When I first heard about Tivi, I couldn’t imagine the pain and fear he must have experienced at the hands of his abuser; hands of the so-called more intelligent species. There’s nothing intelligent about what was done to Tivi. I cannot comprehend that kind of cruelty and never will.
But Tivi has that fighting, special spirit and won over the hearts of hundreds on his road home. Hopefully, he can forget his horrendous past. With Jonathan by his side, I believe he will.
Shelter work and rescue efforts is an overwhelming, usually thankless job. It is success stories like Tivi’s and many others that keep rescue workers going.
I was delighted to be given the chance to do a follow-up on Tivi and get the opportunity to speak with the “angels” in his story (Read Tivi's Angels, July 2010). Like many out there, I look forward to the pictures of his sweet, wrinkly face in his ever-increasing wardrobe and the amusing updates of his happy life posted by Jonathan on his Facebook blog.
The following story is very touching and could explain why Tivi always looks so handsome in whatever dapper duds he is decked out in. It was written by Randa Speck, one of the angels in Tivi’s story.
The Green Sweater
Tivi came to our no kill shelter the summer of 2008. He had been muzzled, set on fire, and left to die. No one could distinguish his breed or his color but all agreed he resembled a Gargoyle. The hairless ,wingless kind. When we tell him that story, and how he must have fallen to earth as a hunka hunka burning love, just missing the water by a tick lick ,his eyes twinkle....
He likes that story so much better than the real one.
Tivis recovery was slow and painful,but every once in a while we would see the glimpse of a smile. Tivi saw hundreds of dogs come and go but never befriended any of them.The only four legged friend he cared about having was a little rubber alligator named Pearl who he gently carried around in his mouth as if she were his own wrinkled baby.
A year and a half had passed and Tivi still refused to venture out beyond the shelter parking lot, sometimes the building, sometimes even his own room and he would absolutely never ever go near a vehicle.
Then just around Christmas time a package came for Tivi and in it was a green sweater. That simple thoughtful gift changed Tivis' life . He no longer felt naked or embarrassed. That very day he hoped into my car and went to Mcdonalds for Tivis' first ever McDouble without onions. That was the day we knew he was ready to go home..
Meanwhile over 150 miles away Jonathan was making a nest.He didn't know why but he felt compelled to buy his first house and fill it with soft blankets.
The why became clear, when he saw Tivis' story on the 10 o'clock news.
The next day Jonathan appeared at the shelter. . Jonathan was wearing a sweater and a big smile. And so was Tivi!
We packed up Pearl, his little socks, his sweaters, the pink and the green,and what we hoped were almost 2 years of good memories for him, and tearfully sent him home.
Tivi lives with Jonathan now and there is nowhere that he is afraid to go, with or without a sweater.
No more nightmares, Tivi. Jonathan promised!
Tivi, may you be surrounded with comfort and love and may you never know pain and suffering again.