Pete Kurimai shares a unique bond with his newly adopted dog, Jumper: they are both amputees. Pete and his wife Mary didn't set out to adopt a tripod dog when they went to the SPCA Tampa Bay earlier this month. The couple were still grieving the loss of their beloved 13 year old Dachshund, Katie. Once they spotted Jumper, a three-legged Mini Pinscher mix, however, it seemed like fate had intervened.
"When I saw Jumper, I knew he was the one," Pete told the Seminole Beacon. "He didn't have one leg and I didn't have one leg.
Pete lost his right leg below the knee over a decade ago due to complications from diabetes. Jumper's amputation was more recent. The 6 month old pup was hit by a car before arriving at the SPCA. While many people would be hesitant to take home a disabled dog, Pete feels a special kinship with his tripod.
"Jumper's a good dog. He's been hoping and jumping all over the place. That's why we named him Jumper. He won't replace the memory of Katie, but he replaces a part of the hurt of losing Katie."
Donna Bainter, the Behavior Manager at Tampa Bay SPCA, is touched by the connection between Pete and Jumper. "It's great when you see how a dog benefits a person and a person benefits a dog," she explained to the Seminole Beacon. "That's our ultimate connection."