Bil­lie’s fi­nal walkies

Middlesbrough Herald & Post - - HERALD & POST -

BIL­LIE the dog took his fi­nal walk on his beloved Red­car beach, along with dozens of an­i­mal lovers who wanted to say good­bye.

Owner Eli­cia Cook stole the hearts of Teessiders when she made an emo­tional plea invit­ing fel­low dog walk­ers to join her and Bil­lie the Westie on their fi­nal stroll along the sand.

Well-wish­ers turned up, many with their own pets in tow, to join Eli­cia and her fam­ily on Bil­lie’s fi­nal walk on Satur­day.

The 14-year-old pooch has ter­mi­nal cancer and is cur­rently be­ing treated with steroids.

De­spite his trauma, Bil­lie was his “usual, happy self” as he jumped around and played with his fel­low dog friends.

“He had such a good morn­ing,” said Eli­cia, 26, who has been in­sep­a­ra­ble from Bil­lie since they were in­tro­duced on her 13th birth­day. “There was such a good turn out for him, peo­ple I hadn’t even met be­fore. It just goes to show how lovely peo­ple can be.

“He was run­ning around and play­ing for ages. He will be shat­tered now though, he will prob­a­bly go straight to sleep when he gets home.”

Eli­cia ad­mits find­ing out her faith­ful friend of 14 years had a ter­mi­nal ill­ness was tough. The dog has been a con­stant source of love and sup­port and has been by her side through many chal­lenges in her life, in­clud­ing a re­cent bat­tle with de­pres­sion and anx­i­ety.

So Eli­cia was dev­as­tated to learn ear­lier this year that her ter­rier had lym­phoma - blood cancer - and could not be cured.

This prompted the Mid­dles­brough nurse to set up the fundrais­ing walk.

“He will only be with us for a few short months,” she said.

Eli­cia col­lected do­na­tions for the Dogs Trust char­ity on the day and has al­ready raised around £1,000 for the cause. Bar­clay­card will be match­ing pound-for-pound what is raised.

To make a do­na­tion, visit: www.just­giv­ing.com/fundrais­ing/Eli­cia-Cook

Eli­cia Cook with Bil­lie who were joined by other dog walk­ers as she took him to Red­car for a fi­nal walk on the beach

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