Canelo ~ 12 years waiting for his friend
by Andres Grijalva
This is a true story that begins in the late 80's. "Canelo" was the dog of a man who lived in Cadiz. A pet that followed his owner to all places and at all times. This anonymous man lived alone, so the good dog was his most loyal friend and only companion.
Every morning you could see them walking together through the quiet streets of the city when the oldman took his friend for a walk. Once a week one of these walks would take them to Puerta del Mar Hospital, where the man was undergoing dialysis treatments due to kidney complications.
Due to the hospital's rules of not allowing animals inside, he always left Canelo waiting at the door. The man would undergo his treatment, meet Canelo at the door on his way out, and together they would head home. This was a routine that had bee going on for a long time.
One day the man suffered complications in the midst of his treatment, doctors were unable to help him and he died in hospital. Meanwhile, Canelo as always, was waiting outside on his own lying by the door of the health center. But this time, his owner never came.
The dog sat there, waiting. Neither hunger nor thirst would persuade him to walk away from the door. Day after day, cold, rain, wind or heat, he continued lying at the hospital's door waiting for his friend to come out so they could go home.
The locals realized the situation and felt the need to care for the animal. They took turns to carry water and food, even managed to get a pardon for Canelo when the pound took him to be sacrificed.
Twelve years was the time that the noble animal waited outside the hospital for his friend to come back. He never sought a new family. He knew his only friend had gone through that door, and that he should wait for him so they could return home together.
The wait lasted until December 9, 2002, when Canelo was run-over and killed by a car outside the hospital. A tragic end to a wonderful example of loyalty and unconditional love.
Canelo's story was well known throughout the city of Cadiz, which in recognition of the love, dedication and loyalty of Canelo, named an alley after him and put up a plaque in his honor.
The following video was made in tribute to Canelo...
"Agaden (Association for the defense and study of nature) adopted him, vaccinated him and arranged the papers to stop him being an undocumented stray dog. And although various foster families were offered to him, Canelo always managed to escape, and time and time again he returned to the hospital to wait.
People fed him and cared for him like a family member. Canelo wasn't a stray dog, he was everyone's dog, the dog of Cadiz.