I am writing this at a time I hope is far from the date I will publish it. I know that when the time to publish comes I won’t be fit for anything so I’m writing and saving this now, while my little dog PJ is still with me.

PJ has been ill for a long time. He has Cushings disease. I made the decision not to medicate him, not because of the cost of the treatment: we have good insurance for our dogs. I just don’t think it’s fair to put him through all the nasty side effects because I’m too selfish to let him go. If you are reading this now, my darling boy is no longer with me and my heart is broken.

We got PJ when we first moved to Oldmeldrum and when my daughter was just ten years old. His breeder advertised on ePupz and we drove down to West Calder to pick him up on a sunny September day. I can remember the exact moment we fell in love. My husband stopped off in a lay-by to give the 8 week old pup a chance to relieve himself. I placed him on the grass and told him to go potty. Of course, he didn’t know the command then, but nature took its course and he peed. “Good boy!” I told him. He looked up at me and I swear at that moment an understanding passed between us. He would be mine and I would be his and nothing would ever get in the way of “us”.

I have so many stories I could share with you, like how I accidentally broke his paw during his second week with us; how he learned to open the shower door to try to join me; how he would lead his baby brother Archie upstairs for a bit of peace because Archie hadn’t learned to go downstairs on his own; how he loved to play with a small ball and hide it in and under things; how he would cry when he couldn’t get it back out; how he sat on the stairs when I went out and was still there when I got home; how he would chew through leads, bag straps and anything else he could find when he was stressed; how he loved to lick; how he had his favourite YouTube video and would happily sit on my knee watching it time and time again; how he would dance and bark on command; how he taught several young children not to be afraid of dogs; how he would bark at airplanes and chase them out of his garden airspace; how he got older and snorier and grumpier and slower and is now no longer lying in my arms.

I have no idea how I’ll cope without him. He was there for me when life was at its blackest and his love never ever wavered. I was so blessed to share my life with him and there will always be a hole in my heart that no other dog will ever fill. Every other dog is, and forever will be, a pale imitation of the perfect boy that was my PJ.


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