Billie’s final walkies
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