An Ode For Zante
I had not long lost Shona (German Shepherd) and was not sure because of my age and disabilities if I should get another when my daughter spotted an advert .
I thought long and hard and having always since the age of seven had my own dog
I decided that there were ways around my disability.
I went to the farm you were born on and met Matthew and your mum Lady.
Matthew suggested we met the 3 puppies left and take them down the fields so I could
choose. He let you all out and we started off by the time we reached the gate Lady and two pups had run on ahead. I looked at Matthew who had not noticed and said I have be chosen he looked in surprise and said so you have.
Needless to say I took you home and thus began a wonderful relationship you were highly intelligent I remember the first time you saw TV you were glued to the screen. We started obedience classes when you were 6 months old and soon you were in the top class. I quickly learnt when a new challenge or lesson was started to hang back and let you watch. Then when it was your turn you went out and did it nearly perfectly and always nailed it on your second attempt.
You had a yellow squeaky dog toy that you liked to live just outside the door and you would nuzzle it going in and out. One day my daughter said to me Zante thinks it her puppy doesn't she I said yes, then my daughter told me she had thrown it for her and that she went mental checking it was not hurt.
I knew you longed to be a mum so when you were two you went to a good dog and
in time produced nine fine puppies you were so happy and a wonderful mum.
I with your agreement moved yellow squeaky dog to the kitchen window sill.
When the day came for them to go as each one left you lay crying softly by the back
gate and I joined you shedding my own tears.
Two years later after some notable wins in the ring by you and your daughter
Tanganyika you again became a mum to 8 fine pups. Tanganyika did not understand
why you growled and sent her away. You finally allowed her to meet them at around
4 weeks. This time we kept two a dog and a b**ch, still we both cried when parting time came.
I did not know we were on borrowed time and that a year later at only six and half years you developed very aggressive cancer and faded in under 3 weeks I held you here at home while you tried to stand to say hello to the vet you could not get up,
the cancer had sapped your strength.
I cried buckets as we said good bye and you slipped of to peace and heaven
I buried you at home with your yellow squeaky dog that still squeaked and your
favourite blanket. There is an uncarved stone marking the spot in your favourite
corner of the garden.
I still miss you so much as does Tanganyika who went on the following spring on win 3rd at Cruft's 2010 you would have been so proud.
Zante you stole my heart and gave me a new leash on life You will always live
in my heart YOU WERE THE BEST 2003 -2009
Copyright © Shadow Hamilton | Year Posted 2014
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