Isis: The Dog That Nobody Wanted
I was asked a few days ago if I could write a story about a dog that was rescued over the summer. Normally, I don’t get requests for stories from people who weren’t there in the beginning or the end. After speaking with the man who took a chance on Isis, I knew that I had to share it nonetheless.
During the summer of 2012, Jessica Jakobe and her then fiance’ Josh, offered to foster 6 puppies for a week. The puppies were being held at an animal shelter in Altus, Oklahoma which is notorious for its barbaric method of euthanasia. Unwanted dogs and cats are killed in a gassing chamber, a very inhumane way for an animal to die. I’ll spare you the details because you really don’t want to know. With the fear of puppies being killed for no reason more than the fact that a home hadn’t been found, Jessica offered to take them on. Mileage wasn’t a factor in her decision. A few days before the puppies were scheduled to arrive in Emporia on transport from Altus, Jessica got a call from an administrator at the shelter. Jessica was told of a mother dog who was recently impounded. While it was obvious that she was a nursing mother, no signs of puppies were found. With a heavy heart, Jessica agreed to foster the mother dog as long as she passed a behavior test. Confirmation that the dog would do fine, sealed the deal.
That following Saturday, Jessica set out for Emporia, Kansas to pick up the puppies and Isis. According to Jessica,
“What lay in store for me was nothing that I ever would have imagined.”
When Isis stepped out of the truck, she began spinning in circles and trying to attack a small dog that was on the same transport. Jessica scooped up the little dog and watched the transport driver put Isis back into the truck. Jessica said that she thought,
“Oh crap, this is not going to work! She doesn’t have a rescue lined up, I have no one else here in Kansas City to help me, and I can’t send her back to the shelter, as only death waits her there!”.
Refusing to give up, Jessica and Josh loaded up 4 of the puppies and someone followed her back to Kansas City with Isis and the other 2 puppies in tow.
When the couple got home with the dogs, they placed Isis in their bathroom so they could arrange their living space to accommodate a “hell-bent” Isis. As they moved around crates, they heard a crash in the bathroom and when they opened the door, they found that Isis had ripped the bathroom mirror off the wall, shattering it across the floor. Other fatalities included the mini-blinds and the shower curtain. After making a note to not lock Isis in the bathroom ever again, the Jakobe’s took Isis outside to let off some steam. When they came back in, she collapsed in exhaustion, easily falling asleep in her crate. When night came, Jessica realized that it would be the longest night of her life.
As the family settled in to rest, Isis let out a shrill and blood-curdling scream. The sound was so horrible, it was human-like. In a short amount of time, Isis chewed a hole in the side of the plastic crate and she attempted to escape. Jessica and Josh moved Isis to a wire kennel and they hoped for the best. Within moments, Isis had ripped the plastic tray at the bottom of the cage, completely in half and she was prying desperately at the wire that held her. The screams continued until 5 am.
After the longest night ever, Jessica and Josh woke up and they took Isis to a friend’s house with the hopes that she would do better there. After a few days and the death of another crate, Isis found herself in boarding. She remained there until the following weekend when she made the trek to Iowa to meet her new foster mom, Emily.
Isis’s new home lasted only a short time. After trying as hard as she could, Emily just couldn’t find a placement for Isis. The complete deal-breaker happened when Isis tried to kill (and almost succeeded) Emily’s own dog. Again, Isis found herself in boarding. The cycle of Isis’s foster home/boarding seemed endless. Again and again, Isis would be given a chance and she would blow it. Just when everyone had given up on her ever finding a home to call her own, a man showed up and took her home with him. When Isis tried to attack his dog, the man immediately took her to a shelter where she was labeled “vicious” and she was scheduled to die the next day. Before euthanizing Isis, the shelter scanned her for a micro-chip and when they did, they put in a courtesy call to Emily (who had registered the chip). Emily picked up Isis and transferred her to the home of a dog trainer. Isis made it a few weeks. Again, everyone wondered if Isis could be saved.
And then, Gene walked into the picture. Willing to give it a shot, Gene offered to take on Isis. She went to live with him and his 3 dogs in Mexico, Missouri. It was a “work in progress” that Gene and his dogs took on completely. As time passed, the loving man put in everything he had to see to it that the dog would have every chance possible at a new life. Gene created a Facebook page to track Isis’s progress and he aptly named it “Saving Isis”. Within two weeks, the name of the Facebook page changed to “Isis is Saved” and Gene made the decision to make Isis a permanent part of his pack. Isis, Gene, Cheddar, Axe and Chase were living the dream. No one could recognize Isis and the change that she made because of Gene. She blossomed.
Last Sunday, Isis, Jax and Ace were outside on Gene’s farm when they heard a noise in the woods. Before Gene could react, the dogs took off into the woods. After four hours of frantically calling for his dogs, Gene and Cheddar stumbled upon the lifeless bodies of Isis, Jax and Ace. 100 yards from their bodies lay a mangled and injured bobcat. Cheddar got to the bobcat before Gene could and killed it immediately. Out of frustration and deep sadness, Gene began to beat the dead bobcat with a stick.
Isis now lays in a grave on Gene’s farm, right alongside Jax and Ace. After a season of difficulty, sadness and triumph, her story ultimately ends in tragedy. Or does it? While it’s easy to only see Isis’s death, what is missed is the actual living that she got to do. Isis received a chance, hope and a promise. Isis had a family. After everything that she went through, after every blown chance, in the end, Isis got the greatest gift of all. Love.
R.I.P. beautiful girl. May you roam free and wait at the Rainbow Bridge for your beloved Gene and Cheddar. My thoughts and prayers are with Gene during this very difficult time.