Hi BC Boards,
I just rescued this little pup - pretty sure he's a border collie/husky mix, but would love your opinion! I've been following the boards for a few months in anticipation of finding that perfect pup. & .... Found him!
This is his fourth (!) and final home in 5 months, and my first puppy (!). When I found him he had fleas, a UTI, broken canine (fortunately just puppy tooth), fear of crates, would wet himself constantly and owners who claimed he only knew "sit" and not even his name... but he had that look in his eye of a smart pup, and I knew his potential. Within a week (and a lot of work!) he was cleaned up, healthy, mostly house-trained, walks nicely on a leash, sleeps next to the cat (with supervision), and knows at least 15 commands. He even picked a name for himself that gets nearly perfect recall - "Roux" ('roo' ... means redhead in French... probably sounds a bit like a howl in his ears). We'll be taking him to a sheepherding introduction class here in Southern California at the end of the month.
I'm a former animal behaviorist and dog trainer turned scientist, and waited 10 years (!! 10 years!!) to adopt a pup of my own. I am so excited. ! As a distance runner, I am very, very happy to have a dog that can keep up (he seems to have husky endurance and endless BC zippy energy). I'm also hoping to train him on nose work.
Anyone want to throw out guesses as to his background? Former owner said pure BC / pure Siberian husky. I would agree based on behavior.
BC traits: Coat seems definite BC with white patch on neck, soft ears, flowy tail. Keen eye, fetches/herds anything I throw back to me quick-as-a-whip, sometimes drops flat before going into herding mode, maintains eye contact and listens with ears back. Responds best to whistles. Learns a task within a few repititions, responds well to food or praise reward.
Husky traits: affectionate/cuddly in that husky-way, tries for alpha, loves other dogs (tries for alpha there too), curled tail and definite husky face with that ridiculous husky goofy grin. Also gets bored once he learns a task as if to say "ok, sure, sure... but WHY?! ... neeeeext!"
He also nips at moving objects (including joggers, cyclists ) and sometimes defaults to jumping up on newcomers if not reminded to sit. Working on that.
Those spotted feet have me thinking he might also be an australian shepard mix, any ideas on how to know if he's BC or shepard? People also guess heeler. What do you all think?