Bill King and Dog Belle
By Carey Deinhart, Life Enrichment Director, The Stafford

Life in boutique retirement living wouldn’t be the same without our furry friends! This is a story of one of our residents, Bill King, and his four-legged-friend Belle.

Bill spent four months looking for his special dog. He went to many different kennels and shelters across the state of Connecticut. Bill and his wife Nicole finally found and adopted their Husky/Shepherd and brought their new sixteen-and-a-half-week-old pup home on July 18, 2011.

On the papers her name was Roxanne, but Bill said, “no way” to that name.

Nicole wanted a southern name, so they landed on Belle.

Belle joined the family in Higganum, Connecticut. With a one-acre fenced-in yard surrounded by about 80% woodland forest, it was dream surroundings for a dog! She needed a lot of training and socialization. After several tries, they finally found an excellent trainer, and Belle progressed through a number of obedience classes. After that she also did agility training. However, due to a pinched nerve, she had to give that up.

Sometime later, they made a move to Colorado and into suburban life. Near their home was a beautiful 7-acre dog park with gorgeous ponderosa pines called Fox Run Dog Park. At this park, Bill met a great group of people: Chuck, a fighter pilot who graduated from the Air Force Academy; Mark, a retired information technology manager; and Michelle, who he describes as a very beautiful lady. An inspiring friendship group formed with dedication to meet EVERY morning at 6:30 a.m. with their dogs, even in the dark winter with snow and ice. This really helped Belle improve her social skills and lasted four and a half years until Bill moved to Oregon. This group is still in touch today!

Belle has been a wonderful furry addition to The Stafford. Even with all the treats she consumes, she manages to hold her weight at 60 pounds. We are so happy Belle and her dad call The Stafford home. They both bring lots of smiles to our community, and we love them!

We’d love to welcome you home to boutique retirement living! Schedule your visit today at or call 503-636-4589.