Tip the therapy dog who touched hundreds of lives

Tributes have been paid to a therapy dog, who’s unique smile warmed the hearts of hundreds of people, after he died suddenly.

Tuesday, 17th December 2019, 11:29 am
Updated Tuesday, 17th December 2019, 6:23 pm
Owner Jackie has been touched by the overwhelming response of love for Tip

Border collie Tip, a therapy dog who was a favourite with patients in hospital on his weekly, has suddenly passed away.

Jackie Mountain, Tip’s owner, has said she’s been so touched by the overwhelming response of love that has flooded in for the therapy pup.

Having lost her husband, Tom Mountain, in August, the beloved pet sadly passed away the day after what would have been Tom’s birthday.

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Pets for Therapy dog Tip

Jackie, 69, said: “It would have been Tom’s birthday on Wednesday and Tip died on Thursday (December 12). I thought Tom will be coming back to look after him.

“He had a lump on his leg but I couldn’t get him in the vets until Thursday. They said they’d keep him in for an x-ray but I got the call to say it wasn’t good news.

“He sat down and lifted his paw and he put his paw in my hand and I said they could do it now. He put his paw out for the vet and I laid with him until he passed.

“When I tell people they can’t look at me without crying. He was such a wonderful boy, he really did love everyone.”

Tip the therapy dog would get dressed up over Christmas

After rescuing Tip from a cat and dog shelter, Jackie decided to get him registered as a Pets as Therapy dog after seeing how mild and kind-natured he was.

Over the last six years, the seven-year-old Border Collie brought smiles to hundreds of people in hospital and care homes in South Tyneside.

Dressed in festive outfits over the Christmas period including a reindeer, an angel and even Santa Claus, Tip would bring joy to staff and patients alike at South Tyneside District Hospital on his weekly visits.

The great-grandmother said: “So many people will miss his because they’ve seen him over the years.

Jackie Mountain with border collie Tip

“When he use to smile at people they thought all their summers had come at once.

“He was ‘one in a million’, that’s what people say to me. He use to smile and laugh – he was just the loveliest boy and he’ll be so missed.”