Dogs are amazing, they don't care what car you drive, what job you do or what you look like. They love you unconditionally & forever.
They are always there when you need them, instinctively knowing when you have had a bad day, giving you a gentle nuzzle when all around you haven't noticed. They are there for you in the good times too, tail wagging with gusto, bouncing, all four feet off the floor in excited celebration of whatever has made you happy.
They truly are man's best friend.
They are our companions our confidantes & we love them all with equal measure.
And then every now & again a dog will come along & capture our hearts like no other. No more, no less, just different.
Bert was one of those dogs.
There was something about Bert that was different. At the risk of anthropomorphizing Bert was just a little bit human.
His battle with the bulge struck a chord, the carrot treats the slow feeding mat, Dad & Mums relentless efforts, Berts moves on anyone in the family he thought might show weakness in response to those big brown eyes & that pleading look whenever toast was around.
The gentle tug on Mums sleeve when it was bed time. Bert kept his house in order & everyone in the place they should be at the time they should be there.
Then there were the walks or the plods that Bert shared with us everyday.
Bert had the stunning Scottish landscape in his own backyard. Lochs, woodland, hills, tussocks, lush green fields.
And when Bert got tired he stopped for a sit down. Did anyone else feel that they needed to slow down & be more like Bert?
Pausing, just being in the moment, connecting with the landscape breathing in all that amazing beauty. Taking time to fully appreciate mother nature at her most glorious.
Bert had an amazing relationship with his Dad.
A modern day love story I guess.
An escaped uncared for 2 year old dodging traffic & heading dangerously toward the motorway. Skin & bone, not house trained, rummaging in bins, cold & alone.
Dad was driving home at midnight & saw Bert running scared.
If you believe in fate you will like the next bit.
Frightened dogs aren't for coaxing into strangers cars but guess what, Dad is a PE teacher & just happened to have a skipping rope in his car that he could gently slip over Bert's head & lead him to safety.
Kismet, divine intervention a coincidence, call it what you will this relationship was destined to be.
Bert was saved.
Food, warmth, care, love, everything he could have ever dreamed of & more.
The most wonderful life with Dad & then Mum Bert had landed on his paws.
Surrounded by the best of everything & more love than he could ever have imagined.
Bert was & is loved with a fierce intensity by thousands of people who have never even met him.
When the world lost Bert on 29th September twitter dog grieved like I have never seen it grieve before.
The outpouring of emotion was tangible.
People were shocked, confused & hurting.
They were broken & reached out to each other for comfort.
And I wondered in awe of a little dog who could create such a void with his absence that nothing could ever fill.
We are very honoured to have had Bert as our station mascot.
It's been a pleasure logging into the station each morning & seeing his gorgeous face looking back at us.
Bert may not be physically here anymore but his memory will never leave us so we are keeping things just as they are. Bert's job at the station is permanently filled.
If another dog should ever come along in the future & wish to give Bert a helping paw then so be it but Bert will always be our mascot.
In his honour we are dedicating our very first magazine to him.
Bert The Bear, an amazing dog that brought people together all over the world, united in love, a community filled with kindness. It takes a very special kind of a dog to make that happen.
Thank you Bert x
© Michelle Robertson 2020 All Rights Reserved