Nicknames: Tails, Taylor-Whaler, Taylor-Sailor, Taylor-Whaler-Sailor, Baby, Tinky Taylor
Birthday: January 28th 2003
Likes: Non-dog food. Kids and any other humans. Lying on the top landing in our house where he can see and control most everything. Being the front door people-greeter. Long walks and big parks off- lead. Rubber necking on car rides. Being groomed & massaged.
Pet-Peeves: Our motor mower - off or on - 'cause he doesn't like his lawn grass been cut. Swimming. Thunder and fire crackers.. Having to endure wearing a hat. Rickity chairs. Kites lifting off.
Favorite Toy: Playing break-neck chases with pet rabbits (live), a miniature Mohammed Ali boxing glove, a squeaky hedgehog, a honking duck.
Favorite Walk: Any bush(forest) and river trail hike, the daily morning power-walk, the Corgi group outings.
Best Tricks: Sitting in a wheelchair to be whizzed around in meeting hospital patients, catching a ball etc with his front feet - not easy for "no leg" Corgis, giving Corgi kisses. Going for the world record for Pembroke Corgis in the 60-pole (agility) weave
Arrival Story: Two years after my previous Pembroke Corgi had died, I contacted one of New Zealand's three top Pem breeders and Taylor - whose father is American born - eventually was selected by the breeder. He arrived by air to Wellington (NZ 's capital city) aged 3 months and 1 week to be greeted at the airport by four of his new five human family. It was very exciting and the bonding was instant as Taylor's initial shyness went quickly out the window. He came with an impeccable temperament and pedigree. His show days were superceded by the much more fun and exciting sport of agility in which he excels. Just prior to turning three, Taylor became an expert at Eating By Tracking.
PHOTO CAPTIONS: 1/ Calendar-quality shot (2 yrs). 2/ At his breeder's home (2 months). 3/ His favourite spot - on the top landing inside our house;.4/Agility expert - loves going thru tires. 5/ Studio posing at aged 6 months. 6/ In his dress-up coat. 7/ Jumping over a hurdle in agility. 8/ Happy to sit on a resident's lap at a Retirement Village.
Bio: In September, 2005 Taylor finished runner-up in the NZ Canine Pet of the Year Award and in September, 2007 Taylor was declared the NZ Canine Pet of the Year. His major prize was 2 years supply of ProPlan dog food. He is a regular visitor to a Retirement Village/Dementia Unit and is a regular stay-in-class visitor at schools and pre-schools with me as the dog discussion leader. Taylor really, really loves the school thing and he puts in a lot of effort to charm the kids. In 2006 Taylor and I turned professional for school class room visitations. He wore a lavish designer-made coat as a guest "performer" in the 2005 Christmas street parade in Upper Hutt City. His photo was in the metropolitan newspaper on successive days in attending a church service. His image is on USA-produced 2006 and 2007 calendars, stationery and mouse pads. Agility competitor at championship level - the only Welsh Corgi competing in agility in NZ. He was awarded the trophy for the most promising agility competitor in the Upper Hutt Canine Training Centre for 2005. Went three clear rounds in events at the 2006-07 national meetings, finishing 15th out of 110 all-size competitors (2006). Collected $1100 for cancer research in three successive team running relays as a member of the Silverstream Lions team in the Relay For Life - the only dog among 6000-plus participants. Pictured and featured in the August-September 2006 issue of the NZ Lions magazine re the Relay for Life. Appeared on national television in August, 2006 to promote the NZ Canine Heroes Awards and performed a special agility circuit (set up just for him) in the studio, using studio props. He was the featured Corgi on national TV in June, 2007 in a special programme to celebrate the British Queen's birthday. He was a feature of the 2007 and 2008 Wellington Xmas street parades which had live audiences of 60,000-75,000. And the day after the 2008 parade, a photo of a costumed Taylor appeared in the metro/regional newspaper. At the 2009 parade, Taylor was the sole passenger in a 'royal' carriage. His 5th birthdaycelebratations in 2008 were photographed by the metro newspaper and several pics were published in the subsequent edition. Taylor was one of 16 Pembroke Corgis with a photo featured in the metro newspaper's weekend supplement Indulgence to celebrate the 2009 Queen's Birthday Weekend (also incl 2010). At the first NZ national Corgi agility champs in 2010, Taylor finished runner up for the contacts title and third in the jumpers event. His photos jumping a hurdle appeared in many newspapers and on several internet sites.At the 2011 NZ Corgi agility champs,he won the contacts event and his photo appeared in newspapers and websites. He has taken on the mantle of leader of the crew in the Wellington Welsh Corgi club Walking Club. Taylor was the inspiration for me becoming a canine writer for magazines and newspapers, and my first book, Amazing Dog Stories, published in March, 2006 is dedicated to Taylor. He was a guest of honour at the book launch and his photo subsequently appeared in two local newspapers. His fourth birthday on Jan 28, 2007 was a biggie. Fourteen doggie friends turned up at a hall and park for fun, games and swimming; a special Corgi cake and armed with lots of presents. In April, 2008 Taylor and I collected $300 for Guide Dog Services doing a 3 hour street appeal. In June and September 2009 Taylor went on his first long tramps (hikes) with overnight stays at trampers (hikers) huts. In April,2010 Taylor made the front page of the main Metro newspaper as a royal entrant in a local dog/handkr fancy dress competition.In 2010, Taylor's photo profile appeared monthly in NZ Dog World magazineas related to the Dog Talk column. In March,2011 Taylor's own painting effort made the news (newspapers and TV) for within the art work was the word "DOG" and the ouline of an Afghan Hound-type dog in motion. Also a tiny replica red and white Corgi's head and face.Also in 2011 and 2012,Taylor features in a couple of scenes advertising a national hotel chain on tv. At the 2012 Wellington Pet Expo, Taylor was one of the star performers on stage when I did several readings of his adventures on both days and he spent over 14 hours with me"manning" the WWCWC stall.In April 2013 Taylor was a standout feature on national television and also had a pic in the DomPost's website in taking part in an SPCA fund raising event. Taylor marched on Parliament in Wellington in August 2013 protesting legislation to allow dogs to be tested for safe party pills. Taylor featured in publicity and promotion in newspapers and websites for the Corgi entry in the 2013 Wellington Christmas street parade.
One of his great assets is his awareness level. He is Mr Look Around & Everywhere Else and he makes very direct eye contact with people. When he's out walking with more than one of his family members and one of us eventually goes elsewhere, Taylor will lie down and not budge an inch. It's one of his displays of responsibility as a family menber.
The three diary items below were published in a leading canine magazine.
It was Christmas 2005 and popular Wellington region radio station, More FM together with the Lower Hutt Pet Vet were running a special promotion.
" Bring your dog to Pet Vet and receive a gift for your dog from under the Christmas tree," said the More FM breakfast hosts. " Nick Tansley will be on hand and it will be lots of fun, lots of great gifts, and there is food and bubbly wine for the handlers."
Taylor, then a two year old, and I exchanged glances. Taylor pricked up his Corgi ears and I raised a thumb. Yes, this was for us.
So at seven in the morning we drove the 10 minutes to the large Pet Vet establishment.
Sure enough there was this deep mound of brightly wrapped gifts stretching two metres to a twinkling Christmas tree. Eventually Nick Tansley got round to Taylor and me and I gave the radio audience a short resume of Taylor.
" Now," said Nick, " Taylor will choose his gift with his nose."
" Go for it Taylor, " I urged, and the Corgi cautiously inched towards the vast piled up array of gifts . He was committed to selecting very carefully something which would catch his eternal hunger pangs.
The trouble was, the world and Nick Tansley were in a hurry. Radio listeners were hanging onto every detail.
Taylor looked only momentarily at a wrapped present in front of him and he was heading further up (towards) the tree. But then came: " That's it. That's the present Taylor has chosen," exclaimed Nick excitedly. No, no Taylor and I shouted back/ We both knew exactly what the gift was from its shape (me) and smell (Taylor) and we didn't want a bar of it.
" He doesn't want this present," I said out loud. " He never really did sniff at it."
"Yes he did, " insisted Tansley.
What could I do. Tansley and a radio audience of millions held sway. All these lovely gifts containing wonderful and delectable treats to bring utter joy to a Corgi. And what was he forced to endure?
So I unwrapped the gift. Taylor stood with a look of despair. Yes, it was a red plastic food bowl. made by poor lowly paid workers in some far off land. Taylor needed a plastic food bowl like he needed a hole in his head.
Tansley made me describe what Taylor had got. I'm sure I gave a sombre account.
At least the bowl sported my favourite colour. Taylor only saw red.
A TALE OF TWO KITES
Down at the local park there was this insignificant kid's diamond shaped, white papered kite.
A pre-school child held onto a delicate bit of string attached to the kite and was attempting to get the thing airborne, under the gaze of an adult.
Also watching intently was Taylor who for the first time in his three years was experiencing a kite and one which was struggling to do what kites are suppose to do - fly feverously but proudly in the sky, fanned by the wind and under the manipulative control of a hand or two.
Thought Taylor, " if these people launch this thing off the ground, goodness knows what will happen. It might rocket into me, anger the Gods and bring down thunder and lightning. It could explode."
So Taylor promptly turned tail and ran for his life back along the streets, with his dad in hot pursuit. Nothing I said made the slightest difference. It was homeward bound to the safety of the air-raid shelter. This from a Corgi who is not the least phased out by whirring helicopters and massive, noisy tankers.
Eight months later at the same park but different kid and adult. This time an impressive, brightly coloured kite flying high in the sky. Taylor looked hard at the kite flyer, his eyes traced the nylon string upwards to where the kite was hovering gaily in the breeze.
Again Taylor looked upwards and downwards. " So that's what happens to these things, " thought Taylor. " They change colour, go into a deathly orbital dance before wreaking havoc."
Away he sped from the scene. This time taking the short cut through the forest to his home dugout. Once more I raced after him in futile pursuit.
In future, when we go to that park, I'll look around first before giving Taylor the 'all clear,' otherwise if there is a kite, we are both outta here.
Taylor was betrothed to young, dark, zesty and beautiful Zara and when Zara joined the Wellington Welsh Corgi Walking Club, it was going to be a renewal of friendship formed before any union was consummated.
But on the first club outing that Zara attended, Taylor only tentatively acknowledged Zara in favour of a fluffy, pretty young thing named Holly.
It was love at first sight and smell. Taylor was besotted. He wouldn't leave Holly alone for any length of time, planting numerous kisses behind her ears and on her neck.
For her part, Holly retained some sense of composure in being demur yet engaging.
That Holly had been spayed made no difference to the youthful suitor. On the next couple of Corgi outings, it was the same again: a virtual ignoring of Zara and Hello Holly.
Well, Zara felt more than a little put out and she and her mum's interest in Taylor diminished and the marriage was split.
A shame because Zara was full of fun. She was high on flirting and fooling around (in a nice kind of way) with every male or female dog she encountered however fleetingly - yet was keen on a long term relationship.
Then came Taylor's birthday party. Zara and Holly both turned up but so too did Holly's chunky brother, Fin.
Now Fin was his sister's sworn protector from any other male dog that ventured within his sister's shadow let alone manage a friendly touch.
After several attempts at contact, Fin's message hit home to Taylor: " while I'm around, don't mess around with Holly. I am her keeper."
And if it wasn't Fin lambasting Taylor, it was Holly who felt obliged to support her kith and kin. She also flicked off Taylor.
So Taylor's party was all but ruined for him and it took two days for a recovery of his demeanor.
But I know who will turn on the charm with Holly again when next they meet. And hopefully, Fin will have been permanently consigned to another district.