Tessa was, undoubtedly, the first love of my life.
One day my mum mentioned to me that there was a litter of English Springer Spaniel pups available and would I just like to go and see them? I made it quite clear that there was no such thing as just going to look - if we went to look, I was most certainly bringing one home. She said ok.
Tessa was one of a litter of twelve puppies. We were taken in to the room where all twelve were still with their mum. Tessa wandered over to see us, she wasn't the first to come to us but there was no doubt about it - she was the one.It was love at first sight!
Only a couple of months after bringing her home we met someone who owned her half-sister and they spent many happy hours walking and playing together along with a lovely old Welsh Springer Spaniel who shared the home of her half-sister.
Tessa was a typical gun dog and was forever carrying something around in her mouth. The picture here shows her telling us 'it's dinner time.'
She'd also fetch her lead when she thought it was time for a walk, whch was quite often!
If she wasn't hungry or ready for a walk then she'd be seen carrying her teddy bear around or sleeping with her head resting on teddy. She couldn't possibly go to bed a night without either her teddy or her towel.
Whenever any of the family returned home she'd greet us with - you gussed it - her teddy. If teddy couldn't be found then the nearest thing she could lay her paws on - a duster, her towel, her ball, a sock... in fact anything she could carry.
Almost everyone who met Tessa fell for her charms, although she really wasn't very fond of men - a trait which she seemed to pick up from her father (who, I'm sorry to say, had to retire from being 'shown' as he really didn't like the male judges) however, she loved my dad from day one - as you can see from the picture at the left.
Tessa was taken very ill when she was aged 8. She had a serious infection, lost part of her liver and her womb, and almost died, however, thanks to our vet and a very determined and stuborn dog who refused to give up, she pulled through and managed to enjoy several more years with us. She died, peacefully at home, aged eleven-and-a-half, after another serious illness.
She'll always be remembered as the most loving dog and left a huge gap in our lives.
Tessa was a pre-digital camera dog so I shall endeavour to add more pictures as they are (eventually!) transfered to my computer.