Everyone knows that dogs are a man’s best friend. The relationship between a canine and its owner can be a beautiful thing. Not only do our furry friends offer valuable companionship, they keep us fit and healthy. But who’s to say that they only offer humans such benefits? The bonds that form between dogs and their peers can be just as strong. And that is exactly what this story is about.
Meet Stevie, a blind shar-pei and chihuahua Jimmy. These two dogs share a very special relationship. With Stevie under his full-time care, Jimmy never lets him out of sight. And this has made the canines inseparable.
The Ramona Humane Society picked up both Jimmy and Stevie as stray dogs in Hemet, California. This part of the state has a growing stray dog problem. Too often, dogs die on the street because they don’t have a home. Such organizations help prevent such dogs meeting such an awful fate.
The Ramona Humane Society is dedicated to minimizing the mistreatment of all animals. The organization helps all those who have lost their beloved pets, shelters homeless animals and gives rescued animals away to loving homes. Without it, Jimmy and Stevie might still be roaming the streets today.
Once the Ramona Humane Society rescued Jimmy and Stevie, the pair were available to be adopted. However, no one came forward to take them under their wing. It looked like they were unwanted strays. But it appeared that they didn’t need the comfort or protection of an owner. After all, they had each other, and they seemed pretty happy with that.
Jimmy relishes his role as Stevie’s primary care giver. Indeed, you will often find him tending to Stevie’s fur, licking his eyes or helping him get around without hurting himself. Jimmy knows that blind Stevie often can’t figure out where he’s going. So there’s no hope of him maintaining his appearance without a bit of help.
Along with a lack of sight, Stevie also has other medical conditions. He will often have numerous seizures in a day. This is treated with medication, which he will be on for life. But with Jimmy there, he has nothing to worry about.
The pair, quite simply, share an incredibly unique and close connection. With Stevie being a big, wrinkly shar-pei and Jimmy, a small, sprightly chihuahua, they make a funny looking pair. But that just makes them look more adorable. It’s a mystery that no one wanted to adopt them in the first place.
In addition to their opposing looks, there is a big age gap between the two. Although Jimmy is smaller, he is a whole five years older than Stevie. But, like their differing appearances, they don’t let it get in the way of their relationship.
However, when the Ramona Humane Society posted a photo of Jimmy and Stevie on Facebook, it caught the eye of another rescue organization. California Shar-Pei Rescue is a specialist team which saves that particular breed. But if the team thought they could separate Stevie from Jimmy, they had another thing coming.
California Shar-Pei Rescue’s mission is to house the dogs safely into nurturing families. At its shelter, the organization helps the dogs grow stronger before they are adopted, keeping them long enough to get back into good health. The charity also measures each case individually, so each canine has the best chance at happiness.
Neda Rosa, a volunteer and board member at California Shar-Pei Rescue, was particularly smitten with Jimmy and Stevie. She told Scoop Whoop, “We have never – in our 30 years of rescue – seen a bond like these two… And it’s interesting because it’s like Jimmy… knows his partner is blind, and he’s taking care of him. He’s just stuck to him like glue. He’s constantly grooming him, and he showers his face nonstop. And he just wants to be with him.”
Of course, the team faced a problem when it came to breaking up Jimmy and Stevie. In short, they realized that it could never happen. Rosa told The Dodo, “We are a breed-specific rescue, so we only rescue shar-peis. But when we saw how bonded these two dogs were, we thought that there was absolutely no way we could leave his little friend behind.”
Both dogs were taken to California Shar-Pei Rescue in the end. They did so even though only one was that particular breed; a first for the rescue team. In response, the Ramona Humane Society dedicated a Facebook post to them. It read, “These two were found together in the city of Hemet. [When their owner didn’t reclaim them] they were sent to one of Ramona Humane Society’s adoption partners, California Shar-Pei Rescue. Thank you for taking them both!”
Rosa was still astonished at Jimmy’s commitment to protecting Stevie. “He’s just constantly next to him, and he stands in front of him,” she told Schoop Whoop. “He’s like his protector, and you can tell that they’ve had some time together. And Jimmy is always licking [Stevie’s] eyes, and he’s always taking care of him and doesn’t want to leave his side.”
Having adopted them together despite regulations, Rosa won’t let anyone take one and not the other. “These two will only be adopted out as a package. We will not separate them. Ever. So it’s going to take a special person who is looking for a package deal,” she said to The Dodo.
California Shar-Pei Rescue posted photos of Jimmy and Stevie on its Facebook page to announce their availability. The photos received some hilarious comments. One read, “They look like they just dropped their new mix tape for a rap album. Cute!” Another user simply wrote, “Love!”
When Stevie and Jimmy arrived at the rescue center, they looked right at home. But when the team first met Stevie, he appeared uneasy. However, they posted an update of his progress on Facebook. “Who is this boy and what has happened to our shy, scared Stevie?” Things were looking up.
Stevie’s health has seen vast improvements too. On November 15, 2018, he went to the vet to have eye surgery. The results are still unclear, but hopefully it will have improved his vision. And if that wasn’t amazing enough, the seizures have stopped thanks to his medication.
For now, Stevie and Jimmy will stay at the rescue center until they find a permanent home. After they have been through so much together, there is no chance they will leave one another. Elated to have them there, the rescue center posts regular updates on their health and wellbeing. And it still goes without saying that like Laurel and Hardy, you can’t have one without the other.