It has taken me over a month to write this blog post because this is such heart-wrenching news to share with you. Roy and I had to say goodbye to our gorgeous, kindhearted Siberian Husky Benson on the 26th May.
Benson turned fourteen in February and like so many other large dogs his age his back legs that were once so strong gradually weakened from arthritis to the point he couldn’t stand at all. It wasn’t just his legs. At the very end, every part of him was just hanging on. I had to hand feed him in the final few days and we knew at that stage it was time for him to go to doggy heaven.
Benson had such a sweet personality. Hundreds of people came up to pat him and admire him during the course of his life. Everyone wanted to cuddle him when he was a pup (he resembled a small panda) and pat him on the head when he was an old boy, doing his best to keep his legs moving as he walked to the end of the street and back. One day we were on a walk here in the Cotswolds and a farmer’s pet lamb rushed up to Benson out of nowhere and gave him a kiss on the nose. I’m sure that lamb could sense his gentle nature as well.
Benson was a dog who could never understand why you would ever go out without him. He hated being left alone. He loved being with my husband and I more than treats. Every day, before and after his dinner and walks and between sips of water, he would come up and ask me to pick him up so he could sit beside me on the left arm of the sofa; it was his favourite place to sit. He knew I liked having him near me and he seemed to love being next to me. I’d pull him over to me and hug him at least three times a day. He looked up to my husband as the protector but I was his mummy who gave him all the kisses and hugs he well and truly deserved.
I want to share with you this poem by Colleen Fitzsimmons. I’m missing my boo so much and I wish he were still here with me. This poem pretty much sums up how I’m feeling right now.
I stood by your bed last night, I came to have a peep.
I could see that you were crying, you found it hard to sleep.
I whined to you so softly as you brushed away a tear,
“It’s me, I haven’t left you, I’m well, I’m fine, I’m here.”
I was close to you at breakfast, I watched you pour the tea.
You were thinking of the many times your hands reached down to me.
I was with you at the shops today, your arms were getting sore.
I longed to take your parcels, I wished I could do more.
I was with you at my grave today, you tend it with such care.
I want to reassure you that I’m not lying there.
I walked with you towards the house, as you fumbled for your key.
I gently put my paw on you, I smiled and said, “It’s me.”
You looked so very tired, and sank into a chair.
I tried so hard to let you know, that I was standing there.
It’s possible for me to be so near you everyday.
To say to you with certainty, “I never went away.”
You sat there very quietly, then smiled, I think you knew…
In the stillness of that evening, I was very close to you.
The day is over now … I smile and watch you yawning,
And say, “Goodnight, God bless, I’ll see you in the morning.”
And when the time is right for you to cross the brief divide,
I’ll rush across to greet you and we’ll stand, side by side.
I have so many things to show you, there is so much for you to see.
Be patient, live your journey out — then come home to be with me.
RIP Benson. We’ll always love you dearly.