My name is KOA!

Posted 1 year ago

Adoption process

Submit Application




Home Check


Approve Application


Meet the Pet


Sign Adoption Contract


Take the Pet Home

Adoption fee: $616

This helps West Coast Paws Dog Rescue with pet care costs.

My basic info

Shepherd (Unknown Type)
5 years 4 months old, Adult
Large 61-100 lbs (28-45 kg) (when grown)
61 lb (current)
Pet ID

My details

Checkmark in teal circle Good with dogs
Checkmark in teal circle Shots current
Checkmark in teal circle Spayed / Neutered
Checkmark in teal circle Has special needs

My story

Here's what the humans have to say about me:

Hello kind hoomans! My name is KOA and here is some info about me:


  • Breed: Shepherd Mix

  • Age: 5 years

  • Gender: Female

  • Weight: 61 lbs, 28 kg 

  • Height (paws to top of head): approx. 72 cm

  • Length (nose to bum): approx. 92 cm

  • Current Location: MEXICO CITY

  • Medical Condition: Dermatomyositis (click this link to read about my condition)

RESCUE STORY – I was found abandoned on the streets of Mexico City. Given my skin condition, I was either avoided or abused by passerby's. Luckily, I was rescued by an amazing hooman and I received top-notch veterinary care and have been living safely in a local shelter for the last year and a half. I am looking for a very special home with hoomans who are prepared to help me manage my inflammatory disease and let me live life to the fullest. If you are the special hooman I've been waiting for, I promise to pay you back with all the love I am so eager to give!

TEMPERAMENT - I am friendly to all and crave hooman affection. I am lively and playful with people and other dogs, although I can never play rough because of my sensitive skin. I coexist peacefully at the shelter with other dogs of all shapes and sizes. Good news: I don't show any resource guarding! I really like having outdoor time where I can just sniff yummy things and enjoy the fresh air. Given that I have suffered so much pain before my condition received treatment, I am still very sensitive and react as if in pain even if I'm bumped into or touched without my knowledge. If I see you coming to give me affection though, I welcome it and am happy to receive gentle love :) My rescuer says I will be an amazing companion, I'm just looking for a very special person who's ready to open up their heart to me. New videos of me (Feb 2024) here, here, and here

Here is what my Rescuer says about my condition:
Koa is not in pain now, but she was for a long time because of the skin infections she used to have. She was crying constantly. Luckily, that is under control now. If she sees that you’re about to touch her, she is completely silent and she actually loves to get cuddles. But if you touch her while she doesn’t see you, she will start crying. Both vets said she used to be in so much pain that she’s reacts as if she still was. When the vet cut her nails, she screamed. The vet said that there was no physical pain, but her skin infection used to be so bad on her feet (they were swollen) that she’s very sensitive if anyone touches her. She’s not aggressive at all, she just cries. Her skin is quite oily and more subject to infections than normal skin. It also breaks easily. She cannot be exposed to the sun (even through windows). She would need to be walked in the morning and evening, avoiding sunlight between 9am and 5 pm. I know her condition sounds awful, but a person who understand this and gives her appropriate treatment and a good life will make Koa the happiest dog.

ENERGY LEVEL - Medium. I really enjoy going for walks with the shelter volunteers, however I can't be exposed to harsh sunlight (UV rays), so my opportunities for walkies in Mexico are limited to before 9am or after 5pm. Once I've had daily walkies, I am a chill gal who is eager for affection.


  • Kids – Unknown (I haven't been tested around children) 

  • Dogs – Yup! I live with lots of other dogs at the shelter and we get along just dandy. I greet other dogs nicely on leash (video 1, video 2, video 3)

  • Cats – Unknown

PREY DRIVE - Unknown. I’m not too sure how I’ll react around new things in Canada like cats/squirrels/rabbits etc., so my adopter needs to be prepared and willing to train me through these behaviours, should they arise.  


  • Leash skills – Pretty good! As you can see from my videos, I don't pull much and am just such a happy gal out there!

  • House trained – Work in progress. I know I should do my business outside in the courtyard at the shelter, but living with so many other dogs, I don't get the 1-on-1 attention needed to become officially house trained. Frequent potty breaks and positive reinforcement in my new home will help me learn quickly :)

Please Note: WCP Dog Rescue partners with Unleashed Dog Training (Hannah Swain, Balanced Dog Trainer) to offer adopters 50% off one training session (not including tax and applicable gas surcharges). Any subsequent sessions will be offered at standard rates. WCP also highly encourages adopters to do some research and training on their own before their dog arrives. 


  • I am spayed and vaccinated. I will come to Canada with proof of all my vaccines and test records.

  • I receive a monthly pill to prevent heartworm.

  • I have Dermatomyositis, an inherited disease of the skin, muscles, and blood vessels that causes dramatic inflammation of these tissues in the body. Dermatomyositis is a condition that is managed rather than cured. Most dogs with dermatomyositis can be managed at home, rather than in the hospital. It is important to avoid activities that could traumatize the skin or muscles of affected dogs. Ultraviolet light exposure may worsen skin lesions, so it is important to be mindful of the time these dogs spend outdoors.

    • My condition is currently well managed in Mexico, however my rescuer is hoping that I would get even better care in Canada! This is a disease that cannot be cured, but with adequate medical treatment can be managed in order to maintain an adequate quality of life.

    • Luckily, I do not have any symptoms that suggest megaesophagus or affection of the esophageal muscles-- there is no difficulty eating, drinking or swallowing. I do have a stiff gait, but this seems to be very focalized to physical contact on my paws, which were infected when I was rescued. I am receiving ongoing treatment for infections, so this has improved. 

    • My Dermatologist recommends the following treatment for my condition:

      1. Continued treatment with immunomodulator treatment.

      2. Symptomatic treatment for secondary skin infections.

      3. Frequent veterinary monitoring.

    • West Coast Paws/DogMex Rescue will provide a copy of the Dermatologist Veterinarian Report from Mexico and all associated medical records. It is recommended that my adopter consult their veterinarian before I come to Canada in order to learn more about my condition and to make a fully informed decision on whether or not to adopt me. 

    • My future adopter needs to be willing to pay for future medical costs, likely required. For a dogg-o like me, WCP highly recommends purchasing pet insurance :)


  • My adoption fee is $550.00 CAD + applicable taxes, which includes my airfare, if a flight volunteer is found directly to Vancouver.



Please visit to read about West Coast Paws Dog Rescue and it's adoption process.

The info included in each WCP bio is provided to us from the international rescuer. WCP does not have in-person access to overseas dogs and cannot always verify the accuracy of their descriptions, although we ask for video proof of a dog's attributes wherever possible. Every dog is an individual and can act differently in different situations based on the person(s) adopting them and the environment in which they live. 

WCP is unable to guarantee the accuracy of a dogs age and/or breed. These are strictly "best guesses" based on veterinary exams and their educated estimates. 

West Coast Paws Dog Rescue

Contact info

Pet ID
Hannah Swain
Langley, BC V2Y 0S9

Their adoption process


Submit Application



A West Coast Paws member will contact applicants to arrange a Phone Interview.


Home Check

A West Coast Paws member will contact applicants to arrange a House Check- either virtually or via photographs of the home.


Approve Application

Successful applicants will receive an Approval Email from WCP. A $100 deposit will be required at this point.


Meet the Pet

This step only applies to LOCAL dog adoptions- i.e. a dog that is already located in the Lower Mainland.


Sign Adoption Contract

- Adoption Contract Signed - Adoption Fee Paid


Take the Pet Home

Congratulations! Your fur-baby is finally here! Adopters will be required to meet at the airport to pick up their dog.

Additional adoption info

Please keep in mind that there may be multiple applications for a single dog and that even if your phone interview and home check are successful, there is no guarantee that you will be matched with the dog you have applied for. Your chances of a successful match greatly increase if you list more than one dog on your application.

More about this rescue

West Coast Paws is a British Columbia-based non-profit dog rescue established in 2022. We are a team of animal lovers with a passion for rescuing dogs in need with a current focus on dogs from Mexico and South Korea. With the help of our amazing overseas rescuers, we bring stray, abused, and/or neglected dogs to their forever homes in BC where they have a new chance at a love-filled life.

Other pets at this rescue