Rescue Dog and Cat Who Become Best Friends Put to Sleep in Each Other’s Arms

dog cat

A rescue dog and cat became unlikely best friends during the final years of their lives. So when their health deteriorated and vets said there was no choice but to put them to sleep, their owner let them go in each other’s arms. 

Their owner, Louisa Crook, shared the story of the dog, Winston, and the cat, Tilly, with News Week recently. She explained that Winston came into her life in 2019 after she saw a photo of him on Facebook that showed him starved and homeless.

“The dogs I would take in from the streets had usually only been there a matter of months,” she said. “But he was this old, hardened dog who had survived in an industrial area where food is scarce for over eight years.”

Winston’s body was horribly damaged from his life on the streets. His right leg was deformed from a probable car hit, and he was covered in sores from a skin infection that Louisa believed he had had for years. Winston was also so starved that his entire rib cage showed. 


I will never cease to be amazed that he survived that way for so many years #olddog #saluki #toughdog #strongdog #mydog #streetdog #rescuedog

♬ The Good Part – AJR

“Honestly, we thought we’d maybe get six months with him, so when he made it to a year, then another year, and then another, we were over the moon,” Louisa gushed. “He was so tough.”

Winston’s personality and temperament reflected his hard life, but after “time and careful effort” he became a loving, and happy dog. 

“Though my other dogs helped, Winston never lost his ‘street dog spirit’ completely,” she noted. 

In 2021, Louisa brought Tilly into her home. She had lived a similar life. 

“Tilly was living in utter neglect,” said Louisa, “trapped in a room in a house. Her owner just didn’t care. They eventually left the country, abandoning Tilly.” 

On top of the living conditions that created irreparable damage, Tilly also had “a significant head injury.” 

“She was in such a bad way,” said Louisa. “But we got her better.”

The Dog and Cat Spent Their Last Year “Cuddled Up All Day”

For reasons Louisa never understood, Winston and Tilly formed an unbreakable bond. It took Tilly some time to make Winston come around, but after a while, the two were inseparable. 

“He was a grumpy old man, very set in his ways,” she said. “I’m sure he was tormented by cats in the industrial area where he had lived. So he probably pre-judged little Tilly. She was so gentle and calm with him, though.”

Tilly and Winston

Louisa said that during their final year, the cat and dog spent their time “cuddled up all day, every day. She added that Tilly loved all the dogs in the home, but Winston was clearly her favorite. 

When Winston was 13 and Tilly was 15, their health had deteriorated so much that Louisa had to make the difficult decision to put them both to sleep. Tilly’s heath was “rapidly” declining because of her age, and Winston’s liver was failing. 

Louisa decided to let the pets pass together. 

“Winston was unbelievably scared at the vet,” she said. “But when Tilly came and rested up on his chest like she always would, he was visibly calmer and actually laid down more. It’s awful to have any pet put to sleep, even when it’s necessary. But this was such a deeply beautiful way to say goodbye.”

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