Parting is such sweet sorrow; my final Dog Blog

Parting is such sweet sorrow; my final Dog Blog

Hi Friends and goodbye

Arrow lying on her back
I’m kicking back!

By the time you read this I’ll be living in Brisbane. The boss is taking me up there so this is my last chance to get on his computer and write.

He doesn’t think I know. It’s amazing how humans under-rate our sense about these things. If I hadn’t understood him talking to other people about it, I would have picked it up from the extra cuddles and pats he has been giving me for the past few months since the decision was made. I can read him like a book.

I’m sad about going

I really enjoy working as a guide dog. I love working with the boss. I get to be a superior dog, going to lots of places where other dogs are just not allowed to go. I get to travel to new places all around Australia. And most importantly I get to meet all of you, and give you a quick sniff (and even the occasional lick when the boss is not paying attention).

Arrow's taxi to the airport
Only the best taxi to the airport

But I am finding it tougher these days. I’m 10.5 years old now, that’s 75 in human years. The arthritis is painful when I’m in cold places, and my wheat allergy means that my ears are sore much of the time. I think I should take it a little bit easier.

Where I’m going will be great. It’s Brisbane so it’s warm. I will be with people who I have visited for Christmas for the last five or six years. There are two other dogs there who I really like. And humans who visit call it dog heaven — it’s a totally dog-friendly house, we get to go for walks every day, and it’s close to parks and the beach.

I visited there with Maureen and the boss last year, and really enjoyed the weekend. I’m going to be pretty happy there, and I’m sure that the boss will come to visit me regularly.

I’ve met the dog whose taking over my job

I tried to pass on some of the things I have learned. But she’s a typical teenager, and it seemed to me that much of it went over her puppy head. We’ll see how much she took in during the years to come, I guess.

She’s a golden Labrador, and she has been training with the boss for about four weeks. It’s hard work for both of them at present, but in time I think she’ll be almost as good a guide dog as I have been.

I don’t think her writing skills will match mine, but you wouldn’t be surprised by that. I did explain to her how she could access the boss’s computer at night when he wasn’t paying attention, but she just looked at me dismissively. She told me that computers were very “old school” and all the hip pooches are using “smart” devices. She tells me not to bother myself about techno stuff; she’s cool with all of that. We’ll see.

Think of me kicking back in Brissie

Arrow the guide dog get some well-earned rest on a bed wrapped in Rachel's baby blanket
Here I am in Brisbane. My bed is made with Rachel’s old baby blanket

I’m sorry I won’t see you at the book launches. But just remember that he didn’t write it all — you have my permission to quietly remind him of that if he gets above himself.

So, to quote the great dog of the universe: “May the sun shine warmly where you lie, may the breeze bring you pleasant smells, and may you catch all those rabbits that you chase in your dreams.”

Arrow, the retiring guide dog

P.S. You are seeing some of my pictures from Facebook. I will try and update my old mate Jordie’s FB page (she was MY predecessor, may she rest in peace), so you can see what I’m up to.

Image credit: Top and centre, Tracey Markos. Bottom: Julie Tait. Featured image: Kim Welinski.


13 thoughts on “Parting is such sweet sorrow; my final Dog Blog

  1. Goodbye Arrow. I’ve enjoyed your blog so much and along the way learned a few more things about the boss. He has a great sense of humour and I wish him many happy years with the new girl. (Even if she’s a blonde chick!)

  2. Dear Arrow,all the best in your new home.I’m sure the boss will really miss you but he will be happy knowing that you are well cared for by people you know and like.

    Enjoy your retirement

    Robynne and Bundy

  3. Enjoy your retirement Arrow! I know you have done a wonderful job, and am sure you will get a new lease of life in what sounds a great retirement place. Enjoy ” kicking back” you have certainly earned it! The boss will work it out with his new girl, though it will take a good deal of work!

  4. I’ve occasionally seen you at Lindfield station, and thought “what an amazing dog”. I hope you enjoy your retirement.

  5. Read this with both happiness and sadness, pets are family and I cannot imagine how much more they become when actually working for the “boss”, may you have a long, fun (yes mature age doesn’t mean doing nothing but having lots of fun when the mood is on) and healthy retirement, warm those old bones to the QLD sun, dear Arrow. Am sure the boss will cope with the young one, she’ll have so many opportunities to learn and broaden her horizon with the life the ‘boss’ leads as an exceptional human. Good luck
    Pet lover Roz

  6. Congratulations Arrow what a star you are. Enjoy every second of that QLD Sunshine -you deserve it. Much love.

  7. Arrow, have a happy retirement with friends. You’ve been a great healer and teacher – may your successor be half as good as you! Zevia

  8. Bless you Arrow! Know that you are loved and valued and precious companions like you are rare! Your patience and devotion makes you virtuous and your lifelong dedication has, without a doubt, brought “the boss” much help, health & happiness daily. He is a rare person, too, so you were well matched, I believe. Your beautiful face can never be forgotten and your look of love is 2nd to none! You are adorable and don’t look your age. Like the boss, you deserve the best and the shores of Queensland will certainly make life a pleasant atmosphere for you. Ocean vistas and alabaster sands and swaying palm trees. Mmm, Arrow, sounds just the place for you in Brisbane where every day will feel like a holiday! Enjoy the warm weather forever! May God’s peace be with you always! Sunshine and smiles, Arrow! Much love for your loyalty, Roslyn

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