Brin arrived into the UK on September the 15th around midday. I was at at school at the time when the text came in and I was able to share this news with the children who had also followed Brins story over the summer holidays.
The quarantine rang to say they would be collecting him in the afternoon and, once cleared, Brin would be finally on his way to Sussex to begin 6 months in their care.
Many people have opinions on quarantine, and I personally feel that for ‘domestic’ dogs this is a long time indeed. But, with Brin, I felt that this time would be beneficial in two ways. One, to get to know him and try to understand how he ‘ticks’ and two, for him to get to know me and to learn trust and commitment from a human who had decided never to let him down.
The quarantine was set in beautiful countryside and the people in charge, kind, caring and full of humour and there are stories I will share with you later.
On arriving (after getting very lost!) my husband and I waited as the paperwork was handed over. This folder contained everything to date concerning Brin and documented every stop/injection and medical check he had gone through to make it home.
It was all a bit of blur really as all I really wanted to see was if this little brown dog, who had been part of my life 24/7 for the past three months, really was real.
The noise became pretty deafening from all the dogs as we walked along the path toward the kennels. Faces, large and small, peered out over vast swathes of grasses waving in the wind.
Pointing to one kennel I could see two eyes staring that belonged to a small brown dog who remained totally calm despite all the chaos surrounding him. Those eyes I knew by heart. I had looked at them everyday.
The time came when the door to his kennel was to be opened and peering in I could see a dividing door from where I could see a shadow moving behind. I had already thought about how I should introduce myself and took up position to allow him to come to me and not the other way around. I had no idea really as to whether he would greet me, or bite me…but the time had come to find out.
Brin leapt though the door and immediately began wagging his tail. Back and forth he leapt though the door as if checking that his escape route was still there. Following him into the front part of the kennel we watched in wonder as this dog, who had made it so far, ran around greeting each and everyone of us as if he had known us for always.
He was extremely dusty and dirty but underneath all of this there seemed to be a river of colours just waiting to shine. His eyes were almost orange in colour and followed you everywhere. Brin allowed us to stroke him but only at arms length, for any closer he would back up and skip away on his rather short little ‘Queen Anne’ legs!
In a bag I had a toy. His first ever real dog toy. A small yellow fluffy dog had been donated, along with his first proper bed, from Pets at Home who had heard of his story and wanted to help. Brin’s reaction to the toy was one of pure wonder. The sound of the squeak sent him flying backwards with surprise and tentatively he stepped forward and took the toy gently from my hand.
To this day..this teddy remains intact and in his bed.