The fact that Janine was also a “dog person” helped our relationship along to be sure, and after Janine and I married we decided that Ringo also needed a companion. We bred him with another Jack Russell, and brought Gromit into our family in March of 2001. She was my first puppy and would quickly become so much more.
Her meek nature didn't mean she didn't exhibit typical Jack Russell traits. Given some open space she would run for hours, yet never ventured very far from my side. She and Ringo also loved to wrestle, gnashing teeth and nipping at each other’s ears to the point where bystanders thought they would injure each other. It never got to that point. Ringo may not have liked sharing the spotlight with Gromit when she was a puppy but they soon became inseparable. Neither would have done a thing to harm the other.
She also had the uncanny ability to know when someone needed cheering up. One winter, my eldest son stuck his foot through the ice at lake by our cabin. Upset, he returned to the warmth of the cabin to, as he put it, “pout.” Sitting on the couch under a warm blanket, my son was soon joined by Gromit who cuddled up against his wet foot as if to say “Don’t be upset. I’ll make it better.” As my son would often say, “You just can’t be sad around Gromit.” And if you tried, she would come along to lick up your tears until you smiled.
We had to put Gromit down last week. 11 years old is quite young for a Jack Russell, but her liver said that her time with us was over. To say that we’re heartbroken is an understatement. Her absence has left a heaviness in our home. Even Ringo wanders the house looking for her. Each day is a little easier, and I know that soon the sorrow will be gone and we’ll look back at our time with Gromit with smiles and laughter. But I'll never forget my little Gromit. She brought a lot of joy into our lives and I just wanted you to know her too.