Monday, 18 June 2007

Eight: Brag more about my 'granddog'

Snuffles, as you can see, is the most beautiful, cutest, wondrous, affectionate, gorgeous, loving little 'granddog' that anyone could ever be blessed with.

I know, I know, we all love your pets, specially the snake in the back shed and the crocodile in the bath. But Snuffles has an unusual history which I'll briefly tell you about and then I intend to brag some more.

We were teaching in Kuwait six years ago when I saw a picture of the sweetest little puppy stuck on a tatty piece of paper on a tatty notice board in the local supermarket, with a tatty phone number beside it.

What can I say? It was love at first sight; utter, blinding, overwhelming, breathtaking love. Never in all my (nearly) 60 years have I fallen so quickly. I didn't know her breed, if she even had one, I didn't know what her nature would be like, or what to expect after only having kept bulldogs before. Bulldogs are another one of my passions.

I rang the number and a man with very broken English told me that he had got 2 dogs from Thailand, one a rottweiler and one a 'small dog'. He informed me that his small children were hurting the 'small dog', but I suspect he wanted to get rid of her because he would've preferred another rottweiler.

We arranged to meet the next day in the supermarket's car park, exchanging car colours for recognition.

After waiting 30 minutes,we had almost given up, when he arrived and, there sitting on the back seat was this bundle of love, pure absolute love. I can't say anything else except that I was smitten, gone, completely gone!

After a bit of haggling we bought her there and then and took her straight to the vet, who informed us that she might be a shih tzu and also that she had a blood disease and may not last the next few days. Oh no, my heart was broken. How could this be happening? After just one hour with her in my life, I felt bereft.

He started treating her and within a few days she was completely well. Don't quite know what happened to the blood disease, but there you are, he performed a miracle on her ........

She was everything a naughty puppy should be, but delightful, with instant cartloads of pleasure.

The following year, when the Iraq war broke out,teachers were urged to leave, but couldn't take their pets with them. What a huge calamity. What were we to do with Snuffs?We spent more time worrying and discussing her than any other problem we might face if we left.

One of the Sri Lankan cleaning ladies at school heard about our predicament and offered to look after her, which we accepted very thankfully. She promptly moved in for eight weeks and bonded with our Snuffs just as we had. Without her help, we would have had to get rid of our precious 'child' as we no one knew what the outcome of the war would be.
That was an awful time for us, but soon we were reunited. The following year we decided to return to the UK.
We sent her to do her quarantine in France with some friends of ours, and when she entered the UK our reunion was better than any you might see in a Hollywood tear jerker.
It was hilarious the first time we took her to a park here, as she had never stepped on grass before. She was a real desert dog, sand , sand and more sand.
After six years my love for her is as strong if not stronger than it was then. She and I have an incredibly close bond and she is my shadow.
She is the happiest, most contented little soul that I have ever had the pleasure to share my life with and if I were ever reincarnated I would love to come back as Snuffles, providing I could have me as her owner.