A former feral dog named Rex, who “learned to live on the streets and to survive on his own hunting ability,” according to owner Ed Gernon, is the only reason a tiny hummingbird is alive today. Only a month after Gernon adopted Rex, he spotted him standing over what looked to be a dead hummingbird. The pup refused to move.
Gernon told reporters at CBS Los Angeles when they came to visit his home:
I mean [the hummingbird is] tiny and it’s dead as far as I’m concerned. It’s covered in ants. It’s got no feathers.
And if others had seen what he saw, they would probably think the same thing. Rex, however, disagreed. “[H]e suddenly stopped and he would not move,” said Gernon.
Fast-forward one year later, “Hummer” is a full-fledged member of the family, though she’s free to go whenever she pleases. “I rescue this dog. He rescues the bird. The bird rescues all of us in a weird sense and it’s just a miracle,” he said.
Gernon continued, “It’s time for her to start mating and I keep leaving the doors and windows open thinking she’ll leave,” but the little bird seems to prefer to flit around the house. She drinks from Rex’s water bowl, gets fed a special sugary formula every fifteen minutes, and even learned to fly with the help of Gernon and a hairdryer.
It was this little creature. This fragile creature that the whole world wanted to kill and [Rex] was trying to protect her so I thought I’d go the distance.
It seems this frisbee-fetching, tiny bird guardian is a far cry from the feral dog he used to be—at least where this little “Tinkerbell” is concerned. Hummer will spread her wings when she’s good and ready, but for now she’s content to share a home with Gernon and the big dog who saved her life.