This is an upsetting story.
There will be no happy ending.
I am heartbroken.
My Daisy, my 10 year old Cocker Spaniel, my rock and my only friend for two years whilst I was going through a violent divorce is dying before my eyes; two weeks ago she was fine, jumping around happily, now alas she is deteriorating before my eyes and all I can do is love her and make her comfortable and take away the pain and make sure she is not alone when it happens.
She has a tumour, one which has engulfed her liver and is slowing her down.
We grabbed her from my previous sister-in-law at the age of 9 months and she howled frightened throughout her first night with us, I went downstairs and stayed with her, curled up on the floor to comfort her.
And our bond started.
I had an office at home at the time, and every morning we’d share breakfast, normally a couple of soft boiled eggs and toast, then, contented, she’d clamber up onto my high backed office chair, I’d have to wriggle forwards to the edge whilst she slept in the small of my back all day long, it was a wonderful feeling.
We also ran, through the local park together, and I’d have to speed up to ensure she didn’t lose sight of me as she raced ahead but she always waited, then there were the times, running at dusk, when she became scared of the dark, so I’d have to clip her lead on her for protection and she’d happily continue with me.
We got so many big smiles from passerby’s as she sprinted beside me.
Then the divorce came and my friend stayed by my side night and day, we started sleeping on the settee, in the morning we’d still be wrapped up together, then later when the weather was better we slept in the tent in the garden sharing a blanket, both snoring.
We’ve slept everywhere together, spine against spine, both enjoying the body warmth and the companionship, I’d often wake up with her standing over me with her tail furiously wagging, and her bright eyes and playful face and a mouth stuffed with a discarded sock as a present.
She saved my life this dog, she saved me from my torment and from the intense sense of rejection the divorce brought, she was the only thing that liked me, she still is, and always will be my best pal, and I am so, so grateful to her for her existence in my life.
I don’t get to see my children anymore, so I guess Daisy has given me something to care for, to tend to, to be a Father to, and a better substitute I couldn’t have wished for.
She still wags her tail at me, despite her illness, she still sulks when I return from leaving her for longer than 60 seconds, and she still raises her ears at me and rotates her face from left to right understandingly when I talk to her, but really there is nothing I can do for her now, other than keep her pain free and happy and come to terms with the fact that she will leave us soon.
I know that when my time comes, she’ll be waiting for me…
…and we’ll do it all over again.
At least I have that to look forward to, that and the million happy memories of a true one-in-a-million dog.