Belfast Telegraph

Watch: Grieving granddad gets puppy for Christmas

Pensioner Patrick with pup Buddy
Pensioner Patrick with pup Buddy

By David Young

Almost three quarters of a million people have so far watched a heart-warming video of Strabane pensioner Patrick O'Goan (68) meeting his new puppy Buddy for the first time.

Recorded on Christmas Eve by his granddaughter Sophie Roulston, it shows the precious moment when the little Labrador puppy brings new joy into the life of the recently bereaved widower.

"Granda's dog - a black Labrador - died a few months back and he asked Nanny to let him get another one," granddaughter Sophie told the Belfast Telegraph last night.

"Nanny passed away a month ago and he has been so lost since then. We surprised him with a pup for Christmas - and he is so in love already!"

Mr O'Goan's wife Marian passed away just a month ago and they had been married for 50 years.

Caring Sophie (21) searched high and low to find just the right puppy for her Labrador-loving grandfather - and was successful just on Christmas Eve.

"We didn't want to get a black Labrador in case it just reminded him of his dog which passed away recently.

"But we knew he is a big Labrador man and when Buddy became available, we went for it and got him," she said.

"My Granda was just delighted - he was absolutely over the moon!

"As soon as he saw the wee dog, he was like 'Come here till I see you, come here till I see you' - and the pup was just wagging his wee tail like mad from the very first moment he caught sight of Granda.

"It was so strange. Buddy just lay there, and when Granda came in his tail started going as if he knew he was for him," said Sophie.

"It's made him so happy.

"He is the cutest human in the world," said Sophie, who reckons her Granda is the spitting image of Granpa Carl in the hit cartoon film Up.

"He is so precious and deserves the world."

Mr O'Goan, a retired former coalman, is a well-known figure in the Strabane area.

The touching video featuring the little pup's first cuddle with his new owner has already been watched more than 700,000 times, with more than 500 people posting comments about the heart-warming story on Sophie's Twitter channel.

From England, Sarah Tyler posted: "That's so sweet.

"Happy Christmas to your granda, you'll have made what could have been a very difficult day for him so much better."

While John Glasgow wrote: "Glad Christmas has brought your grandad some happiness after a very tough year.

"All the best to them both."

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