Age: 5 Years
Weight: 41 lbs
Fenced yard required: Yes
Location: SE Michigan
Foster Home: Jo
BC Experience Required: No
Good with dogs: Yes
Good with cats: tbd
Good with kids: tbd
Commands: Sit; Stay (95%); Come (about 50%)
Almond Joy and Heather (raised together and would prefer they be adopted together)
Their owner passed away. When Police, EMTS and Animal Control officers came to pick them up, they were relatively calm. Almond Joy was a bit withdrawn. These beautiful girls were taken to the Macomb County Animal Control where they remained for about a month. Both girls passed temperament tests (including interactions with other dogs) with flying colors and staff at the shelter were able to handle them all over including belly rubs. Almond Joy (the mostly white one) is deaf and tends to rely on her sister, Heather, for cues. They entered foster care on August 17, 2021.
Prey Drive: medium but does enjoy a good squirrel chase
Food & Treats: Gentle taking food from your hand. If the treat is high value, she may get a bit grabbier.
House Manners: She is not being crated in the house and she has not bothered anything she is not supposed to. However, if I leave food unattended either on the kitchen counter or where I am eating, she will try to sneak it.
8/17/21 - Day 1
Heather is inquisitive about meeting new people and dogs. Upon arrival at her foster home, she happily submerged herself in my pond while digging at the pond plants. Full of swamp mud and water, so Peggy, another volunteer, held her in place with the leash so I could spray the worst of the muck off of her. Although she jumped right into the pond, when I tried to give her a bath, she stood at the edge of the tub and trembled. Treats thrown into the tub were ignored. A small fence has now blocked her entry to the pond.
Heather appears to be an alpha dog because, during play, she tried to hump a visiting male dog. They tried to play a bit. She met the two resident female dogs and tried to play with one of them. All 5 dogs ran, sniffed and got along appropriately.
Feeding time: Heather simply sniffed the food and walked away – nervousness. After watching the resident dogs eat and taking a few kibbles from my hand, she went to her bowl. She did not demonstrate any food aggression with me or the other dogs.
8/19/21 – Day 3
Heather is reverse sneezing, usually outdoors, allergies?
8/23/21 – Day 7
Heather’s sneezing is diminishing – probably from the same issues Almond Joy had at the shelter.
8/24/21 – Day 8
Saw energy out of both dogs today. Up till now, they have been fairly reserved. Today, they ran and chased in my yard! Took her to Pet Supplies Plus to have nails trimmed – scared but did allow the trim. She was well-behaved in the store and wanted to be petted. Fairly good on a leash.
8/26/21 – Day 10
On my office wall, I have a large calendar that shows the whole year. The large picture at the bottom was a black bear cub. Heather came into my office and approached slowly. When the bear on the calendar did not move, she went straight up to it to sniff. Adorable!
8/27/21 – Day 11
Heather got the zoomies tonight and wanted to play chase in the yard (I had her out by herself because if Almond Joy is there, she muzzle punches). Heather comes to me much more often and really enjoys her neck, back and butt scratched.
9/4/21 – Day 19
No longer using a baby gate to separate Heather & Almond Joy from the resident dogs; all is great!
9/12/21 – Day 27
Heather is becoming more affectionate; she likes to lick ears and noses.
Heather seems to like men a bit better than women although she will come to anyone to be rubbed and scratched.
Tried separating them today for training purposes and Heather barked her fool head off in the crate and Almond Joy shut down almost completely. At night, these two can't get much closer together while they are sleeping. They are rarely apart unless I force them apart.
9/14/21 – Day 29
Heather is becoming more comfortable with everything. She climbed up on me and layed across my legs to be rubbed.
And, using a treat, Heather sat on command for the 1st time today.
9/17/21 – Day 32
Heather can be a counter-surfer if given the opportunity and may steal your dinner if you leave it to go to the bathroom.
Today, Heather picked up one of her foster sibling’s toys and began tossing it in the air and chasing it.
Heather will bark at a dog on the other side of a fence but will leave it when blocked from the fence.
9/20/21 – Day 35
Today was the first day Heather played with and chewed on a stick.
Today, Heather actually sat when I told her to without being prompted by a treat!
And today was the first day, Heather invited her resident sibling into a full out run and wrestle.
9/21/21 – Day 36
Tried to get Heather to play with a toy today. I tossed it toward her mouth and she would almost open her mouth to catch it but then would stop.
9/25/21 – Day 40
Heather enjoys being outdoors and will lay in the grass or hide in the tall plants.
9/30/21 – Day 45
Tried teaching her to go through a tunnel. Heather will only go so far to get the treat and then back out of it. More work to do.
Heather is responding well to commands such as ‘stay’, ‘sit’ and ‘back up’. Still working on ‘come’; she can be slightly obstinate. We are also working on ‘down’.
If you are working in your office, Heather is content to sleep on the floor while you do your work.
This girl loves affection. You can hug her and kiss her on the head and she loves being rubbed and scratched.