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Jake came to our family when a school teacher noticed that my ADHD son paid attention in class after wrestling with a stray dog at recess a few days in a row. She gave us the number of a woman who rescues dogs that would otherwise have been put down. Our family went that night to the rescue home, and she apologized that she only had one dog to choose from, a mangy German shepherd cross that a man had brought it in from an Indian reservation in Canada near where we lived. My son loved him immediately, and Jake became one of "us."

When my sister had a hatch of baby chickens, Jake took to looking after them in a mothering way, moving in between the neighborhood kids and preventing them from picking the chicks up when they were too small to pick up. One morning, one was not in the box and Jake noticed that one of the 12 was gone. He worriedly trotted through the house, found it behind a chair in the living room, picked it up in his mouth and gently placed it back in the box. Later that week, my sister saw Jake playing in the faraway meadow with a pack of wild baby foxes. He was truly a Sawtelle dog.



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