This is the Heart Dog story of Westie..the Westie! He is loved by Karine & Gay Hazan of Montreal. Westie was an adorable little critter filled with love and cuddles for his favourite people. He sadly passed away last year but not a day goes by he is not missed by those who love him. Thank you Karine & Gay for sharing your Heart Dog Tribute story!
When we got married I promised my husband that the day we had a backyard we could get a dog. Fast forward 3 years - we had just purchased and moved into our first home, a duplex, with a backyard. My husband, Gay, was quick to remind me of the promise I made. I retiterated the promise with one condition - the dog had to be a West Highland Terrier. Knowing that my husband wanted to adopt from the SPCA I was convinced we would not find a Westie anytime in the near future. Behold my surprise when one-month later my husband calls to let me know the SPCA does indeed have a Westie. That night, we went to see him and took him for walk. We were instantly smitten but decided to leave him at the SPCA to discuss it and think about it over the weekend. Deliberation didn't quite go as planned - my husband called me the very next day and told me he was on his way home with our new dog Westie :)
From that moment on our lives were changed forever. Westie became part of the family. Our parents were expecting Westie every Shabbat dinner. He enriched our lives in so many ways and during certain busy periods, he was the glue that kept us close. He made sure we were ready to be parents and once that moment came, it seemed as if he was ready to say goodbye. A month after my son was born we found out that Westie had an inoperable tumor at the base of his neck. He left 4 months after my son was born. The hardest part of saying goodbye to Westie was not being able to make him understand that we had to let him go for his own good. We buried him in a farm in Saint-Lazarre and we make a point of going to see him every year on the day we said goodbye, August 8th.
We loved and will always love Westie the Westie, our Heart Dog.
Westie loved food. It didn’t really matter what it was, he would jump up and try to snatch it out of our hands. We soon discovered that although he loved everything, he had a special place in his heart for cheese and sweet potatoes. Westie would sit at our feet, ears down, licking his chops waiting for us to share with him. He would let out a little yelp every so often to remind us that he was there waiting for his treat.
Westie also had a love for balls, but one ball in particular was his favourite - the “devil ball”. The ball was green and had two little vampire like ears sticking out and it squeaked. I work from home so when he would start playing with the ball all I would hear is squeaking for hours, hence the name “devil ball”.
Our favourite activity with Westie was going for walks. If my husband and I were home he wouldn’t leave the house with only one of us, it had to be the three of us. As it turns out, that stubbornness to be walked by both my husband and I was what made us connect as a family and talk about day, problems, future plans, etc. Westie was the one who made sure we had that special family moment, every day.
There are a few special moments that stick out. For starters, when coming back from our nightly walks, we would let Westie off his leash when we got to our street. As soon as we did this, he would start walking towards the house but always looked back to make sure we were right behind him.
Another special moment happened every day at around 5:30 pm when I would hear Westie jump off the couch, run to the front door, and wait for my husband to return from work. He would sit up and stare at the door for 15 minutes and then curl up against the front door until my husband made it home.
Simply cuddling on the weekend in the basement while watching a movie together was always special as well. We loved listening to his light breathing knowing it meant he felt comfortable and safe.
Lastly, Westie always loved to lie down on my stomach when we watched movies or took naps, but as soon as I was pregnant (even before I was showing), he started putting his head only on my stomach and not all of his body as he had done for 6 years. This perhaps was the most special of all moments because it showed just how intuitive and protective he was of me and my son.
Skills & Tricks
1) Westie knew how to moon walk. Whenever he wanted something he would back up a few feet sliding with his hind legs while moving his behind, that meant give it to me or else..lol.
2) Shabbat dinner, Friday night dinner, starts off with a prayer on the wine and a prayer for the bread. As soon as Westie would hear the start of the prayer he would run up to the person reciting the prayer, sit and wait patiently for the prayer to finish. As soon as it did, he would jump up for his piece of bread.
3) Westie was also very talented at doing a few tricks in a row, especially when it meant an extra special treat was the prize. Once we captured it on a video and created a home movie out of it (click 'play' below to check out Westie's amazing talents!)
Westie loved meeting other friendly dogs but one dog in particular he was really excited about, his girlfriend Zoey. Every time he would spot Zoey (a Golden Retriever), he would pull us towards her and start panting until he got close to her.
Unique quirks or other interesting tidbits
Westie would bump up and down his littl' butt and make these funny noises which always made us smile and laugh.
Would you like to share your Heart Dog Tribute story? It's a simple as filling out this form. It's an opportunity to reminisce and celebrate your Heart Dog. Whether they have passed or still with you, taking the opportunity to showcase all that you love of them will strengthen your bond and help create published memories to last a lifetime.
How can this blog help you?
This website and blog originated from the experience of learning to let go of my beloved Heart Dog, Maverick. By sharing my story and offering the opportunity for you to share yours, I hope we can all truly celebrate their lives. pay tribute, and heal from the loss of our one true canine companion. I hope this website will also raise awareness of the meaning of a Heart Dog because it is a concept that is not largely understood.