Guard Dog Has an Important Message for MUTTS Fans and Everyone!

Wyatt Ray, our forever Guard Dog, is spotlighted in the November 2023 MUTTS Guard Dog saga happening this month. We are honored.

Wyatt Ray Guard Dog Puppy

The legacy of Tripawds Spokesdawg Wyatt Ray Dawg continues. This month as the world watches the heartbreaking saga of Guard Dog unfold in the panels of MUTTS Comics, we are reminded that Wyatt and Guard Dog have so much in common. This series has really hit home for us, and having the Mutts pack share Wyatt’s story today on social media is an incredible honor.

See MUTTS Spotlight Wyatt Ray on Facebook

We want to share MUTTS’ post, fan comments, and Wyatt’s story here for a furever remembrance, and posterity’s sake. Here’s what MUTTS wrote:

Guard Dog
Image © Patrick McDonnell used with permission from MUTTS.

Ode to Guard Dog Wyatt Ray from the Pack at MUTTS

Our friends Jim and Rene Nelson, founders of the nonprofit Tripawds, have dedicated their lives to providing advice and support for amputee pets and their people.

In 2009, their journey connected them with Wyatt Ray, a tripawd “guard dog” who lived the first few months of his life tethered and neglected in a backyard. Excited for attention or eager to escape, his confinement caused the chain to wrap and strangulate his right rear leg. A Tripawds member involved with a local animal rescue helped save Wyatt, who ended up abandoned at a vet clinic. At eight months old, Wyatt joined the Nelsons’ pack.

Jim writes: “Wyatt Ray indirectly showed his love for us, as best as he knew how. Our steadfast German Shepherd was not a cuddler. He didn’t care for hugs, baby talk, or deep eye contact. If he joined us at night, it wasn’t for long. Instead, he preferred to lay at the foot of the bed, always in protection mode and sleeping with one eye open.”

“Protecting the pack was his job, and by doing it well he showed his love. You can’t blame him, really. As a puppy, his first introduction to family life was to stay chained up out back, ignored and starving for attention. And from that early experience, he not only lost his leg, but a level of his trust in the humans around him.”

“It took years for him to regain what was stolen from him at a young age. We cherish memories of those rare occasions when Wyatt felt free enough to let his guard down, and be an ordinary family dog.”

Tripawds Jerry and Wyatt
Tripawds Spokesdawgs Jerry and Wyatt Ray

To read more about Wyatt Ray — and about a special “heart and soul” dog named Jerry, who inspired the Nelsons to start the Tripawds community — check out Jim’s heartfelt essay (written in 2021) on our blog:

One Heart Dog, One ‘Guard Dog’: A Tale of Two Different, Triumphant Tripawds

Comments from Team Tripawds


Thank you for sharing our story! ❤

We’ve known many Tripawds who started life as Guard Dogs. It’s sad how many dogs lose a leg, or their life, due to being tethered and neglected. So watching the Gard Dog story unfold in MUTTS really hits home. Thankfully, there are also good people people who know better.

Wyatt needed an amputation at 8 months old from being chained up as a puppy. We helped him love life on three legs for 12+ years. So there is certainly hope for Guard Dog. But only Patrick knows his fate…which is my reasoning for my quote shared here.

Wyatt Borrego Springs

Tripawds Spokesdawg II Wyatt Ray


❤ We can’t thank the pack at MUTTS enough for sharing Wyatt Ray’s story, and the work they’re doing to raise awareness for this important issue. Guard Dog has such a great message to share. It is both heartwrenching and heartwarming to watch his story unfold. Patrick is brilliant, and we’re certain there will be deep meaning behind whatever happens.

Having had the honor and pleasure to meet Patrick, we also know how difficult this story is for him to tell. And you can’t rush greatness. The best thing we can all do is help spread the word. Sharing now with Tripawds fans everywhere…

Patrick McDonnell & Wyatt Ray
Patrick McDonnell & Wyatt Ray

(#Tripawds Spokesdawg II Wyatt Ray meets Patrick at 2009 book signing.)

Author: admin

I will always miss Jerry. Readers may notice I write in the plural "We" since he is always at my side in Spirit when moderating these blogs and forums. Learn more about Jerry and how Tripawds came to be at

One thought on “Guard Dog Has an Important Message for MUTTS Fans and Everyone!”

  1. Furever guard dog indeed!
    What an honor 👏🏻 I hope you can get A PRINT to hang!
    WOOF, Wyatt Ray & Jerry G, you live on through all of us now and furever. Both were distinctly different pups with a purpose to teach, learn, and share, just as Nellie does.

    When you look at both Jerry and Wyatt, you can see the differences in their eyes. Wyatt is the guard dog, and Jerry is an old, wise soul. Both are amazing once-in-a-lifetime dogs.

    What did the G. stand for, Jerry? I can’t pull it im my head if I did know 🤔
    Holly, Mark, Purrkins, and Saxton in the sky💫

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