We had known that this day was coming, but it never gets any easier. Darling Taffy, the longest-serving Pud in the Twilight pack, who had been with us since almost the very beginning. But, sadly, it was time to say goodnight dear friend.
Strictly speaking, Taffy wasn’t an ‘official’ Twilight dog. He arrived at Twilight, via Sue of PoorPaws way back in 2009, when Leeanne and Mike were just starting to think about how they could do something to help abandoned dogs. A shaggy little bundle who still needed some milk. He was always his own man from the beginning, shy, and very much mummy’s boy.
Taffy was the most remarkable dog. As he grew, he became the Twilight in-house doggie doctor. He was amazing; he sensed need, illness, and approaching death, and cared for hundreds of Puds. Affectionately known as Dr Taffy, he was always there for all the new Twilighters, the sick Twilighters and anyone needing an extra cuddle. He was intuitive and generous with his love for everyone, staying close to any new dog that was frightened, disabled, sick or overwhelmed, loving them and healing them.
We remember how he cared for Mr Fitchie, an old, deaf dog who was abandoned in a cold, wet field in winter. Mr Fitchie spent his last four days at Twilight, yes, just four days – sadly, we couldn’t save him – but Taffy spent those four days caring for him and ensured that he knew love until the last breath. There were many similar stories, and although he retired from his caring duties in his later years, he was always there, keeping an eye on the newbies, as you can see above in the photo of him with two of shyest, most traumatised Puds, Snowy and Flopsy.
Mummy’s special boy
It took Taffy over 10 years to be friendly with other humans and seek regular human friends for a fuss just for him. His favourite was sneaking between someone’s legs for a very special snug. Not just anyone though! He loved his mum the most and was always a mummy’s boy. You might visit and never know we had a Taffy, but if you were low or needed a quiet snug, you would find a little nose between your legs.
Taffy didn’t escape a few problems himself. In 2015 he injured himself while running, cried and snapped the cruciate ligament in his right knee. He had a week’s bed rest, painkillers and anti-inflammatories, but with the diagnosis confirmed, he was swiftly off to a specialist for x-rays to confirm the level of arthritis and prognosis for a full repair op. The starter for ten was a figure of €1,100. Ouch. Of course, the Twilight supporters rallied round, and funds were donated to pay for Taffy’s operation at the end of October.
Dear Taffy, thank you for your wisdom, your love, your unique way of being. The ligament surgery in one leg, sadly, didn’t work. Then, the other leg the same problem. Your legs were not strong and you haven’t found these last months easy with the severe arthritis. Your sight and hearing were going too, and confusion setting in. My dear friend, it was time to help you over the Rainbow Bridge. January 2024. It was the end of an era, but you will be always remembered, always loved and an integral member of our life. Thank you for all you have taught us. When you passed, here at home, with Daddy close by too, we saw you change from the boy to a man. It was a special experience. Run free now Taffy. All those demons you had that sometimes held you back, they have all gone now.