It's 12:24am as I begin to write this post.
I wanted to write it now just so I don't have to later.
You see, later on today, my sister's dog is being put down. He has been ill for the past few weeks and has been given a few weeks to live. So, her family has made the decision not to let Paddy go through any more pain.
I've never owned a dog. There have only been two dogs before that I was attached to. One was my next door neighbours' pet that died when I was in my early teens and then the other was my aunt and uncle's dog who died the day following my uncle's passing.
At the risk of sounding heartless, I didn't feel as sad for the other dogs as I do right now. A possible reason is because I've seen Paddy grow from a puppy. Plus, which I think is really cool, we share the same birthday.
As I wrote above, I've seen him grow from a pup. He is really loved by all of us and it's heartbreaking to see them having to deal with everything that has been going on since August.
I've written on this blog that I always used to have him stay here over Christmas while my sister's family visited other relatives. They couldn't take him to the other house because the family had a dog that didn't take kindly to Paddy, so I would look after him for the day.
My sister brought him here a few weeks ago because she didn't want to leave him at home. At the time, all he had was an ear infection, but - since then - they've worked out that it's cancer. Anyway, back in August, when I last saw him I was sitting on the sofa. Not knowing it was the last day I would ever see him, I was thinking about how old he had become and did a check to see his age in dog years. I worked out that he turned sixty in May.
I have so many funny memories. I wrote about this one when I offered to look after him. He spent the first half an hour or so running up and down the stairs into every room of the house and left a nice surprise in my bedroom for me to clean up. Then there was this one when I had to look after him an entire weekend and he wouldn't sleep in the sleeping thingy (I'm not a dog owner, I don't know what they're called!) and it took me a while to get him to settle into it.
Another funny one is how he would jump on my lap when in the armchair as a puppy but still continue to do it for years after when he was fully grown! He hadn't done this at all recently and it only came to me while reminiscing.
There was also a funny time, I am certain it was Christmas Day 2009, when I was walking up the road with him and a couple were walking towards us outside my house and the man stopped to smooth him. He allowed him to. Then, the lady went to smooth him and he started to bark at her! God knows what caused him to do that, but they thought it was funny.
Another fond memory I have is from when my sister was taking a photo of my nephew when he was a few months old. He was laying down and, just as she was about to take the picture, Paddy photobombed it and was laying beside the baby. It was a really cute picture that I still have somewhere.
I really am going to miss him.
As weird as this may seem, I'd rather write a tribute to him while he's still alive rather than have to do this when he has gone.