The Delightful Duke

2020 was like no other year for all of us, it was made especially difficult with the passing of Bud, the second of our two fine Labradors. It left us feeling so empty and bereaved. After a few weeks of coming to terms with the loss, I found a number on the Labrador Rescue Site and spoke to a lovely lady called Patrica. She explained to me the process in acquiring a dog, but due to the present virus, there were not that many dogs to adopt, but not to give up and to fill out the form and register. My wife Ruth and myself had our name down for a Labrador pup, which was to be born in spring, we had resigned ourselves to be without a dog until then. Out of the blue ,Patricia phoned me to inform us that there was a possibility of adopting a 7year old, black male Labrador called Duke, who at the moment was with his foster mum, Sally. .She did explain that he might be difficult to re home, due to the fact he had always  lived outdoors and may not be house trained; and that his linage’s of a working Lab.

Ruth, my wife was enthusiastic ,so in due course, Sally sent some photos of him. What a lovely boy, we thought, and found ourselves talking about him on a regular basis, even though we had not yet met him.It was about this time, I started to get viscous abdominal pain and uncontrollable vomiting , culminating in an ambulance trip to hospital with ,a jab of Morphine, to be admitted. .How disappointing, to end up in hospital .Because of the, no one including Ruth,  was not allowed into hospital to visit me as she also has underlying health issues too. This was a very dark time, i have never been so ill, but i must admit, Sally sending me a daily blog of Duke, photos, videos and commentary of how he was doing, kept me going, It was evident, that day by day, Sally coaxed this nervous creature into the domestic environment, and with lots of love and patience won over his trust, enabling him to be adoptable. .Dukes daily blog bought a real ray of sunshine into our lives .  Ruth also received the blogs and when we spoke to each other on the phone about him, it was very uplifting for both of us. Thank goodness for modern technology! We both couldn’t t wait to see him. My stay in hospital lasted 10 days, whilst in there it was discovered that my Gallbladder was badly infected and inflamed and i was put on the urgent list to have it removed within 6 weeks. Leaving hospital, 1 & half stone in weight lighter and very weak, we still drove to Whiltshire, the next day to go and visit this lovely dog.

We fell in love with him immediately! Duke truly is a square peg in a square hole; he has clicked our life back into gear. we are not sure, Who has rescued Who?

Duke now has a happy, fulfilling life of running on the beach, walks in the woods, along rivers and generally around our diverse countryside, with many dog friends he has made.Duke fills our lives with happiness, love and enjoyment.

He has truly settled into our home and our neighbours! They are very good friends of ours but have always been wary of dogs, almost frightened of them. But delightful Duke has remedied that situation and he regularly pops next door for a stroke and to eat the cat food!

He is loved by everyone – even our postman loves him and he is adored by all 5 grand children.

He welcomes all our guests to their holiday cottages with their dogs, helping them  all to settle in quite quickly and to make the most of their holiday.

We are taking him with us on holiday to Cornwall….but that’ll be another story.

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