~ Alysha, Jono, Ziggy, Zora and Promise ~

Several years ago, Alysha adopted Ziggy. Years later, as she moved in with her partner, Jono, Zora came along and then Promise. They provided all three furbabies with their forever home, but all three have been life-changing for their humans and have all positively impacted one another. 

Just over 13 years ago, Alysha met a beautiful cat who she named Ziggy. Eight years ago, they moved out together to their own place. Then, two years later, Alysha and her partner, Jono, moved in together. Through thick and thin, Alysha and Ziggy have always been by each other’s side and faced any challenges together. Whenever Alysha has felt sad or in need of some comfort, she has found Ziggy gives the best cuddles, too. 

Not long after adopting Ziggy, Alysha and Jono felt it would be good to get another furbaby to keep Ziggy company. They wanted a dog, but at the time, felt they weren’t quite ready, so decided on getting another cat. Alysha and Jono went to their local animal rescue and instantly fell in love with one kitten in particular. She was quite a feisty little thing and had one less tow on one of her paws due to an incident when she was younger. They adopted her and named her Zora. 

It took quite some time for Ziggy and Zora to learn to live with each other. Ziggy, being a bit older than Zora, wasn’t as interested in playing as her younger sister was. Because of this, Zora has had to be in a separate room at night so Ziggy gets some peace and quiet. They have gradually learnt to tolerate each other, but they aren’t quite best friends yet! 

Having Zora has had a big impact on Alysha and Jono. While she has a lot of energy and is feisty, she loves affection. She’ll often sit with Alysha for lots of pats and cuddles, and the occasional scrap off of her plate. Zora is highly food driven, which has allowed Alysha to even teach her some tricks, such as sit, spin, and to shake. 

A year later, Alysha and Jono revisited the idea of getting a dog. They decided that they were ready and began searching. Alysha felt a Labrador would be best, and she wanted to provide a home for an older dog. She spent months looking, until one day, she saw a got in contact with the South Island Labrador Retriever Club about a Labrador named Promise who was about to have her next litter. 

The breeder was unsure if she wanted to rehome Promise. She wanted the best for her dog and, after a lot of thought, felt it was best to rehome her. It was a tough decision, but she knew that Alysha and Jono would provide her with a loving forever home. 

Before being able to bring Promise home, Alysha and Jono visited her often. The first time they met, she was the sweetest and most friendly dog they had met. Almost every Sunday after having her litter, Alysha and Jono would spend time with her. After a couple of months, her pups were able to be adopted and Promise went to go to her new forever home. 

As soon as Promise was welcomed into Alysha and Jono’s family, she brought so much joy and love into their home. She loves to find a nice sunny spot to lay in, but also has zoomies every day where she runs around the yard or their lounge with her favourite toys. At the end of each workday, Promise always greets Alysha and Jono at the door with a toy in her mouth and her tail wagging furiously. No matter what, she always makes everyone around her smile. 

In May of 2021, Alysha was diagnosed with breast cancer. A month later, she underwent a surgery and started chemotherapy. Throughout this, her furbabies have been there for her. When Alysha’s resting in bed, Promise and Ziggy lay with her and provide her with comfort, with the occasional disruption from Zora. By simply being there, they make what she’s going through just a little more manageable. 

Alysha has found her cancer journey to be isolating. Knowing that she has Ziggy, Zora and Promise there has made all the difference. On days when she is finding it particularly difficult, she is grateful to Promise who encourages her to go out for a walk or does something silly to make her smile. As well as this, Promise also loves snuggles and is more than happy to give Alysha as many as she needs.

Not only has Promise had an impact on Alysha and Jono, but also their whole family. Alysha has three sisters, all of whom love seeing the excitable Labrador. Her youngest sister, Mia, spends most of her time, when visiting, with Promise. Lily, second youngest, took some time to warm up to her as she finds it hard to trust dogs, but now they love doing tricks together. And, lastly, Shannen, the eldest after Alysha, while not a dog person, has fallen in love with Promise. 

One of Alysha and Promise’s favourite things to do is go on adventures. They often find off-lead parks where Promise can follow her nose and just explore, even better if there’s a river to swim in! Before Covid, Alysha and Promise would go on road trips to Nelson to visit family and to other places, just for a new adventure. As well as this, they also enjoy learning new tricks together, both new and reinforcing old ones. However, at the end of the day, they love simply spending time together and being in each other’s company. 

The love that Alysha, Jono, Ziggy, Zora and Promise all share for one another is so special. They have been there for each other through so much, and have shared so much happiness. Through all the ups and downs, they know they have one another.