A Good Girl
The Bad Black Dog died the day before we went on holiday. The photo was taken the day before she died. She'd been on the decline for months - walks became harder and harder as her back legs gave in, as they tend to in labradors. But she still had a zest for life and a good appetite.
In her prime she had been a great dog - gentle with small kids, affectionate but not slobbery. We got her from a farm Up North (of Inverness) aged one year and for a time she was very scared of men. Her timidity went (she would constantly nudge your hand with her wet nose if walking to heel for the first few months) but it took her a year to utter her first "woof". Like most labradors she was a food thief (and remained so until very near the end). Despite her name (largely a result of chewing and thus wrecking my wife's shoes whenever left alone in her early years) she was really a Very Good Dog.
The house feels very empty without her and it's strange not having her to take out morning and night. We've lost a member of the family.
I may be wrong but I suspect the Church has little or nothing to say about the fate of animals after death. I can't imagine Heaven without the Bad Black Dog at my side to have some share in the Beatific Vision, which is my joyful hope.
Night, night. Good girl.