It was a sunny afternoon in early September 2002, I was just about to pass Dogs Trust in Shoreham when I got a strong urge to go and see the dogs. I looked at my watch seeing it was 2.15pm, did I have enough time before picking up my child from school, I made a decision and found myself in the compound looking at a lot of barking, eager dogs.
Right in front of me was the most handsome long haired Jack Russell, doing his impression of Tigger, boing, boing, boing, pick me! I had to, it was destiny. He had been returned to the dogs home twice already, did we understand that, yes, we'd be fine, we'd had dogs before. This was his last chance they told us to be adopted, what they didn't know was the first time I saw him I knew he was ours.
So after what seemed like a very long adoption process where his feet were constantly wet (it was December by this time) and frozen solid because it was so cold (Dogs Trust was very stark and bare at that time, it has since had a fabulous face lift and the dogs are now housed in warm accommodation), we took him home where he joined our other amazing dog.
We have had the most wonderfully fun, hectic (think Marley and Me), loving time with him, he was totally untrained at 1 year old when we adopted him, Mr CCL took over the training and very quickly he (mostly!) played ball, literally!
He has been the best company, a great guard dog, always up for a walk or a tussle, he has loved our children, he took a sniff at Miss CCL when she was born and they have been inseparable since. I've cried into his fur when times were rough, he always understood and leant into me too, I shall miss those cuddles....
Yesterday we lost him, he passed away peacefully after a stroke. He was 14, a good long innings and a happy life with us. A while ago I sat cuddled with him and thanked him for being such a wonderful dog to our family, I'm so glad I did, he knew but it was good to sit and share a biscuit with him, just us. I cried a thousand tears yesterday, I'm off to cry a million more, there is a dog-shaped hole in my heart again.....
Farewell buddy, we love you, it has been amazing.