Update: Man Whose World Has Been Turned Upside Down Is Desperate To Make Sure His Dog Is Safe

Update: Man Whose World Has Been Turned Upside Down Is Desperate To Make Sure His Dog Is Safe

***UPDATE: 07/25/16***

Cody has been boarding and receiving medical care at Elkridge Animal Hospital in Maryland since our last update, while occasionally spending weekends with some of his rescue team when possible. He has improved both physically and behaviorally, though he does have spondylosis (a degeneration of the spine) and his resource guarding still needs work.

When unable to foster, rescue volunteers Sonya Wahi-Miller and her husband Steve have picked Cody up from the vet for weekend outings which include playing ball in the park and getting cheeseburgers from Burger King.

Cody park

Cody has gotten very adept at ordering from the drive–through…

Cody drive thru collage

And the best news of all is that he finally has a foster lined up! After nearly two months of waiting, Cody will be going to a trial foster home with Jessica. She is an intern for a wildlife rescue on the weekends, and preparing to start graduate school for business management in the fall in the hopes of making her way into the animal non–profit world. Jessica lives in New Jersey with her two–year–old pup Roxy (she will be taking great care to integrate the two safely and properly) and her parents are also interested in helping Cody. They might even be able to take Cody to visit his former owner Jeff!

“Team Cody,” which consists of Christine Sandberg from Rescue Well, Steve and Sonya Wahi-Miller, Rachel Moxley, and Virgil Ocampo, have done a tremendous job of sticking with Cody through the good and the bad. Whether this foster works out or not, they deserve a giant pat on the back for not only Cody, but the countless other animals they help. They are still very much in need of donations for Cody’s medical care and boarding, as they have already spent more than they have taken in, so please keep them coming. And keep those fingers and paws crossed that Cody has found his forever home!

***UPDATE: 06/20/16***

There is an official You Caring Fundraiser set up for Cody’s medical care by one of his rescuers (Sonya Wahi-Miller) here. This money will go towards having him seen by a veterinarian, medicine needed for any illness, and rescuers are looking into either boarding him until a foster/adopter is found, or hopefully finding a trainer that does boarding who can work with him on his possesion/resource guarding issues. These issues may be related to illness, but he will be getting a full behavioral assessment once he receives medical treatment. Training and/or a very experienced foster/adopter is imperative. We have not been able to speak with Jeff or his counselor at the homeless shelter that he is staying in, but are still looking for ways to help him as well. Cody and Jeff were already separated before this article was written, and Jeff made that choice on his own in order to do what he thought best for Cody. Jeff is safe and being helped by the shelter in NJ, so the best thing for rescuers to do right now is focus on Cody’s safety and well–being. If there are surplus funds, they will go towards Jeff (depending on his sitation and getting in touch), the homeless shelter he is staying in, or a program that helps homeless people with dogs. Thank you all so much for your caring and wanting to help Cody and Jeff, and special thanks to Jamie for taking Cody in and working with rescuers to find the best home possible!

Cody is a beautiful 8-year-old yellow Labrador who has recently lost everything and is in need of a lot of help. Rescuers were alerted to his plight via a Facebook post nearly a month ago and they have been working to find him a home ever since.

Cody side

Cody’s owner is an older man we simply know as Jeff who has fallen on hard times. A source that has spoken with him tells us that he has lost his home and checked himself into a homeless shelter. He considered living on the street with his dog, but made the very painful yet loving decision that his senior dog would be better off finding a new home with a roof over his head. As if that isn’t heartbreaking enough, Jeff also lost his wife to cancer this week.

A Good Samaritan in Maryland named Jamie saw the post and drove to New Jersey where Cody was located to take him home with her. However, Cody is in a lot of understandable stress and Jamie and her family have had a hard time getting him to feel comfortable.

Cody Post

Cody, who lived with Jeff from the time that he was 8 weeks old, has been licking his legs raw from the stress of being uprooted and separated from his person. He also hasn’t seen a vet in quite some time and it is unknown at this point if he is suffering any illnesses. Jamie has tried getting him into her car to take him to a veterinarian, but he doesn’t want to leave his space right now.

Unable to give Cody the help that he needs, Jamie is considering taking him to their local animal shelter. She receives daily texts from Jeff asking how Cody is doing. Upon learning that Cody needs more help than Jamie is equipped to give, he is begging her not to take his beloved dog to a shelter where he may be put down. Even worse, their local shelter is currently being closed at the end of the month, which means that any dogs who are still under their care will have extremely limited options.

Cody down

Cody is in so much distress that he is licking his legs raw
Rachel Moxley is a rescuer who volunteers with Tara’s House Animal Rescue and utilizes several Facebook pages to match up missing and found pets with their owners. She happened to stumble across a post of Jamie’s that she had found a home for Cody, but connected the name of the prospective adopter to a man who is suspected of dogfighting. She immediately contacted Jamie and told her to get in touch with Rescue Well, another Maryland rescue that specializes in helping owners re–home pets.

She then reached out to a new super group of connected rescuers, advocates, and shelters called Coalition of Rescue East (CORE). The many rescues and rescuers involved have stepped up and are working in every way possible to get Cody the help that he needs, but of course they are all full to the brim as well with dogs waiting to find homes. It’s a race against the clock as everyone is trying to save this adorable guy!

Cody tongue

As of right now, CORE is working tirelessly to find Cody a foster or adopter. They are currently focusing on finding a mobile vet to visit Cody and get him the medical treatment he so desperately needs. Though they are looking for a home for Cody, they aren’t giving up on trying to find a program or way to help Jeff so that he can be reunited with his dog. If there’s anyone who needs man’s best friend right now, it would be Jeff.

Those interested in potentially fostering or adopting Cody, helping CORE, or that may know of any programs that offer long term solutions to help Jeff and Cody reunite, please get in touch with Rescue Well at [email protected] It is unknown at this time how Cody does with other pets and children, but probably best that he be in a relaxed, experienced, and patient environment for now. Cody is currently located in North East Maryland, and Jeff is located in Atlantic City, New Jersey.


Special thanks to Rachel Moxley, Sonya Wahi-Miller, Virgil Ocampo, CORE, and the many others who are working to help Cody and Jeff.

All images via Rachel Moxley/Foster mom Jamie