Friday, April 04, 2014

White Dog: The rest of the story

White Dog in my stepson's Vancouver apartment
I've been posting a lot of White Dog updates on Facebook but realized that not everyone who saw my first blog post on her is my Facebook friend and might be wondering how the story ended.
    It ended well. White Dog is now settled in her new home in Cumberland, and judging by the little video I saw yesterday of her bouncing around with my daughter and her family on a Comox Valley beach, settling in quite nicely. And just like childbirth, all the hassle has been forgotten just seeing how happy she is to be here and how happy my family is to have her as their newest addition.
    But that's not to say that anything about the process was easy or cheap. When last I posted, White Dog's tab was at around $1000, which included vet bills to get her ready to come, shipping and pet brokerage fees (expensive!). We got hit with an additional $90 after we arrived in Canada - $30 to the Canada Border Agency and $60 to the company that handles cargo at the Vancouver Airport.
WD in her kennel at the San Pedro cargo area
    We would have incurred even more costs for transport were it not for having good friends with big vehicles. A Kennel 500 is one honking piece of furniture, and we had four seriously big suitcases and an accordion to transport as well because we were leaving the country and packing up what little household goods we had. There were four legs of land transport that would have been difficult and costly had friends not stepped forward to help us out.
     My Honduran boss Merlin Fuentes transported all of us and our luggage to San Pedro Sula from Copan Ruinas, saving us money but more importantly, an unbelievably difficult four-hour bus ride. Another co-worker in San Pedro took us to the airport on the morning of our flight, and patiently drove us around the airport as we looked for the cargo place where we could drop off the dog (which nobody informed us of until the night before).
    While we'd initially thought White Dog would be flown into Victoria along with us, her flight in fact ended in Vancouver, which is apparently as far as the company will take the dog. So then we needed my partner's son Sam to step up and come and get us at the Vancouver Airport at midnight. We didn't get out of there until after 2 a.m. due to an enormous final hassle they saddle you with in which you have to drive back and forth between the cargo area and the airport to get papers stamped by customs and fees paid.
First daffodil experience during a morning walk in Vancouver
    Then we were in Vancouver with no way to get to Victoria. Happily, another friend who happened to be returning to Victoria from the mainland on Wednesday and had a big vehicle stuffed the dog and I in and we came on the ferry. Paul had taken a couple of the bigger bags earlier that morning and made use of one of those two flights we'd paid for to Victoria; we had no choice but to forfeit the other one.  But then my daughter met us at my mom's place in Victoria and White Dog stepped out into her new life, and all was well.  
    She seems invigorated by the cooler temperatures, and I'm sure will be forever grateful that the ticks aren't nearly so relentless in Canada and the municipality doesn't poison dogs on a regular basis. She has a new pal, Angus - my daughter's other dog - and a family with a nice yard and a lot of chicken gizzards to share.
     And it's great to have her here. She's the ultimate Honduran souvenir. I still blush when I think of just how much money we ended up spending to bring her, but let's just consider that water under the bridge. 

1 comment:

Marg said...

LUV happy endings!! Such a great gift you and your family have given White Dog! Thx for sharing happy news, Jody.