Continuing the trend of posts about family it wouldn’t be right of me not to include Lassie, my 5 year old Border Collie. I first met Lassie when she was born but it was 6 weeks later when Robert was with me that he picked the same dog from the bunch amd gave her the name Lassie. She was born in Co Mayo, on the west coast of Ireland and made the journey back to Dublin with me just before Christmas 2010 in a small box that I had till I left Ireland.

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I got Lassie just after I retired from the Defence Forces and she became my constant companion as I went to college and started work in the airport. My last pet was actually my sisters dog so Lassie was the first pet I owned myself. For the next 4 and a bit years long walks down the park were a daily part of my routine. I met some wonderful people while walking in the park and Lassie met some great doggie pals. I am still in touch with them and they regularly ask how Lassie is doing.

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One of Lassies best pals is a little terrier called Pippa, they were neighbors and went everywhere together. Luckily when I was working shift my neighbour would bring Lassie and Pippa to the park and let them have a run around. It is the one thing Lassie misses, being able to get off her leash and run with her pals. But she does have a new pal now, her adopted brother, Bozley. Ever since we arrived in America Lassie and Bozley have got on great. Of course getting a dog to the USA isn’t just a case of arriving at the airport, like everything else it took advance planning. I started the planning in August for a November flight, getting Lassie rabies shots, blood tests, buying a crate and booking place on flight.

Lassie always either slept on the bed or on the floor so the crate was just a piece of furniture until the day of the flight. Unfortunately dogs travel cargo so I had to let Lassie go with the airline early. In fairness Aer Lingus were superb, even coming up to me on the plane before take off to let me know Lassie was on board and looking good. With the stress of me emigrating it was nice of the airline to do that for me.

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I love my dogs, it’s not just Lassie but Bozley as well now. We go on walks everyday and generally have fun. The 2 dogs follow me everywhere, and I mean everywhere! I wouldn’t have it any other way as they are both part of the family, are loved by us both and well looked after. Next week will be a challenge for Bozley as he goes in for an operation to have his leg removed but with Lassie there to help him and our love he will be in good hands.

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I make no apologies but I am a dog person and there were times when things didn’t look so good that Lassie would come over, just lie beside me, rest her head on my leg and look up at me and then I would know everything was going to be ok.

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Have a great weekend folks and have fun. It’s time for me to go and enjoy some time with my wife and dogs. I will be back on Monday with an update on how my return to playing football after nearly 20 years away from playing.

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