Shadow - The First Dog - first day at Aras an Uachtaran
As most people are now aware, the President of Ireland, Michael D Higgins,has promised to bring two of his favourite breed, the Bernese Mountain Dog, into the Aras. True to his word, the first bernese arrived at the president's mansion on Monday the 5th of March 2012.
Shadow is a three and a half year old spayed bernese bitch who recently had to be rehomed because of her owners changing circumstances. Shadows' family are relocating to Dubai and felt it would be unfair to expect her to adapt to this new environment especially taking into consideration the extreme heat. After much discussion it was decided to return her to her breeder, Valerie Hughes, who would find a suitable home for her.
Valerie, who has been in regular contact with the President since he first expressed an interest in acquiring a bernese, mentioned she had a bernese in for rehoming. He asked to see some photographs and rang the very next morning to say he would love to take Shadow. When asked, when would he like to see her, his response was 'as soon as possible'!!!
Valerie, accompanied by her sister Ann and Shadow the bernese made the trip to the Phoenix Park and were greeted at the main entrance by the President's aide. Within minutes the President and his wife arrived as well as many of the staff to see the new Resident in waiting! Shadow was delighted with all the attention and was quite happy to join us in the State Drawing room for afternoon tea, even sampling some of the patisseries!!!
It was obvious from the outset that the President had a special affinity with this wonderful breed and Shadow was quite happy to sit by his side and accept all the attention bestowed upon her. The President then insisted on taking her to see their private quarters and Shadow happily accompanied the President and his aide without a backward glance! On her return, the lead had been removed and Shadow was quite happily checking out all the corridors, stairs and rooms in the Aras! It was evident that this girl was making herself at home!
After a two hour visit, Shadow was left in the company of the President and his wife and Valerie is delighted to hear that she is settling in very well, has found her spot in front of the hearth and is up walking the grounds with the President every morning at first light.
Valerie tells us that there is also a new bernese puppy in the pipeline and it is hoped he will join the President and Shadow when he is fully housetrained!!!