CHEK Upside: Nanaimo dog treat company partners with painting pooch

CHEK Upside: Nanaimo dog treat company partners with painting pooch
WatchRogan the miniature Australian Shepherd and the Foley Dog Treat Company are coming together to help the Alberta Herding Dog Rescue.

He’s the Picasso of the pet world.

Medicine Hat Alberta’s Rogan the miniature Australian Shepherd first learned how to paint last year as a training exercise.

“It’s really actually a simple trick, he just [needed] to learn to hold something in his mouth and then touch something,” says Rogan’s owner Megan Bolen.

“It’s mostly treat reward-based,” says Bolen. “So, he knows when we get down there that’s what we’re doing.”

Bolen began posting Rogan’s abstract art on Instagram and it exploded in popularity. He was even the subject of his own art exhibit in Hong Kong.

“Somebody contacted me and said that they wanted to have a famous artist commission a portrait of my dog and have it in Hong Kong,” smiles Bolen. “It kind of just kept blowing up and blowing up, they wanted more and more Rogan.”

The Hong Kong exhibit is how Daniel Stiefvater, the owner of Nanaimo’s Foley Dog Treats heard about Rogan.

“I thought that this is pretty cool, maybe we could work together, maybe he could paint us a package or something like that, ” says Stiefvater.

So the duo partnered to create Rogan’s own line of treats, with the proceeds benefiting the Alberta Herding Dog Rescue in Didsbury Alberta. The organization rescues and rehabilitates herding breeds from across Canada.

“The majority of the fundraising goes to our vet costs and they chose us to take the proceeds from this…and I was like ‘wow this is so good’ because our vet bills are what kills us,” says founder Cindy Swiney.

“We like to donate to them quite a bit because Rogan being a high drive herding dog he has unique needs,” says Bolen.

“We know that there’s a lot of other dogs out there that have those same kind of needs and they help connect dogs with the right homes.”

It’s just another chapter in the incredible life of Rogan.

“He has his own treats and we’re donating all the money that we get from them,’ says Bolen.

“It’s so awesome, we’re so excited,” she adds.

Rogan and Foley Dog Treats hope to raise $5,000 through the fundraiser. To purchase Rogan’s treats visit the Foley Dog Treat website.

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Cole SorensonCole Sorenson

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