Back in 2013 I was booked to do a Photo Shoot of two dogs, one a Staffie Cross, the other an American Bulldog, at Reddish Vale Country Park. It was a fun shoot where I got to meet two wonderful dogs. Coles, the Staffie Cross was 13 years old and having good and bad days with his arthritis. Buster, the much younger American Bulldog, who is such a soft gentle dog.
Today it’s with a heavy heart that I announce, Coles crossed the Rainbow Bridge this morning.
After that initial Photo Shoot, I have been lucky enough to spend time with Coles, Buster and their lovely Mum Julie. Coles was a complete gentleman, politely coming up to say hello and enjoying the fuss he would receive in his quiet way. He had the ability to capture your heart within minutes of meeting him
The day of the Photo Shoot despite his senior years he was determined to enjoy every minute of him and looking back I am so happy that I was able to capture images of him running, which made him look so much younger than his years. He enjoyed his life, as you can clearly see. No surprise really as he had a human mum who adored him and he grew up to be the sweetest dog.
I have some favourite photos from the day, with a firm favourite being one I named Batman and Robin with Buster (Batman) running and Coles (Robin) keeping up alongside. It is one of my business card photos and has been a firm favourite of many. It sums up the close relationship between these two dogs, a bond that despite Batman losing his Robin, will remain forever and will see them reunited one day.
Coles was very much the straight guy to Buster’s happy go lucky, they were the perfect Odd Couple, Best Friends and every time I saw them both they always made me smile.
Learning of Coles passing brought tears to my eyes, but I know my feeling of loss for him are in no way close to what Julie and her family are going through today. Buster will no doubt be at a loss that his little sidekick is no longer by his side and will grieve in his own way. Losing a pet is hard, they are family and that grief is felt by their human and animal families.
It was a honour that I got to photograph him and know that Julie has wall art of him to cherish, a reminder of an amazing little guy.
For me, I think back to the last time I saw him when I gave them both a lift in my car. Coles sitting in his own quiet way on the back seat and Buster crying because I think he thought I’d just kidnapped him from his mum, even though she was in the car in front! I didn’t think that would be the last time that I would see him, if I had known I’d have spent some extra time scratching his back the way he liked.
The Rainbow Bridge gained a true gentleman today. It was his time to return home and gain his wings and I know in my heart that he’ll always be watching over his Mum and his Batman.
Run fast like no one is watching Coles! I feel lucky that I got to know you and you’ll forever be in my heart.