Rock the Dogs

What goes up must come down, and that is just what Maggie Tyerman-Norbjerg did on Sunday at 2 p.m., 24 hours after she climbed up on the Big Rock in Campbell River.

But what kept going up was the total funds raised for the Rock the Dogs fund raiser. The final total pending any mail in donations is $4,096.25, four times her goal of $1000.

Tyerman-Norbjerg was symbolically representing the experience of the “Reef Babies”, Jonah and Isaac, two dogs found stranded on a reef off the shores of Kyuquot two weeks ago. The RCMP admitted the dogs had been “relocated” after a young girl in that community was attacked by dogs.

“They pose a risk to the public and cannot go home,” said Corporal Darren Lagan, RCMP Communications. “They need to be put down and not be in the company of humans. If the dogs are somewhat feral we relocate them and let them fend for themselves but we are quite rightly justified to euthanize dangerous dogs on the spot with our firearm. People have to put this situation in the context of where we are located. Kids here (in Kyuquot) play in the street, the street is their home. With the feral dog population, wildlife come to the community because they see the dogs as a food source. We have to protect the village kids and as long as the dogs keep multiplying it will continue to get worse.”

There remains the question as to how the dogs got out on to the reef. The police said the dogs were dropped off on the beach. Their rescuers believe the dogs were not capable of, or inclined to, swim out to the reef in the freezing water.

After providing veterinary care to the two dogs, including neutering, they will be professionally assessed for temperament.

“Since the RCMP have identified them as dangerous dogs, I cannot foster them out or adopt them until the professional assessment is done to clear them,” said Tyerman-Norbjerg.

“And in addition to the attention given to Noah and Isaac, let’s not forget there was a little girl who was injured and traumatized by a pack of dogs wandering the streets there. We must send our blessings to her and her family, and also we must work to find a way to help this community address the dog problem there. We need a rescue program to get the dogs out and a spay and neuter program to go in there and help control the increase of street dogs and feral dogs because puppies are having puppies, and it is out of control.”

Although the view was amazing, she has never been so cold in her life, Tyerman-Norbjerg said of her vigil atop the Big Rock.

“I can’t even imagine what Isaac and Jonah experienced. I lost feeling in my hands and feet several hours into it,” she said.

Tyerman-Norbjerg wants to thank the people and the businesses who made this possible, by donating their time, talent, items needed for the event, prizes and gift certificates for the raffle. The local businesses are; Campbell River Pet Centre, Play’n Trade, Splash Body Care, Wei Wai Kum House of Treasures, Go Dog Go, Dogwood Petmart, Tim Hortons, Woofys, True Blue Pet Supplies, Hair Squared and Coastland Veterinary.

“I would also like to offer a very huge thank you to Dr. Jim Proctor who, over the past couple of years has worked with Eleasha, Rob and I in providing vet care for the many animals we have brought to him,” said  Tyerman-Norbjerg. “Going so far as doing surgery at 11:30 at night for an animal in need. This man is amazing, I am truly blessed to have his and his wife’s Carole’s friendship.”

The volunteers for the event were Brittany Hazlett, Dawn Mills, Eleasha Chidley, Elaine Mills, Nikki Watts, Claude Jacques, Bob Watts, Emma Thomson, Rhonda and Melyssa Wykes and Dave Smith.

“Without this group of people, Rock the Dogs wouldn’t have been the success that it was,” said Tyerman-Norbjerg. “I’d like to give a special thank you to Kevin Weatherall for bringing dinner for all of us and for the dogs. And to Ella Nicolaye for making numerous trips to ensure that I was kept warm. The heated seat and multiple packages of hand warmers she brought played a key role in keeping me from completely freezing. “

If people want to donate to the Rock the Dogs fund, which will continue to help rescued dogs and hopefully the dogs of Kyuquot, contact Maggie at K-9 Designs 250-287-3033.

sthomson@courierislander.com

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