Princess, our beautiful and precocious German Shepherd has left us. She will be sorely missed. Like her name, she was such a commanding presence you could never miss her when you visit the sanctuary. She made sure of that…Princess came to Noah’s Ark when she was still a puppy. Then, the sanctuary was still located in Singapore. As her name indicates, our Princess came from a pedigreed background. She was sold by a breeder as a show dog and was later diagnosed with serious hip dyslexia by the vet. Mercifully, the vet said it would be a pity to put her down as she was only 6 months old.
The German Shepherd Club (GSC) then got in touch with Noah’s Ark Natural Animal Sanctuary and asked if it would be possible to keep her there. When the little puppy came to the sanctuary, she could hardly walk. She could not even cross a tiny drain 5 cm across. Raymund decided to let her learn to walk on her own. After a couple of years, The GSC came for a visit and discovered that her hip dyslexia disappeared! There was no sign of hip dyslexia in the x-ray scan.
It was from Princess that Raymund learnt hip dyslexia is curable; the environment plays a big part. Dogs of any size need space for movement to allow their limbs to stretch and grow. This is especially important for dogs that may be vulnerable to hip dyslexia. Slippery tiled floors do not help dogs who are susceptible to hip or joint problems. Natural environments like gardens and soil help puppies and dogs use their muscles, allowing for natural movement. This is something to think about when puppies or dogs that have hip dyslexia are euthanized.
Needless to say, Princess welcomed the move to Johor when the time came. Imagine that, 10 hectares of land to roam and run free! Princess took to the sanctuary’s new location like a duck to water. Except for the transportation from Singapore to Malaysia, our Princess has never been caged.The sanctuary was her little kingdom. She roamed and policed every square inch and was one of the dogs who loved the pond, often jumping in for a swim on a hot day. Princess left a lasting impression on every child who came to the sanctuary.
She loved little children and was always very excited when they came to visit, following them around until they left. When there were no children around, she would follow the adults, calmer, but still sticking close. She was such a sweet dog.
Her end came fast. She was old, had spleen cancer and liver problems. Nevertheless, she took everything in her stride, like the Princess that she was. I saw Princess a day before she passed away. She was quiet, unlike her usual exuberant and active self. I spent some time in the clinic with her. It was as though she knew she was winding down. The next day, she passed away at 4am in the morning.
She went quickly and quietly, in peace. It was a good life she led at the sanctuary. Free to roam, to run, to play with children and dogs, to be loved; and now, to be sorely missed.
Thank you for gracing us with your presence, Princess. We know you are happy in God’s kingdom now.
*Article contributed by AW, pictures contributed by AW and H*