Furry Friends Feature: 624 Days at the Shelter, Williamsburg dog looking for a forever home

Homeless dog Jerome is looking for someone special to call family. Today marks his 624th day at The Heritage Humane Society. The six-year-old mixed breed dog is the poster child for October’s National Shelter Dog Adoption Month.

He was left an orphan as a result of a divorce

Jerome was originally surrendered to The Heritage Humane Society on November 25, 2020 due to a divorce. After four long months of work, he thought he had found his forever home on March 26, 2021. Unfortunately, Jerome was re-surrendered to the shelter on June 12, 2021 and has been there for over 16 months since then. His surrender in 2021 was the result of Jerome wanting more time with his new owner, and when he was abandoned for so long, Jerome experienced separation anxiety, worrying that he would be abandoned again.

488 dogs and counting

Since adorable, huggable Jerome has been at the shelter, 488 other dogs have been adopted from there. Each time, Jerome wonders if the next receiver will be his game.

“Many times people interested in adopting a dog, cat or one of our small pets expect to come to The Heritage Humane Society and find their perfect match will immediately jump into their arms, give them lots of licks, and deliver them. purring power or wagging tail. While we have those wonderful moments, we have many pets like Jerome who share the same traits as many people, it just takes a while to warm up and observe new people and new situations as opposed to just being their life. party,” says Kimberly Laska, executive director of The Heritage Humane Society.

Fido Field Trip love from human companions

Heritage Humane Society volunteers Janet and Mike Zikes have long taken Jerome on Fido Field Trips at least once a week. Fido Field Trips allow Jerome and other shelter pups like him to take a break from the kennel.

“We love Jerome!” Janet shared in a recent email, “Jerome loves Fido Field Trips. No matter where we go, she is happy to be with us and excited to take in all the sights and smells. He walks easily, but likes to sniff every tree he sees. He is so busy sniffing that he barely notices other dogs and people walking by. “He walks well and will sit on the bench with you when you’re ready for a break.”

Jerome takes time to build trust with people. When he does, his giant heart opens wide. Zikes and the shelter’s other volunteers and care team staff share that Jerome is very smart, playful and active, so he needs someone to continue to work with him and give him plenty of opportunities to exercise and play. Recommended for older kids because he really likes toys — and treats, Jerome says, so don’t forget to bring plenty of treats.

Janet and Mike Zikes on Fido Field Trips with Jerome

Shelter Volunteer Amanda Ibrahim shares, “I absolutely love Jerome! Walking into her room and seeing her light up makes my day! He is so excited to show me his favorites at the moment, running from toy to toy. This guy is a real gem and if you are lucky enough to be on the receiving end of his joy and love, there is no better feeling than that! He loves long walks, tummy rubs, peanut butter Kongs, old toys, new toys, toys of any kind, and most of all, he would love to meet you! Currently, I am taking him to level one dog training courses where he has become a star student. He is a quick learner and an overall amazing dog!”

Training courses and seminars

Adam Claar is a Dog Training Class Instructor at The Heritage Humane Society. She is a Certified Dog Behavior Consultant with the International Association of Animal Behavior Consultants, a Certified Professional Dog Trainer – Knowledge and Skills Assessed and a Good Dog Citizen, STAR puppy and Trick Dog assessor for the American Kennel Club.

Claar works with Jerome and shares that “he has consistently been the superstar of the training class and is very proud of his spin trick.”

As Jerome continues to learn, Claar can also offer advice to his new human companion(s) to help them relax more and avoid separation anxiety when they’re apart. In this way, Jerome will not worry and will learn to believe that his human companion has not left him.

Jerome is on track to continue to improve. He could continue to benefit from Adult Level 2, Trick Training and AKC Good Citizen classes at the shelter. The Heritage Humane Society houses a variety of dog training courses.

Sponsored Adoption Fee

The Greater Williamsburg community is working to end Jerome’s homelessness and find him his forever home. His adoption fee is fully funded by the Drive Safe Hampton Roads Christopher King Foundation. With the adoption fee paid, the Heritage Humane Society also makes it easy to purchase items for Jerome’s new home with a Retail Store located in the shelter’s lobby.

Jerome is available for appointments seven days a week during normal adoption hours, 12 – 4:30 p.m.

For more information, visit HeritageHumane.org or call 757-221-0150.

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