RIP Berti

RIP Berti

Berti is dead. The German pointer adopted by Paul and Rita Whitelock last August died last night after a hit-and-run accident. Paul explains what happened.

We are devastated. Such a lovable dog, not yet three, gone, just like that, after being hit by a speeding motorist who didn’t stop. Eyewitnesses estimate the car was travelling at 120 kph! On a country road with houses and a bar/restaurant!

Although no longer living with us, we saw Berti most days. After Rita’s close shave with Covid-19 – she is still recovering -, we decided we couldn’t manage Berti any longer, so our friend José offered to take him, which we were happy about. José is good with dogs and in the few weeks that the dog had been with him, he had thrived, put on a bit of weight, was calmer and better behaved.

The accident happened at around 10.30 pm last night outside Venta El Puente in La Indiana. José rang me and I drove straight there. Berti lay prone by the side of the road, blood seeping from his mouth. I rang Cristina my vet and she agreed to meet us at her clinic in 10 minutes.

We carried Berti into the observation room at Osa Mayor where Cristina  said she would stabilise him and observe him overnight. We were free to go and she would ring us in the morning with a progress report.

She rang within 10 minutes – Berti had died from his internal injuries.

I rang José briefly and then managed a quick drink to drown my sorrows. It was 11.50 pm.

As I sipped my beer I thought back over Berti’s short life. Abandoned at a basura near Cártama, Last Chance Animal Rescue had taken him in. He was fostered for a period before finally being adopted by us.

Sleepover with Coco.

We like to think Berti enjoyed his time with us. He had loads of space to run around and play in our large garden. He had two main problems: leishmaniosis, which we controlled with medication, and separation anxiety – Berti couldn’t tolerate being left alone. He could become destructive.

I lost count of the number of leads he chewed through. He chewed two car seat belts, a brand new sun umbrella, my mobile phone cable and other items too numerous to mention. Nevertheless, we think he had a nice, if short time with us.

Then a few weeks with José, whose house beside the River Guadalcobacín offered the space Berti needed. He loved jumping in and out of the river and chasing the birds.

My last memory of Berti will be a pleasant one. José and I had dinner together earlier last night on the terrace at Restaurante La Cascada, with Berti at our feet. He had behaved well and got some bits of chuleta de cordero from our table as a reward.

Then, an hour later, I got that phone call.

RIP Berti.

Berti helping us build a children’s swing earlier on the day he died.

Paul Whitelock

About Paul Whitelock

Paul Whitelock is a retired former languages teacher, school inspector and translator, who emigrated to the Serranía de Ronda in 2008, where he lives with his second wife, Rita. He spends his time between Montejaque and Ronda doing DIY, gardening and writing.