Bluebell was found next to the body of her owner, Eunice; she had probably been there for a few days. The police called Mandy at Northants Greyhound Rescue to see if she could take Bluebell, which she did. But Bluebell did not adjust to kennel life. She was about 12 years old, had been with Eunice for at least 7 years (the RGT branch that Bluebell was rehomed through had closed 7 years before) and now her whole world had been ripped apart. She did not eat, hardly drank, and did not even get into her bed; she literally was dying on her feet and Mandy put the word out that a home was needed now.
Lilly had arrived two days earlier and the last thing I needed was a) another dog and b) an older dog. But no way could I just let a dog be in the state that Bluebell was in, so called Mandy. There were another couple of people potentially able to give Bluebell a home and I put myself right at the back of the queue; clearly I reached the front and at lunchtime went to get a confused but beautiful old lady. Mandy pointed out that given her age she probably wouldn't be here very long; turned out Bluebell had a different opinion.
For the first few weeks she was here Bluebell would look round when we went out – I am sure to see if Eunice was there. Eventually that passed and I became Bluebell's human.
For her age, Bluebell was amazing. She did the same walks as the younger Beasts, albeit at a more sedate pace, though if a rabbit or squirrel came into view she would usually be the first to chase it. And at the end of it all she hopped into the Beast Bus like a puppy.
One of her early outings was to go to a friend's wedding – they had met when she was helping at White Lodge and he came in to adopt a Greyhound, so they invited hounds to the wedding too. After the reception the dogs were taken for a walk and our friend Linda asked to walk Bluebell, expecting her to be a doddery old lady; she wasn't and Linda had to keep up with Bluebell who was into everything.
Bluebell got to go on holiday to Little Dumpledale were she went to the beach and saw the sea for (probably) the first time; she had a blast. In fact, she went on holiday a few times and always loved the beach.
And that gives a clue about how long she was here, just over 2½ years. She even had a case of bloat and hence surgery at 14, which she bounced back from. Bluebell may have been here for her twilight years, but she lived them shining brightly. However, she was an old lady and in the last couple of months she did shorter walks close to home. One day she just stopped while we were out and gave that look, the one that says "I've had enough"; she left us to rejoin her mum Eunice cuddled in my arms.