In Loving Memory of Domino (Elaridge Just William)
" The Dally In The Valley "

13/11/1998 - 07/01/2010

In the new year of 2010 my beautiful Dalmatian Domino was taken ill for the first time in his 11 years. At first it was thought to be old age and a touch of arthritis
but showing no signs of improvement further tests were carried out. Sadly he was found to be suffering from cancer of the prostate, cancer of the uretha and cancer of the spine. He had never shown he was suffering, he had hidden it from us until he could hide it no more. He was put to sleep on the 7th January 2010 whilst being comforted by myself and my family. We are heartbroken and missing him terribly, but we knew It was time to let him go with our love and blessing.

Domino was loved by all and known the world over. When he was younger he was the starting point of my online activities. I had been through surgery,
unable to work and was bored, so I joined the Dalmatian mailing list at Yahoo. Getting to know so many Dalmatian lovers and their spotted companions,
I was inspired to see if I could get together photo`s of another 100 Dalmatians from all over the world, and make a gallery called "The REAL 101 Dalmatians",
of course Domino was the first one!. The response was overwhelming and I had made the gallery in no time, so I started another one, this time "The REAL
102 Dalmatians", again it was finished in record time and I probably could have gone on to make more!. It was wonderful to meet so many like minded people,
and the number of Dalmatians I found internationally who were related to Domino in some way was astounding, it was like doing Domino`s family tree!
Then I started my first website, just for fun and to see if I could do it ... having no knowledge or previous experience and being a complete novice to computers. 
I named the website "Dotty About Dalmatians", and featured photo`s, information, free graphics etc. It was very popular whilst it was online, but I then returned
to work and had little time to keep it up, so I closed it down. Today I have many different online activities and hundreds of good friends the world over,
and to think I wouldn`t have even gone online in the first place if it wasn`t for Domino!


Some other lesser known things about Domino...

I have always loved Dalmatians and wanted one of my own for some time. After a nasty experience at work in november 1997 I was finally awarded compensation in february 1999. I decided to spend some of that money on getting my dream dog. I phoned around breeders until I found one who had a puppy available.
I arranged to go and see him with a possibility of buying him. I had a number of possible names in my mind but Domino was the one that kept coming to the
forefront of my mind, so I decided that was likely to be the one. My ex husband and I were taken into a room and were asked a few questions and were able to
ask some ourselves, then we were introduced to Jessie (Elaridge Wilhelmina), Domino`s mother. She was stunningly beautiful and I was delighted when she felt confident enough in me to jump up and lay her front end across my lap, a good sign she liked and trusted me. Then this adorable puppy was brought in and immediately came over to me and made friends, wanting to play and be fussed. Good news, he liked me and I was allowed to buy him! I was told his registered name is Elaridge Just William, so I thought maybe I will call him "Billy" instead. It wasn`t until I got him home I noticed a set of 6 spots on his neck almost exactly
like a 6 spot Domino... so I ended up calling him Domino after all!"

When he was just over 5 months old we went to a country fair and took him with us. They were holding an open novice puppy show and people persuaded me to enter with Domino. Despite neither me or Domino having any dog show ring experience, and no time to prepare before entering, we got through to the final 6 out of about 52 puppies. It was a boiling hot day and just at the critical moment of judging Domino decided he had had enough and laid down... getting us disqualified on the spot, lol! I heard rumours afterwards we may have got further if he had just remained standing a few minutes longer, but I was so proud of him for getting as far as he did, just goes to show he was a dog of distinction and it`s in his blood and heritage- Elaridge are one of the UK`s top Crufts/Show Dalmatian breeders!

When he was little he struggled with the stairs, but eventually managed to get to the top and have a look around. However he couldn`t get down again and used to stand at the top crying until someone went up and carried him down...  but he grew into a big dog and was too heavy to carry even though he wanted us to!
We had wooden safety railings up the stairs. Domino liked to lay across the stairs with his head through the railings, watching what was going on in the house below him. It was fine whilst he was younger, he was easy to step over and his head fit in the railings okay. However as I said above, he grew into a big dog... he then
took up three stairs so we had to climb over him, and one day he got his head stuck in the railings and I thought I would have to call the fire brigade to come
and rescue him... but thankfully we managed to free him somehow!

One day there was a knock on the front door. I opened the door to find a fireman on the doorstep. He told me there had been a fire in the neighbourhood the day before, and that they were doing a door to door check to see if people had working smoke alarms. I let him in and he went to inspect and test our alarms.
Domino was only about a year old and had not had any training, yet he took each one of us by the sleeve/arm and calmly took us to the front door as if to get us to safety! Although Dalmatians are not known in U.K as fire dogs as in the U.S, the fireman told me if ever we decide we no longer want Domino he can guarantee a
good home for him at the fire station... I just smiled and said "nice try, but you have no chance, he`s mine ;-)!" lol. A few weeks later we took Domino to town with us.
We didn`t know it but they had a fire engine on display for publicity and fund raising purposes. The same fireman saw us and asked if we would let some children have their photo done with Domino & the fire engine, Domino was "Dal-ighted" to be centre of attention, but we were there all day as he was so popular!

One of Domino`s favourite passtimes was watching the local children playing ball on the grass area outside our back garden, the only thing was we had a fence between the garden and the grass area. That was no problem to Domino however, he found himself a large rock and stood on it so he could just about see over
the fence... he looked so cute and comical from both behind at full stretch and from outside with just his eyes and paws showing! I took a photo of him from
outside and named it "Peeping Dom", it became an award winning and published photo and people loved it!

Domino also liked to play with his tennis ball in the garden. One day I was in the house when he came running in and I could swear he said "Oohhh Muuuum"...
I turned around expecting it to be one of my children, but it was Domino with a concerned look on his face. I asked "What`s wrong baby?" and he responded with "My ball ball". Astonished I replied "Where is your ball?, he took me by the arm to the back garden gate and stuck his nose into the gap underneath it, I guessed he had lost his ball under the gate so I opened it and looked outside, and there was his ball a few feet away, it had obviously gone under the gate when he was playing with it! He also regularly lost his ball under the shelving unit we had in our lounge. It was comical watching him trying to reach it, but he wouldn`t let anyone but my ex husband get it for him... as soon as he came in Domino took him to the shelves and he had to get down on his hands & knees with Domino to get the ball out.
I have a lovely photo of the two of them down on hands/paws & knees with their bottoms in the air getting the ball out from under the shelves!   

As mentioned earlier Domino appears to have a natural sense of fire safety despite having had no training for it. My mum sometimes comes to stay with us,
but she smokes and Domino loathed people smoking. One day she fell asleep, Domino took the opportunity to sneak her cigarette lighter from her pocket
when no-one was looking, and he took it into the garden and buried it in the lawn, then stood on guard over it with a smile on his face, satisfied at his good
deed for the day! It was only that my mum woke up and saw him burying something, went outside to see what it was and expecting it to be a bone, then saw it
was her lighter... otherwise we would have had no way of knowing what had happened to it later on! Domino was not impressed he had been sussed,
he went inside and sulked the rest of the day, bless!  

Dalmatians are people dogs, they love to have their human family around them. Domino took this to the extreme though. There were times we had to go out for the day and couldn`t take him with us. A neighbour would always look in on him a few times in the day and we also made sure he had adequate food and water, and left him some treats too. But when we came home he had not touched a drop of food or water and the treats were in the exact place we left them in, he had starved himself until we came home! He would then eat and drink it all then lay with his face under the long curtains we had, peeping at us occasionally with one eye, if he saw us looking he looked away sulking. He would keep this up for hours, making us feel terribly guilty at leaving him! There was a time we went away for a fortnight to Florida. Domino went into a local kennel. We were sure he would be okay and wouldn`t possibly not eat in all that time... how wrong we were, when we got home and phoned the kennel for them to bring him home, he was skin & bone as he had refused to eat ... I`m sure if we had been away one or two more days Domino wouldn`t have lived to see us return... as soon as he got home he ate and drank his fill, I vowed never to go away and leave him again, and never did!

The children had pet hamsters and a gerbil. When they were in their exercise balls Domino loved to chase them around the room, they seemed to enjoy it too!

Domino loved the Disney film "101 Dalmatians" (not the cartoon). It`s one of my favourites too so I would often put it on to watch. It was comical watching him studying the dogs on the screen, nodding his head when they did etc. I`m sure he knew they were the same as him! However I hadn`t realised just how much he
had taken note of things on the film, until I took him to collect my daughter from school after a fundraising day of fancy dress. Her teacher was dressed
as Cruella DeVille... oh boy, Domino was not amused and grabbed at her cloak as she passed us, whilst giving her a very disapproving look!

Domino would have a large bone once a week as a sunday treat. One day we were relaxing by the TV when there was an almighty crashing sound coming from
the stairs. Thinking one of the children had fallen down I rushed to their aid... only to see Domino carrying his bone up the stairs and deliberately letting it go so it
fell from the top down the stairs to the bottom... he did it again and again until eventually the bone broke in two, he found it an easier size to gnaw at then!

More soon!


I have several sets of merchandise featuring Domino in my Dogs & Puppies section at CafePress.
All Dalmatian items except the sleeping Dalmatian on wooden crate and the Dalmatian graphics are Domino.
Please click on sample image/s to see the whole range of your chosen image/s.
Please don`t search from the CafePress homepage or you won`t just get my items!


Thank You XX

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