Kate Middleton's Brother James Reveals Heartbreaking Loss

Kate Middleton's younger brother, James Middleton, is mourning the death of his beloved dog Ella. James, who is the Princess of Wales' younger brother, shared the heartbreaking news on Jan. 20 that Ella, his beloved cocker spaniel who he previously credited with saving his life, died at the age of 15 of kidney failure.

James shared the news in a tribute to Ella on Instagram, writing with great sadness, "I announce my dear Ella has passed away." Sharing a gallery of images of Ella, including a black-and-white photo of her sitting in the grass as she looked into the camera, James shared that "for 15 years Ella has been at my side, from my darkest days to my happiest. I'm going to miss her terribly." He explained that the pooch "had a very short illness" and "slipped away in my arms at home and is now buried in the garden alongside Tilly." He said that he took the first image in the slideshow "just a few hours before she died. I'm just about holding it together to write this, and despite the fact I knew this day was coming, it doesn't make it any easier. Goodnight my darling Ella, Alizee and the dogs will take good care of me."

Ella had a significant impact on James' life. Not only was Ella a central part of his family, with James even crediting the canine for his relationship with wife Alizee Thevenet, whom he married in 2021, the pooch also had supported him throughout his battle with depression. James previously credited Ella with helping him overcome clinical depression, revealing on the BBC's Sunday Morning Live in 2020 that Ella "came to all of my therapy sessions," adding that "with her by my side, I really became confident in understanding that I had a mental illness. I would go so far as to say that I owe Ella my life, and she doesn't know that." James later named his all-natural pet food company, which he founded in 2020, after Ella.

In the weeks since Ella's passing, James has continued to pay tribute to her. In late Janaury, he penned a special tribute to Ella in a heartfelt essay for The Sunday Times, writing, "everybody knew how much she meant to me and there was a day they feared the most: the day Ella was no longer in my life. She meant something to all of them too." James later wrote, "she was next to me through my darkest times, her head in my lap. Winston Churchill would complain that he was followed by the 'black dog' of depression. I had my own black dog but she was my saving grace."

Amid his loss, James has been surrounded with love and support, many sending their condolences. After he shared news of Ella's death, the Ella & Co. Instagram account replied, "missing her already," with Pets As Therapy, the charity that provides therapeutic pet visits to care settings that James previously signed up for, sending James their "deepest sympathies" as they added, "Ella leaves behind a beautiful and indelible mark on all who met her." Ella was the mother of Lupo, Prince William and Kate Middleton's black cocker spaniel that sadly passed away in November 2020.