It was with much sadness that on Sunday our beautiful and faithful friend Amber died aged 16 and a half, a great age for a Staffordshire Bull Terrier. She was the gentlest and most devoted dog any family could have.
As a family who loved buying pets on a whim (including her), Amber had spent much of her life sharing the house and garden with a menagerie of other animals, including Chickens, Rabbits, Guinea Pigs, hamsters, lizards and cats. You would be able to leave Amber alone in the room with all of them and you knew that the only harm that would come to them, would maybe be a slobbery lick of her tongue. She truly was the gentlest of souls.
Now when Jo was diagnosed with Breast Cancer first time round, Amber went from sleeping in our sons room, to sleeping in our room, it was like she knew something was wrong. She would follow Jo around the house as if making sure she was OK. I have heard it mentioned before that dogs can detect Cancer and it wouldn’t surprise me if she at least detected something was wrong with Jo.
Pets as a whole I believe are great as a pick me up for anyone but especially if going through Cancer treatment. If Jo was upset or scared and in tears and one of the animal’s walked in, she would immediately focus her attention on the animal and her attitude and outlook would change. She would give them a hug, stroke them, talk to them in a silly voice, give them a kiss and for a few moments at least, forget about what had upset her. Those few moments of respite would often break the dark thoughts she was having and allow her to get back on with her life.
Jo often says she prefers animals to Humans, for one they don’t answer back, their love is unconditional and they are always there for you and Amber certainly was always there for us. As a family we will all miss her and Jo especially as her constant companion through Cancer treatment, There will now be a gaping hole which is now left to Milo the cat to fill. He will distract and provide her company, but cat’s are more likely to seek attention on their terms and when it suits them, while Amber was always there.
So if you need support during tough times maybe ask man’s best friend for that little bit of love you need to get through the day, they won’t disappoint.
RIP Amber x