BHRR’s Braveheart…… ? – April 8th, 2015
HOW we are going to remember you!
Becoming more confident and, comfortable and, playing with one of your best of friends, BHRR’s Purse Puppy Coach(special needs yet does not hold him back! – Blind & Heart Condition)…..
Full of personality, vocal and, when he trusted you, quite affectionate, that body armor would have been of benefit! 
Not a half measure kind of dude….all in or all out for him…..
Honest, was learning self-control and, to make good choices……..
It took a long time to get within his circle of trust, yet, if you did earn such a privilege, it was a gift… be cherished and, treated carefully.
Quirky boy who moved with little grace or style and, yet, had much heart!
He was also one of our BHRR dogs greatly affected by the contaminated food sent our way in January……..

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BHRR’s Ethel and BHRR’s Braveheart have been moved to our BHRR Haven program due to the severe internal organ damage that has occurred due to food contamination. They are a number of dogs that have been terribly affected by food donated our way by another group on January 17th, 2015.

BHRR’s Merlin was the first death that occurred on January 21st, 2015 and, then we lost one of our own, our EM Caffrey(she was not fed the rescue donated food yet, she eats vomit and, sometimes poop and, at one point we were cleaning up over 52 piles of diarrhea and vomit. With her advanced kidney disease(AND, she was doing great…and, had been for years!), her body could not handle the toxins.

BHRR’s Porridge, BHRR’s Braveheart, BHRR’s Salma and BHRR’s Ethel were also severely affected and, more minorly BHRR’s Oakley. I will update his own blog later for he also has been moved to the Haven Program yet, not due to food contamination. Here is a copy of the blog post that was made on BHRR’s Blog. We made the exact same post on our BHRR Fb page under his memorial photo. All the other dogs have already bounced back or, are still doing so.

BHRR’s Merlin – ? – January 21st, 2015
*Victim to Food Contamination*

Tragically, he is the first of several dogs deeply affected at BHRR by food sent our way by a group.

We have learned a lot more than we ever did before about food contamination and, how easy food can be contaminated once it leaves a manufaturer’s hands and, the more hands it touches plus transfers from, the higher the risk of problems occuring.

This memorial posting is only being made now for a number of reasons.

1) I wanted to touch base with the animal control person that I have worked with for well over a decade saving amazing dogs such as BHRR’s Licorice, BHRR’s Thor, BHRR’s Ava Marie, BHRR’s Potter etc….they entrusted this amazing GD to our care and, it was important to converse with them directly and, not for them to find out on a blog or a fb post that he was no longer with us. Many tears were shared over his loss…

2) I and the control officer finally made contact on Monday February 16th after much tagging back and forth and, it was like ripping a fresh scab off a very raw enormous wound and, I needed a few more days.

3) We have been in contact with two food testing and analysis companies – both in Mississauga and, it has been extremely informative plus educational. One could have a 1,000 bags of food, it only takes one bag to be contaminated to affect a life and, a whole bag also does not need to be contaminated for a life to be negatively affected…

We had been told that no other org.’s donated this food by this group, were affected. Then a group did reach out to us to say that they also had dogs affected.

We do sincerely hope that no more deaths or even vomiting, diarrhoea, lethargy, excessive gas etc. occur to any of the groups involved. No one should go through our experience.

We went through 72 hours of the worst hell imaginable with vomiting, diarrhoea, lethargy, gas and, now loss.

We are even now still trying to get weight back on, after purging their systems and, re-introducing food slowly – many witnessed at our February 1st BHRR ‘EXPERIENCE’ mini open house, the new thinness of many of the dogs.

Each day is better and better for most of them now. Thank goodness…..

Yet, sadly, we have a number of other dogs including BHRR’s Porridge, BHRR’s Braveheart, BHRR’s Oakley, BHRR’s Salma(HQD), not to mention one of our own Caffrey(though she was not fed any of this food, she does like to eat vomit and sometimes dog poop) and, at one point we were cleaning up over 52 bouts of diarrhea/vomit – lost count after that – inside and out of the house) adversely affected.

We have spent much money on exams, blood-work and UA’s to see how the internal organ functions have been affected and, how much if so.

At our recent BHRR ‘EXPERIENCE’ mini open house, it was so sad to learn of not one but two other groups that were in attendance that have experienced their own losses over the years due to contaminated food – it is so easy for food to become contaminated – how it is stored, how it is transported/transferred, mouse droppings, moisture, birds, freezing and thawing etc. No one’s intentions were ill with the donation of this food, yet, the results have been devastating to BHRR.

We began to feed the food the same day it was donated – January 17th and, it was mixed appropriately and, the food bags were stored properly.

Since learning even more about food contamination, we are taking even more precautions on our end re: food donations and storing and, handling.

We have operated BHRR for over 19 years and, we have never gone through an experience like this and, may we never do so again.

Our wish would be for no organization or group to do so.

We did inform the group that donated the food – they originally wanted us to take food back in December, we did decline as we had just bought food and, had some donations sent our way – SS etc. and, we never wished to see another group do without.

In January, we were contacted again and, this person was quite insistent to assist our group with food for they did not wish to see it go to waster/bad and, we then accepted with our grateful appreciation 8 bags.

We also had two dogs in foster care also affected and, not just the rescues residing here at BHRR.

We showed the proper due diligence in informing this group about the food as were were aware others had also received some.

We respectfully request that any posts made in this thread be made in BHRR’s Merlin’s honour plus memory…..

If only we could turn back time…….we tried so hard to save you, you were getting healthy day by day, putting on the weight slowly, your skin issues were resolving, did blood-work and UA’s and, we even saw a specialist for your eye, biopsied all your lumps and bumps and, yet, your poor special needs neglected broken abused body just could not handle the food………

BHRR deals with extremely compromised immune and digestive system medical cases such as severe emaciation and, these special needs dogs could not deal with the food.

BHRR believes in full disclosure and, the BHRR BOD can be reached at

RIP BHRR’s Merlin……..we will miss your special ‘purring’….

GENTLE Reminder:
BHRR's Gretta's angels have been working quietly plus hard behind the scenes on a special Fundraiser event to help raise some much needed monies to help her with the bills from her cruciate repair surgery and rehab journey.
Thanks is appreciatively extended to Pet Valu – Manotick for helping us, AND, for hosting this event on Sunday February 15th, 2015 from 10 AM – 4 PM
This is the 'Grooming For Gretta – Sweetheart Spa' Fundraiser!
No APPOINTMENTS necessary!
BHRR is still ISO: two more approved BHRR Volunteers willing and open to helping lend a hand that day! 
This is not a community education or public awareness event for BHRR yet, we will have some merchandise for sale such as our signature leash sleeves plus magnets. smile emoticon
Please email
THANKS once again MUST be shouted out to BHRR BOD member B. Cole for such an amazing poster!

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Winter Wonderland At BHRR
February 3rd, 2015
It was time for a new and updated Photo!
All of them are waiting for the kids to come home from school – what they do not seem to realize is Mason was already home! 😉
Part of how I got to spend my Birthday….many of our approved temp fosters have come to spend the day to play and visit – my own car would not start – darn cold! – and, so, instead of meeting at a local 'best kept secret' walking place, they came here to play on our 148 acres!


Back in December, Fran from Global Pet Foods Bank Street (1176 Bank Street) phoned plus emailed us to inquire as to our thoughts in being the rescue to benefit from the annual Global 'Show Us Your Heart' Campaign.
Fran said that they have been following some of the great work that BHRR has been doing and, wanted to direct funds raised during their annual campaign in 2015, our way. 
To say that we felt humbled and deeply honoured, was putting it lightly. We feel so privileged to have been chosen by Global Pet Foods Bank Street, out of so many out there in the community doing such much needed and essential work helping animals…….
This exciting campaign begins January 31st and shall run through to February 14th, 2015
If you visit their store, you can make a donation in any amount you desire, and, you can write your name or that of your beloved pet(s) on a beautiful red heart and, it will be displayed with such pride and thanks at their store!
All monies raised shall go towards BHRR's Gretta's Vet Bills – she took a bad fall at her approved temp foster home and, we have to now repair the cruciate in her back left leg. Her surgery is January 29th at Liston Animal Hospital. It was the first surgical date we could get…….
Thank you Global Pet Foods Bank Street AGAIN for selecting our small r/q Rescue to support……be it $5 or $50 or more that is raised during your annual campaign, it will mean the world to us!!! AND, to BHRR's Gretta!
Barry, thank you SO much again for working with me on this poster. It is gorgeous!

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Our 2nd ANNUAL 'Breaking Bills Baking' Online Auction' starts TODAY – Saturday January 17th, @ 7 AM EST!

We will have 40 extremely generously donated and, delicious items. THANKS to all the baking angels that are making this annual event possible!!!
All monies raised in this Annual Fundraiser shall go towards BHRR's Maverick's Vet Bills. His current Bills are over $15,300.00 which includes three leg surgeries.
To read more details about the auction(those darn rules!) and, to view the items up for grabs so far….please visit the below link and scroll down the page…….Our latest new delectable array of items include Rice Krispies, Macaroons and, at least 5 l of the special pasta sauce that we served at our annual September "DINE WITH THE BHRR DOGGIES' event.

If anyone else would like to donate a baked goodie or goodies, it is NOT too late…all items do not have to be made until the auction is over to ensure freshness for the winner(s), please do email

Already 2015 is shaping up to be another extremely busy year for the special animals in need of us, as we have the Male Blue GD with the untreated broken leg and, have another Dane – BHRR's Gretta that will require a cruciate repair(Surgery is on January 29th) NOT to mention The Lord Stafford and his continued mounting Vet Bills.

We were able to assist 16 dogs in 2014, and, 24 dogs in 2013. We will assist as many as we can responsibly take on with quality and, resources in 2015.

THANK you Barry for working with me on this gorgeous poster!!!!
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Mason(14) with BHRR's Braveheart
Male Heavily Marked Harle GD
December 24th, 2014
That amazing painting was from Bridget and Charley and their beloved RIP GD Ella. They collected $300 for him in lieu of Birthday gifts and, brought him some much needed items and showered him with so much love!
This very special painting will go into his file and, be given to his right matched forever loving home when it is his time….
This is his first XMAS and, shall have a bed to call his own, toys, treats etc….
As a r/q Rescue, we do not have many excess items to share with all the dogs and, this is what makes our successful SS program so wonderful….dogs get nice collars and leashes and, beds, bowls and, items, that we otherwise, rarely can afford to provide for the dogs on a regular basis….even dog food donations are a winning lottery item for many groups out there, and, especially for BHRR!
They get to be spoiled!
We remain so humbled by all of you…..

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BHRR's Braveheart with company! 🙂
LESS than 48 hours at BHRR.
December 10th, 2014
(BHRR's Oakley, BHRR's Ichabod, BHRR's Potter, BHRR's Bloom!)
Thank you Tammie Jackson & Karen Starkie for being his angels….

VIDEO BHRR's Braveheart Dcember 10th, 2014

(You do not need a PayPal account either)

A file is set up at Kanata Animal Hospital (613) 836-2848 and they will take Visa, M/C and AMEX over the phone under the account of ‘Birch Haven Rescue’ for ‘Braveheart’. They will take Debit or Cash in person at 440 Hazeldean Road in Kanata, Ontario

You can also mail donations via a Bank Draft to:

Birch Haven Rescue & Rehabilitation Services
C/O Gwendilin Boers
2425 Totem Ranch Road West
RR#1 Oxford Station, Ontario
K0G 1T0

OR email transfer to

OR via PayPal(please use the ‘gift’ option OR the ‘friends and family’ option) OR we shall have to pay service charge fees. :(

BHRR’s Braveheart's Angels  $15.00* donated to date & Bills are $0.00
A. Biggley



This is BHRR's Braveheart – not the greatest photo yet, he was looking at our 13 gallon freshwater tank in the sun-room and, the best I could snag.

In less than 12 hours, he was already integrated with some of the dogs, doing wonderfully, had eaten some food, wagging his tail some and, boy does BHRR's Kricket ADORE him!
Less than 24 hours later, he has been almost fully integrated with all, eaten some more food, making a couple of friends, beginning to become even more affectionate and, just now, he asked me for love for the very first time! He has been settling in much faster, than anyone would have thought or predicted and, he will continue to call the 'pace' as we work on providing all the set-up for success opportunities that he deserves. 
He and BHRR's Kricket have something really special going on….she was determined to 'win' him over. THE only other dog that she has connected and loved instantly so much to date, has been BHRR's Ivy. She likes all the dogs yet, she has a really special relationship with BHRR's Ivy and, even now, she is 'showing' BHRR's Braveheart what fun it can be to race around my house at almost midnight! 
AND, HQD is just laying upon her 'throne' looking upon them with approval and looking upon me with her usual disapproval as I want the 'no running in the house' rule enforced!  
To think that less than a week ago, he was 'poled' to get out of his run at the shelter, people were afraid of him, and, he was described as being severely aggressive to dogs, and people and not just extremely undersocialised etc. 
AND, if it were not for his shelter angel, Tammie, he would have been pts on Friday…..she advocated so strongly for him, contacted us and, the rest is history. LOVE working with this shelter….amazing people. 
Honored and privileged as I have said previously to be a rescue partner of theirs.
I cannot wait until I get home from work tomorrow and do one of our famous Winter Wonderful Video's for people to 'see' just who this boy is and, the potential he has!
He is a heavier marked Harle, young – maybe 18 months and, such clean markings….
AND, while some have found his eyes to be intimidating…to me, they are lovely…..
So, ends the first 24 hours with this magnificent creature that is starting to trust and believe and, accept hands of help and love over hurt and rejection…..
Yes, he has a path for sure that he needs to walk of healing and rehab and confidence building and acceptance of there never being another day of bad things in his life again…..yet, I will walk this journey with him, each step of the way…..right by his side!
Encouraging him, supporting him and, believing in him!
BHRR's Braveheart is just one of the many specialized reasons why BHRR exists…..why, our programs are needed…..


We will be out to visit around 11 AM on Saturday ourselves to get some photos' and, I am hoping to bring BHRR's Ichabod Crane, BHRR's Zayna and BHRR's Salem for their very first XMAS photo's!
I heard a rumor that BHRR's Mav 'could' also put in a celebrity appearance!

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UPDATE: I got him and, after careful transitioning – two leashes, two people, he is in my car and I am getting ready to make the push home!
Dogs like him, really need two collars and two leashes as they are a huge flight risk…
He is a bit skinny, nothing terrible and, has the softest chin ever! BHRR's Canvas and BHRR's Kaden were far worse in fear and, we shall see how things go in seeing more dogs. No integration until he is more settled and…..
Thank you Tammie and Karen and, welcome to the BHRR fam, Braveheart!

UPDATE: Karen now has the Harle GD male in her safe plus loving arms and, I will be driving out to meet her later.

We have named him BHRR's Braveheart – my family tree actually traces back to William Wallace, being one of my relatives.

He is understandably very nervous right now and, while a night transport is not the best for many of these extremely fearful dogs, it is not our first rodeo as they say, and, he is in experienced hands…..

We were contacted at the end of November re: a severely under socialised and fearful Male, Harle, 'similar' in colour to our BHRR's Treasure and, asking if, we may wish to assist as we were told that he really needs us….

While we did not have a photo of what we knew to be a Harlequin GD(if the colouring was similar to BHRR's Treasure), we committed. As he was just recently o/s to the high kill shelter, he had not yet been evaluated/assessed. 

I sent a courtesy follow-up on Wednesday December 3rd to check the status as, I had not heard back(I understand how busy everyone is!).

We were then passed along some very unfortunate news. They were not able to handle him at the Shelter and, could not assess him as they were scared of him and, the staff refused to vet him. 

He is extremely undersocialized and staff at the shelter were not comfortable working with him and, he had to be 'poled' to be handled. 
Said to be aggressive with humans and other dogs. Was slated to be pts on Friday December 5th and, we were able to get in to do an assessment/evaluation Friday AM and, he was able to be walked without concern. He was relaxed when he saw other dogs in runs and, appears that men more than women make him scared. 

He is deserving of a chance and, we are going to give it to him………

We do not profess to be miracle workers yet, we understand fear aggression, how dogs do not present well in a shelter environment and, that if people are not comfortable or are scared, dogs can 'mimic' and 'react' to that…..We know that not all dogs can be saved yet, we are prepared to give him what he deserves…the opportunities and structure and best set up for success that we can!

We understand and are experts with Danes, and, this is one of the big reasons why BHRR exists! 

ETA to BHRR Monday December 8th, 2014

He would love a SS of his very own if anyone is interested…guaranteed that this dog has not had ONE moment of love or kindness in his life to date……

(You do not need a PayPal account either)

A file is set up at Kanata Animal Hospital (613) 836-2848 and they will take Visa, M/C and AMEX over the phone under the account of ‘Birch Haven Rescue’ for ‘Braveheart’. They will take Debit or Cash in person at 440 Hazeldean Road in Kanata, Ontario

You can also mail donations via a Bank Draft to:

Birch Haven Rescue & Rehabilitation Services
C/O Gwendilin Boers
2425 Totem Ranch Road West
RR#1 Oxford Station, Ontario
K0G 1T0

OR email transfer to

OR via PayPal(please use the ‘gift’ option OR the ‘friends and family’ option) OR we shall have to pay service charge fees. :(

BHRR’s Braveheart's Angels  $o.oo* donated to date & Bills are $0.00



BHRR does not adopt out during the XMAS season due to our position that it is not in the best interest of any new addition being added during such a busy, exciting and somewhat stressful time for many.
Quite a few other Rescues, Shelters, Pounds etc. have also begun to follow a similar protocol to what we have been doing for so many years.
Our XMAS Shut down period for this year is from Monday December 15th, 2014 to Tuesday January 6th 2015 inclusive.
Any applications received during this time will be processed/reviewed on Wednesday January 7th, 2015!
During this time, BHRR is available 24/7 as always for requests for assistance of animals in need and will do intake.
Thank you for your continued understanding – The BHRR Team