"I had a black labrador called Ben. He was everyone’s best friend and my mum called him her wee shadow. My granny passed away in 2014 after quite a long traumatic few months. We were her carers and there right until the end, so after she died, home felt like it was in the middle of a storm. I remember going home to wash a few hours before it happened and Ben climbed onto the couch with me and pushed his head into my neck and let me just cry.
A few days after she died, my mum was sitting at the kitchen table just weeping inconsolably and Ben just walked up quietly and put his head on her lap. When she leaned in he started licking her tears and trying to get at her ears to make her laugh. Without him, I don’t think we would have got through those days. We talk about him all of the time so even though I can’t hold him or go to the river and see him stick his face under water, he’s always with us. He was the very best boy."