You were the biggest puppy in our first litter and you were (as far as we know) the last one standing. You were always good natured except when fighting with your sister over the meerkat dolly purchased from Melbourne Zoo. When you wagged your tail, it hit both sides of your not-inconsiderable girth. As soon as you saw the dog-lead , you would begin yipping with joy, especially when I was trying to smuggle you out for a walk without taking your mother, brother and sister as well.
You always loved your food. You invariably knew when it was 5.30 and would jump annoyingly at us until we fed you. You would sit in your too-small basket, waiting to be told ‘okay’ before hoovering up your dinner within seconds. You were well known for eating a kilo of frozen chicken fillets and having to lie exhausted, stuffed and shivering with your belly ice-cold and distended, until you digested it. You survived a Christmas packet of Celebrations chocolates which you hid all around the house for later snacks. In fact, anything special went into your little wicker treasure-trove on the back porch: tissues, dog food cans, bones and lolly wrappers.
Eventually it was just you and the cat. By now aged 17, you were blind and deaf but still managed to negotiate the house, the stairs and the garden- as long as nothing was shifted. But it’s been too long since your tail wagged and once you stopped eating – always your greatest pleasure- it was time to go. Goodbye Ellie McPelly Belly, my little love. I never did finish the last line of your song, sung to the Postman Pat theme-song, while waltzing around the kitchen with you in my arms.
Ellie Mac, Ellie Mac
Ellie Mac is white and black.
You’ve got a big fat tummy
And you love your mummy
Perhaps the last line should be
And I loved you very, very much