RENO, Nev. -- Jake, the local therapy dog that had lost his leg to cancer, passed away in December, but his legacy still lives on in the community.
His story is inspiring, after having a leg amputated, he was walking within a day and quickly became a therapy dog. He comforted others, children, adults and amputees, who like him, have overcome so much.
"He he was everything, my companion, my best friend," Lori Archer, Jake's Owner said. "Everyone who met Jake got something out of him. I don't mean take something away, I mean it changed who you were inside when you meet Jake."
He left a strong presence in the community, but after his passing, Lori and her kids felt a loss that only a man's best friend could heal.
The support from the community was overwhelming as evident on Jake's Facebook page. It was a place for people to gather to express love and well wishes, but it also gave Lori and opportunity she never expected.
"I'm so excited, I just can't stop thinking about them. I've been excited since I woke up, because when I woke up my mom told me that they started coming this morning," Allie Michaels, Lori's daughter said.
Lori and her kids anxiously waited for Finley and Julia, two family members they've never met, but already love. The homecoming could be credited with divine doggy intervention.
After seeing the support Jake had on his Facebook page, the Southern California Golden Retriever Rescue (SCGRR) agreed to let Lori's Family adopt Finley.
He's a tripawd dog that was abused by his previous owner and then abandoned in the middle of cancer treatment.
"Just imagine and open wound on you that's not treated. You wouldn't do that to one of your kids, why would you do that to your dog that you're supposed to love?" Carrie Madrid, SCGRR volunteer said.
Then came Julia, another tripawd dog. She had lost her hind leg after hit by a car and her owner refused medical attention.
Now that these two are finally safe at home, you'd never know about their troubled and painful pasts when you look into their sweet eyes.
"Goldens are the forgiving breed. They kind of forget the bad things that happen to them and kind of go with today and be happy with today," Lori Yalem, SCGRR said.
"They just love. It's so unconditional with dogs. so unconditional that he was loving, honest from the minute we took possession of him and they're all like that, all of them. They just want someone to love them," Madrid said.
Once these two are settled in, they'll follow in Jake's footsteps and become therapy dogs. For this family that is still grieving the loss of a family pet, they see so much of their beloved Jake in these two, especially the ability to show people there's nothing wrong with having a disability.
"I learned that the depth of character he had was more amazing than most people you meet," said Archer. "When a dog can teach you about how to overcome obstacles and how to look inside yourself, you're not losing a dog, you're losing an inspiration."
"I miss him and I hope he's happy where he is and not in pain," Allie Michaels said.
"I love him. If I had one day to just be with him, I'd just sit there and just pet him," Josh Michaels, Lori's son said.
Jake's final act of kindness? Bringing these two tripawd dogs to their fur-ever homes.
To follow up on Finley and Julia, Follow Jake's Facebook page below.
Designed by Gray Digital Media