Our ‘Tilly Girl’

In preparation for our newest family addition due to arrive any day now I’ve really slowed down on the work front and therefore haven’t posted for some time.

But this week I felt the need to share a very heartfelt story and some pictures I’ve taken over the years.

Unfortunately last Saturday night my husband Craig and I were called to the vet hospital see off our pet dog Tilly, as she had to be put down due to diaphragm issues we knew nothing about. Before you stop reading – I know, I know; just a dog – get a new one and get over it (I remember being one of those people!) I just want to tell you a little about this dog.

We spontaneously bought Tilly home 7.5 years ago and admittably it was a very ‘off-the-cuff’ decision based on, er, well, shamefully the whole cuteness factor. Sure we were dog people but we really didn’t go to much effort researching breeds and what-not. Tilly was simply a darn cute little Beagle-cross so we just had to have her.

Tilly 22 Design & Photo1

Tilly 22 Design & Photo2She wailed for the first few nights and Craig lamented that I seemed to sleep through the ordeal whilst he pacified her. We took her everywhere with us and before long the initial lust developed into a deep love. Tilly did something amazing for us; She turned Craig and I into a ‘family’.

Just like any excited new parent, we wanted the best for Tilly. So we showered her with affection and attention. And obviously we took her to Puppy School then onto Obedience Training. This is where things got a little shady. Tilly wasn’t really keen on obedience. Actually…she was down right naughty. She took to destroying everything in our yard…just as any puppy would, right? It became more problematic when we’d find destroyed objects in our yard that were never ours to begin with. She dug under our yard and destroyed the neighbours yards. This wasn’t popular with the neighbours. She was VERY hyper and I pleaded with Craig to come and watch us at obedience school just so he could witness how bad she was. Finally he came and agreed she was a disaster and very distracting to all the other dogs…I was embarrassed by this (the looks from the other dog-owners was a bit much for me!) and pulled out of the school.

We just accepted that we had ourselves a little nut-case whom was lead by her nose. She was cute enough to warrant her imperfections!

Tilly 22 Design & Photo3

Tilly 22 Design & Photo4

Tilly 22 Design & Photo4

It’s hard having a crazy, nutty little dog but one thing for certain was she gave us endless love. In fact, anyone she met she seemed to love. She has shared some tough times with us (as we all have hardships from time-to-time) and she was always our rock. Always fun. Always eager to please.

Tilly 22 Design & Photo5

When our first baby arrived things obviously changed for Tilly. Though curious of our glorious little human girl, Isla, Tilly was always gentle. For the 2.5 years that Isla has been lucky enough to have Tilly in her life, it was evident that a beautiful friendship had ignited. Amongst Isla’s first words was ‘Tilly’…the reason for her first giggles were because of Tilly. Isla wouldn’t leave the back door without prowling Tilly and cuddling her.

Tilly 22 Design & Photo7

Explaining to Isla that Tilly has died has been especially tough… she knows no life without her. And whilst initially Isla didn’t understand the word ‘died’, she’s beginning to comprehend as there’s no need to put food in Tilly’s bowl, no lead to fetch whilst we walk to the park, no four-legged sibling to hug in the yard. Watching Isla shed a tear over this realisation has been so difficult.

Tilly 22 Design & Photo7_1

Tilly 22 Design & Photo6

I’m sad for Craig’s and my loss. I’m so sad for Isla’s loss. And especially sad for what could have been in the years to come not just for Isla but also for the next baby we’re expecting any day.

But I am eternally grateful to Tilly. For showing us endless love. For teaching us that all you need is each other. For making Craig and I parents. For shaping Isla into the little person she is today. And with her passing; teaching us valuable lessons we’ll hold onto forever.

So if you’re still reading, please just do me one favour for Tilly. If you have a pet addition in your family; go give them a hug. They’ll be eternally grateful and so will you x

Tilly 22 Design & Photo8

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