As we welcome in a new year – 2024 – we take a traditional look back at 2023 and share some memories, highlights and hopes for the future with love to all the Twilight Puds’ friends and supporters
Leeanne writes, 2023 – it still feels like writing a date in science fiction time, just where does the time go?! Another year and many more delicious puddings pass through Twilight land. I’m not sure why, but this year has felt harder work, perhaps it is the aging process, but we have had some wonderful highlights.
Discovering the wonderful animal osteopath, Dr Romero, has been a tremendous benefit to many of the Puddings’ comfort. It also reignited our own healing for the Puds and working with other healers, such a true addition to the inner Puddings’ lives.
Having the local youth group visit in the early months was a real treat, to see the young so interested in animals and general welfare. We hope this educational programme will help the next generation with understanding dogs’ needs and later life care.
Whilst our core volunteer team have some health issues, we have had a wonderful team all year. Welcoming a couple of new faces has been a delight too, and we hope that as we enter a new year we might encourage a few more to join us. We especially could do with some stronger chaps who could help with déchèterie runs and moving those infamous settees!
Team South have excelled this year with so many marvellous events and raising some incredible funds for the Puds’ daily needs.
Hard to believe, harping back to time , that we are in our sixteenth year now. This last summer we celebrated 15 years and over 400 puddings at Twilight. Our celebration event was a joy, meeting up with old and new faces. So much support from the now growing number of associations who work tirelessly just to raise funds for animals in need. Our own events wouldn’t cover a third of our needs, so we are deeply grateful for this external care and support. It is part of the Twilight life line.
Meeting up with some of those associations on our festive tour this year reminded us of the need and importance to meet our fellow rescue buddies. Time to chat, share and give those supporting hugs. I hope we can get back to doing a little more of this. So many doing such tremendous rescue work, in what seem the saddest times as we have gone backwards with full refuges and many struggling for basic funds. Then there are those dogs crossing borders needing help through war or cruel circumstances. We feel sure the situation is worse than when we started.
But, looking positively, there are more rehomings of older puds. It is talked about more freely and there is more understanding I feel. But, sadly it is not enough. The number of requests we get is far too high. Folks need to plan what will happen to their animals when they die; I’m afraid your family just don’t often want to take on your loved companion. You can’t cop out that the pud is toileting, or barking, limping, has lost a limb or dying; this is your responsibility to your old friend if you can. As is, holding them with love when you need to do the right thing by them. Yes, costs can be high owning an animal, but old age isn’t always costly, and there are ways to care often that doesn’t need to break the bank. I have said before, I hope someone will have the patience to care for me if I make older age. Someone needs to care for our older dogs, and you might have to up your game face for those difficult days …. But dying alone in a cage shouldn’t be an option you leave them to. As human beings we have to be more aware of our responsibilities for animal welfare, not just leave it to the few.
But the few of you out there we celebrate. You are all amazing and we are proud to be a very small part of this rescue world. The number of people involved in just one of our puds’ lives, Lord. The family he grew up with initially, the rescue centre that took him in, the social media that allows cross country community to talk, and the funds that raised him leaving Ukraine and coming to France. Twilight’s small part to home him with us, our vets to give him necessary surgery, the fundraisers that then provide for a higher level of care, and now with the extra specialist knowledge and success he walks with a prosthetic leg. It is marvellous and a mighty team. He is a lucky boy, the result of the best of human kind. His light will shine as an example what we can all achieve together.
This year we have lost 15 puds over the rainbow bridge, all deeply missed, but we celebrate the extra time and all comforts they could have here. As I write we have 24 wonderful puddings in the house. We are blessed to have 21 puddings in outreach. This is the most we have ever had, but Outreach is such an important part of our work. Funding 45 puds is a challenge, but it is thanks to you that we can do this.
You, our faithful followers and supporters. Be it your loyal comments or generous support in kind or funds.
Mike and I thank you all, our volunteers, fellow rescuers, supporters, you all, our friends. But, the last thanks go to the Puddings themselves, for trusting us, teaching us, sharing there souls with us. How blessed are we.
May 2024 bring you good health, peace and happiness, and maybe a few more Puddings xxx We have two exciting newbies joining us soon. We feel rejuvenated to move forward with pudding life and do the best we can, and we so hope you will stay with us xxx