It all started in the fall of 2021 when John and I took a trip to Mexico together. At the end of our stay at one of the mega-resorts, we had a few days before our flight home so we ended up at an apartment complex near downtown Cancun. It was here I discovered the dogs.
There were four dogs living at the complex, largely ignored by the residents but noticed by the security guards at the front gate. I think the dogs felt safe there, in the front, and they seemed to have bonded somewhat with the guards.
The dogs would not allow anyone to approach them. They quietly lived their lives, scrounging food where they could.
When I returned home, I could not get the dogs out of my mind. I learned that homeless dogs were a problem in Mexico and I wanted to figure out a way to help so I planned my return, to the same complex, to see if I could find a way to befriend the dogs and bring them home.
Spoiler alert — EPIC FAIL!
I had researched extensively what I had to do to bring them back to the U.S. They had to go in cargo. They had to be examined, certified and vaccinated by a veterinarian 30 days before travel. I gave myself a couple of days to befriend them, figure out a way to get them to the vet and all would be ready. Then I would need to find crates and book them passage on a flight.
After several days of trying to get them close enough to get a collar and leash on them, I had to admit defeat.
So … I came to Cancun on a mission and if I couldn’t rescue these dogs, I would have to find some others to rescue.
I took to social media, searching for rescue organizations in the area. And did you know, there really aren’t organizations there as we know them here. There is no magical Humane Society or ASPCA or even animal control. Most of the work that is done with the dogs is done by individuals, some loosely organized into teams, who care about the animals and do the best they can to help them.
These people spend their own money, time and resources to help as many as they can.
I sent messages on social media and by later that day, I had a woman who was willing to help. By the way, my friend John was teasing me, telling me I couldn’t help them all! Of course not, but I will do what I can. John was actually in western Mexico playing on the beach while I struggled in my mission in the eastern part of the country but we talked nearly every day.
Maria was her name and she hooked me up with Dayli and Ana who were fostering some dogs that I could take with me. I will talk more about that in my next post as it was, and still is, quite an adventure.
This post is about what I call the “Dreams” dogs (the name of the complex where they were living) and my friend, John.
As I said, we talked nearly every day. Until we didn’t. I wasn’t too worried at first but after a couple of days I messaged a mutual friend and she hadn’t heard from him either. We were to find out that John had passed away.
This news came at the end of my trip to Cancun. I was facing leaving the dogs I had come to rescue (I had become VERY attached to them), I was facing leaving the men at the gate, with whom I had become close … and then, John.
He was an unusual and very silly person. I will miss his quirky sense of humor. It’s a great loss. Yet I realized, if it weren’t for him, I would never have gone to Cancun where we did, would not have ended up at that apartment complex, never would have known about the dogs and would not have undertaken the mission to rescue them.
I feel that my mission of helping the dogs in Mexico is very important. I will not give up. I have networked with people there and together we are working to make a difference. And truthfully, it’s all because of John.
We had been talking one day last summer and he mentioned that he had bought a trip on Facebook. It was a really good deal — something like $300 for a week at a fancy resort. Then he couldn’t find anyone to go with him. I said, randomly, “I’ll go!”, which, I might say, is very unlike me to be so spontaneous.
But I didn’t falter and we went. I’m grateful for the time I got to spend with him for those 10 days last fall. I could write a book about John, because as I said, he’s an interesting fellow.
But for now, I dedicate this post to him and my mission to rescue dogs in Mexico to him. I hope he’s watching and that he’s proud. And I have the last laugh! Because it’s working. We are making a difference.