■ It was the end of an era for Karrathabased animal rescue service Saving Animals From Euthanasia last week when its long-term canine ambassador died.
Terrier cross Taffy had spent a long and happy 14 years with founder Sue Hedley before he suddenly lost mobility in his legs at the SAFE house in Pegs Creek last Thursday.
He was rushed to Karratha Pets and Vets and when it became clear he was not going to recover, his carers took several hours to say goodbye before he was put to sleep.
SAFE founder Sue Hedley said Taffy was the last of her pre-SAFE animals and had been an important part of the service since she had rescued him as a puppy, deserted on the South Hedland vet’s doorstep.
“It wasn’t until after saving Taffy that I started SAFE, because I kept finding animals that needed help,” she said.
“So (former SAFE dog) Amber and Taffy were two of the reasons SAFE started.
“As one of the dogs that was rescued and part of SAFE for so many years, he’s witnessed almost 6000 cats and dogs that have come and gone.”
Ms Hedley said Taffy was known and loved by many in his role as SAFE ambassador and had always been a “social butterfly”.
“He’s been involved in a lot of photo shoots and gone to schools to talk about his life,” she said.
“He’s been a bit of a media hound, always keen to get the word out about SAFE.
“He’s been such a good ambassador because he was such a good-natured dog.
“He loved the attention.”
SAFE founder Sue Hedley and Taffy.