Just over six months ago, this beautiful creature became a permanent fixture in my daily life. She had been living with my brother, his fiancée and my two nephews, but the burden of giving a dog the attention it needs was just too much with two children aged two and under and they had no choice but to give her up. I couldn’t see her going in to a shelter, and as she lays here next to me, head on my pillow and snoring, I know I made the right choice.
That isn’t to say that I don’t think shelters do a good job – I think they do a fantastic job and more should be done to support them, where possible – but I recall seeing an older dog on the website of one of my local shelters, and he was on there well over a year before finally being adopted earlier this year. I didn’t want that to be Treacle’s fate. She loves people and wouldn’t have coped well in a shelter.
Treacle was abandoned approximately three and a half years ago, found by my brother, and housed with him until her owner came forward. They never did. The anger I feel towards this person I have never met cannot be put into words. I will never understand people who can treat animals so cruelly. I also feel sympathy for them, as they will never know the quirky, sensitive, protective, outstanding character that is my dog. They will never understand the small joy of waking up with her curled between their legs, or climbing under their covers for ‘snuggles’ when it’s a bit colder. The joy she brings as I walk through the door and experience her greeting is unparalleled. The way she insists on sticking her head out of the window of the car to feel the breeze, or carries her Pedigree® DentaFlex® wherever she goes (although I don’t usually let her take it on walks with us), or has made herself at home on the back of the chairs in the living room so she can watch the world go by and wait for my return are some of her characteristics I love and cherish in her.
She loves being outdoors and I only wish I could spend more time outside with her. She loves to chase a ball or frisbee, although she’s not too keen on actually fetching it – more chase to chew and destroy! She loves exploring a new place and would run around all day if I let her. She demands my time and I feel rejuvenated following a long walk with her. I have experienced new places and made new friends and yet I also cherish the solitude of our individual walks. I didn’t previously want the commitment of a dog, but now I really don’t know what I’d do without her. She is my family and my whole world, and I think I would be lost without her.