Main image: Cllr Chris Jackson with Kiska on Brean sands. All images courtesy of Chris Jackson.
A popular Knowle West dog known for her beauty and gentle nature – Kiska the Alaskan Malamute – has died recently after a short illness.
Owner Cllr Chris Jackson is devastated by her passing just short of her twelfth birthday – and says he and his wife have been overwhelmed by the community reaction to her death.
The rescue dog they had at just 10 weeks old was well recognised around the area as his constant companion – and an integral part of Knowle West.
He says: “…I have some of her ashes round my neck so I still take her for a walk three times a day and I see the same people taking dogs out – and they all say they miss her so much.
“So many have said: ‘She wasn’t just your dog she was my dog as well.’… and the amount of people that brought flowers to us.”
Chris’s daily walks with Kiska always included the Northern Slopes Nature Reserve and the park known as ‘the jungle’ near Knowle Park School where pupils used to like to stroke her on their way to school.
He recalls: “She was just so friendly with everybody, she was just lovely, a beautiful girl, she had a heart of gold, she never barked or growled at anyone or anything.
“Quite a few people if the little ‘uns were ill and couldn’t go to school they’d ask us to pop past and knock so they could see the dog. She was a therapy dog as well…”
Kiska is also missed by Chris’s Volkswagon Camper Club who are “devastated” as he never went there without her.
She won Best Dog in the Dubs and Dogs show there eight times in a row – until he was asked to stop entering her.
Kiska also scooped a string of other awards – and achieved national fame as a dog beauty queen .
She featured in The Knowledge in 2016 when she was crowned Miss UK for her breed and came runner up for Miss World – her picture also appearing in a Malamute calendar the following year.
Outside of competitions, her favourite jaunts, apart from local walks she liked to choose herself, were visiting Chris’s parents in Knowle West and going to the caravan at Brean sands.
After she died Chris and his wife Lyn took her ashes there for one last walk and he wrote on his Facebook:
“…We were so lucky and blessed that she allowed us to be her human parents. The love, joy and laughter she gave not only our family but the thousands of other people’s lives she touched was truly amazing…”