ITV news correspondent Nina Nannar says farewell to her beloved greyhound Biscuit, who changed her life forever
- Credit: Nina Nannar
We have just had to say farewell to our beloved greyhound Biscuit. His hind legs have been giving up, letting the rest of his beautiful body down. It's a neurological thing the vets in Norwich told us.
There was nothing to be done, but we knew that. We took the only decision we could.
He went painlessly. We hurt like hell.
This former champion racer had helped shape our future.
I still can't quite remember the sequence of events, the conversations that somehow lead this London family – us – to a greyhound rescue charity in Hainford seven years ago.
We had only popped up to Norfolk for the weekend, something we were increasingly doing, and I can't recall who said what to whom, but we found ourselves at the Yarmouth Greyhound Homefinders.
Greyhounds, those bred to run, can have a hard life. And it's these rescue centres, whose volunteers hang around racetracks on race days, that offer them a respite when the legs have gone, when the urge to chase the pretend bunny around the track, has waned with age.
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Or just plain laziness. They are after all the couch potato of the dog world.
So there we were. And there he was. Grab The Biscuit. Mr Happy as he was dubbed at the centre.
He bounded up to us and with that one bound he had us.
We always said Biscuit chose us. And he did. One nil to Biscuit.
So, we had a dog.
Packed into the car, we drove back to resume London life.
Biscuit tolerated the mean streets of Queens Park and even forgave us when we had a slight mishap with the car boot and the tip of his tail one dark night.
Then, and again I can't recall who said what to whom, we found ourselves moving to Norfolk, Biscuit's county.
He loved beaches. Two nil to Biscuit.
When you make a decision about moving cities, you do it considering your whole family.
Norwich was right for us but we knew it would be better for Biscuit too.
Families should be a democracy. His vote mattered.
The years of chasing squirrels, of doing the school run, hanging around outside, waiting for his fan club of school children to cuddle him: 'Biscuit, Biscuit' they would squeal.
We stood by proudly.
The long beach walks when he would sprint a bit – as a greyhound these were brief dashes, they're a breed that don't like to exert themselves.
The times he would secretly jump onto the sofa when we were out, and then dive back down when he saw our car coming up the drive.
Poor Biscuit, we could see what he was up to through the window, but chose to pretend that we hadn't sussed him out. Three nil to Biscuit.
The times as a Pets as Therapy dog, we'd take him around a local care home, meeting people with dementia.
My embarrassment as he decided to sit down, when they were trying to reach him from wheelchairs so they could pat him.
Walking down the road in Norwich just seems weird without him beside us. The dog poo bags are still in every pocket of every jacket I have.
There's a Biscuit sized hole at home now. He seemed to suddenly enter our life. Fill it.
And now he's gone. He wasn't just a dog to us. He was a gamechanger. And we're so grateful for that.