Very occasionally in this life we lead, a twist of fate throws people and pets together in the most unlikely of ways. Enter the wonderful story of Winston, the Staffordshire Bull Terrier.
We have been rescue-dog owners for many years and we have let the fact that we have dogs in our lives dictate where we spend our time and holidays. When we lost our beloved Ebony, another SBT, we saw it as an opportunity to sample the things in life that you can do without the restraints of being a dog owner; like B&B weekends, hotel trips, fly and flop in the sun etc….
What we hadn’t bargained for, was just how empty the house would be without a dog around. Very soon we found ourselves having a little peek around to see if there was a suitable dog that needed a little TLC in any of the local rescue centres; there were a few likely candidates, such as Molly and Mabel who didn’t quite fit the bill for us (but have since found their furever homes, hooray!). Then completely out of the blue we got an email from Vicky Bastow, who tirelessly trawls the pounds to get dogs into rescue homes, saying that she had seen a very friendly and happy Male SBT in a home down in Rotherham and if we would like, she could arrange a visit. First, she would visit us to ensure we had a suitable residence for the dog and then for us to visit the home to see if he was what we wanted.
We couldn’t wait! We passed the home visit with flying colours (Ebony had taught us lots about Staffy’s needs) and then on a bright spring morning in April 2014 we set off to Rotherham with great anticipation. We stopped off first to get a dog cage for the car in case he wasn’t a good traveller, our appointment to meet him was 12 noon. As we parked the car in the rescue home carpark, we were very excited about meeting him as he looked great in his yellow vest in the photo’s we had seen of him. We set off up the path to the office, walking behind another couple who obviously had thoughts of giving a dog a new home too. Just before we got to the door the couple in front of us were approached by a member of the staff who said “are you here for Winston?” to which they replied “yes, we are”. We were mortified that we had got things wrong in our phone calls, and that we would end up not having Winston after all! We promptly spoke out with “excuse me there must be some mistake, as we are here to pick him up having had the home visit already”. It turns out the other couple had seen him online and came with the hope of getting him, not realising he was already rehomed. What a relief all round.
This is when we sorted out the paperwork and got our first sight of Winston, it was magic from the moment we saw him, he was waggy, happy and everything we had hoped he would be bearing in mind we had only seen him in photos. I dread to think what might have happened if we had been late or unable to make the 12-noon meeting, we may never have been united with this incredible wonder do that we love so much.
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