Patch adopted us in July 2008 just after we’d lost our 13yr old black lab and right when we needed him most: he was 10 years old. We both thought when we first met him that he had at least another 3 good years in him and we wanted to make them the best ones of his life.
When he was 11 we came home one Saturday
afternoon to find him in severe distress and we rushed him to the vets; an x-ray showed he was bleeding internally and he was close to death. We were concerned about putting him through surgery at his age, but wanted to give him a chance so we had an agonising hour and a half wait whilst he went through emergency surgery to remove his spleen: Patch had had benign tumours which had bled into his spleen eventually causing it to rupture. For his age his recovery was remarkable and he was soon back on his feet. At the age of 13 Patch learned to live with another dog, not bad considering he had never been very good with other dogs, but we had given a home to an unwanted rambunctious 11 month old chocolate lab who had no manners. Patch was my right hand man when it came to training Hershey and he quite often helped me by putting him in his place and showing him who was boss. At 14 he welcomed another unwanted dog into his world, Ozzie a 5 yr old golden retriever with a deformed paw and they took to each other as soon as they met. Patch was always the leader of our pack and he always came first, and in return he gave us so much unconditional love, attention and friendship. We sadly had to make the decision to say goodbye to Patch on Saturday 26th October 2013, we must have been doing something right as Patch gave us 5 1/2 wonderful love filled years before old age got the better of him and quite selfishly we wish we had known him longer. He was a valuable member of our family who will be dearly missed and although losing him hurts like crazy, we wouldn’t change anything. “To rescue one dog will not change the world, but for that one dog the world is forever changed” – we hope it was that way for Patch; it certainly was for us and we always wonder who really rescued who?