Spike was the second of our Spinone, who came into our lives in the summer of 2001. As different to our first as chalk is to cheese, he operated at a frenetic pace, a bundle of energy who lived life to the full. Affectionately known as “Private Pike, you stupid boy”, he truly came into his own when hunting – for Spike every walk was a hunt - a fearless dog who knew no barriers when it came to the thrill of the chase. That said, come the evening, he was happiest curled up on the sofa, as close to his people as he could contrive to be, at peace with himself and the world.

And as it is with our precious companions, we expected him to live out a long life and be parted from us in old age, and without regrets. Sadly, this was not to be and in the early morning of the Summer Solstice 2009, excited and on his way to his morning exercise, he died suddenly and without warning, yet peacefully, his last moments on earth spent in anticipation of the hunt to come.

There is so much more that could be written in tribute to Spike, but who he was can be best summed up in the words of Hermione Gingold;

“To call him a dog hardly seems to do him justice, though inasmuch as he had four legs, a tail, and barked, I admit he was, to all outward appearances. But to those of us who knew him well, he was a perfect gentleman.”