Lady, The origin of Big Guy, Littles World Sanctuary. The story of Lady.
Anyone that is willing to put the effort forth to help us in our mission must know the beginning and how this light came from a place of darkness. How did all of this begin? Those of you that have known me for years, knew that through my adult life, especially my last 17 years of marriage, that I am an animal lover. However, most have known that I’ve only owned very large dogs for the last 15. Rottweilers to be exact. Beautiful, regal animals that are gigantic lapdogs. I actually would poke fun at any of my guy friends who happened to date someone who owned a small dog. I truly just never had given one a chance.
So I’ll keep this part brief and pleasant, even though it is the whole reason as to why this all came to be. However, I will state the facts. After 17 years of marriage, on New Year’s Eve of 2016, my ex-wife left me for somebody else that she was already in a relationship with. A team mate from the amateur bodybuilding team we were a part of. A guy she only knew a month supposedly. The combination of that devastation, the amount of time invested in the marriage, and the absurdity of no comprehension, closure or understanding as to how things were being handled, combined with the guilt of her blaming me for everything, pushed me to the edge. I lost faith in humanity. I got weak. I wanted to end it.
A good friend at the time kept me on this planet. A true friend, that was always there. In fact, she wouldn’t leave me alone long enough to do what I wanted to do. She literally just wouldn’t go away no matter how much I told her to. She had lost friends to suicide before and wasn’t going to lose me. Her name is Connie and still today she is my best friend.
She became so close to my situation and I trusted her so much that I would ask her to watch the house while I was out of town for work. You see, I’d leave for work for several days at a time. So I entrusted her with a key. As of late summer of 2017, I rescued my first animal. I needed a companion, something low maintenance, as it was time for me to get my life in order. Start moving on. Maybe it was time to travel and see the world. So enter Mogli, my man cub. A tiny, tiny little gray tabby found in a dumpster. I should’ve known then how expensive this process was going to be, as Mogli literally cost me $500 to rescue before a single vet appointment. He was found in North Carolina, (like I said, thrown in a dumpster) and after three tanks of gas, a night in a hotel, and a blown tire on a brand new car, the tally was well over $500 for my first rescue. 😂😂😂
My friend, Connie, Had shown me what friendship really meant. No matter what I needed, she was there for me. Needless to say, I feel I owed her quite a bit. Right around Labor Day of 2017 she came to me and asked me if I could do her a favor. She was moving into a new place that unfortunately did not accept animals. She asked if it was OK if I kept her dog, actually her sons service dog, Lady, would be at my house for an indefinite amount of time until she found a better place where she could keep her. Now believe it or not I’ve done this before in my life for other friends. I have aloud their animals to stay at my house for an indefinite amount of time while they worked out a living situation. Also, I was in no position to say no. Even though, through seeing lady at friends cookouts and listening to stories from Connie and numerous others, Lady was not exactly somebody I wanted to be near. Connie admitted that she was very protective of both her and her son, that she didn’t really like people and was known to be, and I quote, “unpredictable”. She especially didn’t like men. So, honestly, I just steered clear of her until this point.
Now, to make matters worse, Lady, is what you would say...” a little off. Why, you ask? Well, since her son had to go through chemotherapy, he was placed on special medicine. Lady apparently decided one day to eat his chemotherapy medicine. This was well before I knew her, or even Connie really. As the story goes, the vet told Connie to prepare her son that he’d be coming home to a dead dog after school the day that she ate his meds. Somehow, amazingly, lady survived. However, she wasn’t quite right after that. 🤪I like to describe her as this. Many of peoples Chihuahuas and dogs in general, look as if you were to draw a caricature of them, they would look like something out of a Disney cartoon. Round, fluffy, adorable. Lady looks more like a Rugrats cartoon. She’s a little lumpy, a little off, just not quite right. Lol.
So years later, here she is, in my house. I’ll never forget the day we met. Connie had mentioned she was dropping her off at the house and that she would check on her after work that day. To be honest, I totally forgot about it until I got home early from work that day and sat down in my living room on the couch and turned on the television. Well, sitting directly below the television, in a kennel, with the most adorably sad look on her face, was lady. She did not make a peep, she did not move, she just simply sat there. It literally took me all of 15 minutes to tell myself I don’t care if she bites me or not, I’m not making this poor dog sit in this kennel. So I decided to let her out. Not knowing what could happen.
I’m going to fast forward the clock about an hour and a half when I hear Connie knock on the door and walk in. Much to her surprise, I’m still sitting on the couch watching television, and there is a lady, in my lap watching TV with me and just relaxing. Connie was completely dumbfounded. She swore she’s never seen anything like this, this dog hates everybody. Lady and I have been literally inseparable ever since.
Unfortunately, even as much as a year after my wife walking out, I was still struggling to come to grips with everything. There were many days I could not even get up and go to work. Weeks turned into months and the only thing that made me happy was spending time with Lady. I could not get out of bed. I would just lay there either in bed or on the couch spending time with Lady. Connie would come over as late as 11 or 12 in the afternoon, and find me still in bed just spending time with Lady.
As pathetic as that sounds, Lady was slowly teaching me that I had a bigger purpose. She showed me a love that I’d never had before. I cannot believe how this little 7 pound beautiful baby stole my heart. Again, Connie was in disbelief. As was anybody else who had come in contact with Lady. It wasn’t until I asked Connie to let me borrow Lady as a chaperone to my mothers Christmas Eve dinner (as it will be the first time I’d be going by myself in 17 years) and witnessed both my brother and uncle trying to come up to me as I’m sitting on the couch and say hi, that I realized what everyone was talking about. Lady doesn’t like anybody. She went straight into protection mode as she tried to take their hands off of their arms when they reached out to shake my hand LOL I was shocked, and I felt horrible for them as well because moments prior I told them she’s an incredible dog with a great personality LOL she’s just extremely protective I guess.
Fast forward the clocks again for five more months and I’ve come to the realization that as much as I love this dog, she is not, in fact, my dog and that my time with her will be at an end at some point. So I set out to find myself my own lady. I have some childhood memories of my grandfathers Minpin named Lucy that I also was very partial to. I either wanted to find somebody that looked like lady, or find somebody that looks like Lucy. I guess I’ve become sentimental in my old age LOL. Those stories will be for another time but my first two dogs that I found were Kira, who, while not being black and tan, was brown and tan and reminded me of Lucy. I found her on craigslist for very inexpensive and seeing the condition she was in was horrifying. She was amazing but she was also full grown and I wanted a puppy. Somebody that I could raise from a baby and resembled Lady. Enter Harley. My little mole rat. Any of you that have seen pictures of or met Harley know that she very much fits the rug rats description. She’s lumpy, she’s a little off, pretty much hairless and very fragile. The epitome of Lady. That’s because it turns out her and her sister Quinn who I went back for the next day, were inbred.
I will share these stories in much greater depth on Harley, Quinn and Kira’s bios because each has a story of their own l, but for now everybody knows that there is a special girl out their named Lady who changed my world and saved my life. Oh,since all of this has happened, Connie has graciously accepted a full time position here, complete with room and board for her and her son to help me with this endeavor. This means that I get to spend the rest of Lady’s life with her as well!!