When we lost Alfie suddenly, one of my main concerns was for Holly, who was his constant companion for the whole of his nine years, They did everything together sleep, eat they even pooed in unison! Holly was the oldest and definitely the boss but Alfie was her protector and soul mate, I can honestly say that they never had the slightest tiff.
It wasn’t like that in the beginning, far from it!. Holly was five and had got far too clingy with me. It was lovely to have such a devoted dog but I was worried for her. She seemed to be forgetting that she was a dog, just focusing her whole life around me. She is a chihuahua mix and reading about the breed they do tend to attach themselves to just one person.
So, I set out to find a friend for her. At the time I wasn’t involved in dog rescue and I’m ashamed to say that we bought Alfie from a breeder. I am cringing as I write this but hindsight is a wonderful thing!
We chose a puppy who would grow to a similar size as Holly, with a very laid back temperament.
If I’m totally honest it wasn’t just Holly I wasn’t thinking of, my daughter had left home and I had a very bad case of empty nest syndrome. The desire for a puppy in my life was like a physical need, a pain in my stomach that would only heal by the smell of puppy breath!
We bought Alfie home and introduced him to Holly outside the house on neutral ground just like the books tell you to. Holly took one look at this tiny ball of black and white fluff bouncing all over the place and bared her teeth. She hated him!
I was so concerned about Holly hurting the puppy I kept them separate and only let the two meet under strict supervision. To say I was worried was an understatement, I could never see Holly accepting Alfie, What had I gone and done?
Three days after he arrived I was doing some housework and became preoccupied. I looked into the garden and there they both were….playing! I must have left one of the doors open. I can’t tell you how relieved I was. Holly had accepted Alfie and they were never apart until he died of cancer in April this year.