Best friends, Laura Markham and Olivia Hnatow, raised a grand total of £60.20 for 'Wimbledon Greyhound Welfare' (the Hersham Hounds) with their own initiative of setting up an orange juice stall.
Their kind donation was made in memory of Laura's beloved greyhound, Chinny who sadly, passed away recently.
Although much missed by all her family and friends, Laura and Olivia wanted to do something special for us in honour of this very special lady.
Thank you both for all your hard work and for helping Chinny's memory live on in all our hearts.
Pictured are Laura and Olivia with their stall information they put together themselves, with WGW's 10 year old homeless hounds, Dee-Dee and Coco, looking on.
After we lost our big boy Spiral we decided that we wanted another friend for Penny our Lhasa Apso, so brought her to the kennels to help choose. We walked you a sad little figure with a poorly foot who wouldn't even look us in the eye. You took no notice of Penny so we decided to give you a go, that was nearly 3 years ago and the best decision we made.
Even though you were 9 when we got you, you settled in well and slowly accepted our love and gave yours in return. Stubborn to the core and ousting us out of your favourite chair and off our bed, but you enjoyed being with us.
You recently started to get frail and got a couple of infections that you have found hard to shake off and arthritis has taken its toll, when we had to make the decision to let you go over the rainbow bridge.
It was the hardest decision we have had to make and will miss you more than you will ever know.
Sleep tight our lovely little girl
Love The Woollards
The legend that was "Pepsi" is no more.
This evening, (18/3/16), 'Pepsi', a handsome, characterful 9 year old brindle boy with a wonderful curly tail (racename: Pepsi Legend') , passed away in his sleep, snuggled up in his Nordic cream and red pyjamas with his greyhound girl, 'Sky' for one final time.
He had a normal last day, playing in the paddock and being his usual happy, active, lively self.
He would have been with us 4 years in May, having been retired from Wimbledon stadium in 2011. We never gave up hope someone would see past his anxious barking in the yard or on walks and recognise what a happy, loving boy he actually was and take him home where we knew he would have flourished.
Whilst that sadly never happened, he was very much loved by us all at the kennels and by his regular walkers, like Ian and Liz, who knew he thoroughly enjoyed his walks with them and loved him for what he was.
Pepsi loved to bark and jump at the paddock fences, if he knew there was another dog likely to react in the next paddock, and he initiated many a paddock fence repair as a result. He relished the mayhem his fence-jumping naughtiness created in the adjoining paddock. Pepsi was always a joy to look after. He relished a cuddle and a long walk and there was never a dull moment when he was around.
He was such a thoroughly happy boy and will be a very hard act to follow. The paddocks will be so quiet and empty without you, Pepsi, and we will miss you dreadfully, but we can rest assured you loved every moment of your time with us at 'Wimbledon Greyhound Welfare' and we all loved you unconditionally.
Goodnight darling Pepsi - from everyone who knew you, cared for you, walked with you. You were one very special handsome and happy boy none of us will ever be able to forget.
On the 2nd of January 2016 we had to say a sad goodbye to a great dog Romeo after an accident In the park.
He didn’t get to Hersham for rehoming as a neighbours nephew worked at kennels in Addington, and they persuaded us to take him on as he was black, and would possibly take longer to find his forever home. He was owned by a footballer. He was a perfect dog, never barked, never complained and was a father to new hounds that came into the home.
The photo is of Dexter being close to Romeo they never left each others side. He would have been 14 on 2nd April this year. Nine wonderful years to remember.
Our darling 'Ritz' fell into a deep sleep in his bed and sadly, passed away today (Saturday 2nd January). He was a very gentle, loving, impish 10 year old lad with a unique little lion's mane of fur on the back of his neck who touched the hearts of everyone he met. He was one in a million and will be so very much missed.
Desperately sad though we are to have lost our beloved Ritz, please know he too was always happy, a bit sheepish if he didn't know you to start with but extraordinarily loving, openly affectionate and cheeky to the end. We all loved and will miss dear Ritz but whilst he had slowed down, he was spared any suffering and fell into a final peaceful sleep.
Goodnight Ritz. You were a truly gentle fun-loving happy hound no-one will surely ever forget.
Carol (the Sanctuary)
On 14th December 2015, we suddenly lost our fantastic dog ‘Vole’ (a Hersham Hound) .
She was with us for 5 years, and we saw her change from a timid creature (hence the name ‘Vole’, given to her whilst at Hersham) to a fun-loving, boisterous, chatty, delightful member of our family. She loved having her ears tickled, loved to run – especially in the snow, and would roll on her back on the sofa to have her tummy tickled- at times falling asleep in that position. She was always happy to see us, and would bark with excitement at walk time. We would often come home to find that soft things had miraculously appeared in her bed- hats, slippers, scarves etc- in fact, she would collect anything soft if it was not kept securely out of reach!
We are both very grateful for the time we had with Vole. She has left a huge hole in our lives and will always be remembered. Thank you for rescuing her and for letting us share her life. Our hearts are thoroughly broken.
Despite the Vets best efforts, she died within 4 days of showing the first signs of illness. She never was one to complain.
Here are some pictures of her, with our other Greyhound (her best friend, role model and protector), Sam.
Kind regards and please keep up the great work you do.
Pete and Amanda.
James (Shell to Sea)
1 February 2006 -19 October 2015
Tragically we lost our wonderful greyhound boy, James. He’d been ill during September and we had come within a few hours of having him put to sleep only to get a new diagnosis that the “tumour” in his spine was no worse than dead tissue and that a course of antibiotics should clear it up. As promised be bounced back to his normal self within a few days but going through that roller coaster of emotions made it all the more tragic when a month later he collapsed and died, probably from stroke or heart attack. We were, and probably still are, just numb and it’s taken a bit of time to think positively about this. He had his Dad and his greyhound girlfriend Midge with him, he was comfortable and safe at home in his basket, whatever happened was sudden and catastrophic and he didn’t suffer albeit that we were devastated by the suddenness of it all.
James was such a wonderful greyhound. He adored human company and his favourite place was to sit on the window seat in the kitchen with his head and paw in his Dad’s lap having his tummy tickled. He was such a fun loving boy, interested and curious about everything. He bought so much pleasure to our lives and his presence really brought Midge out of her shell.
It doesn’t get any easier when you lose one and I don’t suppose it ever will. We miss him and all the funny things he used to do dreadfully but take strength from the fact that he led a very comfortable and happy life with us and will remain, with all our greyhound children, in our hearts forever.
Rex aka Rexy Boy, Gorgeous Boy, Silly Boy, Handsome Boy, Baby Boy…..the list goes on
Our hearts are broken at losing our boy so suddenly. After adopting us in 2008, Rex gradually grew from a boy who was scared of the outside world, to loving everybody and embracing every walk and trip out. He absolutely loved going out in the car, pushing everyone and everything out of his way so he could be first in.
When Lily came to join us a year later he, was so so happy to have a lady greyhound friend. Although he loved our two Yorkie's, they wouldn't let him play with them and he was a bit left out. He howled all the way home in the car when we collected Lily and excitedly showed her all around the house and garden when we got home.
He always let her have her way and ignored her snapping at his face like a crocodile when she wanted a cuddle or she wanted the sofa. He took great pride in being her big brother, always walking ahead of her and meeting and greeting other dogs and people first so she knew she was safe.
There are so many stories to tell about Rex.
The first time he was left alone we made the mistake of keeping the Yorkie's in the hallway and giving Rex the run of downstairs, not realising he would be desperate to be with them. After giving up trying to chew his way through the door to get to them, he managed to rip down the curtains, chew the dining furniture, pull a 1kilo bag of bird seed around the living room until it was empty, pull out a paint tray which had wet white paint in in, tread in it and leave white paw prints all over the slate floor and rip up the cushions. He was never left without doggie company after that and never destroyed anything (except toys) ever again.
He spent his whole life misjudging how big he was.He absolutely loved his cuddly toys. Although he lost one eye, he had incredible accuracy still and once snatched a small cuddly toy the size of a hamster from a toddlers hand without any warning at all. The first I knew was when the girl cried out to her mum "that doggy's got my chimp"!
She lives a few doors down from me and told Rex every time she saw him since then that he stole her chimp. (he gave it back….well I had to prise his mouth open)
Someone once left a giant Winnie the Pooh in their driveway with bags of charity stuff for collection. He tried to fool me that he wasn't interested and hadn't seen it, then quick as a flash, stretching his rubber neck about an extra foot, grabbed it then dragged it down the road, refusing to let go, much to the hilarity of passersby.
Apart from his thieving ways, he could also tell the time within about 5 minutes accuracy. He would politely remind you if his dinner wasn't ready by 5pm.
He was obsessed with hedgehogs. More than one ended up at Tiddlywinks for recovery.
He loved opening presents, even if they weren't his. (Poor Lily didn't stand a chance)
If he saw a gate, he wanted to go through it.
If anyones car door was open, he though it was his right to try and get in it.
His favourite pastime was roaching, and he liked to go upstairs to bed by 10pm, often picking a toy out of his box to take up with him.
I could go on and on. But most of all, he was the most loving and beautiful soul. If he had been human, he would have been the kindest of people, wanting to make others happy. He made us laugh everyday. He taught us how to enjoy the simple pleasures of life, we enjoyed so many adventures and wonderful walks together.
He made our lives complete and now we feel broken that he is no longer here.
Through the pain and tears, we will smile and laugh as we remember all his funny ways. We will try and live life as he did, enjoying every single day.
We will love and miss you always Rex
From Mummy, Daddy and Lily xxx
Rooster (1 November 2001 - 1 July 2015)
Our darling 'Rooster' has sadly passed away. At nearly 14 years old, he was the oldest resident in our Sanctuary. On the hottest July day on record, he was finding it very difficult to cope with the heat, as it was always something he struggled with at the best of times and being an elderly chap, we had to make the sad decision to let him go, as he just could not get comfortable and his heart was being put under incredible strain from the sheer effort of trying to cope.
I still cannot believe he has gone and the Sanctuary is so quiet without the sound of his distinctive 'cuckoo' call , which was his musical bark when he was demanding to go out in the paddock, have his breakfast or go for a walk. He was always a strong, happy boy, although this last year, he has wanted less walks, preferring instead to lay at the side of his favourite paddock, happily watching the world go by.
In his heyday, he would often lead any walker who didn't know him, a merry dance, darting unexpectedly from side to side to sniff a favourite bush or to go in a completely different direction. Rooster knew his own mind and if you just went with the flow, he was happy as Larry. He was a sweet, happy and gentle boy who was lovely to look after.
Those of you who did not know him very well or at all, will not have seen the incredibly loving, affectionate side of dear 'Rooster'. If you were saying goodnight to him in his kennel, he would offer his outstretched paw, as if to hold your hand. He was so sweet. As he got older, he loved a cuddle or would run away from you in the paddock, so that when you eventually caught him up, he could have a special cuddle.
When he first came into kennels, he was wary of loud noises, thunder and people he didn't know. However, he was lucky to have had a lovely trainer who looked after him and brought him into us, and he became more confident as he got older and was a thoroughly happy, loving and cheeky chap.
There will only ever be good memories of 'Rooster' , dashing down to the very bottom of the paddock with his distinctive 'bounce' as he did every morning, even on his last morning with us. In what turned out to be his final year, he went for walks with 'Rebel' regularly, who we also sadly lost recently. 'Rooster' was my special friend too. It would be lovely to think that Rebel and Rooster are walking together again and, like the. name of the beautiful rose I bought for the Sanctuary garden recently as a tribute to 'Rebel' they will now be 'forever friends'.
It is quiet in the Sanctuary without you, Rooster, but my memories of you will always be happy ones.
Carol (the Sanctuary) 2nd July 2015
Sophie (Ballyerrin Queen)
It is with deep regret we said goodbye to our dear Sophie (Ballyerrin Queen).
We had 10 glorious years with her, when she was rescued from death row and GAP saved her and sent her to Hersham where I fell in love with her sticky up ears.
Run free dear Sophie over the Rainbow Bridge.
Always in our hearts.
Brenda and Bryan Warner
A fond farewell to Rebel
10th May 2003 - 21st June 2015
On Sunday 21st June we lost our dear Rebel, one of our much-loved who lived in our Sanctuary residents. At over 12 years old, Rebel never did find his home out of kennels but had, I hope, enjoyed a loving home amongst his adopted family and friends at the Kennels where he had lived for nearly five years. I was fortunate enough to be one of his carers in the Sanctuary and hope he found comfort in my being able to be with him at the end.
Rebel had always loved his walks and a cuddle from those he knew and when he refused point blank to go for a little walk yesterday afternoon, when he had seemed a little more like his old self that morning and the previous day, we suspected his health may have taken a turn for the worse, as that was so unlike him.
Over the previous week especially, he had been getting a bit slower after cutting a foot pad, then gradually was losing appetite, therefore losing weight, although difficult to determine if the sore foot was the cause as he was such a sensitive dog and very delicate over any foot problems, exacerbated by his intolerance to heat, given the hotter days recently.
On the Sunday morning his energy levels were depleted , his breathing rapid and his limbs were swollen. The greyhound vet in Kent I took him to today, confirmed all facts considered, that he believed the heart was struggling because he suspected he had fluid on the lungs. Rebel did not even have the energy to go for a walk. We decided the best thing for Rebel, given he would have been very stressed being handled, inspected, x-rayed etc with no ability to recover at this stage in his life and the incredibly laboured breathing that had also developed, was to let him go.
It is never easy making these decisions and you can never get used to losing a hound. But I can honestly say he had a peaceful end and just fell fast asleep next to me, whilst I stroked and talked to him. He was calm, relaxed and at ease.
The Kennels won't be the same without him. On a personal note, I will miss his half cocked head looking out at me, asking to go out, first thing in the morning, his little teddy at his side. I will miss his soft football in his mouth , squeaking it to ask for a walk or to demand his breakfast. But most of all, I shall miss his little kisses he always gave as he came out of his kennel and the trust he showed in me and others, given that trust had been abused at a previous time in his life.
He loved his life and was loved by everyone who met him. After all, what was not to love about dear Rebel? Kind and gentle to the end. We will all miss you, Rebel, but know you will be remembered for the sweet lad you always were.
Carol (the Sanctuary)
Stan (Crackator Rossi)
January 1st 2005 - May 19th 2015
From the very first day you took me home and cherished me with love
Now it's my turn to look after you as I look down from above.
Rest in peace our sweet boy,
Love Mum and Dad
Tatty (Little Tatler) 4th July 2002 – 28th March 2015
Tatty joined our family in October 2005 as a companion for Freda, our female Greyhound.
We all fell in love with Tatty as soon as we saw his big brown eyes and beautiful black and white fur that was soft and silky to touch. At only 3 years old Tatty was young and excitable but small for a male, hence his racing name ‘Little Tatler’. He fitted in with us all immediately and helped Freda’s confidence grow.
Together, Tatty and Freda were like brother and sister. They would spend their days swapping beds, stretching out next to each other and Tatty loved to cuddle up to Freda at night. They loved their walks together and people would often stop us on the street to stroke our beautiful pair.
Tatty was a very loving dog – always asking for kisses and cuddles. He would greet anyone he met – human or dog, adult or child - with a big wagging tail. He would show his affection by lying at our feet and pawing to make us stroke him. He would often stick out his foreleg to stop you from leaving just so he could get an extra five minutes of undivided attention. Tatty loved his cuddly toys – squeaky ones were his favourite. Freda tolerated her young mate’s enthusiasm and playfulness despite him stealing her toys whenever he could.
Tatty’s chase instinct was not strong even with two family guinea pigs! Although he did love to chase the odd cat that came into the garden with big bounds, deep woofs and jumping up and down on the spot staring at the place where they escaped over the fence.
Unfortunately Tatty wasn’t at all confident during thunderstorms, or fireworks and got very anxious. If you dropped anything near him, he would leap into the air in fright! He was a big scaredy cat!
After we lost Freda in 2013, Tatty’s bright happy nature changed. He would wander around looking for his Freda and his sadness was evident. His health declined in several areas after Freda died. We all knew that he would benefit from more trips to the Kennels to cheer him up and it was clear when he was around the other hounds that he needed that companionship back.
We fostered a quiet little black beauty called Heidi in 2014 and fell in love with her as soon as we got her home – that quiet little girl was as loving as Tatty and slotted into the daily routine with ease.
Together they both Reached the Beach and there was no stopping Tatty walking the whole route! Tatty’s poor health and weak legs got steadily worse and we had to say goodbye in March. Tatty, Tooty, Tatler, Tatty-man, Toot-boots – we all miss you so much.
Steve, Julie & Amy
Doc (Barefoot Doctor) 20 August 2001 – 15 April 2015
“The Best Greyhound In The World”
The life that I have Is all that I have
And the life that I have Is yours.
The love that I have Of the life that I have
Is yours and yours and yours.
A sleep I shall have A rest I shall have
Yet death will be but a pause.
For the peace of my years In the long green grass
Will be yours and yours And yours.
This poem always made me think of my dear old chap, even before he left me so peacefully. Thank you WGW for letting me adopt him. And thank you Doc, for so many happy years together.
Hughie (Killeacle Hugh)
Happy devoted gentle Hughie, Always at my side
Turning heads in admiration, Giving me great pride
He never failed to please me, Made so many smile
The bond we shared will remain strong, Hughie's life was so worthwhile.
Goodbye Hughie (Stunner!). Thank you for the fun, devotion and show successes.
Hughie is in the attached line up with his mum Kath, 4th from the left looking at the picture.
This picture was taken in 2009 at Maggie's reunion at our annual dog show. (Maggie was Killeacle Hugh's mum so he's pictured here with his siblings)
Cracker (Killock Cracker 7.11.2002 - 11.2.2015)
Our dear boy Cracker was put to sleep recently due to bone cancer. Cracker came to live with us in Cornwall in 2006. He loved life and lived it to the full - he especially loved going out and about and meeting people and was always happy and bouncy. We are so lucky to have had him in our lives, and will always miss our 'special' boy.
Amanda, Gary, Alice and Shadow
Dixie (Whistle Dixie)
Dixie was the most beautiful big greyhound who came to live with us from WGW age 3. He loved to run nearly as much as he loved his sofa.
Dixie was perfect with our two young children and was loved by everyone who knew him.
Sadly we said Goodbye to Dixie just before Christmas but he will always be remembered and loved.
Archie (Arclight Clover)
Archie joined our family on the 21st February 2010 having already met up with Cilla, our existing Grey, when we first introduced them at Hersham. They very quickly developed a good relationship and became very close. As things progressed it became clear that Archie had experienced some difficulties in the past but with care he eventually overcame them.
As a character he came into his own when he met up with Lucky, a Patterdale Terrier, when he was at his best.
Archie is sorely missed by mum, Ken and Lucky.
Daisy (Opening Dash) 20.07.2003-30.07.2014
We decided to get Daisy as a companion for our much loved Trotter but, despite being a very quiet little thing, she soon ousted him from his favourite bed and his top dog position!
Although Daisy was very quiet and a bit timid when she first arrived, it didn’t take her long to settle down and she became a lovely, gentle pet. When Trotter was taken from us, far too soon, we brought Jasper into the household which proved to be quite a shock to her as he was no pushover and Daisy found herself out of top dog position. Daisy remained a quiet dog (she very rarely barked) and always stuck close to us when out walking. Several people remarked that they were surprised that we could let her off lead but she never wanted to be anywhere other than with us. Apart from chasing the odd squirrel of course! Daisy loved her walks and was always first to the front door when she heard a lead being picked up and she loved a soft ball to carry around and put her head on whilst resting.
Daisy also liked to lie on her back and waggle her legs in the air to get your attention for a stroke. She belied her years, had hardly a grey hair and was still very sprightly so Daisy’s sudden decline took us rather by surprise. Making the decision to let her go was very hard but we were at her side as she gently slipped away and were able to cuddle her and tell her how much we loved her.
We will never forget her and all the happiness she brought. We were very lucky to have her.
Jane Fogg and family
A final farewell to Maggie
On Sunday 3rd August we will be saying a final goodbye to our dear veteran Sanctuary hound, Maggie, who had lived in our Sanctuary since it was first established and who we sadly lost over a week ago now. Maggie represented the whole ethos of the Sanctuary - set up so that we could always be there until the end for any hound who would not be lucky enough to find their forever home.
As a lasting tribute to Maggie, we will commemorate her at the local church's pet service to which we have been invited, along with a few of our homeless and Sanctuary hounds, and then once back at the kennels, scatter her in a rosebush to return her to her beloved little garden in the Sanctuary.
'Maggies Garden' is currently going through a re-design, thanks to the kindness of so many of our supporters who have volunteered to donate various climbing plants, garden items and their time, to ensure the garden is made special for other elderly or poorly hounds who will need a special secluded place to look at, sniff around in and relax in, in the future. Maggie had spent so much time in her beloved garden over the last year especially, depending on the weather and it had meant the world to her as she was becoming older and more vulnerable.
Maggie was getting on for nearly 14 years of age but within the last few weeks, had become gradually more frail and given the recent heat and humidity, she had then struggled with a nasty tummy bug which took a lot out of her and which combined with her increasingly frail health, she did not have the physical strength to overcome.
Her strong will had always stood Maggie in good stead and she was a lady who always knew her own mind. Sadly, somewhere in her past, her faith in people had been betrayed to the extent she could never fully trust anyone ever again. This made her behaviour unpredictable and meant she was always difficult to handle. Fiercely independent and uncooperative with those she did not know, over the last few weeks, she seemed to grow closer and more trusting when we were alone during our early evening walks, when it was cooler and more quiet. Those special moments when she would come up to me for a stroke and forgot- just for a fleeting moment - her mistrust of people.
Goodbye Maggie. You were loved dearly and will never be forgotten. There will always be another hound who needs special care and attention - but I doubt there will ever be another Maggie...
Carol (the Sanctuary) 1st Aug 2014
Walter (alias Druids Aquarius)
Peter ,Maria, Lucy & Rachel are sad to announce the passing of Walter (Druids Aquarius) a truly lovely dog. Walter was a beautiful Greyhound and we were very lucky to have him in our family for 8 years.
He is now buried in our garden next to Bonnie (our Border Collie who died last year). God Bless you.
Goldie sadly passed away on the 16th January 2014 she was the most beautiful serene princess she had the kindest soul.
Go run with the wind my girl you will always be part of me. I'm so grateful for having the honour of sharing my life with you.
Virna, Julian, Oliver, Max and Jordan xx
Rameses (Do your Turn) 27th July 2002 – 28th November 2013
Rameses and his twin brother, Pharaoh, (Looney Lindsey) were a real joy to us from the moment we first picked them up from Hersham in September 2007. They became great favourites with the wider family and our friends.
Pharaoh was the leader of the pack and when he died (In Memory 18th July 2012) we wondered how Rameses would cope without him. He certainly missed him very much. They had always slept side-by-side paws touching and their game of Hide and Seek was a wonder to behold. Rameses made a great effort to rally his spirits and started going to work with John on a regular basis. He even attended Board Meetings and, on at least one occasion, when Rameses got up and stretched, the MD said that he felt that Rameses was speaking for the Board in indicating that the meeting should be brought to a close.
Rameses was the complete athlete but last summer we noticed him slowing down and seeking help in jumping in and out of the car. This was eventually found to result from an inoperative condition and, with great sadness, we had to let him make his way over the Rainbow Bridge to join Pharaoh and one of his very special human friends who had made the journey a couple of months before.
Antonia & John
My bertie left me in march. i am still greiving for my big guy. Bertie boogles was with me through good times and bad. He went everywhere with me
He made me laugh especially when he wanted cuddles. He allowed me to cuddle him but wanted a treat for his trouble. he would show off for a couple of minutes and when i laughed would want a treat. he did a bertie dance when i lifted his lead an shoot out the door like a puppy.
He was the gentilist soul and loved everybody. I miss him so much my bertie boogles....the bertster.... Bertie buttons...baby bert.
Till we meet again my gorgeous boy.
SPIRAL (Cloheena Spiral) 2001 – 2013
We were thrown together in July 2006, a big beautiful boy, albeit a little frayed round the edges, but it didn’t take long for your lovely glossy coat to grew through. You filled our house and took to being a pet like a duck to water.
We had 7 brilliant years with you – chasing you down the road when you decided on one of your daily walks, that you would quite like to go for a run instead and then kept going. When we first let you off the lead on the beach ( forgetting you were a hurdler) and saw you in the distance hurdling all the breakers to come up short when you spotted a group of children collecting crabs and decided to join in with their fun.
Everyone who met you couldn’t believe you were an ex-racer because of your gentle temperament, even the vet commented on the fact that she has never come across a greyhound like you and loved it when you came to visit her and try and take all her treats out of the jar, just because you could.
You loved meeting people and dogs alike and would get very excited when your favourite Alsatian was in the park for you to have a good run with. You even took to Penny, a Lhasa Apso, that turned up at our house in January 2012 and decided to stay and the two of you were bookends on the sofa.
You started to get a bit greyer and a bit slower over the years, but never stopped enjoying cuddles and attention or enjoying your walks even at the end when cancer decided to take you.
We are so glad that fate threw us together and we have lovely memories of our time together <3
Love you and miss you
We wrote this for our beautiful little Missy, who went to sleep on 05/08/13 aged 14. She did so well for a Greyhound, and was healthy right up to the end, except for wobbly back legs. We had nine years of total joy, and Miss had a happy life, loved by everyone who knew her. Thank you Denise, and all at Hersham.
Love From Annette, Alex and Ritchie xxxx
Upside-downer, licky, kissy
Never straying, always there
|Anxious checking that we’re near you
Always standing in the way!
Like lightning when the fridge was opened…
Deaf to words like ‘wait’ or ‘stay’
Gentle, loving, waggy, sniffy
|Joyful running just ‘cause you could
Chasing deer into the wood
Giant circles just for fun
Heart stopping beauty when you run
Silly songs that we sang to you
Stalking squirrels super stealthy
You made us protect and love you
|Not sure there’s a greyhound heaven
Or that you’re running free above
But here on earth I hope you knew it
There never was a dog more loved
Pinky (Kinky Malinki)
20 January 2001 - 16 July 2013
From day one, when you were 'Rottied' you were our brave, beautiful girl. You were happy, bouncy, demanding and I don't mind admitting, spoilt rotten! Yes, you were right, it was 'all about the dogg'!
Everyone here misses you. Carol misses her cuddles, Pat misses your ears, Chester the lab misses his kisses and Manchego the cat wondered why you weren't on her cushion just last night.
We miss you so much, from dawn to dusk:
- Your 'dogg yoga' as you stretched out of bed, a wet snozz on my arm to let me know you were ready to get up, the tip-tapping around the bed to wet-snozz your Dad too.
- Your head around the bathroom door to tell me I'm taking too long in the shower.
- Your squawking when I was too slow to get your meals, the way you ran ahead up the stairs and then stood in the kitchen 'shouting' for a treat.
- Your happy hoppity-skip walk that sped up as we got to the front door, your casual glance at the not-so interesting neighbourly cats, your aloofness with non-hounds that admired you and wanted to be your friend, and the happy wagging on greeting fellow hounds.
- Your 'race track dogg' mad dashes around our compact garden, your dancing in circles on the patio and making yourself comfortable on people-cushions when you had plenty of your own.
- Smiling and waving in the back of my car, how we knew when you'd woken up mid-journey, Stinky Pinky!
- How you knew it was a Friday evening, and 'shouting' at us to hurry up to go the pub.
- Your cheeky-cute way of getting away with anything, especially sneaking onto our bed when you knew we were going out without you.
- And finally, the happy grumbles on finding that perfect position in one of your many beds, the quiet woofing and running as you slept.
We knew you were ill, but it seems so long since they told us over 4 years ago - all those pesky lumps that kept appearing and had to be removed, you didn't even seem to notice the last time you were recovering. We knew you were getting older, we could see you were slowing down, but you enjoyed the whole summer, smiling and having fun.
We are so sorry that you had to leave us - you were so happy right up to that last evening. We are sorry that we couldn't ease the pain of those last few hours, but We are so glad that you chose to go naturally whilst we were there to hold you and tell you how much we loved you. Give our love to Janey, Pixie and Victor - they will take care of you now.
It's just as well that you won 'Best Girl at Show' and the ladies race at RtB last year - you made us so proud - shine bright like a diamond...
Mum & Dad.xx (aka Vickie & Andy)
Ricky (Hee Haws Hitman)
2nd May 2007 - 26th March 2013
Ricky (AKA Tricky) was a truly beautiful boy with big expressive ears. He had only just begun his new life away from racing and kennels. Sadly his life was suddenly shortened by lymphoma. He bore his illness very bravely.
He was an absolute gentleman to his new wife Misty. She was a bossy boots with him but he wisely accepted she was boss and took it in his stride. He loved his new home and was so proud of his big bed and adapted to the busy urban environment easily. We discovered that he was hugely talented with a football and a game in the park bought him great joy.
We are so glad that he went away on holiday with us in December and he loved staying in the woodland cabin with all the squirrels. It hurts so bad that he is no longer able to enjoy life. The shock of losing him so quickly is devastating. We are so heart broken.
Rest peacefully our truly beautiful boy, love and kisses Mummy Kirsty, Auntie Lucy and Wifey Misty.
Tigger (Always Scoring)
22/10/98 - 22/3/13
On 22 March we finally had to say goodbye to our boy Tigger, a grand old man at the age of fourteen and a half; we will remember his love and cuddles, his laid back approach to everything from kids to fireworks, his desire for everything we were eating (quiche crusts, cheese and crisps particularly appreciated), how he could only raise one ear - coincidentally the one that had the letters UP tattooed in it, sleeping with his tongue out, and the boxes of old envelopes we used to wrap up for him for Christmas, as he far preferred them to any shop-bought toys.
Companion to Becky throughout her life, he put up with her manic antics, looking on as if to say 'oh dear' but still missing her madly when we lost her. The last few years saw his enjoyment at seeing regular canine friends on walks and meeting up with family dogs, particularly Spitz Pickle and Chihuahua cross Indy, both of whom just walked under him!
He loved our grandkids and tolerated their gentle but persistent affection, picking his way carefully across the drawings and toys they strewn the floor with during visits, on his way to his bed and peace.
He loved his walks along the towpath, in the canal itself on a hot day, and in the woods but was completely unimpressed with the seaside, especially that strange moving water!
We miss you Tig, as we still do Becky, and love you both lots - sleep in peace.
(Mum & Dad) Tracey & Mick Hayward
Tigger (Always Scoring) 22/10/98 - 22/3/13
Becky (Belmore Solas) 14/11/96 - 20/5/06
03.11.2002 - 20.03.2013
From the nervous greyhound that sat in the corner not wanting to move when we first brought you home, to finally becoming 'top dog' and taking over the house and our bed.
You went everywhere with us. We always came as a 3, you, me and Steve. I wouldn't hear of you going into kennels so all of our holidays were 'Funky' holidays. We went down to West Wittering and you splashed around in the sea, we have watched the video of you enjoying yourself so many times since you have gone, just trying to remember the happy times we had with you.
You were always getting into some scrap or other. You ripped your nail out after a mad greyhound dash around our holiday cottage garden in the Cotswolds....we had only been there 30 minutes! You even had your own first aid kit in the end you were so clumsy, but that's what made you Funky and one of the reasons you were so special to us.
The list of things you were scared of was quite bizarre...from balloons to lamp posts, footballs to people wearing hats. You managed to get over some of these but not all. I remember the day you dragged us into the road, towards oncoming traffic, just so you wouldn't have to walk underneath a sign that hung above a shop front.
Despite you ignoring most of the words we taught you, your hearing was perfect when it came to noises in the kitchen.... the sound of cheese or ham packets being opened brought you to the kitchen in a shot.....all other times you were 'deaf ears'! and did as you pleased.
We are so grateful for all the time we had with you but those 5 1/2 yrs went far to quickly.
We miss your silly little noises. Grumbles and chattering teeth when you were happy and whines for when you wanted attention or you hadn't got your own way. We miss not having you waiting at the window for us when we return home, tail wagging, racing around the room in delight that we were back.
We miss not having you stick your head in all our bags checking to see if we had brought you home anything (which we usually had). We even miss not having to get up to let you out at 5am every morning.
We still cant believe that you have gone. You have left such a big hole in our hearts and home. Every corner of the house has something of yours in it, it just feels so empty without you.
We couldn't bear to see you in pain at the end, so had to do what was right for you, we miss you so so much my special little girl. We will never ever forget you.
Jo & Steve
2000 to 2013
On the 4th February we said goodbye to our beloved Daisy. We had her for 8 years, she was a very good Pat Dog, was very good with the Bichon we looked after.
Her other two companions miss her terribly. When she was much younger we used to have trouble with her jumping over the next door 6 foot fence, running in the park through the river, and once fell in the lake when she forgot to stop.
Daisy you will never be forgotten, thank you for 8 very happy years.
The photo is of her on a PAT dog visit.
Brenda and Bryan
Tracy and Sharon
These two beautiful girls have shared my life for 12 years. It isn't an exaggeration to say that they have been the one constant in my life and without them, I might not have gotten up in the morning. They made me laugh when all I wanted to do was cry and were there whenever I opened a door.
They got into so much trouble in the early days and were like true sisters in every way. They squabbled and played in equal measure and when we then rescued another huge boy, Bruno, they helped him adapt after what can only be described as an awful start to his life. He had been very badly treated and didn't know how to play and would not bark at all. It was incredible to watch my girls lead and very quickly, he followed.
Nothing will every replace Sharon and Tracy but life without a rescue greyhound would mean very little - Maisie joined the household shortly after Tracy's death and now she needs a buddy. So, onwards to more beautiful greys but never will there be a pair like these. I'll carry them with me forever.
Kenny (Kilkenny Excel)
September 2002 – January 2013
Tea Room Kenny. Racer, Ruby’s carer, Lassie’s companion and finally a much loved family pet.
Kenny was handsome, independent, undemanding, gentle, loyal and special.
Here he is doing what he liked doing best in his later years, on holiday, dozing and watching the world go by.
Freda (Fredan Fiesta)
9th June 1999 - 16th February 2013
On the 16th February, we said goodbye to our beautiful little Freda after a short and unexpected illness took its toll.
We homed Freda in May 2005 after falling in love with her straight away. She had been in the kennels for two years and was a very shy yet stubborn girl. She was also extremely wary of other dogs.
Freda loved the comforts of a home but enjoyed our company at a distance for a long time. We decided she needed a companion 5 months later, when she didn’t want to go out for walks as before (digging in her heels and refusing to walk any further), so Tatty (Little Tatler) joined the family.
With his help she started to come out of her shell and got used to other dogs when she met them on her daily walks; although she always kept her distance from dogs smaller than herself, right up to the end!
We often saw flashes of her cheeky side; coming home to a shredded newspaper, a pair of mangled sunglasses abandoned on the sofa when we left the room for a few moments, her big smiles when she knew she was going for a ride in the car to her favourite park, the dancing legs when she rolled onto her back and her endless spins in the garden rejoicing at her freedom.
Freda was such a cheeky monkey that when one of us tried to have an afternoon nap on the sofa she would wake us up by talking and nuzzling with a wag of her tail.
As the years went by, Freda showed her love more readily, in her quiet, gentle way; the complete opposite to her mate with his exuberance and boundless energy.
We are all missing our little girl, especially Tatty. Freda has given us so many happy memories and she will always be in our thoughts.
Steve, Julie, Amy and Tatty.
2nd October 2000 to 23rd January 2013
Lucy came home with me to begin her retirement. Little did she or I know that as one door closed on her racing career another door was about to open. Tentatively we began to participate in organised greyhound walks and the occasional fund-raiser to help those hounds still waiting for a home in kennels.
Lucy and I took to our new lifestyle like ‘ducks to water’ and thus began a journey that was to last for the rest of Lucy’s days. The years slipped by so quickly and as Lucy’s face turned grey she ensured that everything she had learnt was passed on to her new, younger associates so that they could continue her very important work. Lucy had found her perfect home but she never forgot those still waiting for theirs.
There will always be an empty space on the duvet –Lucy’s space. There will always be an empty space in my heart.
No man could have wished for a better companion
Miss you my special girl,
“OUR” SAM (Some Design)
I have entitled this piece “Our” Sam because he really did belong to the Hersham family – staff and volunteers alike. Sam was born on 21st March 2001 and it has broken all our hearts that he had to leave us to join his greyhound friends in doggie heaven on 20th February 2013 after developing soft tissue cancer.
I first met Sam soon after he arrived into the safety of Hersham. Through no fault of his own, he had been overlooked in a holding kennel for a long time and was not in the best of health. Poor boy had a nasty, unusual condition which meant he had to suffer lots of unpleasant and undignified treatments and then a weakened immune system which meant he was on medication for the rest of his life.
Early on, he was so poorly none of us expected him to pull through but we underestimated Sam’s inner determination to survive and reward all those who had cared for him and made him feel safe. Throughout all the indignities of his condition, he never once lost his happy smiling face and wagging tail.
When the Sanctuary opened, Sam was one of the first to find his home there along with Princess. They just seemed to gel and together grew old like Derby and Joan.
As it has proved with so many hounds, the Sanctuary provided Sam not only with a permanent place of safety but with a routine and continuity to his life which he had never before known. I truly believe it was the making of him. His health improved and he really was happy and contented. When Princess died, he had a couple of infections, lost all his toenails, but that didn’t deter him from continuing to enjoy his walks. When he was joined by Jennifer, they became firm friends.
His health improved until recently when Jennifer found her “forever” home, Another infection developed and this time it was also found that he had cancer. Right to the end, Sam was a happy boy who never had favourites. He loved everyone who showed interest and kindness and he was brave and determined to carry on.
He loved life and especially going out in the car away from the kennels. He would always stand in the car as he didn’t want to miss out on anything on the journey. His behaviour was never anything less than exemplary and he was such a huge ambassador for his breed. He never flinched when small furries danced around his legs and would always just stand still in a dignified way and then gently walk on. He loved his outings to Reach the Beach and I think it made all our days to see him there last September wagging his old tail and enjoying his day at the seaside so much.
One of his last outings away from the kennels was with me just ten days ago when I took him to Claremont for the final time. Although his poor face must have been uncomfortable, he still enjoyed himself doing what he loved best – sniffing! He stood beside me while I sat on a seat and gave him his treats and told him how much I loved him.
Throughout the years I have been associated with life at Hersham, in both sad and happy times, Sam has always been there with his wonderful, happy, face and wagging tail and I will miss him more than words can describe. Sam, you taught me so much and I will love and remember always all those special times I spent with you.
You were a brave boy who brightened all our lives every time we saw you. Thank you, Sam, for being my forever friend.
Diggy (race name Dignity) Aged 11½
On 15th December 2012, we said goodbye to our beautiful boy after he became too poorly with a diagnosis of doggy Chrones disease. After a successful career with Norah and the fantastic care from all at Hersham, we brought home the wonderful and stunning Diggy, or rather Lord Diggy has he became known - a true ambassador for greyhounds everywhere.
Although known as a barger when racing you were the most loving, gentle boy -raising the lordly paw was the cue for wanting a cuddle, a rub on the belly for a burp or for us to plump your bed and puff your pillow. You loved going to all the new places we took you and experienced so many different things.
You loved your stays in Wales with Jeff and Pat where you'd hook up with your mates. With Jeff often at your side, these trips enabled you to be freer; you went from an A1 racer to a dog just like any other - off the lead, running free, meeting other dogs and going off to stick your nose into what they were investigating.
We miss you smiling. We miss you running upstairs to our bed and jumping on it with ridiculous excitement for your weekend treat of a lie-in with us. We miss the funny way you did all the tricks we taught you - all at once without command, so you got your favourite treat. We miss your kisses. We miss your excitement at hearing the words 'd'you wanna go out?' We miss your devoted love.
You've gone to a world full of pigs ears, to chase pussy cats in the dark alleys and to be fussed over forever.
To know him was to love him. Never will you leave our hearts, love Joe, Garry, Pat, Jeff, Marc and Cheryl xxxxxx
Bella (Lady Canadian) - 6 years, & Betty (Calculate) - 12 years
I am prompted to write a celebration of the lives of my two Greyhound girls who so sadly passed away within five weeks of each other, September and October this year 2012, following a recent period of great sorrow at the kennels with the sad news of the passing of some of our much loved, long term Kennel Greyhound characters.
Bella was our first Greyhound. Although we were WGW supporters and walkers, she was found by us through the wonders of the Internet, languishing at an RSPCA pound in deepest Norfolk. The photo on the Internet site did her proud, she was the most stunning hound we had ever seen, she looked like a “Stubbs” painting of a thoroughbred horse.
A couple of emails later and we had arranged the long drive to see her. We knew after 30 seconds as we walked her along a Norfolk country lane she was coming home with us. So began our love affair with these beautiful creatures. Bella was like an autistic child, locked in her own world, needing time to blossom, and blossom she did.
She came home with us in September 2010, and in February 2011 through WGW, the naughty but nice Pearl joined our family.
Bella was in charge, and Pearl liked it that way. No amount of alpha female displays by Bella put them off, and they cuddled and loved each other as if they had been puppies together.
In October 2011 Betty our ‘oldie’ came to stay. Her story is documented elsewhere on the pages of the WGW web site. Suffice to say; with age and illness against her, we thought we would only have her over the Christmas period.
She was the most sweetest and loveable Hound ever. She was like Pearls sister, and the pair of them would be naughty together and mum Bella would keep them in check. She slotted into the pack with ease, she never caused a fuss and she would joyfully cuddle each night with the other two. For all Bella’s pack leader tendencies, she needed them as much as they needed her to be in charge.
Betty’s illness finally caught up with her nearly a year to the day we offered her a home. Even in her final hours she did everything right, so as not to be a bother. She died at home with us all at her side, loving her to the end. We like to think she was like Shakespeare, born and died on her birthday. She was a grand and beautiful Lady.
Our greatest shock was to come. After a lovely walk on a beautiful October Sunday morning Bella who had eaten a hearty breakfast, and was in tip top condition collapsed and died. We have not yet come to terms with this frightful event. We only had Bella for two years, but in that time she had become a ‘dog’ and a fantastic companion. She was sensible, dependable and above all obedient. She would walk along side you, or should I say trot in the most genteel way, be mindful of your intentions, stop at road junctions, pay no attention to cats, squirrels or other critters put on this planet for the benefit of Hounds to chase, but above all, she would do everything just to please us. We have never owned a dog, nor will we ever again, own a dog like her.
We were not the only casualties as little Pearl was lost. First her best friend Betty, and then her boss Bella the matriarch of the pack were gone.
Lurking at the back of a kennel at WGW all on his own was gentle Ollie. The WGW staff knew he was a softie with a lot to learn so to cut a long story short he has come home to stay and cheered us, and above all Pearl up.
We know that all our collective Hounds are special, and we each have a story to tell about their sweet and gentle ways, however it is so heartbreaking when they pass and leave us. We are content that they will all meet up and run free until the day we will be with them all again.
Mark & Nikki Cussen
Colin (Garlyn Concorde)
17th August 2002 to 18th September 2012
We adopted Colin in 2009 from Hersham as one of "Eve's dogs". He was skinny and aloof and was known to be "thick as a plank" by the staff. I fell in love with him from day one.
But Colin had that effect on most people who met him. He was so sweet and gentle and you couldn't help noticing him. He was so gorgeous! And when he got to know you, is when you realised how special he actually was and how rare an honour it was to have him bestow a beaming smile on you!
He was also not thick as a plank at all, just lost in his own world, but willing to come out from there and share ours too, from time to time. He was never any trouble at all, as long as there was no open windows and no fireworks and you didn't make any noise when he was eating! I was never worried about him running off if he should get out: he would be waiting by the car, ready to go for a drive (his second favourite past time after walkies!).
It is very difficult for me to put into words how special a boy he really was. Every one who knew him, will understand what I mean by this. Which is also why it has taken so long to write this. When ever I think of him or look at pictures of him, it makes me aware of how big an impact he had on my life. He wasn't with us all that long, nearly 3 years only, but we loved a lifetime's worth.
It still hurts as much today as the day he died. We found our darling Boy had passed over to the rainbow bridge when we got up that morning. He wasn't unwell, nor had he shown any signs of discomfort the night before. He just went quietly after having a ball at Bedfont Lakes the evening before.
And that would be the end we would have wished for him, if we had to choose. Happy, content and on such a high note.
His absence is noticeable every day.We miss him every day. We will never forget him.
Run free at the bridge my beautiful baby. XXXXXX
Ronel, Danjal and Claudia.
Taken time to be able to talk about losing our beautiful Rosie ("Best of Dreams") at the start of the year to bone cancer. It was very sudden and we were shocked and saddened. Rosie had helped me through losing Barney and Rita and since I had lived with this beautiful girl for nearly 13 years as I got her as a puppy from Norah it was so much of a wrench.
We think of her and the others every day. I will open my doors to another greyhound or two when I am ready.
Sleep tight gorgeous - you are truly missed. xx
From Paula Daniels
Alfie (Freighduff Ball)
22nd February 1997 to 21st February 2012
We brought Alfie (Freighduff Ball) home from Hersham hounds on the 1st February 2003 and he was with us for 9 very happy years, until he became so very frail suffering from spondylosis of the spine that we had to let him go. We made that decision on the 21st February 2012, he would have been 15 years old the very next day on the 22nd February 2012.
In all the time he was with us he was such a good boy and we loved and miss him so much.
He was such a gentle and loveable boy and never did anything naughty, apart from the few wee's we had when he first came home and eating an orange plastic ball he found in the garden, we did get it back though (bit by bit). He was a companion for Pepsi our lurcher, but after a few years with Alfie we had to let her go as she had osteosarcoma in her leg and was really not well and was not going to get better. We then got Ruby our beautiful black greyhound and Alfie was there to help Ruby with the "rules" and he was so good for her.
He was always a chaser having raced til he was five and a half, but we did manage to let him run free on lots of occasions, on the beach and where we live and in his latter years he was not really bothered by chasing every dog, big or small, that he saw.
I am still feeing so sad that he is no longer here, and in time we may get another greyhound.
Dear Alfie, your presence we miss, your memory we treasure, loving you always, in our thoughts forever.
Rest in peace our beautiful big guy.
Mum, Dad, Steven, Paul and Ruby
Mikey had a great life but he was 14 and a 1/2 so he did really well for a greyhound. We had to put him down as he he could not walk as good and was in so much pain.
It was heart breaking to see him go as he was the last of the 3 greyhounds we had. Mikey is now reunited with his sisters Chloe and Treacle. Love you Mikey with all my heart and never forget that I'm always here for you. Miss you loads.
Love from your favourite sister Whitney and the rest of the Henderson Reilly.
Pharaoh 27th July 2002 -18th July 2012
We first met Pharaoh (Loony Lindsey) on the Homeless Hounds page when he and twin brother, Rameses (Do your Turn), were described as "two gentlemen in evening dress ready for an evening out". Who could resist such charming companions? Over the last five years they have accompanied us to a vast variety of social events as well as sharing evenings in curled up on the sofa.
Pharaoh was always the leader of the pack dictating what time we woke with his early morning call at 5.40am. He was first out of the house and last to bed at night. He had no interest in catching a ball but loved a good game of "hide and seek" with Rameses in the local park. They were brilliant at creeping up on each other or suddenly changing direction to get back to base first. Pharaoh made friends wherever he went, even with the vet. He overcame his many health problems with a determined spirit and a reassuring wag. In the end the cancer that claimed one of his front legs eighteen months ago, returned. His last illness was a short one but we had to let him make his way over the rainbow bridge to enjoy reunions with two special human friends who died earlier this year.
Rameses is missing dear Pharaoh as are we all.
Antonia & John
Lady (Lady Patches)
July 1999 to July 2012
Our beautiful girl, we miss you in so many ways.
The walks, the dreams, the holidays in Devon, the moving footwear (but never damaged), the many friends you made, your presence in our home, our companion.
You survived cancer but a deteriorating back meant that you couldn't go on. We were together for ten years, you will always be in our thoughts and our hearts.
Nick and Christine Feast and family, Lymington.
12-8-99 to 22.5.12
Dearest Flash is so sadly missed. He was my constant and loving companion. I cherish the memories of the good times and his support in times of difficulty, both with my father's death and my own illness.
Our house has an emptiness, though Flash still lies in the garden. We are sure he enjoyed his retirement in the countryside and his many trips to the seaside as shown in the accompanying photograph. Running was, for most of his life, a daily joy.
Tim and Diana Bateman.
Louie (Spencer Louie)
15.12.05 – 04.05.12
“What are we going to do with Louie?” That was the homeless hounds strap line that caught our eye. What were we indeed going to do with Louie when we first saw him trembling at the back of his kennel?
In the two short years that we were privileged to have homed, loved and cared for him, we saw him slowly transforming from a nervous boy - bewildered and scared of the outside world and of anything and anyone unfamiliar - to enjoying his home with us by the sea. We treasure our memories of the way he tossed all his toys in the air, tiggered around the garden, and boxed us when we came down in the mornings or had been out, as he came to love and trust us.
We are lost without you Louie, even more so knowing that you had just turned the corner in realising that the outside world was not so bad after all. Your unexpected passing after a short but aggressive illness seems so unfair on all of us. We are comforted to know that you are in safe and peaceful place now and will be dearly remembered by all who knew and loved you.
Janet and Paul xxxx
2005 – May 1st 2012
It is with much sadness that I find myself writing the news that Willie has passed away.
Willie lived with us in the Sanctuary, having bounced back from 3 homes, and obviously preferred being with us than being anywhere else.
He was an absolute delight to care for and had an army of friends and fans who would go to great lengths to show him how much they cared.
Sadly his heart failed and on Tuesday 1st May Willie died in our arms in the office.
Thank you to everyone who sponsored Willie and to all those who over the course of time ensured that Willie had the biggest most loving family that he could wish for.
Sweet dreams little Willie, we miss you so very much.
Denise and all at WGW
14/8/2000 - 31/3/2012
Charlie (Kishlawn Prince) our much loved greyhound was put to sleep after on 31st March aged 11 after a brief but extremely nasty illness when we discovered he had inoperable tumours.
It was a truly horrible decision to have to make, and sitting with him as he went to sleep was one of the hardest things I have ever done, but he went very peacefully and quickly surrounded by his family.
He was an absolutely brilliant dog, a real ambassador for greyhounds everywhere. Extremely calm and gentle, fantastic with the kids, slightly neurotic with an undercover playful streak and a lifelong penchant for butter, pigs ears and his squeaky toy pheasant (we were on number 24).
When he was young he would run after anything that moved and was especially fond of squirrels (before he realised they could climb trees and he could not).
As he got older he mellowed and even shared his home with a cat although the foxes we met on our late night walks could still get him barking with excitement.
Rest in peace mate. Thanks for all the memories.
Marc, Kristy, Bryn, Maia, Anna and Evie
Prince (Captain Blood)
8 March 1999 to 5 March 2012
Prince arrived at Hersham after five years racing as a Grade 1 hurdler. He had a strong chase instinct, was a consummate athlete and yet frightened of people. I will always remember the first time I met him, shy, head down, barely daring to make eye contact. I fell in love with him then and eventually took him home on 21 October 2007.
Prince was so strong and yet so gentle, he was the perfect gentleman, always kind, considerate, patient and trusting. He was happiest when he was with Richard and I just quietly sitting at home or exploring the Surrey Hills, searching out tranquil picnic places. He came everywhere with us, from Northumberland to Dartmoor.
His idea of bliss was just being with us, quietly.
It was a joy to watch as he grew in confidence and mellowed over the years. He became well known, loved and admired as we walked the streets of Clapham. He truly won our hearts, it was a privilege to share our lives with him.
Prince, you were my first thought in the morning
And my last thought at night,
You were the centre of my life.
You gave so much and asked for so little,
You made me laugh.
You brought joy with every footstep.
You were the most loved hound.
Prince, you leave a hole in our hearts
You will always be remembered.
Diana Bell & Richard Stone
Our darling girl Cara lost her battle for life on Friday 23rd March 2012.
She fell ill in December last year, not long after she arrived at our kennels. Throughout her illness she has been so brave, so stoic, and always so happy, with a tail wag for everyone despite an illness which affected her mobility and her co-ordination. We thought she was going to make it and that in time she would find a loving home with someone who saw beyond her imperfections.
But she suddenly deteriorated on Wednesday and I think we knew in our hearts that this was one battle she couldn’t win. Our vet confirmed our fears yesterday. Cara had a brain tumour and now we could only let her go to a better place where once more she could run fast and free and be the beautiful girl she was meant to be.
Cara touched all our hearts and she is sorely missed by all of us who took the time to make her feel special, loved and cherished.
Sweet dreams our darling Cara.
Chrissie (Mulla Pride)
02/01/1999 – 15/02/2012
We had to say goodbye to our gorgeous, beautiful, beloved girl a fortnight ago, after she fought a sudden, brief battle with a very aggressive cancer.
We met and instantly fell in love with her in Hersham in 2004, our silly black hound with the grey muzzle, and had eight glorious years of fun, love and laughter with her, for which we will forever be incredibly grateful.
We are sadder than words can say but have so many great memories – the daily morning walks in the park, her steadfast hogging of the bed and the sofa, the spins and runs of joy she would do in the park and on the beach; destroying almost every last plant in our garden with her digging; the time she proudly trotted home with an entire roasted chicken she'd found on the street; the surprise and indignation on her face when she fell into the pond in the woods; downing treat after treat given to her by her toddler; bounding after her favourite lurcher whenever she spotted him in the park; burrowing her nose in our laps for her special evening cuddle; spraying the entire house with blood when she nicked the end of her tail but kept running about wagging it anyway; barking unbelievably loudly very last thing at night just to show the foxes she was in charge.
We will miss her more than words can say, but are so grateful that we had the chance to share her life.
Rest in peace our beautiful, beloved, silly boggles.
Droopys Becker (Becker)
3 Oct 2003 - 14 Jan 2012
Tragically we lost our wonderful Becker on 14th January to leukaemia. It was very fast acting and after a lovely Christmas we started to worry that he was drinking a lot and took him to the vet. Leukaemia was confirmed on New Years’ Eve and although he responded really well to chemotherapy with a 25% drop in his white blood cell count in 7 days his heart wasn’t really in it and it was his refusal to eat enough that in the end gave us no choice.
His ashes are in the wood at the end of West End Lane where we used to take him before we brought him home and where so many other greyhounds are walked.
He really was a wonderful hound, favourite of a lot of walkers and kennel staff at Hersham and a much loved and spoilt pet for the short time we had him.
We miss him dreadfully but find comfort in the fact that as greyhounds go he had a good life albeit far shorter than anyone would have wanted. He was our first greyhound and because of him we will always provide a pair of greyhounds with the safe, secure and loving home that they all deserve.
Dotty (Vintage Dotty)
She was a lovely girl who we all miss dearly, especially Ollie her doggy companion of 4 1/2 years.
Thank you for the 7 years of wonderful memories,
Stephanie, Tom, Ollie, Grandma, Grandad, Nicola, Paul and Maddy
Alfie (Wylie Sunset)
September 1999 – February 2012
On the 6th of February, our beloved greyhound Alfie made his final trip to the vet. Alfie developed arthritis in his back left leg back in the autumn and it got to the stage that he could barely walk, yet he still wanted his walk though he rarely made it even around the park anymore.
The saddest moment was one morning when all the other dogs were bouncing around the green and he stood watching. He gave a little cry. He wanted to join in but couldn’t manage it.
The house is quiet and unsettled; there is a huge gap that only one daft creature could fill.
We miss him terribly.
Inez, David, Anne and Simon Wilkins
Lulu passed away today after a long struggle with back problems. it was time to end the pain.
She was probably the sweetest natured animal I have ever known (unless you were a cat or a rabbit).
She had been with us through all of the upheavals of life and never complained.
She made us cry and laugh at the same time.
Our grateful thanks must go to Martin Leith of the Leadon Vale Veterinary Centre in Ledbury for looking after her for the last 9 years and being so kind to her on the last visit.
We will miss her so much.
Alan & Mary Seldon
Missy (Outstanding Miss)
2/5/1999 – 5/12/2011
Missy we had a very enjoyable week’s holiday from 26 November to 2 December 2011 at Little Dumpledale Farm near Haverfordwest that is Missy, Merlin, Menta and your Dad (me). On Friday after we arrived home you decided to have a snooze, on waking up you screamed in pain. That night everytime I went to bed you cried such that I was up all night with you. We went to the vets where you did not murmur at all when the vet checked over your leg, yet on arriving home everytime I touched your leg you yelped. On speaking to the vet we agreed to take you in on the Monday for your leg and hip to be X-rayed, within an hour I was told the very bad news that Bone Cancer had been slowly attacking the Femur in your good back left leg, which was your supportive leg as your back right leg had the hock broken in late 2002 and in 2007 was plated.
I met you in July 2007 and decided to give you a home alongside my GSD Mimi who was still missing my Greyhound Jagger who left me in June 2007. We had great time teaching you to use your right back leg. Then in November 2007 we moved to the Swansea Valley Area and also rehomed Greyhound Merlin who from that day considered you as his Mum. Your femur had snapped right at the top where it joined the ball and socket joint of the hip. We all decided that as your quality of life was now reduced to nil that we would not wake you up. I requested that you be cremated and your ashes returned to me. I went to the vets to see you that afternoon and you looked so lovely and at peace and fast asleep.
We all that is Merlin, Menta, Mickey Finn who you put me onto after your demise as he was at severe risk at Sheffield Council Dog Pound and your Dad (me) all miss you and can’t believe we will not have you around physically, I have felt your presence a number of times since your demise. I have your ashes in a lovely memorial box alongside those of Jagger’s and Mimi’s memorial boxes.
I will never forgot My Missy who came into my life at a time when I needed all the love you gave me, I am so sorry that we could not repair your back left leg such that you could have still be with us. Mickey Finn says thank you Missy for getting Dad to drive up to Sheffield (460 miles return journey) to collect me from Sheffield Council Dog Pound.
10th February, 2000 - 28th December 2011
It is with heavy hearts and many tears that Carla and I find ourselves writing today. After a few short weeks of suffering from a serious back problem, Bandit had a third and major relapse yesterday morning, resulting in his back legs completely failing. We rushed him to Daniel's (My Vet 24-7), and we had no choice other than to let our big old handsome hunk, and best friend Bandit, embark on his journey to the Rainbow Bridge last night. Daniel himself was fantastic, compassionate, understanding and we could not ask for better support, and care, from a vet, for our dogs.
Bandit was my best mate. He was unique, a one-off. From the day we met him at Hersham in 2010, to last night, we bonded in a way I've never bonded with a dog before. I have never known a dog that you can have a conversation with (and understand him!), yet we did with our Bandit.
At weekends, he'd wake us around 8am, because he thought we were running late! At 8pm, he'd wake and nag us, because it was treat time. He'd ask us when he wanted something, be it a walk, dinner, or going into the garden. Two barks for "yes", every time!
Sunday mornings will never be the same again. To see him galloping around Langley Park, as happy as can be, was joyful, and will be an everlasting memory. Even funnier was his weekly chat at the tea-room with Sue and Steve, when they asked him how his week had gone just before the treats came out.
I'm sure his spirit is running around there right now with our old dog Tess, who he helped through her final months back in 2010. They were so close, they are surely together now.
I could go on forever, but one thing I will say is that if we knew back in June 2010 what we know now, would we have still taken home a 10 1/2 year old Bandit with known back issues? YES we would, without a doubt.
Bandit touched everyone he met, and won a place in many hearts, both at home and amongst the wonderful community that is WGW. I'm sure a few of you will also shed a tear for him, as have friends and family here.
We miss you mate, and will love you forever. You will always be in our hearts.
Run free my friend.
Bob, Carla and Little Phoenix xxx
July 1999 – November 2011
My free spirited, feisty little girl has gone to join her ‘brother’ Blue. Prior to arriving at kennels to choose a dog I had spoken to Denise on the ‘phone and specifically asked for a black dog – she got ‘Megan’ out – quite a clearly a dark brindle but Denise said “she’s nearly black” !! A friend and I walked with Blue and this nearly black girl who was full of beans and very interested in Blue, the rabbits in the field and generally everything that was going on – we could see that Blue was fairly relaxed in her company. We took her back and persuaded Denise to let us walk a proper black girl but luckily for Megan, this little girl did not appear to have any interest in us and Blue seemed a little nervous of her. When we returned to the kennels, Megan was running loose in the pen and greeted us by barking non stop and jumping up and down – my friend said that’s your dog now !! We all entered the pen and with Blue off lead we started playing the chase game – Megan had absolutely no idea what was going on but joined in with gusto – decision was made and we took her home with us (by the time we had reached home in Hampshire she had been renamed Daisy Megan).
Daisy took to home life as if she had been born to it – immediately house trained and not worried about anything. The first morning I woke up with Daisy in the house, she leapt on top of me, stuck her nose in my face with an excitable expression that basically said “yippee, you’re awake – what happens now?”. That’s how she lived her life – always happy and usually up to some sort of mischief.
I am lucky in that I live near thousands of acres of army land where Daisy and Blue have been free to run and run and chase various forms of wildlife (once Daisy had learned that little dogs were off limits) - I suspect the rabbit and squirrel populations round here have breathed a sigh of relief.
When I lost Blue in January this year I was worried that Daisy would die of a broken heart; they had not been apart for one day since they met in 2003 but as usual Daisy showed what a tough cookie she is and together we moved on and I was able to spoil and cherish her like the princess that she was.
In her quiet moments Daisy was the most loyal, devoted and cuddly dog. Not sure I will miss being squashed up in bed because she insisted on sleeping fully stretched out, half way down and across the bed but I miss her huge presence, her feisty personality, her beautiful face and our special cuddles. I miss her because I love her so much and will never forgot the fun and happiness we shared.
6TH August 1999 – 14th November 2011.
Princess collapsed at the kennels on Monday afternoon. She had been remarkably well these past few weeks, and in fact had just eaten her afternoon feed and polished off what her kennel mate Sam had left in his bowl. Despite being rushed straight to our vets there was nothing to be done but to put her to sleep and ease her struggle. I was with her at the end and she slipped away as I stroked her ears and told her how special she was.
This is for you Princess. With love from Denise and everyone who knew you and loved you and made sure that you only ever knew kindness. xxx
COME WALK WITH ME
Come walk with me a little while, We’ve done this many times before,
Your hand on my shoulder feels warm and familiar,
Portraying a love that’s secure.
The pains in my body, Like old friends embrace me, Making our journey slow,
As your voice reassuring, encouraging, rewarding,
Tells me it’s time to go.
And as we move forward, In familiar comfort, My pain and discomfort they ease,
And now I am trotting along here beside you,
I look to you eager to please.
And now I am moving at a pace long forgotten, And as we move further apart,
Your voice gently calls me, But I know I shan’t lose you,
For I carry you here in my heart.
Don’t fret I can hear you, And see you and feel you, No matter how far I may roam,
And at the end of this journey, I know you will hold me,
And gently you’ll carry me home.
Woofa came to the kennels on the 3rd of December 2006 to become a resident. We first got told that he must not be paired up with a female friend because he used to be a stud dog. This soon changed and we were able to pair him up with our oldest and dearest girls that came into the holiday kennels and he would always share the bed with them like a gentleman.
Dear Woofa gave us a few scares where we didn't think he would come back from the vets, but each time he did and when he recovered he had more bounce then he did before!
He would be one of the first dogs you would hear barking first thing in the morning. He always barked when he wanted something, to go out, to come in. to go for a walk, to be fed or just for a cuddle.
Having been at the kennels for nearly 5 years a lot of people got to know and love Woofa as much as the people to cared for him at the kennels day in and day out and he loved them back just as much.
He will be dearly missed by everyone who knew and loved him.
We will remember the 5th of November (2011), the day dear Woofa left this world, but he will never leave our hearts.
Miss you forever baby boy
Lots of love all at the kennels and all your kennels friends, human and hound alike
11th February 2000 – 13th August 2011
What can be said? From the time you woke us up in the morning for your early walk, to reminding us it was time for breakfast, from barking at the postman and chewing the post, and then stealing our bed for most of the day and night, but most of all for the love you gave us.
It was a pleasure to own such a gentle and loving boy and all of this will be sadly missed, though you remain in our hearts and thoughts forever.
God Bless You, Sleep tight our boy.
In Loving Memory.
Mum and Dad xxxx
4.8.2005 – 1.8.2011
Who cured Alex of being scared of dogs?... Jamie.
Who stole the chocolate biscuits?... Jamie.
Who chewed the kitchen?... Jamie.
Who ate the wallpaper?...Jamie.
Who stole our hearts and then who broke them?... Jamie.
Sweet dreams our gorgeous dog, always and forever in our hearts. Miss you,… Jamie.
All our love,
Mum, Dad, Chloe, Joe & Sam xxxxx
25th June 1998 – 1st August 2011
It is with great sadness that we have to report that our lovely boy Smiler has passed away.
We came to the kennels a few weeks back with Smiler after he had been diagnosed with a Tumor on his spine which was inoperable. Sadly he had deteriorated over the last few weeks and we decided the time had come to stop his suffering.
We first saw Smiler at Hersham kennels seven years ago. We had sadly lost our dear old Greyhound Soni and it had left such a gaping hole in our lives that we thought we would come and visit the Kennels to meet the staff and the dogs you had that needed re homing but this trip was just meant to be a visit and a chat !!!
Then Denise bought Smiler out well that was it his lovely placid nature won us over immediately so home he came and what a lovely dog he turned out to be.
Nothing Fazed him even when I had my daughters two greyhounds over to stay he took it all in his stride . He loved his walks in the woods where we lived and would chase the squirrels but luckily they were quicker than he was!!
Our beloved Smiler our faithful friend, and your love you shared till the very end.
For 7 years our family was blessed,now it's time for you to rest.
You still live on in our hearts and minds, from the loving family you left behind.
Julie & Tony Carpenter
Pippa Jones has written a poignant and articulate article about Rosden Rio who was adopted from Hersham in 2006.
"People who own greyhounds are weird. Categorically strange, and not a little obsessed with their dog of choice. Life revolves around the hound.
Even now, I can ask my mother who her favourite child is and she will say Rio. If he was on ‘his’ sofa, we weren’t allowed to ask him to move. He was given extra treats when Mum thought no one was looking.
He was allowed upstairs, and Mum would arrange the expensive, pink coverlet in her room on the floor so he could lay on it. There is a picture of him next to her bed, in an Art Deco-style, luminous pink frame ... "
Read the full article here.
“ We are not getting a dog….we’re just going to walk a few, but we are not getting a dog boys ok!”…My mantra to my sons (and husband) the whole journey from Brentford to Hersham. Then Dot introduced us to Belle and that was it – I was hooked & the boys said nothing about the mantra. She gave us nothing but joy for the next 5 years. Victoria did our home check – I was panicking as I was late leaving work so missed her. Was sure she would turn us down as ‘parents’ to Belle – but she didn’t.
We couldn’t wait to bring her home. Belle initially, was very quiet, nervous and extremely wary of men – bit of an obstacle in a all male house except for me. She wouldn’t go through doors if we were stood by them, howled if a broom was lifted near her, refused to eat indoors (even in the pouring rain) and pulled like a horse on the lead! So, 4months later, I decided she needed a mate to help boost her confidence – husband at this point speechless but didn’t remind me that 4 months previously we weren’t getting any dogs. And anyway, two is easier than one.
Jordi dog made his appearance and a love affair between the two began – well – more of a “ I’m the boss of this house, and you will fall into line boy” – which Jordi did, very happily. Not once was there a crossed growl between them in 5yrs. The perfect partnership. Once Belle realised she had our unconditional love, all ‘Belle’s madness’ poured out and the alpha female ‘Don’t mess with the Belle’ made her appearance. Belle was also an excellent communicator.
She had a wide range of expressions and moods which she was all too eager to let you know about. Belle’s hooded scowl when showing her disapproval of something you’d done or were about to was classic as was her cocked head ‘lets negotiate that’ look when you were trying to get her in from the garden, or to come back to you when the walk was over, because she had decided it wasn’t time to leave!
She would always let you know what she wanted, when she wanted it and how much she wanted and woe be tide you if you disagreed. She nibbled your sleeve when excited, and whacked you with a paw if she felt you hadn’t been stroking her tummy just quite long enough. Belle filled our lives with her ways and is sorely missed with her passing.
She was a big, stunning looking girl. The number of people who stopped us to speak about Belle, (always a pitch to promote greyhounds as pets) ask if they could take her photograph; stroke her silky coat will be in triple numbers. Admittedly, she was a bit of a snob, but she did love that attention. Belle was not a great success as a racer, but found her real talent in helping those people with mental health problems to build confidence, and self esteem. She also helped treat those with phobias of dogs, by showing her calm, gentle, placid nature and allowing them to build a trusting relationship with a dog. Belle came a long way from the scared girl we adopted.
Belle had suffered terribly with corns from the time we adopted her. Eventually, after many surgeries we found the vet Daniel Doherty. Once he saw and treated her in Jan 2010, Belle’s life was turned around for the better. No more pain and a much happier girl. In March 2011, 5yrs to the day we had adopted her, she had suddenly developed a limp 3 days prior and despite resting her, she was lame in her right leg. Not the usual sequalea with corns. Off we went to see Daniel and he kept her in for investigation. 3hrs later he told me Belle had Osteosarcoma. Our world fell apart. She came home and we made sure we spoiled her even more than usual. We had 7 more weeks with her until the 27th of April when Daniel agreed it was time to let her go. We were all with her and we all still miss her so very much. Jordi doesn’t know how to take care of himself without her and paces around looking for her at times.
Belle was known by so many people. We had more than 40 texts and calls after her death, and numerous people continue to stop me who had met her to tell me how sad they were to hear of her death. Belle may have been a force to be reckoned with at times, but everyone loved her.
Thank you Belle, for choosing us for your family. We wish we could have had you for longer.We will love you always.
Mum (Sharon) Dad ( Richard) Jack, Euan and Jordi
13th November 2003 – 14th April 2011
Grace you were just a plain little black girl with a speckled grey face. Overlooked so many times in favour of younger, prettier, girls; girls who behaved themselves around non-greyhounds, something you always found so difficult.
But we loved you. We loved you for your gentle ways, your sweet nature, and your willingness to oblige. We loved you when you were naughty and argued with the greyhounds next door. We loved you unconditionally.
When you were taken ill a few weeks ago we thought we were going to lose you. But you were given a reprieve and we were given hope. Sadly last Thursday that hope was snatched away. The tumours invading your body would only lead to more pain and suffering, and so you needed us to let you go.
Sweet dreams darling Grace, we miss you.
15.6.2001 - 3.3.2011
It was during a November afternoon in 2004 that I took my first trip to Hersham Hounds. I was looking for a companion for my Collie Jake.
Denise suggested a girlfriend for him and introduced us to Cody (Suki as she was then called). Well, what a big girl she was - she made Jake look like a jack russell! I walked her up the lane with Jake, she was wearing her muzzle and I remember so vividly how graceful she looked as she trotted alongside and she was looking up at me, smiling - it was that smile that did it for me.
I knew she was the one and that she had picked me too.
She had just recovered from a ligament injury which had ended her racing life. She adapted without any fuss or problems from kennel to home life.
I had to keep her on the lead for the first 2 years as she had a passion for small furry animals, however with time and training she enjoyed off-lead walks wherever we went and had the perfect recall - she was even better than my collie.
I used to love watching her run and everyone admired her - she received so much attention and everyone wanted to stroke and fuss Cody. They loved her silky fur and she had the softest ears.
I can honestly say with hand on heart, Cody has been the easiest, kindest, most gentle natured dog I have ever had the pleasure to own. She never complained, never made a fuss and took everything in her stride.
We sadly lost Jake last year and Cody grieved for him. She was now also starting to show signs of slowing down, she was getting tired and her years were taking their toll on her.
Unfortunately our beautiful girl has taken her place with the angels and has joined Jake at Rainbow Bridge.
Cody, we loved you so much and we will never, ever forget you. You will always be in our hearts. Run fast and free beautiful girl.
We lost our gorgeous Twinkle last year to illness. We adopted Twinkle (and Colin) from Hersham in 2009. We always wanted a dog, but our work schedules didn't allow it. We decided to volunteer walking the hounds as a compromise! I've always wanted a Greyhound, for as long as I can remember. Danjal at first thought I was nuts. He said they were skinny and ugly! My insistence made him research them and won him over. So, of to Hersham we went.
Twinkle was the first hound we ever walked. She was one of Eve's dogs, and was recovering from surgery. She was so skinny! No fur on her tail, bald elbows, the works. To me, she was the most beautiful dog I've ever seen. I fell in love instantly. Then we walked her and Colin together, once she was sufficiently recovered from her op. They were such a handsome pair.
Our work-schedules changed, and we made the decision to adopt them both. We just couldn't take her and leave him.She settled in immediately. No accidents, no destruction, no counter-surfing. A model addition!
She was so silky soft and cuddle-some. She always met you with a serious amount of tail-wagging and little jumps and huge smile. Almost immediately it felt as if we've had her for ever. If she fancied a snack, she would stand by the cupboard door and look at it then me until I get her something! She always got so excited when we were getting ready for a walk. She loved going to Bedfont Lakes and run around in the off-lead area. She never had any issues with any other dog or person we met. And always caught people's attention when we're out and about, because of her size and colouring. (she was a big girl!)
And then in November last year she was just not being herself. Sometimes limping a little, not playing as much. I took her to the Vet's and they said it's a soft-tissue injury. (She's had a few bumps and scrapes from chasing cats(!!) in the past year, so it seemed plausible). She got worse over the next 10 days with talk of Osteo Sarcoma. She became very ill, ending up in hospital.After 3 days, with little improvement, they were talking of chest drains, cracking her chest open, lung tumors and all sorts. With little hope of a positive outcome. We had to make the difficult decision to let her go. She was suffering so much. My heart was breaking. Even though we only had her a year, she was part of the family, and I couldn't imagine the house without her. But we had to let her go. It was the kindest thing we could do for her. And the hardest decision I've ever had to make. We stayed with her to the end and after. But it was so hard to leave her there.
I know this happened on the 16th November 2010, but I just couldn't bring myself to write this before now. And it is still not easy. But I owe it to her to let you know what a wonderful companion and friend she was to us, and how much we loved her, even if it was for such a short time. At least we gave her the opportunity to experience life in the lap of luxury and pampering to her heart's content.
And she was not alone in the end. I held her through it all, telling her how much I love her, and how glad I was that she shared the last part of her live with me.
Twinkle, my Angel, I miss you terribly, but you are at peace now, and that helps to ease the pain.
11 years old
I first visited the Hersham kennels seven years ago after my friend’s German Shepherd was saved by a Greyhound blood transfusion.
My friend wanted to thank the Greyhound world for saving her dog’s life and I was so touched by the story. She told me about the kennels and that members of the public were welcome to go and walk the dogs as a way of socialising them and getting out for some exercise.
It didn’t even occur to me that I could actually own one myself and would never have thought I could have a Greyhound, let alone any dog, as I had never owned a dog before, and I lived in a townhouse with no garden and owned a precious Russian Blue indoor cat. None of these factors were conducive for owning a dog. So I took pleasure in visiting the kennels during the week sometimes (or at weekends with my husband and son) and walking different dogs on each visit.
One day I visited the kennels and as I walked through the entrance, the most beautiful Greyhound I had ever seen looked lovingly into my eyes through the wire mesh with the most amazing big, brown eyes. I felt this dog looked into the very soul of me, and we became attached at that very moment. I took this dog for a long walk and felt she was asking me to stay with her forever.
I ignored all the reasons why it could not work to have this dog, Wish, in my life and with the reassurance, advice and guidance of Denise at the kennels, she came home with us. I had great confidence that everything would work out, and with the help of my husband Jake, we taught Wish a few rules about our cat, Elly, and helped her to use the stairs, and to understand that she was safe with us.
She was initially nervous about this new life but I stayed with her all the time, and gave her a routine, which she learned to trust, and most of all got her out and about as much as possible. Although I was advised to give Wish a coat for cold or rainy days, Wish was our very own Audrey Hepburn. If we ever used a coat on her, she would refuse to go to the toilet on a walk and we felt sure this was because she didn’t want to spoil her fancy outfit!
It wasn’t long before she was enjoying trips in the car to my son’s (Daniel) local school and being petted through the window by all the children. She became part of me and was with me everywhere I went. She took a trip to Wiltshire to meet my parents-in-law and their Pointer dog, Mica. They instantly hit it off and she made their place her second home without hesitation.
Even my parents, who were not ‘dog’ people, warmed to her immediately, and my father would regularly ask if he could take her for a walk.. Her beautiful eyes were infectious.
She would lie on her bed and watch me intently as I did my chores, her eyes following me all the time. She loved nothing better than a gentle stroke and kiss and reassurance that everything was ok.
Training her was a joy as she understood all commands and requests. For a dog, she was amazing that food was not her main objective. In fact, a doggy treat was not usually of any use when she was nervous or unsure of a situation. Instead, she needed my positive reassurance that everything was ok and then she would give me her special look of love that told me she felt alright again. She accepted all the different pets that came to us over time. (chickens, rats, mice, budgies and even a rabbit). Her acceptance of these creatures made us love her even more (even if she did sometimes huff and sigh loudly when we were petting the other ‘furries’ too much!). She also accepted that when our second child (Laura) was born, my time was taken up with tending to the baby. She knew I loved her and she was a permanent member of the family. When we moved to a bigger house with a garden, she loved settling in the sun while we pottered around outside. Living on a busy road, people on their way to the station would see her on the porch and smile.
When my daughter started school down the road, I was able to walk Wish at pick up time and wait outside the school gate. All the children would come out and ask to pet her. She would look so angel-like and soft, as the children stroked her. So many lives having been touched by Wish and, since losing her, we have had so many people contact us who say they feel our loss and what a special dog she was.
Wish became poorly over time; unnoticeable at first, but looking back I can see many factors building up which led to me having her checked at the vet. She was diagnosed with proteinuria of the kidneys and there was nothing that could be done. Wish’s last day was a beautiful, unusually, warm, sunny, winter’s day. We spent it sitting on the porch soaking up the sun, going for a leisurely walk and stroking and kissing her. She fell asleep gracefully in our arms with no pain or suffering, and I looked for one last time into her beautiful, big, brown eyes, and told her I loved her for eternity.
3.5.2002 – 27.1.2011
Trotter was our first ever dog and he was absolutely fabulous.
We knew he was exactly what we wanted right from the first time we saw him and took him for a walk at the kennels. It was with much excitement (and some trepidation) that we collected him to take him home but we needn’t have worried because he settled in quickly and it wasn’t long before he became a much adored and spoilt member of the family.
He came everywhere with us – in pubs and restaurants, outdoor concerts, on holidays in the UK and on steam trains, trams and even up in a cable car! He was such good fun and so easy to look after that he gave us the confidence to adopt a friend for him a couple of years later and we thought we’d got the perfect family.
Sadly it was not to be for long as we were devastated to discover that he was suffering from a very painful circulatory disease which prevented him from enjoying all the lovely walks we had planned.
We tried to make his life as comfortable as we could but eventually we had to accept that we had to let him go and we were able to kiss and cuddle him as he peacefully went to sleep. We are glad that he is now free of the terrible pain he had borne very courageously for probably much longer than we knew.
He was a huge personality and a wonderful companion and he gave us much love as well as lots of laughs and we miss him terribly.
We will never forget him.
Rob, Jane, Tom, Ruth, Margaret and Daisy.
My baby girl Lass was with me for nearly six years. She was the most infuriating, stubborn, adorable and gorgeous girl ever. I took her to the vets on a Monday in February and she was diagnosed with a large tumour in her stomach. I was heartbroken and couldn't bare to think of life without her. What would I do when it was cold and she jumped on top of me in the middle of the night, lay on my feet and legs and if i moved hit me with her head until i got into a comfortable position for her?
I had to make the devasting decsion to do the right thing by her. It wasn't about me but about my little girl going to rainbow bridge with dignity. I had three days left with her and we made the most of them. She had roast beef, stew, chicken, tuna, maltesers and anything she wanted. I took her to the local common and let her off her lead, something i've never done before as the little minx would make a run for it and not come back. She was as good as gold, stayed by my side, had her head down every rabbit hole and i even let her eat the rabbit droppings that she was so fond of.
On the last day we walked and walked and then the vet came to my home. I did not want her to be frightened or stressed and she wasn't. She lay on her bed and I lay beside her. I didn't cry but told her how much I loved her and would always love her. I stroked her head and cuddled her and she went to sleep. She has left a big void in my life but I still have her brother Bertie. Bertie got to say goodbye to her as well. The two of us are lost at the moment and miss her dreadfully. Thank you Lass for being a big part of my life. I love and miss you so much but nothing can hurt you now. Sleep tight my Bonnie Lass.
From your mum Angela
Oct 98 - Jan 11
I had to say Goodbye to my lovely little girl Tilly on the 8th January 2011 after a long battle living with arthritis, which finally took it's toll.
Tilly was the most gentle, loving and sensitive girl, she only ever wanted to please, and she was my best friend. I was lucky enough to share 10 greyt years with her, we Reached the Beach, went to Companion Dog Shows and the Annual Greyhound Shows and won lots of Rosettes over the years. We had great times with her friends Jerry Lee a Golden Retriever, his mum Aunty Fletch, and Harvey, a German Shepherd Collie cross who is already at RainBow Bridge waiting to meet and Greet and play once again.
I'd like to thank all at the kennels for their support over the years (Tilly used to enjoy her holidays with you.), and to Congratulate you all for the Greyt work you continue to do.
Tilly and I had lovely walks and times together where she'd be looking up and I would look down. Now on my walks it's me looking up hoping she's looking down. The brightest Star in the heavens is the Dog Star and it seems to be shining a even brighter now!
Rest in Peace without pain lovely girl and once again run as fast as the wind.
I miss you. . . your loving mum Pauline
Beau sadly went over the rainbow bridge on the 21/1/11.He had been going down hill since xmas and I couldn't bear to see him suffer so letting him go with dignity was the least we could do for him. We miss your singing, chocolate nicking, bread pinching, bed jumping, bin raiding and watching you wrestling in the garden with Billy. Sugar Plum misses you loads and cant understand why you aren't around.
The family love you Beau with all our heart and hope you are now reunited with with your beloved Ruby.
Sleep tight my sweetheart
A poem for Beau
You made us laugh you made us sigh,
there was never a dull moment with you around big guy,
your love of chocolate was worse then mine
my birthday cake which you ate,
but still you would pretend it wasn't you but the chocolate on your face gave us a clue
when we had a BBQ you ate all the rolls how you opened the packets I will never know.
but for all of your naughtiness you still made me smile
Rest in peace Beau
Farewell Louie. 3.6.1999 - 3.1.2011
Louie saw in the New Year with us and all his very favourite people. He was treated like a king, and no treat was denied him.
Carol and Angie, who both shared his care, took him on his last journey to Daniels and he slipped away with them by his side. Louie touched all our lives, and we shall never forget what a beautiful, gentle, sweet natured lad he was.
Dawn, just one of his special friends sent us this poem, which we’d like to share with you - The Last Battle.
When Louie retired his racing owner tried to take him home, but sadly Louie found life away from the kennels far too stressful. In many cases, when a dog is unhappy in home, they can become destructive like Daisy Annie.
But Louie simply spent both day and night circling around one of the rooms in the house like a caged tiger.
Louie had a bitch for company, was not left for long hours, and as far as we know, there was nothing in the home environment that would have caused Louie to react like this; any other dog would have probably settled in fine.
Eventually it was decided that the best thing for Louie would be to bring him back to the kennels where he had always been happy. As it turned out, this was the right decision for Louie, who settled in like he had never been away.
Louie was an absolute sweetheart, who was always so desperate to please. He will be sadly missed.
1998 – 13.12.2010
It is with much sadness that we have had to say goodbye to Daisy- Annie.
Carol shared her last journey to our vets and stayed with her as she slipped away.There were no choices; the tumour on her liver was taking its toll, and we knew what we had to do.
Daisy- Annie we have cared for you for so many years. You were such a silly, young, thing when we first met you, and you made it clear that you preferred life with us at the kennels to life in a home.
Thank you for loving us, for trusting us, and for enriching our lives.
11 October 2003 – 10 September 2010
Having to write Stoney’s tribute so soon after writing his homing profile is a terrible shock. He was a wonderful boy who was starting to show a great personality. The fact that it was gradually revealed made him even more special. Even though I wasn’t his owner he became a huge part of my life. I am positive it was only a matter of time before he found a home… even if he had to wait for me to acquire my own first. However, he could not have asked for a better temporary home then the Kennels where he was wonderfully cared for right up to the end and lived with his sister Jennifer. He was often admired when out and on several occasions met the same people the following day at the Kennels.
He was my first greyhound and I enjoyed every moment I spent with him.
Stoney, thank you for being my summer companion.
Ben (Annas Valentine)
Sylvia Meloy - 2010
My beautiful Ben [Annas Valentine] had to leave me on the 16th July 2010 after suddenly developing cancer. He was my second hound and I didn't expect him to replace my first love, Petal [Bruis Petal] - but he did in his own way. He was big, full of mischief, very funny, playful and a dreadful thief.
Night night Ben, I'll never forget you xx
Jenny (Bonds Cindy)
Sue & Steve - 2010
Jenny (Bonds Sindy) was spotted by us at the kennel BBQ in August 1993, we already had 2 Wimbledon Greys (both now sadly gone over the Rainbow Bridge). It was thought Jenny would be a kennel dog for life as she had been out to a home and was returned because she was so withdrawn and nervous. Ever up for a challenge Jenny came home with us and never left us until the night of 3 August when she sadly, passed away at the age of 11, in our garden, the place she loved the most. Her companion, Flynn, another Wimbledon dog, is at a loss as are we. Jenny has been described to us as 'just like Bambi'. She blossomed with time and patience and was never happier when she was at home with us. We like to think a place she felt secure. Jenny was loved by us all and is sadle missed.
Run free sweet girl
Stuart Lathey - August 2010
As a man of nearly 40 this is one thing I always dreaded having to do having read the WGW Newsletter and been moved to tears many times it is unfortunately our time to write now. We lost our wonderful Greyhound Sam (aka Folly Dolly) on 16th July. He was having trouble breathing and a scan revealed he had a major heart problem as well as other problems. We had to make the heartbreaking decision to let him go. I was 100 miles away and my wife made the brave step of staying with Sam and feeding him a large piece of cheese, his favourite treat and letting him fall asleep and be free from pain and discomfort.
I remember the day we first took Sam up the lane at the kennels, handing him back to Denise and deciding then that we would come back and get him in a few days when we were organised. We had Sam for 9 wonderful years and he was loved, adored and fussed by everyone and loved his Whippet companions. He never once showed anything other than love and kindness to everyone; there wasn't a bad bone in his body. Sam loved everyone and everyone loved Sam. I still cant believe that he has gone. I come home and expect to see his face at the window. I still think I am going to trip over him as he always laid down right in the way of everyone but we just worked round him, after all, he was retired and deserved the rest! We have planted a small tree in a large Whisky barrel and that is Sam's tree. We miss Sam so much. We can however take comfort from the fact that we know we did the right thing letting him go. If we had bought him home he would not have been comfortable and Sam deserved so much better than that. Denise said in a wonderful email after I told her that we had lost Sam that he was a lucky boy to have 9 lovely years of retirement with us and that is a great memory to hold on to.
We miss you Sam but will never ever forget you our wonderful, wonderful friend.
Whitney Henderson Reilly - 2010
Treacle we only had her for seven months and she only turned 5 last year on september the 7. We do not know what caused her death. All we know she died in her sleep R.I.P Treale and I love will never forget you.
Love From Your clossest friends,sister and Mum. Miss you lots. xxxx
Shane (Dejays Lord)
Caroline - 2010
Big Pup, Shane (Deejays Lord) - we love you so much and miss you every second of the day.
Never to be forgotten xxxxx
June Connolly - 2010
Queenie. 3.8.98 - 21.5.2010, you were my very special baby girl; an ardent leaner, a smiler and a love bite nibbler. Our 9 years and 4 months together went far too quickly. Your are deep in my heart and always will be. Sweet Dreams Sweetheart.
Your Mum, June. xxxxxx
Ruby sadly had to be put to sleep as her cancer was taking all the goodness out of any food she was eating. She was the most amazing dog i have ever had the pleasure to know.
I remember the first time i met her she came right out put her head on my thigh and that was it we were meant to be. The house feels so empty without her, her husband Beau misses her.
Ruby i hope you are at peace now and that you can forgive me for taking you to the vet. I couldnt watch you waste away before my eyes it was breaking my heart.
I love you and you will always have a special place in my heart thank you for picking me out ...Thank you Denise for giving me courage to do the right thing.
Maria,del,geege,brad and beth and Beau and Billy your 4 legged friends.
Sweet dreams Ruby
Katie Quinn - July 2010
We lost our beautiful boy Ranger not very long ago I can't discribe how much I miss him. We had him for nearly 10 years and unfortunaly he got put to sleep when i was in london.
RIP sweet heart xxx
Steve Coleman - June 2010
We lost our beloved brindle boy Elvis last Thursday (3rd June), prematurely at 8 years to bone cancer. During the 4 years with us our family we quickly grew to dearly love Elvis for his gentle and affectionate nature. Nothing ever phased Elvis, always calm, never worried always trusting in us – right until his last moments. Elvis taught our lovely brindle girl Emmy confidence, Emmy taught him how to play and have fun. They were inseparable, always together and she is missing him terribly.
He is sadly missed by all of us, but will never be forgotten.
Paul Delve and Thierry Bregliano - May 2010
We said goodbye to Bartok today. He’d been with us for ten happy years, a loyal and loving friend who will be missed so much. We’d like to thank all the team at the kennels where he often stayed, for their care and support over the years. You all do an extraordinary job.
Lucy (Trade Image)
Kerry, Nick, Talia & Casey Carroll - 2010
Lost my lovely lady Lucy (Trade Image) this week. Born Nov 96 & came to live with us in 1999. You gave us over 10 wonderful years and you've left a huge gap but thanks for everything girl.
Lady (Meggie May)
Helen and Lawrence - April 2010
In loving memory of a true lady meggie may who sadly had to be put to sleep thursday 21st april due to cancer. we stare at your empty bed and miss your greeting when we get up. We had you for 9yrs from the age of 4 and you will always be our true lady.
Love from Helen and Lawrence xx
Lady Laura Locket (Killeacle Laura)
Richard and Evadne Staddon - April 2010
Lady Laura Locket (Killeacle Laura) was peacefully put to rest on 6/4/2010 . Born in Ireland she went to public and finishing school which showed in her exquisite manners and grace. Unfortunately the family fortune was lost by her father in a deal with a Jack Russell and Laura had to go into racing. It was not for her so she took up charitable works and adopted and trained people and also had a great interest in preventing obesity in rabbits and squirrels through running. She could often be seen promenading in Surrey with her bodyguard 'Moley'(Herne Bay) and her game keeper and handyman 'Sam'.
You are so very very missed by us little one and the house is empty without you. Thank you for being our friend.
Lady (Proton Star)
Yvonne - April 2010
We lost our beautiful girl today, lady (proton star ) we have been lucky to share our lives with her, for the past 8, and a half years. she brought so much laughter into our lives with the funny things she did..she took over our beds, and furniture, what ever she did was fine.
8 weeks ago she was diagnosed with cancer, our world become looking after, and spoiling her, we are so heart brocken, how are we going to live with out her.. we miss and love you so much lady you will always will be our star.
Caroline ,Steve and Ryaan Sandham - April 2010
We lost our beloved Greyhound Shane on good friday. Its a shock and we are all numb. Cant imagine life without our beloved boy, our hearts are aching so much.
We love you forever our faithful, gentle friend xxx
Brian Paterson - April 2010
Our loved dog Mo was sadly put to sleep on Monday (29/03) this was a painful decision but was one that was right for Mo. We have had Mo in our lives for nearly ten years since the day we met him with his overshot top jaw and tail in a hair curler. Mo has always drawn people to himself with his gentle character and when we came to live in Ireland he came with us and made people see that Greyhounds really are gentle and are fantastic companions.
We miss him dearly and our tears still flow but we are left with so many lovely memories of our Mo our first greyhound but certainly not the last...........
Paula Daniels - March 2010
With great sadness I had to have my beautiful Rita laid to rest recently. She was 13 years old and had survived a stroke some 4 years earlier. She was the most outgoing of all the greyhounds to have come into my life and kept us on our toes. Very cheek and full of personality!
Rosie who is left looks for her every day and misses her. We hope she is resting peacefully along with Sweep, Barney and Kizzy. Sleep tight pretty girl.
Lots of love Paula and Dan
Dee Buyuk - March 2010
In loving memory of Bella 25/01/2010, only 9.5 years old lost her fight to bone cancer. She was a beautiful girl , so undemanding and I miss her coming to work with me every day.
We all miss her terribly love always Dee, Calvin and Ozzy
Ruby (Sue's Happy)
Don and Angela Maclean - February 2010
In memory of "Ruby" she raced as "Sues Happy (18.5.2000 - 7.1.2010). She was our "little legs", she was our sweet girl, she was always there beside us, she loved everybody and everthing, she lived by her name "Sues Happy" and lived with us as our Ruby, she will be sorely missed.....
Don & Angela Maclean and "Harvey"
Faith and Danny
Chris & Mick Sharod - February 2010
It's a year ago this month that we lost our dear Faith (Broadtown Jenny) and three days later Danny (Rastaman) to the Angels in the sky. We were blessed to have two wonderful Greys that asked for nothing but gave so much. They were inseparable in life and inseparable in God's call to heaven. We know you are both looking down approvingly, at our new little girl Sally.
We miss you both so much.....love Mum & Dad.
Ken & Ruth Chiesa - January 2010
Gypsy arrived with us on the 13.1.2007, and for the next three years gave us immense pleasure, together with loads of fun, at the same time making good friends with our other Grey Cilla. Her illness was sudden and rapid, and she was put to rest just three years to the day of her arrival. She was a very brave girl, who is greatly missed, and may she now rest in peace.
Solly (Sew Trader)
In loving memory of our handsome and gracious Solly (Sew Trader) Oct 1997 – Dec 2009. You have brought so much happiness to those who knew you. You were a perfect gentleman to your wife Misty and to all your human friends. We all miss your gentleness and huge personality. Rest in peace our special, special man.
Love and kisses Misty, Kirsty, Lucy, and Auntie Barbara and Uncle John.
Graham Davies - January 2010
Sally and I would like to remember Swifty. We adopted him in 2002 and had 7 enjoyable years with him until he died of bone cancer in July 2009 at the age of 10 and a half. He was a big, boisterous but loving boy and we'll never forget him, especially his funny habit of carrying his full dinner dish around the house and garden. In August 2009, we adopted Brett, a big, bouncy silver brindle. Brett has settled in well.
You can see pictures of Brett, Swifty and our previous dear departed hounds at http://www.camsoftpartners.co.uk/websites.htm#greyhounds
Barney (Murrin Ranger)
Pat Mundy - December 2009
In memory of Barney, 24.7.99-16.11.09. We were so privileged to share your life for more than 5 years and were devastated at your sudden death. You brought us so much joy and we miss you terribly. Rest in peace our gorgeous boy.
Pat and Peter Mundy
Molly (Merry Mary)
Sue Mayne August 2009
In memory of our beautiful big girl. We loved every minute of the 5 years we were privileged to spend with her. we all still miss her.
The Mayne family
Kelly (Delray Beach)
Mary McLean August 2009
I would just like to remember my first ever greyhound, my. I got my beautiful fawn boy (yes, boy, despite the name he was given in Battersea) from Battersea Dogs Home when he was 10 years old. He was such a beautiful old gentleman. I had him for 3 short years before he went to Rainbow Bridge. Kelly, you started my love of greys and I now have four.
Rest in peace, my beautiful boy.