Spring - 2004                                               volume 3  


What’s in

this issue:

Read Kip's story
(Formerly known as Trace)

Poem by
Bridget Byrne

Our featured rescue
for the month of

Update on Charlie

The Princess Diary

MKBCR’s Upcoming Summer Activities

How YOU can help!!

Member info
and contact listing



Out of a Sea of Nameless Faces
Kip’s Story

It was a big lonely world for a little black and white one-eared dog. The shelter’s kennel was noisy with excitement, confusion and desperation. The smells there were pungent and the cold dark walls damp. Things happen here, good things, bad things. The air was thick with anticipation…

There were two lonely people, people whose hearts were still healing from the loss of an elderly Border collie friend who departed over a year ago. These hearts were ready to take the chance to love again, just the right little spirit, whenever he or she came along…

There was something special about Kip. We could sense it right away. This was a dog that had had a rough start in life. With a healed puncture wound on his forehead, an ear that had been torn off, a notch out of the other ear and scar tissue that covered a three square inch area on the back of his neck, this little dog was somehow surprisingly normal. He clearly had come out on the short end of the stick in a serious fight but in his unsinkable little heart, he was the victor. Somehow his inner strength prevailed and had carried him successfully through very tough times.

Kip now brightens our lives every day. His soft brown eyes and beautiful face melt any icicles that may linger in our hearts. His unsinkable, buoyant little spirit keeps him afloat in most any situation. He now is in need of developing the kind of relationship with people that clearly he has not experienced before. Time and training will build the special relationship that only the devoted and patient will enjoy.

Rescue dogs arrive into our lives with a lifetime of stories that they cannot tell. Their secrets are safely hidden away and stay with them for only their hearts to know. Kip is our little diamond in the rough. With patience and time, he will emerge a beautiful little flower. But it is we who will glow in the reflections of his beautiful new radiance. It makes me wonder who really needs whom.

We would like to extend a most sincere thank you to the people of Mo-Kan Border Collie rescue who have tirelessly devoted themselves to making a difference in the lives of these most fortunate of dogs. Rescue saves not only the lives of dogs in need but also the hearts of people whose lives they enrich.

-Alan and Joni Godsy

Kip (fka Trace)



The sounds of pure joy echo through the building
As if the dogs are saying “finally something for me”
The din is so intense the humans grasp their ears
As the numbers tick off and the race nears

Happy stands at the start line poised like a statue
Muscles trembling, heart beating, eyes focused
First the red light, then the yellows and finally the green
With perfect precision Kelli releases him as he explodes towards the box

Fynn follows, his tail high, a hundred years of breeding
To herd focused on the ball, the fetch to bring it to Jen
He’s followed by Kate a swift ballerina released by John
And returning like an arrow over the jumps

Finally, Charly is set free by Rachel and flys
Her paws seem suspended in air not touching the earth
Her big heart propelling her tiny body to the box,
Back over the jumps to Rachel and home

Each dog on a mission, ignoring the rest
Neither pain, nor exhaustion seems to be felt
Won by a nose but more victory is felt
In enacting the age old dance of human and dog
Not owner and pet, but partner and friend

-Bridget Byrne, 2004






Editor in Chief
Bridget Byrne


Jennifer Fitzwater





Kathy Hallberg




In South Missouri:

Barbie Ernst







How you can help



There are four ways to help:




Donate (includes becoming a Border Collie Angel)


For more information on the suggestions above, please visit our web site


Our Featured Foster Dog

Mack is a 4 year old purebred neutered male Border collie. This young man was bred to work, but because of a divorce, ended up in a bad situation, and needs some extra special handling!

Mack is a love! He is learning house manners, and is very well crate trained. We are working on some of the bad habits! He recently discovered the trash can! He has been started on sheep, and responds to pressure very well. He will not take any harsh treatment; he apparently had more than enough of that in days gone by.

Mack would make an excellent working farm dog and companion. He is decent around my cats, but my cats beat up on any dog that doesn't bow to them! He has not been kid tested as of yet, but I suspect he would be fine around older children. He is quite good around other dogs, although he will show other males that HE is the best looking around! Mack is located in Wichita KS. {If you are interested in learning more about Mack please contact Jennifer – see contacts}


~Bridget Byrne & Dale Jannes~
Our Featured Foster Family for March

Bridget and Dale have been tireless volunteers for Mo-Kan almost since the beginning. They contacted us in 2001, feeling the need for another companion for their existing Border Collie, Jenny. My suggestion that they consider fostering to find the right match turned into, not only finding the right match (Charly AND Jess) but they continued to foster and have been an incredible asset to the organization, not to mention life long friends! Bridget is also the editor of the Mo-Kan Newsletter and we all look forward to her poems and articles, they always touch our hearts! Dale developed the new Mo-Kan events calendar and works tirelessly in training and rehabing the rescues! We are so very lucky to have both of them as a part of the Mo-Kan family!! Thank you Bridget and Dale for your amazing contributions and help in saving the lives of so many wonderful dogs!!

-Jennifer Fitzwater

Bridget and Charly

~Bridget Byrne & Dale Jannes~
Our Featured Foster Family for March


Dale and I began fostering about three years ago following the death of our first Border collie McGuffin. He was such an extraordinary dog we hold him responsible for our Border collie addiction! If you had asked us about fostering a few years ago the answer would have been “no way.” I have always maintained I could bond to Cujo and couldn’t imagine giving a dog up that I had bonded with. But, we soon became aware of how limited our vision was. After we had reached three dogs in our Suburban house we knew we had reached our capacity on a permanent basis but there were so many wonderful Border collies out there that we wanted to know and to give a chance. So we started fostering.

Dale with Meg (nka Maggie)

There have been some surprises and challenges along the way. The first week with a new foster is often like having a new puppy. We have read, brain picked, and tried all sorts of things to enhance this process. One of the more humorous ones has been our efforts to assess herding potential in our fosters. Running backwards and falling into sheep poop was not something we envisioned for our 50s. And I have to say the dogs have been much more masterful than us. We have tried Agility and helped form a flyball team. Our communication has become littered with terms like “soft-mouthed” fear aggression, boundary training, and socialization. Etc” Some friends have commented that we won’t be happy until there is a Border collie in every home. No, just the right homes!

Charley, Bridget, Dale, Jess,
and Jenny in front

But the biggest surprise has been how gratifying it is to see a dog go to a new home. Rather than feeling sad we feel exhilarated because we know where that dog came from and we have helped that dog start into a new life. By fostering we have been able to give that chance to ten dogs and counting rather than only two or three.

But there is also a second secret. What these dogs bring to our lives is wonderful. No two have been alike in looks or personality and each has left a part of him or her behind. (No I am not talking about that stain under the coffee table!) And in addition to the dogs we have met some of the best people in the world. Those people are the people who work in rescue and the families that adopt our dogs. I think there is something special about Border collie people. Their willingness to support their dogs in reaching their potential is amazing, as is their tolerance for the Border collie’s need for stimulation and challenge. It has been a delightful wonderful journey.

-Bridget Byrne



April 24 - WALK & WAG Gladstone Parks & Recreation
Location – Happy Rock Park, NE 76th St & N Antioch,
Gladstone. Starts at 10 am. Come watch the Flexible Flyers!
June 10 – Flyball tournament, St Louis MO.
Dog-n-Jog, Country Club Plaza (?)
For a full event calendar, visit our website. Link to calendar is on the LINKS page.


Mo-Kan BCR would like to extend a special thank you to BEST PRICE BANNERS for their generous donation of our new banner to be displayed at our information booths and at flyball tournaments!! (Best Price Banners is located at 8012 Santa Fe Dr, Overland Park KS 66204 Phone: 913-381-2171)

We would also like to thank Alan and Joni (Johnson) Godsy for their generous donation of a Canon digital camera which gives us the ability to take wonderful pictures of our rescue dogs!

Also, a special thanks to Carl Nylund for his endless efforts to help, not only Mo-Kan, but many rescue groups throughout the Midwest. Carl tranpsorts dogs on a regular basis, from shelter to rescue and from rescue to new home. Carl has helped save countless animals! Please visit his website at



Charlie was adopted by Patty as her first dog. She has just purchased some acreage in the country where she will have horses and wanted a dog as a companion and helper around the farm. Patty fell in love with Charlie when she saw his picture on the website. It is obvious watching him how much he already adores Patty….Charlie now has his forever home!

Border Collie Rescue loses a friend….

Our condolences go out to the family and friends of James E. Gaughan, USAF Ret.” He passed away Dec 19, 2003 with his family at his side. James was born June 5, 1926. He married Alice Lucille Campbell of Galveston TX in 1953. James was a proud veteran of World War II, Korea, and Vietnam. After retirement from the USAF, he served in the Federal Aviation Administration. He will be remembered for his zest for life and devotion to his family and dogs. He is survived by his daughters, Nancy Lee Peterson, and husband, Jerry Jackson, of Galveston, TX; and Bridget Wagstaff, and husband, Richard, of Prairie Village KS; son, James E. Gaughan, Jr. of Columbus, MS; grandchildren, Carolyn, Audrey, and Ritchie; many nieces and nephews; and his dogs, Boots and Star.”

Jimmy had an abiding love for Border Collies that became part of his legacy. He saved Border collies that were cast off from herding people who didn’t want them and took in very shy and abused and neglected Border collies. A favorite story told about Jimmy is after the death of Dixie his first Border collie he had a funeral for her and howled into the wind sending her spirit on. He passed his love of Border collies on to his children and grandchildren. Most recently he met Nate who had been adopted from Mo-Kan Border collie rescue in August by his daughter Bridget Wagstaff.

He and Nate became buddies and Nate would crawl into bed to be with him. Boots and Star remained his companions to the end of his life and who knows but a silent howl was sent into the skies when he left. Thank you Jimmy. We would also like to thank all those who donated to Mo-Kan Border Collie Rescue in his name. We received nearly $1,000 in donations which is being used to save many more Border collies.

Information and picture provided by Alan and Joni (Johnson) Godsy.

Jimmy with Stars and Boots
Copyright 2002 Joni Johnson-Godsy


He is your friend, your defender, your dog.
You are his life, his love, his leader.
He will be yours, faithful and true,
to the last beat of his heart.
You owe it to him to be worthy of such devotion.

Author Unknown

The Princess Diary

It was a mystery where the beautiful young border collie had come from but one morning she appeared from the mist across the lake from Ruth and Carol Fleming’s country home. She was terribly thin and shy and would only accept their help when she gave birth to her one puppy. She allowed them to take the puppy in and would sleep with him in a dog house they provided. When the weather grew cold she allowed them to take him in the house at night and would greet him in the morning to run across the dam above the lake, still refusing the warmth and comfort of their home.

The following is a recounting of Ruth and Carol’s experience with this dog they named Princess. Their kindness and patience is truly inspiring! -Bridget Byrne

On July 5, with fireworks were still booming, a pretty Border collie emerged the brush around our country home. She was elusive, but we assumed that she had been spooked by the fireworks and would go home. She didn't. Then we learned that in rural areas stray animal control is strictly DIY. However, her manners were as elegant as her looks, so we set out the food bowls and called her Princess.

Sept 1: We have bribed her with treats, dosed her with tranquilizers and oral knockout drops but can't catch her. If we sit very still, and don't move our hands she will come to the porch for food and treats…sometimes. When our city friends visit, porchsitting and Princess-spotting are major entertainments. There is a male dog hanging around. Gee, we hope she has been spayed.

Nov 1: We hired a neighbor to feed her while we went out of town for a week. On our return Princess had given us a Halloween present - one fat black puppy. Kind of a sausage with feet. We put plans to catch her on hold and set a new igloo lined with clean blankets close to the porch. She let us handle the pup, so we got puppy cuddles and she got potty breaks. We broke out the field glasses and commenced watching a basically wild dog rearing her pup on our doorstep. The strip of white on her nose in the igloo indicated that Princess was 'in'. My elderly dad was sure she was actually a mutant coyote.

Jan 1: When the pup was mobile, she 'housebroke' him and led him to a designated potty place each morning. When she left for her daily ‘rounds’ he hid motionless in the igloo. As he grew, she led him around the yard showing what he could nibble on, and wrestled and played tug-of-war with him. The two made a picture when she led him on her trails through the snow, Sooner gamely bounding behind her. On rainy days, we laughed at the eruption of black fur inside the igloo as he bounced around biting her ears and tail. Poor Princess. About now, we started bringing the pup inside at night to sleep in a crate for safety from predators and warmth. Each morning, Princess peeked in the window eager for him to come out for their day.


Feb: As Sooner grew, Princess withdrew, so we began again to plot. We put a dog pen on the porch with the door propped open. Carol sat in the pen with food and treats and talked to her until she eventually became trustful enough to come inside to eat and nap.

Feb 21: Setback! Just as we were about to spring the trap, she went back into heat and virtually disappeared, causing noisy havoc among the neighborhood dogs. We kept Sooner in the house away from the melee and hoped she would settle back down. Carol rigged the door to shut while he was inside with her, but how will she act when cornered?


Mar 1: He finally shut her in the pen! After 9 months! Betrayed, she simply glared at Carol and withdrew to the igloo, refusing food for several days. She doesn't object to being petted but is rigid with fear. Our first walk through the meadow she laid down on the way back and refused to move. After I picked her up and ignominiously staggered a few steps with her, she decided to salvage her dignity and walk back on her own - to my relief.

Mar 10: She is now spayed and recuperating in our bedroom, still withdrawn and not eating again. She stays in her nest on the floor right next to Carol's pillow. We are aware that from her point of view inside our house must be stuffy and very noisy. Instead of birds and tree frogs, the scary TV chatters and flickers, things beep and clatter. The good news is, she is house broken and somewhat leash trained. If we lay on the floor she will creep to us to be petted.


Mar 14: Big scare…the back door was left open! Princess darted out and started warily circling the yard toward the brush. We were heartsick at the prospect of having to try to catch her again. Carol sat outside on the picnic bench and quietly called her…she cuddled right up to him to be petted, leashed and brought back into the house. Wow!

Mar 25: She is sick and stopped eating again. We hope she isn't developing a stress ulcer. We clean up the many messes and go back to the vet for worm medicine. We are now on first name basis with the vet's wife, Diane.

So, looks like we have Princess and she has us. She is fearful but will gently nudge us for attention now. When I lay down with her while she eats, she touches my nose briefly when she is through, like she is saying thank you. We don't know if she will ever be confident and playful, but her gentleness has won our hearts.

The pup? At 5 mos, Sooner is 40+ lbs of muscular exuberance with a white cross on his chest and, unlike his mom, a YES! LET’S DO IT! attitude. We turned down an offer to adopt him – we would miss his fun. (Princess, on the other hand, pointedly turns her back
to things she doesn't like - like the whole Frisbee chasing thing.)

Hmm...Carol, can we get something for them to guard - like a goat ???

-Ruth and Carol Fleming

Princess and Sooner Playing

"The dog represents all that is best in man."
- Etienne Charlet