On Tuesday 15th March 2022 I had to make the heartbreaking decision to say goodbye to my precious Pops.
As many of you know, Pops wasn’t a dog to me, she was my best friend in the whole world, my confidante, my security blanket.
Wherever I went, Pops came too, providing she was allowed. Every single day of her life revolved entirely around her, she was the centre of my universe. Even on our wedding day, Pops was my first dance! People used to say to me she was the luckiest dog on the planet, but I am equally privileged and honoured, to have had my amazing soulmate by my side for almost 16 years.
Pops was my best friend in the world
We shared thirty-three holidays, she posed for thousands of photos, and we went on countless adventures – always with her trusty ball in tow.
Pops’ happy place was undoubtedly the beach. Her little face just lit up when she saw the sand, and in recent years I used to love watching her and Gerts chasing each other about on the shoreline.
Pops always had control of every situation. If I ever got lost on a walk, (which isn’t unusual!) she instinctively knew our way back to the car. Her Collie intelligence and Terrier determination made her more human than canine – I always used to joke with people that she was my little humog!
Pops lived life to the full right up until the end and she had boundless energy. Two weeks before she passed away the three of us were on holiday in Derbyshire staying at Hoe Grange Holidays. And in her final week, she was still chasing after her ball and loving life.
Saying farewell to the love of my life
She went in the way she would have chosen. It was all incredibly sudden and happened so quickly. Her body had just given up through old age.
I held her little head and hugged her tight until her very last breath, whispering in her ear how much I loved her. After she’d gone, Gerts gave her big sister a final kiss on the nose. It was all so peaceful and Alison, our lovely vet, was crying almost as much as I was.
Alison had looked after Pops all her life. She’d even administered her puppy inoculations and was very fond of her. Pops was just such an incredibly special character and she made an impression on everyone she met.
Pops’ little face is on so many websites, she will leave a lasting legacy. She absolutely loved her photo being taken and would look so proud when others stopped to admire me taking photos of her, whilst she posed like a pro.
She truly was and always will be the love of my life.
I’m sure you can imagine that since her passing I have been an emotional wreck, and I am finding adjusting to life without her incredibly hard. Some days the grief is just unbearable and all-consuming. Nothing can prepare you for it.
Gertie is being amazing. She is such a loving little dog and she has not left my side – giving me endless cuddles and licking away my tears. I couldn’t ask for a better companion to see me through these dark days.
Welcoming Winnie to our Family
Just before we lost Pops we had decided to welcome another puppy to our family. Pops was thirteen and a half when we got Gertie, and I remember worrying so much that she wouldn’t tolerate a puppy in the house, but she loved being the ‘responsible adult’ and showing Gerts the ropes.
I so desperately wanted her to meet her new sibling and to be an impeccable role model all over again, but the universe had other ideas.
Welcoming little Winifred to our family so soon after losing Pops has been terribly bittersweet. In those interim days, I doubted if we were doing the right thing, but I knew it was the best decision for Gertie, and it’s what Poppy would have wanted.
We chose the name Winifred because it means happiness. Our little ray of happiness in our darkest times, and she has indeed filled our house with joy. Providing a much-needed distraction from the shockwaves of grief and devastation that encompass every day.
Pops was my entire world and I will cherish every moment we spent together for the rest of my days. Despite the heartbreak and pain I am feeling now, the memories and love we shared are worth every tear.
Poppy dog I miss you more than words can say. Sleep tight my beautiful girl.
I will always love you.