Poppy had no name before she arrived here and was Meisha's sister and Tina's offspring. Poppy had never raced and as the sequence of events unfolded we discovered much about Poppy that we knew nothing about before she arrived. in view of what happened we now realise Poppy had never left the kennels, had little human contact other than her previous owner, had never been in a vehicle and knew nothing of the big outside world. What happened to Poppy traumatised the volunteers who knew her and we vowed we would learn from her death so as not to let it happen to another.
Sadly, because Stuart was away working at the time of Poppy's arrival we didn't get any photos of her, which is upsetting to me to this day. Since her death Shepherd has arrived and when he came here he reminded me so much of Poppy with the exception that Poppy had a slightly larger white blaze on her chest. So by looking at Shepherd we see a little reminder of Poppy.
1st February 2012
2nd February 2012
I went to bed last night with Poppy on the dog bed by my side of the bed. To stop her wandering I pushed the bedding box at the end of the bed across the gap, making in effect a little kennel for her. This enclosed space with me asleep on my bed next to her settled her and once I worked out how to do this she slept all night.
In the morning she went to the vets where she had a check up and her 1st inoculation because she arrived here with no paperwork. She was as good as gold in the vets, very quiet and didn't make a sound. She's a lovely little angel and her being shy and nervous makes you want to cuddle her all the more.
3rd February 2012
4th February 2012
We had only been in bed about half an hour when Wendy phoned in distress. Poppy had been let in their yard with the others to do their last toilet of the night when something happened and she disappeared. They think she either jumped their wall or the gate or got underneath it, but she was gone. Wendy's husband had gone looking for her, but with no luck. I sprang out of bed, got dressed and took the car along to Wendy's house to start searching for her. With having the bed and breakfast and the other dogs, we thought it best Stuart stay at home to keep watch on things.
I was out most of the night driving around searching for Poppy, but with no luck and I came back exhausted. I was distraught at not finding her, the weather was turning cold and there was snow on the ground. I only managed two hours sleep before it was time to get up and start preparing everything for the guests breakfast. Once the last breakfast had been cooked Stuart went out looking for her while I stayed in with the other dogs and continued my work.
Stuart, Wendy and her husband James searched everywhere, left leaflets around and asked everyone they saw if they'd seen her. It was around 11.00 am when he was told there was what looked like a dead dog in the grass by the side of the A590 at the Ayside junction. It was Poppy - she had been hit by a vehicle. I drove past that place so many times during the night and never saw her, but I was always driving off the A590 at that point whereas you could only see her if you were going on to the A590. Stuart thinks she was killed outright as there was no blood on her anywhere.
It was a sad moment, but I had to take a look at her in the back of our car before Stuart took her to the
vets to be cremated. I had to see her, touch her and say how sorry I was that this should happen to her. We were suppose to find her a loving home where she could be happy and loved for the rest of her life, not for this to happen to her. When we get her ashes home we will lay her next to the others in our special corner of the garden, which is just for them.
I cannot tell you how I feel, it is just too awful. I let her down, and this is something I will struggle to come to terms with.
I cannot let Poppy's death be in vain. We have ordered a set of hi-visability martingale collars with a luminous strip round them, and all the foster dogs will be wearing them from now on. Had Poppy been wearing one as opposed to the black leather greyhound collar then the vehicle that hit her may just have seen her, and been able to avoid the accident. I'm not saying it would, but if these collars can help save others because they stand a better chance of being seen in the dark then Poppy's death will not have been in vain.
It has taken me all this time to update Poppy's page because of what happened to her, and the adverse affect it had on me. I thought then, and I still do, that I let Poppy down, and this is something I will live with for the rest of my life. However, all the foster dogs who have arrived since that fateful night in February 2012 now wear the luminous martingale collars, and the only outdoor coats they wear when out walking are the hi-visability ones. It's the least I can do to ensure Poppy's death was not in vain.
Rest in Peace my beautiful Poppy,
You may be gone but you will never be forgotten.
Just wish we could have known and loved you longer
before God decided he couldn't be without you.