Royal K9 Korner Response Survey

Wednesday, May 16, 2018

Mylu was a Very Good Girl

Last week 3 year old Mylu visited with us for her meet n greet.  She spent 4 hours with us one morning and another 4 hours for an afternoon. She was such a good girl we were more than happy to welcome her back to stay overnight. Her mom and dad had to be away for 5 days! The first few hours she was happy and played with all the toys.  After that, she headed to the gate and set to waiting, waiting, waiting...  After all her 4 hours were up. Right?
We let her stay there for a short time, then encouraged her to come into the house. It was close to dinner time and we knew it would help her remember she's safe with us. After dinner everyone settles in to relax mode around here. She was happy to receive all the attention we gave her and kept a wagging tail and smiley face. Despite our attempts to lure her in, Mylu decided not to join us in the living-room. Instead she found a nice cool spot to rest and wait.
I'll just wait here till my mom and dad come for me.
At bed time she followed us out for the evenings last piddle and was quite willing to head into the bedroom to choose her mat. We gave our normal cuddles and hugs and nighty nights, with a special extra dose for Mylu.
She had chosen the mat along my side of the bed. One that our little Lady May is always willing to give up to new comers. Thank you Lady May. That mat allows me to stroke their fur and give any reassurances during the night.  I leave my bedside lamp on low so I can see comfort levels at a glance. I always watch for the first while until I know every dog is fast asleep.  Mylu lay down quietly for a few minutes.  Then decided she needed to make some noise. Perhaps to let me know, her mom and dad were not with her. At first, she quietly gave a few little moans, enough for me to stroke her and reassure her it was okay to go to sleep. She held her head up and looked me right in the eye and barked! That yielded a big fat No Response from us. I could just imagine her thinking,"Oh drat, that didn't work." Her sounds lasted all of a minute and lessened to moans and little woofs with the occasional little bark. Sleep followed quickly.
With proper reinforcement for quiet behaviours, we encourage our new comers to figure out on their own that they are safe with us. We know they miss mom and dad. A minute after she was quiet, I reached down and spoke softly to her, stroked her fur again while she fell fast asleep. 
Not a peep all night!

By early morning Mylu was ready to begin her, by the gate, vigil again. She laid there while the sun came up until I called her in for breakie.  That seemed to break her concentration on mom and dad's absence. The rest of the visit was plain old fun and lickie kisses for everyone.
Why don't I hear my dad's car coming? 
Oh is it time to eat!?

Mollydawg, "Okay, I'll let you lay beside me but no more kisses!"

 It was a very hot weekend so the kiddy pool was filled and refilled many times.  It's placed in the shade under our big Mountain Ash tree. The blossoms are blowing and they fill the pool quickly.  Mylu didn't seem to mind at all. She spent much of each day, in and out while throwing toys in and staying cool.
When it was time to rest, she made a point of trying out most of the resting spots to see what fit her best.

A little too big 

A little too small

Lady May, "Don't even think about this one. It's taken!" 
Mylu,"Fine, I really wanted to be with Princess MollyDawg anyway!"
She's not so cranky! 

Good! and keep your stinky feet out of my water anyway!
Oh Lady May you're such a funny girl. It takes her a very long time to really warm up to new comers. I love it when they stay longer than just one over night visit.  By the last night Mylu was here, she had warmed up enough that she moved back onto her own mat and allowed Mylu to use the crate she deems her own.   I even caught a moment of acceptance of Mylu's gentle kisses. Of course there was no camera on hand but I saw it!  Mylu is scheduled to be back again this month. I already know Lady May will be smiling this time.

Thanks for visiting us Mylu. See you again soon!
You can check out Mylu's photo album in our Facebook album here  "Mylu"

Sunday, April 29, 2018

10 Years Ago

So much time has passed and yet it seems like only yesterday. My heart will always remember the kind, unselfish deed that was done on that day. Lou and Bonny Baird. It is because of their caring, love and desire to act instead of just walk away that we were given one of our most treasured gifts.

This gentle man and his loving wife set out on a trip. They drove all the way from Alberta. They were stopping and enjoying B.C.'s beautiful campsites. They pulled into one to enjoy lunch while in Bella Coola. That's where the four scraggly, emaciated scruffs sauntered out of the bushes.  They had not long to live, and would not have, with out the intervention that followed.

April 29 2008 Left to right: Bella, Chinook, King and Spring

The couple went through great lengths to find a rescue group that would take these four and provide the care they needed to save them. They were told countless times,"I'm sorry we're full and can not take them in."  Their search grew wider and wider until they finally found one that was 13 hours away from them. They packed up and drove the four sickly dogs out to receive the proper attention they deserved. Turtle Gardens Rescue Society from Topley BC is no longer operating. The CEO at that time, Yvette Labatte, went above and beyond to open her already bursting at the seams doors to bring them in and provide the medical attention and FOOD that all four needed. They stayed with her until each one found a Happy Ever After family.
Safe at Turtle Gardens Rescue Society

To this day, no one knows how those four dogs ended up lost or abandoned in that forest in Bella Coola. What we do know is that without Lou and Bonnie Baird detouring their vacation, and Yvette's willingness to accept those dogs, they would surely not have survived another week.
King on his first day HOME with us. Feb 2009
Those dogs came to be known by many people as the Bella Coola Four. Lou and Bonny had named them after the salmon that frequent the Bella Coola area. Spring, Chinook, Bella, and King.

Lou and Bonny visit King at home 2009
Yvette and King at Reunion 2010

All four were eventually adopted and lived healthy happy lives. We were fortunate enough to have been chosen to be the adoptive family to King. He lived with us for 8 yrs. until he was approx. 14 yrs old. He stayed healthy and happy for a very long time.
He passed away in our loving arms on April 8th 2016.  

Today I remember and know, King still looks down over all of us and gives a howl of appreciation for all that was given to him and his pack on this day 10 years ago! Thank you Lou and Bonny! Thank you Yvette Labatte

You can read the full story written by Author Nancy Bain here
Bella Coola Four

Tuesday, April 24, 2018

Miss Mylu Joins Our Extended Pack

The lovely Miss Mylu is a 3 1/2 year old retriever mix who has had some trauma. She took off from her mom and dad and was hit by a car.  Fortunately for Mylu she has wonderful, caring parents who rushed her off to the vet for the best ever treatment.  As a result of her injuries she is now left with severe damage to her right hind leg. It doesn't seem to stop the little darling from having a wonderful playtime with us and we welcome her with open paws.

She's been for a couple of short visits just checking things out and getting to know Princess MollyDawg and Lady May.  Miss Mylu will soon be spending a few more days within our fold. We can't wait for an overnight stay!

Mylu -" What's to do around here?"
On the very first visit with her mom and dad, Mylu spent a great deal of time with her nose glued to the bottom of my water cooler. Her mom and dad and I were busy filling out paperwork and discussing all Mylu's needs. We watched and just giggled as she pawed and tried desperately to get at whatever was under that water cooler. Her togue just didn't seem to be long enough. When Mylu went home I moved the water cooler and low and behold guess what was under it? Oh my little girl, you certainly have a good nose! It was a tiny grain of cooked rice! I guess I'll be cleaning my floors a bit more often when Mylu comes to visit. Even The Princess missed that one!

I bet you can't see what Mylu smelled?
You mean you found a bit of rice Mylu? Wow you're good!
Mylu was the youngest in her litter and is a very loving little girl. Her main goal is to play and give kisses. Well, we certainly can't complain about that can we? Well some of us do. Lady May will beg to disagree for sure. She can only take so many kisses. As a matter of fact NO kisses would suit her just fine. Mylu is learning that a curled lip means back off. She's not pushed that envelope to far, and hasn't had to answer to anything more from Lady May.

Why can't I just kiss everyone, everyday, all day long?

Lady May and Mylu just relaxing in the sunshine.
Note the distance lol
I'm told that Mylu has been having a wee bit of trouble with her bladder some days. Although she had no 'dribbles' at all while she was here. How do we know? Well, we fitted her with a fashionable pair of underpants. (okay so it was a doggy diaper) She didn't seem to mind that one bit and even continued to play with her chosen toys. We put it on after her outdoors play time and left it on while she slept. When she woke about an hour and a half later, there were no signs of dribbles and she went to do her full business outside. What a good girl Mylu!  Today was a good day.

I can still play with my toys!
We learned that Mylu likes to be noticed at all times and had to have a few moments of ignoring her.
I know, that sure sounds rude eh?  She's a very clever girl and caught on very quickly. Being a bit too demanding just doesn't work here. No, that's just not fun!

Why is no one noticing me?!

Molly had her fill of turning away and walking away and giving her "The Stare" She finally just retreated to her bed and stayed there for a nice long time. Lady May made sure her back was to her so she'd get the idea.  Sweet Mylu stayed very close by, just in case they changed their minds. 

Finally she decided it would be better to just find a toy and come outside with me.  She lots of time running and frolicking all over the yard. What a cutie.
She stumbled a couple of times while she romped about, but her hip didn't seem to hinder her fun.
We're excited to have Mylu come back to visit again. We know it won't be long before the Royals are romping with her.
See you in a couple weeks sweetie.

Wednesday, April 4, 2018

The Diversification at Royal K9 Korner

We have a wonderful variety of dogs that visit us at Royal K9 Korner. Everything from colour to size, characteristics in behaviour and the ever present age and health. We have black ones and brown ones, white ones and grey ones, big ones and small ones, wide ones and thin ones.  Oh my!  Some like to be alone, some love to be in your face and some just wander about.
There are so many in our assortment of K9's that our rainbow is ever changing.

There are moments when a name escapes me and I admit to referring to them by colour or coat condition. Sometimes it's deliberate. They may be in a spot that is safe and comfy cozy and I don't want to disturb them. I know that if I refer to them in conversation by name, they're going to jump up and see what's going on. "Why was my name called? Is there cookies involved??" Oh great now I have to explain!  "I only wanted to say what a good girl/boy you are my sweetie. Go back to your rest in the sunshine"   Many times I just say, "the big fluffy guy" or the "little white curly one" or "Miss Sneaky Butt" or "Mr. Hi! How are ya?"

In all the diversity, size for sure really doesn't matter here. Whether you're teeny weeny or great big, the rules are still the same. Most importantly, be polite to everyone and share. Or at least be kind-fully mindful of the others. I don't really care what the body looks like, I'm more concerned with how the brain processes the surroundings and what messages it sends to have the body respond. Playing fair and safe is so important and will certainly make a visit nicer and they will be welcomed back.
Same age and energy level Miss Mia and Lil Molly 2012 
One of the characteristics not always noticeable is the variety of ages. We currently have ages ranging from 11 months old to 16 years old. When we have both ends of that scale visiting together or within a few days of each other, age is very noticeable.

We had the privilege of keeping Master Rookie, (The Old Man)  company for a day when his mom had to be out of town. The very next day we had Miss Yeti visit us. Let me tell you, age was noticeable!
Our senior 16 year old Master Rookie ambling around the yard.
Getting a picture of Master Rookie is only a matter of walking up, pointing the camera and clicking. He's methodical in his movements and always a happy boy.  When he's done his walk about the yard a few times, he simply finds the best comfy spot and there he waits until his mommy comes for him. I can clean the house or groom a dog or fold my laundry. There is never a distraction unless I create it. He loves to have his neck ruffled and back end scrunched and scratched. Oh the smiles I get.

What a good boy Rookie
The very next day in comes one of our youngsters for a day visit.  A marked difference! Look closely at this little ones eyes, and body language. She's a very obedient girl. Smart as a whip and just as fast.  There is no moss growing under this ones paws. You will see she's only laying still because I asked her to.  Notice she's in a closed area where her choices are limited.  Plus, she knows I have a kibble to offer. Kibble makes such great (whisper.... cookies")

Almost 2 year old Miss Yeti (Bday: May 1st 2018)
Getting a photo of Miss Yeti is quite the opposite.  She doesn't often lay still when she's here. There is JUST SO MUCH to see and smell and do! I was able to snap this one as she took a bit of a break from her busy, busy run around the yard. She zips, she zooms she spins and dashes in between everything possible.

We love it when a youngster gives Princess MollyDawg a challenging moment to exercise like she did in years past. Go Yeti Go!  When she's had her romp and satisfied her energy we can head back into the house for a bit of nap-time. Oh and then I can sneak any photos I may have missed. Yep, you guessed it. I just had to get a photo of Yeti in her finest bunny ears.
Somehow "Old Man Rookie" was left out of the event. I have no idea how that happened??   I'm going to get him another time. Get ready Master Rookie. Im coming for you.

Oh DRAT! I thought I missed the Easter photo shoot.
MOM Take Me HOME! 

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Tuesday, March 27, 2018

Tika's Bath Before Going Home

Tika is getting packed up to leave Royal K9 Korner. She's been a very good girl. She's had a few learning experiences and we can truly see an increase in her comfort level now.
We think she really enjoyed her stay and hope she visits us again soon. Her mom had asked for her to have a bath, so I started setting up our outdoor bath station. The Spring weather has been really warm.  We have hot water hooked up outdoors and I was looking forward to not having to scrub my bath tub down after.  The very next morning my goodness! What happened to our sunshine? There was no way Tika could be bathed outdoors.

So, into the bathtub she went. It took us a very long time to coax her into the bathroom. She obviously has some bath issues and we didn't want to scare her for future.  We used loads of nummy cookies and gentle positive persuasion.

In the end we simply hoisted the big girl up and into the tub she went.   Once she was in all was calm. I hope we helped her comfort level with the good solid rubber mat for grip and a perfect warm water temperature. She stretched her body out and allowed me to lather her up and use the bath brush to scrub her back and every inch of her body.  By the end of the bath she was squeaky clean and her lovely coat was shining.  What a good girl she was.  She is welcome to come back for a Royal K9 SPA treatment any time.
Even though I had the thermostat turned up so the house would be warm for her, this little girl was shivering after her bath. We made certain to rub her down with several big fluffy towels.

Im chilly so please leave 
me covered up ok Lady?
When she was done she found her daybed and cuddled down to dry off better. I changed her blanket a couple of times to make sure she was drying well. I certainly didn't want this short haired little angel to catch a chill. 

Oh yes! Thank you Lady I'm nice and warm now!
Soon it was time to take all the dogs out for their final piddle before bed. Tika decided she was staying in her cozy spot. That was fine. We went out and a few minutes later, guess who decided to come outdoors? Well, goodness sake, she had no coat on and was still wet! I happened to have my sleeveless Jack shirt on so off it came. It turned out to be a perfect warm up coat for Tika. I think we created a new fashion statement.

Ok, I'm done now. Let's go back in please.

Tika has been a delightful guest and is welcome back any time.

Soaking up some warm sunshine in the early morning.
Can you see my mom coming yet Princess MollyDawg? 

Tika still has a few other pack members to meet. We're gearing up for success for her.

Sunday, March 25, 2018

Spring Break at Royal K9 Korner

The long awaited Spring has finally arrived. The dogs are able to run through the yard and not slip on ice or get covered in mud. It is so nice to feel warmth from the sun now. They are enjoying laying on the warm driveway and dry ground.  I'm enjoying not having the labour of cleaning up snow fur ball or muddy paws each time before they enter the house.

Tika and Seven enjoy the warmth of the driveway
Seven only spent a couple of days with us, but he's always such a delight to have in our pack. He has a very calm, no nonsense personality. He understands leadership extremely well and has a perfect ability to read/understand other dogs. Being the only male this time, meant no other younger male was trying to outrank him. He had a very relaxing visit with us.  The girls love to have his influence around and give him the respect he deserves for his 13 years. 

We also have both Lil Molly and Tika returning to visit us. There was a bit of toy guarding at first. I'm always only a foot step away the first couple of days we have these two together. They both have strong personalities and my eyes can not leave them for an instant.  It doesn't take long for them to learn that my growl is WAY BIGGER and the sharing rule must be obeyed immediately around here.

Lil Molly, Lady May and Princess MollyDawg
prefer the softer warm dry grass
Lil Molly is very toy oriented, she's patient, smart and rather sly when others have what she deems, "her" toys.  So sneaky that she often doesn't meet any resistance when she steals them away. That's fine if the other dog allows it and if she's not hoarding them all. Which she will do and I do not allow.

Honestly Lady! No one wanted these toys!
Tika is not as toy driven but is still trying to fit herself into the pack. Her place will come easier with more visits. It will be as a gradual process of just being here. We, people tend to think dogs shouldn't have to prove where their particular rank is. Dogs like to have that hierarchy in tact and it changes each time a new pack members arrives. Patience, consistency and constant supervision makes it an easier learning time.

She is also still learning that I'm a stickler for all dogs using mats and not laying directly on the carpet.
Honestly Lady, I didn't see any mats!
Tika begins her visit with a bit of a bully girl attitude. An overpowering, in your face, posture of "I'm stronger than you, and I might outrank you and I don't have to listen to you, I'll just sit and wont budge and ... Hey, that toy that dog has looks interesting. I don't really want it but I might later, so GIVE it to me! NOW!"
Lil Molly is quick to accept a challenge and sends a big "No Way" bark, right back! Tika is  immediately taken aback.
They meet my quick and loud growl, "MY TOYS!"  and an instant removal swoop of the toy that happens so quickly, they both take a step back..  Every toy is scooped and thrown back in the bin and they vanish immediately.  Sharing, turn taking begins immediately.

I don't cherish the idea of having to go through the next few hours with a couple of dogs that I can not praise or acknowledge because they're on time out. Oh My!  So we nip those behaviors in the butt quick and early on.

We spend a long time playing sharing games indoors and out. What a difference it makes when they know the toys belong to ME. I decide who plays with what and when.  By late afternoon both are very tired and ready to even share a napping space.
Good girls!
Just don't touch my body okay?!
Once the spacial boundaries are defined and hierarchy in place, (which frequently changes dependent on situation and environment) we can get down to just enjoying a wonderful time of being. There's always rules to follow and once they're known and understood our pack settles into relax mode very easily.
Why do we have to sit and wait before we go outside? 
Oh and ... yes, it's never ending learning around here. (sigh)

Tuesday, March 20, 2018

What About Princess MollyDawg's Story

I've been reminiscing about the others who have passed and left their furry paws so deeply embedded in my heart. This time of year always does that to me. I'm happy to say, I'm stronger these days and can now smile through most of those memories. It doesn't take long for my memory to find the day our darling little Princess MollyDawg came to us. What an adorable little ball of fluff she was!
8 weeks old baby Molly's first ever kong. 
We had decided not to adopt until we had a house of our own with a full yard. 2005 made that happen.  We went into the Kamloops SPCA to look for who needed a home.  One of the hardest decisions we ever had to make.  We had to walk away and think about which one of those sweeties were coming home with us. The little black sad/sickly looking puppy in the back had caught daddy's eye.  The SPCA workers told us little black puppies were hard to place because they grew into big black dogs. People had a tendency not to like big black dogs.  She was the last of a litter of 5 brown puppies to be picked. The workers told us these particular puppies were brought in from Merritt. They had been found at about 5 weeks old, all climbing in and out of a box by the side of the hwy. Someone saw them as they were driving by and stopped to pick them up and brought them into Kamloops SPCA. They had come up for adoption a few days ago. This little black n tan puppy was all alone now, her 4 brown siblings had been snapped up as soon as they turned 8 weeks.

We knelt down beside the big cage and the little fluff ball slowly and sheepishly came over. She didn't jump up on the cage and she had her little tail between her legs. Her little eyes looked sad.  The lady said it was because her last brother had just been adopted a few hours earlier and she was now all alone. Awww poor little thing. I worried we were going to adopt a sick puppy who would require big vet bills. Daddy said, "No she's not sick. She's just lonely." He was right and we brought her home with us.

First Stuffy Playmate.
We spent hours on hours on end training this little girl. We were very lucky to have a family member who is a dog trainer. She gave us loads and loads of tips. Some of them I didn't think were very important so I skipped them. Big Mistake now 13 years down the road. We love our Princess with all our heart and know exactly how she gained the Princess Title.
She went everywhere with us and met as many different people and dogs of all types. We frequented places where there were crowds and children and lots of other dogs.  She became very well rounded and socialized.  Her very first best friend was her Border Terrier "cousin", Seven. He was only 1 month younger than her and a spitfire of a little guy.  As time went on of course The Princess grew, lil Seven did not grow very much in body but in his spirit he grew into a very BIG dog. Not once did Miss Molly RatBag get the better of him. Though she tried many times.  Today they are still fast and wonderful friends.

Over the years Molly has been a wonderful girl always helping when I need it.  She will pick things up and pass them to me when I drop them. She brings me my shoes when its time to go out and forever brings me pens even if I don't need them. Oh brother, Molly gurl! 

"I'm always ready to help you mommy!"
She's made many friends. She had no choice. She loves a good romp and has always had way more energy than us. We walked her and ran her and played with her and found it very difficult to tire her out.  She's always been very loyal and a loving little girl. She's also incredibly smart. It was hard for me to train her because I gave into her beauty.  Her face and little antics always melted out hearts and we just caved in.

Look! I did the shredding for you!
Finally one day we decided she needed a playmate. So, our search for just the right playmate began and brought us our devoted beloved King. These two were inseparable. A tightly bonded pair right from the get go.  Princess MollyDawg fell deeply in love with her King and stayed by his side right to his last breath.


Today MollyDawg is 13 years old and definitely showing her age. She now rules over Royal K9Korner and keeps everyone in check. She's had a few serious bouts of tummy issues and now hosts an ulcer. Oh my poor Princess. We keep her on a very strict special diet. She can no longer eat cookies so we keep a little jar of her special kibble set aside and call it "Cookies."  She gets very excited about them and can even count out three of them.  She's been a very tolerant girl of all the others who have joined her extended pack. She's both resilient and resistant and can still be a real Ratbag! We love her with all our heart and can't wait to show her off to you when you visit.

"Oh and remember to bring cookies okay!"