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OPINION: Our affectionate pets reflect God’s love

PUBLISHED: 08:00 20 September 2017

Archant

Her cousins have pets so it was no surprise when my nine-year-old granddaughter said that she really really longed for a puppy to call her own and so, with the help of the lovely people at Catwalk pet shop in Barkingside, we chose a delightful Cavachon puppy (cross between a Cavalier King Charles spaniel and a Bichon) who has been christened Tilly, short for Ottoline, one of my granddaughter’s favourite book characters.

Arabella and I are to share Tilly’s care, aided and abetted by Zippy, my 14 year old Westie, who is fairly happy to have a new friend!

Well, in the books, by Children’s Laureate Chris Riddell, Ottoline is a very clever young lady who solves mysteries; her four-footed namesake has solved the mystery of how to wheedle treats out of us and how to get me out of bed even earlier in the morning. Tilly has also learnt, in just five weeks, about tasty morsels at mealtimes and has a special penchant for licking out the remains left in yoghourt pots, retrieving them from the bin if she feels that she’s somehow missed out! Tilly has been to the park with Zippy to meet our dog walking friends and is entranced with everything that she sees and smells on the way.

I hope Tilly will become a real companion for Arabella – already, lessons about both ends of puppy care have been learnt - the truth that relationships usually have challenges as well as benefits cannot be assimilated too soon! But the excited welcome and faithful affection offered by our pets is surely one of life’s great joys and, for me, a reflection of God’s love. More from Ann

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