will go on for years to come.

Thanks for listening.

Keith and Quiver, his 11-year-old long-haired Chihuahua.

Leonard Rizzo is the founder of Lennie’s Kids, a nonprofit organization that helps sick and injured animals in the foothills, promotes animal welfare, and works to find homes for pets.