WESTIE RESCUE OF CANADA
DEDICATED TO THE PROTECTION OF WEST HIGHLAND WHITE TERRIERS SINCE 1999
To report a Westie needing help:
Call us at (289) 259 5793 or Lise (780) 907 5244
Our beloved Jackson passed away suddenly from pneumonia at the end of last summer. We still miss him terribly. He had become an important part of our family after coming into our lives as a rescue five years ago. When he came to us, he growled at everything and couldn’t walk more than a block without huffing and puffing. He wolfed down his food and was so possessive of his toys, our other Westie, Aggie, couldn’t get near them, or him.
Slowly, he began to trust us, and Aggie, and started to believe that his food would not be taken away if he didn’t wolf it down. He never really came to trust strangers, and especially did not like children, or anyone dressed in black (especially skateboarders!), whom he encountered on our walks around the neighborhood. He did not like little dogs of any stripe, but made friends with some gentle giants in the neighborhood. He also always deferred to Aggie, who despite being smaller and older than him, is definitely the alpha dog in our house. He learned a lot from his big sister, and enjoyed sitting next to her on the couch to gaze our the window for hours on end, although he would never snuggle up to her.
It seemed that in his early life, he hadn’t learned even the basic things of how to ask to go out, or even how to play with another person during the four years before he came to us. He was a quick study, though, and we always thought he was very intelligent, and could understand every word we said. As a result, we often had so speak in code in case he heard a key word like ’walk’ or ‘supper’.€ As the years went by, he learned to accept the people who we accepted, but I always used to warn them that they had to wait until he came and sat next to them before they attempted to pet him. Once he gave you his ‘Seal of Approval’ he was as friendly and loving as any other dog. He loved to sleep and he loved his toys, and if you loved him, he was your best friend for life.
Jackson also had his health problems, like allergies, a very thin coat, and a tendency to over eat and gain weight if we were not vigilant about his treats, although he luckily loved vegetables of any kind. He never really liked to go for long walks, unless the temperature and conditions were perfect, and he was not too tired, but he went along willingly if Aggie nipped at his heels a bit. He was on steroids most of his life for his allergies and coat, but after a year with us, his coat came in a bit more thickly and if we bathed him in his special shampoo once a week, he wasn’t so itchy. About a year ago, he jumped off the porch chasing a squirrel and tore both his cruciate ligaments, which required surgery to repair. During the surgery, he seemed to suffer a blood clot in one of his feet which resulted in a severe swelling. After a couple of months of treatment and constant bandage changes, his foot and knees finally healed, and he was able to walk again, even though he had lost most of the padding on it. But he was a trooper, and with the help of padded socks, he was again able to enjoy the neighborhood once again.
We still don’t know how he got sick, or why, but one day we came home and he had trouble breathing, so we rushed him to the Emergency vet, and he never came home. Aggie also got sick, but she is a tough one, and recovered well. We will always miss our Jack, he was a real character and a good boy, loyal and true. We hope to meet him again some day.