A Dog Is For Life Not Just For Christmas
Possibly purchased as a gift, Bella, a Lurcher Staffordshire Bull Terrier Cross was abandoned at Grove Lodge Vets on the 21st December 2016 after a relationship breakdown. Due to the change of circumstances, the owner passed the four-month-old to the local dog warden before Bella arrived at Dogs Trust Shoreham.
When Mrs Mandy Cross from Walberton, West Sussex, lost her family Doberman to lymphatic cancer she decided that she wouldn’t get any larger dogs. She tried to live without a dog however, after looking after her daughter’s dog temporarily, she felt sad without the company of a four-legged friend in the house.
Mandy and her son, Ben, visited Dogs Trust Shoreham over the Christmas period. They didn’t spot her initially when they walked through the gallery, until the receptionist said, “Have you seen Bella?” Mandy said: “It’s funny, we said we didn’t want a female initially and we wanted a small dog. She’s neither of those but she’s become the love of our life.”
When Bella, who has been renamed Mella, arrived at her new home on the 2nd January 2017 she took a little while to adjust. She was only four-months-old, so there were some behavioural issues to iron out, and she was timid initially. But Mandy said “She’s become such a great family pet and she’s with us all the time. She is just wonderful and I’m chuffed to bits with her.”
After having Dobermans for 25 years, Mella is Mandy’s first Lurcher Cross. Mandy continued: “She was so easy to train as she is so food orientated. I took Mella to puppy classes and we were awarded ‘Most Improved Handler and Dog’ – we’re going for the bronze award next! She has developed such a lovely, good attitude.”
When asked how Mella has changed the life of the owner, Mandy responded: “She has made me a lot happier, that’s for sure. She makes me more social as people come over and talk to us. I can now go out walking; she gets me out and about, she’s my helper in garden and my walking partner! I enjoy training her and she’s the love of my life, she really is a dog for life.”