Harley’s Story – A New Life for A Rescued Dog

harleys story rescued dog thats adopted and homed ark animal shelter blog cover copy

Written by Harley Scorgie, an adopted Pekingese boy. What his first few days in his new home was like 🙂 Such a cute story every pet owner should read! ♥

I was a bit scared when you dropped me off in my new place, but my mom gave me a styling new designer collar which now has my name on and a big bed all to myself – at first I didn’t know what the bed was but mom showed me that it is where I sleep at night and I also find that it is a useful hiding spot from my friends who stay with me for all my favourite toys.

rescued dog adopted from animal shelter johannesburg

This is my version of helping mom unpack her clothing boxes from her move – it was hard work!

The first night I slept all the way through and mom said that I was such a good boy, she says I’m not allowed to sleep on the bed but in the morning she wakes up and lets me come and cuddle in the pillows with her – I love it!!

rescued dog adopted from animal shelter johannesburg


rescued dog adopted from animal shelter johannesburg

Cuddling with mom in the pillows every morning is the best!

On Day 3 mom took me to her office, it’s such a cool place because everybody gets to bring their dogs so I have lots of friends to play with and we have been going there every day. I have all of mom’s colleagues wrapped around my little paw because of my cute face and I make sure they give me as many tummy tickles as I want (tummy tickles are my favourite by the way!)

rescued dog adopted from animal shelter johannesburg

First day going to the office – mom says I’m a good driving companion and sit like a good boy the whole way

rescued dog adopted from animal shelter johannesburg

Cuddles from Carina in the office!

rescued dog adopted from animal shelter johannesburg

Half falling asleep on Byron’s shoulder – he likes to take me for walks in the office gardens

It made mom very sad when she realised that I didn’t know what stairs were in her house so we practiced for a few nights going up by using treats, I was very scared but on the third night I managed to make it all the way up to the top. Mom was so proud that she started crying! Now I’m a master of the stairs and spend all day following mom up and down which she says is good for me since I get spoilt with so many treats so I have to keep fit.

rescued dog adopted from animal shelter johannesburg

My friends and I – Minki (bottom left) is mom’s roommates dog and we also have a foster called Zigga at the moment (top left)

When we come home from work, I go for a walk with mom and her roommate around the complex, her roommate has a Yorkie called Minki and is busy fostering another Yorkie from Ark Animal Centre, called Zigga so we are all friends and love our walks together. I’m not a huge fan of the harness and lead but mom says it’s for me to stay safe so that we can live together forever, I do however enjoy playing hide and go seek with her when I see her take it out and I make her chase me.

harley and minkie with doggy outfits clothes on

Minki and my new outfits for the park

Mom is busy teaching me how to play ball, she had to go and buy special small tennis balls for me because normal tennis balls were too big for my mouth. So far I understand that I must fetch it but mom keeps on telling me I must bring it back to her but I prefer to sit and chew it – she says we need to work on our communication.

When I first arrived I liked to mark my territory all over the house, mom didn’t seem to like that too much but after a week of her showing me I was naughty for doing that, I’ve worked out that I must go outside. Every time I go outside now mom calls me a good boy and I sometimes get a treat – Beeno’s are my favourite!

stephanie scorgie and harley adopted pekingnese

I love my new mommy!!

Mom says that in my letter I must tell you that she says thank you for letting me be part of her life because she doesn’t know what she would do without me now. I also want to say thank you for rescuing me and making sure that I went to a home with lots of love.


Harley Scorgie

Coco the Cleft Palate Jack Russell’s Happy Ending

coco cleft palate puppy posing copy

My name is Coco and I’m a cleft palate pup that would like to share my story with you

I was born on 6th March 2011 along with my brothers and sisters.  For reasons only later revealed my mom wasn’t able to feed me and rejected me. Her owners brought me to my new family when I was a day old and that’s been my home ever since.

jack russell puppy cleft palate

I was hand reared with a bottle and Milk-o-pup formula and always battled to suckle properly, often the milk would come out my nose.  I was fed every 2 hours but only managed a measly 2 – 5ml at a time.

At 5 weeks my new mommy introduced me to soft puppy food but that didn’t work out at all, everything came out my nose.  They thought I might have a cold and took me to the vet who informed them that I in fact had a cleft palate and it would probably be best if I was put down.

My new family was heartbroken after doing such a great job with me for 5 weeks and headed home, straight onto Google, and there they found out all the info they would need to keep me alive.

jack russell puppy cleft palate

I was given water from a hamster bottle on a stand as I needed to drink upright so the liquids didn’t go into my lungs.  As I got older I only eat dry doggy food and drink water, mom treats me with cut up Vienna’s too.

jack russell puppy cleft palate

For Easter 2011 my family and I were heading to Badplaas with their caravan and were involved in a terrible accident, with a truck, fortunately we were all ok but the van and car were write offs.  Every-one was so concerned about me (I was 6 weeks old) but I was none the worse for wear.

jack russell puppy cleft palate car caravan accident

That year my family moved and one day, just for a split second, the gate was left open and I decided to go for a walk.  I got rather confused about where I was and got lost.  The family was frantic; half the neighborhood was out looking for me.  Luckily they found me and now I have a collar with my name and number, just in case.

jack russell puppy cleft palate

One day we went to visit family and I was playing in the garden with their dog when all of a sudden I couldn’t breathe! It was awful! My throat closed up and I was turning blue. My mom was blowing down my nose and throat thinking I choked on something or was stung by a bee.  I was rushed to the vet who put me in an oxygen tank for the night; it was so scary to be alone! I’ve never spent a night without mom, her bed is my bed and she’s not here. We don’t know what caused the attack and every now and then if I get too excited it happens again, not that bad though and I don’t go to the vet, mom calms me down on her bed then I’m fine.

As far as my diet goes I only eat dry, solid food and drink water.  Every now and then I still have water running out my nose but I’m otherwise 100% Jack Russell.  I love riding in the car, teddy’s (emptying them is so much fun) but my rope is my favorite toy and Google is my best friend as without it, I probably wouldn’t be here.

Written by: Coco & her mom, Vionne Kruger

Ark has a Windows 8 App!!

 windows 8 app for ark animal centre puppy rescue shelter

Download the awesome app to read about who we are, what our mission and vision are, find out how you can help and learn how you can adopt one of our adorable animals!

Also stay in touch with us via our twitter feed and read about whats going on at Ark through our blog posts all in one place!

Download the app for Windows 8 now by clicking here!

If you have any feedback or comment please email them to candice@arkanimalcentre.co.za

Developed by: Lionel Camacho

Mike and Candice’s Unique Wedding

Claire Gunn Photography Eilertsen Wedding Day 4 mike and candice eilertsen otto

Our Ark Angel, Candice was married to business entrepreneur Michael Eilertsen on 20th March 2013 in a beautiful event held at the Prynnsberg Manor in Clocolan, Freestate. The couple celebrated with close friends and family in a 5 day wedding celebration that was filmed by SABC 3’s Top Billing show.

Candice and her family started the Ark Animal Centre in July 2011. Later that year she started dating Mike Eilertsen, CEO of the LIVEOUTLOUD group of companies. Not long after that, Mike whisked Candice away on a surprise trip to Venice, Italy where he proposed on a gondola. The couple had wanted a very intimate wedding, with only very close friends and immediate family spending time together for 4 days before the big day.

Their view was that marriage is not just about two people uniting, but about two families joining in a celebration and creating memories that will bond each family member together. Every day was themed with different events and experiences taking place that would create talking points and memories for the future.

Day one was an Arabian themed evening, because the couple met at the Buddha Ta restaurant in Fourways. Guests sat outside in the Starlit Theatre, and watched a short film on the huge sandstone screen.

Claire Gunn Photography Eilertsen Wedding Day 1 (17) Claire Gunn Photography Eilertsen Wedding Day 1 (11)

Day two was a Wimbledon Whites Day with clay pigeon shooting, archery and croquet for everyone to enjoy. Later that evening was the exquisite Venetian Ball, where guests were dressed up in ball gowns and intricate masks.

Claire Gunn Photography Eilertsen Wedding Day 2 (24)

Claire Gunn Photography Eilertsen Wedding Day 2 (29)

Day 3 was the very amusing Bicycle Polo. There were many laughs as guests realised that it is a much harder sport than it seems. That evening was the rehearsal dinner where the bride and groom’s sisters all said a few words before the wedding.

bike polo michael and candice eilertsens wedding claire gunn photo top billing

Claire Gunn Photography Eilertsen Wedding Day 3 (13)

Day 4 was the spectacular wedding. Mike and his groomsmen looked dashing as they entered the ceremony with Conquest of Paradise playing, while Candice’s bridesmaids walked down the aisle to the substantial sounds of Vivaldi, Four Seasons Winter. As a true animal lover, Candice had her rescue dog, Lollipop and Mike’s half brother, Josh, walk down the aisle together. The bride and her dad, Alan Otto, walked very gracefully to the traditional Wedding March while guests looked on with their cameras clicking.

Claire Gunn Photography Eilertsen Wedding Day 4 (21)

Claire Gunn Photography Eilertsen Wedding Day 4 (31)

It was a magnificent day enjoyed by all, with a wonderful union of two families. The couple will be going on Honeymoon after the shelters move in May. We cannot wait to see more pictures!

Click here to watch the wedding insert from Top Billing!

Click here to read Mike Eilertsen’s blog

Below are a few photos from the day…

Wedding Suppliers:

Photography by Claire Gunn: www.clairegunn.co.za

Wedding dress by Pronovias: www.pronovias.co.za

Make up by Cicilia Kaufmann: www.ckmakeup.com

Hair by Gary Rom Hair: www.garyromhairdressing.co.za

Bridesmaid dresses by Fascinating Julia: www.fascinatingjulia.co.za

Décor by Funxion Fusion: www.funxionfusion.co.za

Food by Moemas Catering: www.moemas.co.za

Sound and lighting: www.wizardarygroup.com

Tents by Timeless Tents: www.timelesstents.co.za

Flowers by Salamander: www.salamander.co.za

Venue at Prynnsberg Manor: www.prynnsberg.co.za

Wedding rings by Michaels Designs: www.michaelsdesigns.co.za

Suits by Euro Suits Rivonia: www.eurosuit.co.za/stores/rivonia