Man Saves Dog, Dog Saves Hummingbird, Hummingbird Saves Them All

“It’s crazy. You live with Tinkerbell. It’s like that’s what this is like.”

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Rex the German Shepherd mix dog rescued Hummer the hummingbird. Via Ed Gernon/YouTube
John Virata

Last year, Ed Gernon of Whittier, California, adopted a feral German Shepherd mix dog who he said fought with other dogs, killed cats and was just a dangerous animal. Gernon had attributed Rex’s behavior to living on the streets and surviving by using his hunting skills.

But Rex’s killer instinct changed when he happened upon a sick hummingbird. Rex had apparently pointed out the tiny hummingbird to Gernon, refusing to leave the bird. Gernon took in the little bird despite his initial thoughts.

“I mean it’s tiny and it’s dead as far as I’m concerned,” Gernon told “It’s covered in ants. It’s got no feathers.”

Ed Gernon rescued Rex, who rescued Hummer the hummingbird. Via Ed Gernon/YouTube

Ed Gernon has raised Hummer the hummingbird for more than a year. Via Ed Gernon/YouTube

Gernon then tasked himself to caring for a tiny hummingbird, a bird that is unlike any parakeet or finch. There isn’t a “Cliffs Notes” study guide on how to raise and train a hummingbird, but Gernon, Rex and Hummer have seemingly done well.

It has been a year since Hummer came into the lives of Gernon and Rex, and the little bird seems to be doing just fine and doesn’t quite want to leave, even though Gernon leaves his home’s doors and windows open in hopes that Hummer will fly away.

“It’s crazy. You live with Tinkerbell. It’s like that’s what this is like,” Gernon told

Gernon feeds Hummer every 15 minutes every day and taught the bird to fly using a hair dryer. Rex lets Hummer use his water bowl and Hummer likes to tease Rex every now and again.

Gernon’s circle of life has sure made for an interesting story.

“I rescue this dog. He rescues the bird. The bird rescues all of us in a weird sense and it’s just a miracle,” Gernon said.

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