It is impossible to talk about Juelz’ story without mentioning Shaka, who sadly had left this world at the end of 2016.
Shaka was the definition of a “perfect dog.” He was loyal, smart, gentle, calm, happy, nurturing, sweet, docile, loving, and selfless. He put others’ as his priority instead of himself. I always remember that even when the days he wasn’t feeling well, the first thing he tried to do when he saw me, was to stand up and greet me with the sweetest tail wagging and to come close to me, so I can pat him and hug him. It was impossible to not love Shaka. He was not only perfect, but also “ therapeutic.” He had even helped the owner’s little cousin, who used to be scared of dogs, to get over his fear. The boy eventually adopted a pitbull because Shaka had shown him that dogs and pitbulls are actually very amazing!
It’s All Very Overwhelming
Juelz came from an abusively neglecting situation. She spent her first few months in life being left outside in the backyard without much human nor animal interaction other than her brother from the same litter. When she was first rescued by Bullies and Buddies, she was very skittish and was very disconnected from this world. Everything was a trigger to overwhelm her. She jumped when there was a car driving by, she bolted when someone closed the door, she froze and ducked when being approached, she trembled and urinated when in a new environment. She was afraid of people, intimidated by other dogs. The world was so big and scary that she just didn’t know what to do with herself, and she was constantly stressing out with anxiety to the point where she would start biting and showing aggression out of fear. She was not happy because she was trapped in her own mind.
And then, Juelz met Shaka.
Shaka had always been very good with other dogs. He was especially gentle and patient with Juelz. He seemed to know that Juelz had already gone through a lot at a young age, and there was this sweet little girl hiding behind the constantly overwhelmed anxious wild puppy. Shaka earned Juelz’ trust within a short amount of time, and thus Shaka’s human, Mao, kindly took Juelz in because he believed that Juelz would become a happier and a calmer dog by learning from Shaka.
And Juelz did! She did amazingly well by living with Shaka and Mao. She started to trust people, started to socialize better with other dogs, started to open up to new experience and the world, gradually and steadily. All because of Shaka’s loving patience and Mao’s dedicated care.
Love is the best language that translates and transforms. Because of Shaka’s love, Juelz has overcome her fear and started to open up, because of the love towards Shaka, Mao saw what Shaka had seen in Juelz, and continues working on her anxiety, so the sensitive but loving Juelz can understand the world better and face life.
Being young and athletic, Juelz always seems to have endless energy. Currently as the only dog, she especially needs lots of exercise. However, just like an introverted person, Juelz loves to play with her friends, but she needs slow introduction when it comes to strangers and new dogs. Therefore, Mao takes her for long walks away from the traffic and the crowd, as well as to less known parks where she can enjoy running around and catching balls without worrying about random encounters. The Juelz without distractions and noises is engaged and eager to please, and she can learn a new trick within less than 30 minutes!
Juelz has gone a long way to become who she is now. She is happy and curious about the world, thanks to Shaka, Mao, and many others that had/have believed in her and worked with her! It is never easy to heal a soul when it’s broken and hurting. However, giving it a chance with love and understanding, amazing and powerful results will follow.
Written by Helen Chiu, DVM, CVA