If you would like to write a little something about Valerie, please send it to Lynn Baron at Renaissancecotons@gmail.com and I will add it to the blog.

Friday, October 18, 2013

From Shelley and Gary

Dear Val:  It's that time of year again when I think of you 200 times a day instead of the usual hundred.  Gary and I are doing fine now and I know you have helped us along the way.  Gary is where you wanted him to be and we are forever grateful for all you have done for us. All your cotons are in loving homes too.  I would like to say you would be surprised about the behaviour of people you thought were your friends but I know you already know. Thank you for showing me daily you are still with us and please know I feel truly blessed to have been your best friend. ~ Shelley and Gary

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

From Shelley

It has been over a year since Valerie left my home and had her accident.  Today would have been her 60th birthday.  We were friends for many years and I miss her more every day.  It is very sad for her brother Gary to not see her any more after all the things she did for him and he has a hard time understanding what has happened.  She was so excited to be on "Pick a Puppy" that night and we were all excited for her.  When we left our home to go out for Halloween, she wanted to stay and watch the show again.  When we got home she was already gone.  When she didnt call me or answer her phone we went to look for her and came upon the accident.  She died alone that night while all her dogs were waiting for her at the house.  It has been a very trying year missing Valerie and I was very lucky to have had her for a friend.  All her dogs have gone to their forever homes except for one little puppy girl born one year ago today on Vals birthday.  Her name is Valerie.  Rest in Peace Valerie and please know I am doing my best to deal with everything and that Gary will be forever loved by us.  Thank you for being my friend.  ---- Shelley

Monday, October 29, 2012

Words from Susan van Dijk

Susan van Dijk

I first met Valerie when I shared a hospital room with her mother at the Scarborough Grace.  I was very ill and not often conscious but it seemed whenever I awoke Valerie was there, visiting with her Mom.  Valerie developed a relationship with my Mother, who was there daily caring for me.  Mom told Valerie how much I loved dogs and one day Valerie smuggled one of her Cotonpuppies into the hospital for me to meet!  A few years later my health was once again stable and I began to think about getting a dog.  I was living in Thunder Bay but as soon as I called Valerie she was willing to help and even ship one of her babies to my Mom and I.  It turned out that Valerie had a ten-week-old Coton whose planned family were unable to take him at the last minute.  "Josh" has been a beloved companion for almost seven years now.  I am so attached to Josh that I decided I wanted to add another Coton to my and my husband's "pack".  I'm now living in Calgary but again my first thought was Valerie and I emailed to ask whether she might know of anyone with an adult Coton needing a home.  Well...it turns out she once again had a special male for me.  This one was her former stud dog, Billy Idol.  Billy arrived October 19, 2011 and I spoke with Valerie several times to discuss how he was fitting in (Billy is very timid as he didn't receive proper socialization in his pre-Valerie days).  I emailed Valerie some pictures and a note on how well Billy was doing.  Sadly, it was Valerie's friend Shelley who responded to my email, informing me of Valerie's death.  I still cannot believe such a wonderful lady is gone.  As events turned out, it's obvious to me that we were destined to have Valerie's Billy and he is the sweetest, cuddliest, beautiful inside-and-out dog you could ever hope to meet.  I know if it's possible, Valerie is watching over us and I try every day to be worthy of the two beautiful furry gifts she has given me.

Monday, February 13, 2012

Words from the Hutcheon Family

Our family has just learned the tragic news of the untimely death of Val Ford. We just wanted to express our sadness at this news. She touched our lives by bringing to us Georgia, our first coton who is now six years old. She is a very special dog who has enriched our lives in so many ways. And Val was also instrumental in assisting us to obtain Sabu, our second coton who is now eight years old. He is a majestic dog who has also enriched our family and our spirits in so many ways. Together, these two dogs embody all the love, caring, loyalty and spirit of adventure which was also what made Val such a leading and compassionate breeder and individual. She will be missed by the coton community and all the people and animals whose lives she touched.  
The Hutcheon family

Thursday, February 9, 2012

♥Words from another Carol♥


I wanted to write a bit about Valerie Ford and was glad to find your blog.

I have two wonderful female cotons that I got from Valerie and did not pay
her for either.  

One was returned to her from an owner who could not look after her any longer 
as she was going to an apartment.  Her husband had been abusive to the dog hence 
she was very anxious and afraid of everything.  Valerie offered to give her to me
as long as I promised to have her spayed, which I did.  She was 1 1/2 when I got
her and now after 5 1/2 years is a beautiful companion and relaxed girl.

A couple of years later I wanted another coton so my first one would have some
company.  I called Valerie and asked her if she had any females she would no
longer be breeding and would I be able to buy one of them if so.  She did have
one and again gave her to me without wanting any payment.  She had tears
in her eyes as she gave her to me.  Valerie loved all her mamma's and their

Now I am fortunate to have two wonderful female coton de tulears that are the
light of my life.  This would not be the case if it were not for Valerie as I am not
in the position that I could have paid the regular fee although they are definitely
worth it.  Thank you so much Valerie, I think of you often and talk to my dogs
about you, I hope you can see them and see how well they are doing.


Many thanks for this opportunity to thank Valerie.

♥Words from Carol♥

My name is Carol and I just read about Valerie's passing last year. My god! I am in shock and very saddened by this news. I was searching for her web site because I hadn't heard from her in a while and came across this disturbing news.

I live in Toronto and I have two of Valerie's Cotons. Four years ago when I was researching what breed of pet dog to get, I decided I wanted one of these little bundles of joy! I am visually impaired and after calling several breeders, I found Valerie Ford. She is the only one who would sell me one of her Cotons. Everyone else just presumed I wouldn't be able to look after them. The first female I got was Pippin in 2008 whose father was Billy Idol and mother Chanel. In may 2010, I took another little girl who I named Abigail so Pippin would have a companion. Abigail has the same father but a different mother. I also have a Guide dog Memphis and the three of them get along famously.

I am very disturbed about her passing. She was an awesome breeder and cared about her dogs.

Regards, Carol

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

♥Valerie's Memorial♥

Valerie's memorial service was held on 11/26/11.  Seventy-two or so of her friends and family were in attendance. I am sorry that I live so far away, or I would have been there.  Only 3-4 Coton breeders were there to pay their respects. 

 I am still finding it very difficult to accept Valerie's tragic death.  Valerie was a Coton breeder for about 14 years.  She was very transparent when it came to her breeding program.  She would tell stories of years ago... before I started breeding......... about how some breeders told her to keep quiet when she had a Bandera's affected litter.  Valerie didn't care...she did her research and spent a lot of her own money to send the remains of puppies and blood upon blood to the University of Missouri so they would hopefully find a marker for this disease.  Recently, they did find the marker and every breeder of Cotons should be very thankful for that.  Valerie left her mark in this often cold and cruel world of breeding.  Thank you Valerie for standing up for your convictions and pursuing this quest against the advise of others.

Valerie would keep me on the phone for hours sometimes filling me in on things of the past..telling me that she had to learn everything the hard way because nobody would help her, or tell her things she needed to know as far as her breeding program went.  She would make light of how things can only happen to her.  We would laugh and laugh about just how crazy it all was.

Valerie's last couple of years were very hard on her.  Personal problems that affect all of us throughout our lifetime found her crippled with grief at times.  The one thing that kept her afloat was the love for her dogs.  She had so many nicknames for them..some I may even say to a dog or two of my own every so often.  Nothing bad of course, just rather cute in nature.  Valerie didn't sell many breeding dogs in all her years of breeding...I can count on one hand how many breeding prospects she sold.  Valerie really needed to believe in someone and trust them to sell them a dog.  I feel honored that Val trusted me, as I trusted her as a friend and confidant.  She told me a story not long ago that I thought was just a riot.  A breeder had phoned her looking for a breeding dog and Valerie said, "I only will consider selling a breeding dog to breeders that I know and have established a good relationship with"  The breeder then said, "You don't know who I am"?  Val said, "Umm nope"  The breeder said in a very disgruntled sort of voice, "Well, then that's your loss" and promptly hung up on her.

My heart goes out to her dogs because of "their" great loss.  They are the ones that have suffered.  Let's not forget about these little babies and keep them in our thoughts and prayers.  They loved Valerie with every ounce of their being.  Thankfully, Valerie does have some good friends that she trusted, and they will make sure that their new lives will be filled with the love and companionship that Valerie would have wanted for them.  Families that will welcome their new little dog into their home, and fill their little hearts with the hope of being loved and cared for ..for the rest of their lives.  And one day, they will meet Valerie again when it's their time to cross over the rainbow bridge. I can see Val in my head right now, kneeling down with her arms wide open and calling them home again.  Rest in peace dear Valerie.  I think about you daily.  Godspeed.

Saturday, November 19, 2011

♥From Deb♥

I have the pleasure of having one of Valerie's beautiful coton puppies from a litter 2 years ago.  
I just found out about Valerie's death and wanted to send my condolences.  What a great loss.  I only knew Valerie as the breeder of my baby Baylee, but was very impressed with her when I met her and saw all the love she gave to each and every one of her babies.  Below is a picture I took on the day I was picking up my Baylee to come home with us.  Valerie is saying a little prayer to Baylee and telling her to be a good girl for her new family, seeing that I knew I had chosen a very caring breeder and I was very thankful.
I can't imagine how much her babies will be missing her and feel for them.

Monday, November 7, 2011

♥Words from Pirjo Lindblom♥

To Valerie,

The news of the accident came and I felt so deep sorrow.
I lighted many candles to Valerie.
We had talked on the phone: me in Finland and she in Canada, it is the long distance
but anyhow
what a reception I got from her =))
and so much to talk about
Thank you Valerie

Saturday, November 5, 2011

♥Words from Suzanne Lavigne♥

I was shocked and very sad when I heard the news of Valerie's death.  I have fond memories of Valerie, our long conversation about our dogs, our families and life. "Life isn't always fair" as it is hard to think that in one instant a life is just taken away. Life brings tears, smiles and memories. The tears dry, the smile fades, but the memories live on forever.
On the day after hearing the news of her death, I was reminiscing about our discussions, moments we had shared at dog shows and the one memory that came back to my mind was the First Autumn show in Canada, October 16/17, 2004.  After the show we had organized a banquet and Valerie came with her mother and brother. She was so happy to have had the opportunity to offer such an unforgettable evening to her mother and brother. A few days after the event Valerie wrote that that evening was so special for her mother, fulfilling a dream of living a night of glamour. Her mother died a few months later.  That was Valerie, always thinking of making others happy.  
The last time I met Valerie was in Texas where I had judged the USACTC Specialty.  This is what Valerie wrote : « I would like to take the opportunity to thank you the presentation of the Lopatin award honouring Simba for his achievements. I would also like to thank you for my Best of Winners win in the Specialty show. After 13 years of breeding Cotons, this weekend proved to me that I have consistancy within my breeding program. When looking at the show results my little ones placed in the winnings 4 of the 6 shows. I am so proud of them!!! » 

Valerie and I never missed wishing each other the best on our birthdays as we shared the same day, November 14, but this year she will hear my prayer, wishing her wherever she is, that she is happy.
My heartfelt condolences and deepest sympathy goes out to Valerie’s family as you struggle through the grief and sadness. Please know that you are in my thoughts and prayers
May Valerie rest in peace and may God bless her soul in peace and paradise

Suzanne Lavigne
De Montarville Coton de Tuléar

Thursday, November 3, 2011

♥A few words from Rebecca Brown♥

I met Valerie at the AACDT Speciality also when she came to support the club. I must say it was a pleasure to meet her. She had beautiful dogs and her love for them was obvious. I am happy I had the chance to meet her and will miss her in our Coton world. I am praying for her and her family. Rest in peace Valerie.
Rebecca Brown
Sunnybrook Cotons

♥A nice little write up about Valerie♥

Friend mourns loss of Roseneath woman

Woman killed was featured on television show the night of her death

Valerie Ford. ROSENEATH -- Valerie Ford holds Dugan, a rare breed called Coton de Tulear. Ms. Ford, a dog breeder in Roseneath, was killed in a car accident on Oct. 31. November 2, 2011. Submitted photo
ROSENEATH -- The woman killed in a car accident was featured on a television show airing the night of her death, a close friend said. 
Valerie Ford, 58, of Roseneath, was a dog breeder and was on the show 'Pick-a-Puppy' on Country Music Television on Oct. 31, the night she died, said her close friend Shelley Klintworth. Ms. Ford was at Ms. Klintworth's home watching the show on Oct. 31. She died in a single-vehicle rollover on County Road 29 east of Davis Road just before 9 p.m., said OPP Constable Bruce Thompson.

Ms. Ford was a kind woman who cared for her disabled brother, Ms. Klintworth said.

"She was good to everybody," she said. The brother has stayed with Ms. Klintworth for 10 years, she added.

Ms. Ford raised a rare breed called Coton du Tuleur at her Roseneath residence, Ms. Klintworth said. She added there are many dogs at the home and Ms. Klintworth is now working out what will happen to them.

Ms. Ford lived in Oshawa before moving to Roseneath about 10 years ago, she said. She wasn't married and didn't have children, but in addition to her 56-year-old brother, Ms. Ford has an older sister, she said. A memorial is being planned with MacCoubrey Funeral Home in Cobourg, she added.

Police said Ms. Ford's 2003 Chevy Trailblazer left the road while she was travelling eastbound. The SUV entered the south ditch and rolled into a field, said Const. Thompson. The investigation is continuing, but police believe speed was a factor, he said. Northumberland OPP accident reconstructionists attended the scene to assist and the road was closed until 3:10 a.m. Nov. 1, said Const. Thompson.

There were no witnesses, he said. Residents in the area heard the crash and called 911, he added.

Correction:  In the photo caption you can see on the above link, she is holding Kazaam and not Dugan.

♥Valerie's Obituary♥

FORD, Valerie Lea –
Suddenly on October 31, 2011, in her 59th year. 
Beloved daughter of the late Ruby Mary and the late Ernest Ford. Loving sister of Ruby Williams and her husband Ed Aitken, and brother Gary Ford. Dear aunt of Julie, Ruby and Michelle and great aunt of Daniel, Joseph, Karen and Jacob. She will be sadly missed by her close friends Shelley Klintworth and Scott Turner as well as many others. 
At Val’s request, a celebration of Valerie’s life will be held on Saturday, November 26, 2011 from 12 – 3 pm at 18 Hodgson St., Port Hope. 
Donations to the charity of your choice would be appreciated.

♥A few words from Myriam in France♥

It's always a terrible tragedy when a life is broken too early. I think to Valerie'family and to all the people who know her. Be assured of my deep sympathy and please, continue to see her through the work she made with her Cotons. She will always on your mind because she loved these wonderful dogs and breeded them with care, beauty and love.
Valerie, you will be always with us in the Coton's world. RIP

Myriam (France)

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

♥Words from Vicky♥

I have never met Valerie Ford personally but I have spoken to her on the phone many times. She regularly checked on the Cotons that lived with me. They were my friend’s dogs but I groomed, raised and trained them for the show ring. I have titled a few of Val’s breeding in both UKC and CKC shows. The last one that I helped my friend with was a sweet little female off her “Envy Me” bitch that she spoke so highly of. This was in September of 2011.

She told me about one of her breeding “Kazaam” that she was so proud of. She also spoke of how she was involved in the testing of Banderas and she wept remembering the tiny bodies she shipped off to be tested. She explained how she helped to create a DNA for this and now as breeders we can test before we breed.

We also discussed perhaps attending a Coton Specialty one day. Unfortunately that will not happen now.

This was one really special lady that made a name for herself in the Coton breed. She will be sadly missed.

Till I meet you again.   Vicky

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

♥Valerie Ford of Cotonnelle♥

The first time I met Valerie Ford, she looked like this :)

Here she is in NJ at the AACDT National Specialty with Kazaam.  She was so proud to say, "I AM", when I asked who the lucky owner of Kazaam was.  I fell in love with Kazzam, and of course Valerie too. Who wouldn't be drawn to her great sense of humor and her smile?   She would come all the way to the USA to support us.  Our new club.  She was an amazing lady.

Last evening, October 31, 2011, Valerie left this earth in a tragic car accident.  Valerie Ford gave more than anyone I know to the Coton Community and this is truly a great loss.  My heart is so very heavy, as I know I will miss my friend dearly.  My heart breaks for her dogs that she loved so much.  What will they do without their Mommy?

Valerie will forever be in my heart and soul, and I cherish Kazaam because he is a little part of her..something that lives. Every time I look at him... I will remember Valerie.  I miss you already.  Love you.  

♥May you rest in peace♥