As Le Petit Hotel’s Scottish Terrier , it’s a while since I’ve been in touch with the wider world…& much has happened in both Sumner and Christchurch . I’ve grown up fast and the earthquakes are supposedly behind us, the experts say, but I am still anxious when I hear strange noises. I’m now 9 years old, and my black overcoat is showing some grey hair now!
I’m still performing my hotel guest welcoming routine…racing to reach the front door before Bruce, after the door intercom phone rings, so I can see the new guests first. I really live for my meet & greet job.
A French philosopher whose name I can’t recall, once wrote that to understand fully one’s soul, you need to first love & understand a dog. I often ponder this view, as Martine & I move onwards with Kara, our new Scottish Terrier. Here at Le Petit Hotel, we look at our Juscot Scottie, her physical disability, and her ability to surmount the difficulties it presents her; and then ponder her unmistakable happiness at the thoughts which obviously flood her mind, when she anticipates being taken for a simple walk by either of us. It’s a constant reminder that the simplest things in life can & should be enjoyed.
And so it is with an American NY Times contributing writer Dana Jennings. Dana’s New York Times Health blog is an ongoing story of one man’s brave journey with cancer. It’s an exemplary human story of adaptation, courage, gratitude, resilience, and the ability of the human spirit to rise above adversity…and well well worth a read. Lessons from a dog’s life ( See Dana’s posts about his 13 year old dog Bijou)
Hi folks I’m Kara – Le Petit Hotel’s new black staff member. I arrived here ex Juscot Kennels, Hamilton, in early January, after being flown via Air NZ in the dog standard crate and picked up by Bruce & Scott at Christchurch Airport. I’m adapting real fast to the busy hotel life here, and when new guests arrive at the door, I usually manage to be first to greet them, check out their shoe laces, luggage straps, and anything else that I can try out my new pearly white toofies on. If I think they are going to growl at me, I just roll over on my back and play helpless. I know Maggie left big shoes for me to fill but I’m going to do my very best. Unfortunately tho’ I’ve given Bruce & Martine a fair bit of worry already, because I inherited a strange uncommon( in Scotties) genetic problem from my parents. Essentially what happens is that my two back legs turn inwards, especially my right one, when I walk, and the effect is to make me hop when I try to run. I have to say that lots of white coated people have inspected my hind legs, they have taken lots of photos as well, and now I have just got to wait until I’m a bit older before we can have another assessment. However I know I’m in a good place here, I’ve got 24 hr TLC and I can still get from A to B very fast.
I’ve grown a lot since this day one photo was taken so keep an eye out for more pictures.
Le Petit Hotel’s well known & truly loved Scottish Terrier finally succumbed to liver cancer in the early hours of Monday 28th September 2009.
Although we had been expecting it, when the final hours came, it was truly heart wrenching stuff. As the old saying goes, she died with her boots on. I let her outside at about 2am for a little slow walk. She came back into the hotel, sat down by her water bowl for about an hour, with me beside her. About 4am I picked her up gently and made her comfortable on a rug on the floor, alerted Martine that the end was very near..and with us both beside her, after a few gasps, she gave up the fight……[ Insert: volumes of huge tears]….in her own way, her final parting gift to us…was for us not to have to call the vet.
Maggie was “huge” in spirit, determination, & courage; sensitive to all those who had the privilege of meeting her, and above all an unlimited giver to those humans she had bonded so well with. Maggie was a dignified, exceptional character, no bite dog, who took time out to smell the flowers, taste the grass, look at birds with interest, and who could always see a cat at 1000 paces. Her joy at going for walks knew no bounds until age limited her outings.
Maggie’s departure from this world has left a huge gap at Le Petit Hotel, Sumner, and irreplaceable memories with Bruce, Martine, Scott, & John. Bless her soul, Maggie was a dog apart, she lived happily with us, fought a good fight, and is at peace now.
Maggie Whitfield; a Scottish Terrier, Born 13 December 1995, Died 28 September 2009 at Le Petit Hotel, Sumner, NZ. Pedigree of Greenock Mallaig, Sire: MacPrain Mintmaster & Dam: Shortbread Briar Rose. Black with some Brindle, her breeder was Adele Willis, 97 Soleares Avenue, Christchurch, New Zealand. She will be remembered.