My first ever Golden Retriever

Honey was my first ever Golden retriever. She was everything I’d ever dreamed of in a Goldie, and so much more. She came from a breeder in Falmouth, and we adored each other from the moment we met. She quickly became my shadow at home – never wanting to be away from me for even a moment. When she was about a year old I suspected she had a problem with her throat. My vets did every test they could on her but couldn’t find what the problem was. I had her throat x-rayed to see if it would reveal anything, and decided that while she was under the anaesthetic I should have her hips looked at, as she had a very strange ‘bunny hop’ when she was running. 

The x-ray revealed nothing in her throat, but showed the worst hip dysplasia the vets had ever seen. I was told she would need 2 hip replacements when she reached the age of 6/7 and this would need to be done in Bristol. I was pleased that her throat seemed ok, but very upset about her hips. At the time of buying Honey I had no idea about health screening etc, but after making some enquiries about this, we did some investigations into her parents’ hip scores, and found that the Sire’s score was a total of 39 (the breed average being a total of 19) and the mother hadn’t ever been scored. I was mortified. As time went on Honey’s health seemed to be deteriorating, and she was becoming snappy when approached by anyone other than me. I had yet more tests done including a biopsy of her throat. By this time she was a very poorly dog, refusing to eat and sitting well away from me which was extremely unusual for her. She seemed to be staring at me as if to say “please help me Mum, please do something”. I didn’t know what more I could do as the vets and I were all at a loss as to what was going on with her. At two years and five months, I received the worst news possible in the form of her biopsy report – the news was dire – she had lymphoma and the lab report stated that it was so far advanced that chemotherapy would be fruitless. My heart fell out of my chest, and my world fell apart that day. I went up to my vets where Honey was being looked at by Patrick, and three quarters of an hour after getting the diagnosis over the phone, my beloved girl was put to sleep. My dearest friend in the world was gone – it felt as if my life had come to an end. I simply couldn’t see a way forward without my wonderful Honey……..There isn’t a day that goes by when I don’t think of her or miss her. All these years on it still hurts so much to be without her – to think of how much time we could have shared by now ….. Honey is the reason I do what I do – and why I do it the way I do. I never want anyone to experience the pain I did with her ill health, and subsequently her loss, because of carelessness or neglect of responsibilities on my part, and because of that – and of course because I adore my dogs – they deserve the best start in life, and the very best care. I do everything in my power to produce the healthiest, happiest puppies I can, who will give their owners a lifetime of pleasure and love. Of course, nothing in life is guaranteed, but as a breeder, I endeavour to do everything humanly possible to get things right for my dogs, and for the people who come to me for a puppy, putting their trust in me – as I did with Honey’s breeder……….