Gracie, my feisty madam,

Gracie came to me in January 2004, I was left with 2 boys and missed having a girl. As soon as she got out of the car she wanted to kill my dogs and any other dog she saw. If anyone touched her she would bite, no warning, just the teeth into a hand or whatever was handy. My crate had been borrowed so Gracie and I went to Pets at Home to buy a new one. It took several months of hard work before Gracie could be out with my other 2 dogs.

The work continued with her fear of other dogs, it took about 10 months to be able to pass other dogs without her reacting but it was well worth the hard work. She became very good with all dogs no matter what their size was, I was so proud of her.

Her introduction to the vets didn’t go well either, she wanted to eat his hand, when I told him the age the rescue said she was, 7/8, he nearly fell on the floor laughing, said she was much older than that. Gracie came with waterworks problems which was solved with Propolin.

3 months after Gracie arrived, I was walking on a country lane when a horse and cart came belting along, trying to get 3 dogs into the side when you have a little fireball is very difficult, needless to say the fireball was Gracie.

How she got free I don’t know but next she was under the cart with the wheel going over her chest. I couldn’t get her to the vets quick enough even though there was no signs of damage and she was her normal feisty self. The vets asked if she could stay the night incase there was some internal damage, thank goodness she did, she nearly died in the night, if she had been at home she would have.

Gracie became a very loving little girl who loved nothing better than to sit on my knee, she developed arthritis in all 4 legs and feet, both shoulders and her spine, with the help of Metacam it didn’t stop her. She then developed problems with both her crutial ligaments but at the vet’s advice we didn’t operate. He thought that if she came through the anaesthetic she wouldn’t cope with the amount of rest needed so just to moniter her. It still wasn’t enough, she developed a compressed disc in her spine.

In November 2007 I didn’t think that Gracie would get to Christmas, her walking was terrible and she had no muscle on her back legs, she could hardly walk when the vet suggested hydrotherapy. Slowly the muscles on her legs started to develop and she was moving a lot better, still couldn’t go for long walks but that didn’t matter, she was happy and full of life, to much energy at times. Hydro saved her life and gave her nearly another 2 years of life.

After several mini strokes during the summer, she had a much bigger one, the vet suggested I try Vivitonin, it worked, she had a wonderful week, went everywhere with me including the Bank sitting in a bag and round the market, she still had the twinkle in her eyes. Sunday morning Gracie had another stroke, this time there was no recovery and the light had gone from her eyes.

Run free at the Rainbow Bridge Gracie, you are very much missed, there will never be another like you and you have taught me so much about aggression, fear and how to read dogs.

Gracie was pts on Sunday, 21st September, 2009 at the grand age of 17.5 years young.

I saw this picture and was hooked, I had to have her.

One of my favourite pictures, playing with Merlin 3 months after she came.

Her normal position, telling me off for something

Bedtime in the caravan

Hydro, very rare to see her working like this, she would prefer to play.

With sister Ellie and brother Joe doing what old dogs do.

Taken the Tuesday after her stroke, still the twinkle in her eyes but with head tilted. This is the last photo I took of my fiesty little madam.

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