Farewell, Draco (January 2006 - 12 November 2018.)
Our eldest doggo (beloved of Shona Yean,) passed away this afternoon. It was not unexpected. He lost the ability to walk a few months after his brother, Choji, passed away in December, 2017. Draco was born with severe hip dysplasia and somehow, forced himself to walk, to keep up with Choji, until he was twelve years old. He showed incredible endurance for a dog, being able to walk for so long, when less handicapped Golden Retrievers would have given up.
Draco and Choji, were both born in Malaysia. They followed us to two countries in succession - Havana, Cuba and Zagreb, Croatia. Life was tough in Cuba for Choji, the weather was hot and humid and good dog food was scarce. But Draco had a fairly productive life as a guard dog at the Havana Residence in Siboney. I think he enjoyed his role there. However, they both enjoyed Zagreb and getting to experience snow for the first time in their lives! There was an apple tree in the backyard, and Draco loved munching apples in the autumn.
We have been caring for Draco for the past nine months. But he was diagnosed with cancer, six months ago and had a stroke last Wednesday. The end was inevitable. Still, I felt 'empty' entering our home without being greeted by a dog.
Nevertheless, he was a gorgeous dog. When a puppy, he had the usual golden colour. This colour deepened and in his youth, Draco had flaming red-gold fur. The colour mellowed to a warm gold as he matured but he never faded into grey. He was the most stubborn, intelligent, irrepressible and high-spirited dog, we've ever known.
Vale old friend. You are no longer in pain. Seek your brother, Choji, on the other side of the rainbow bridge. May you two have great adventures together chasing squirrels and guinea pigs!