The famous magician known as Houdini has nothing on us when it comes to escaping our confines. Cheyenne is about three-quarter arctic timber wolf mixed with husky. Huskies are also known for their great escape skill. Huskies are a very curious animal, they want to know what is on the other side. Wolves tend to be a little more cautious and typically hang in packs and even though huskies are considered pack animals as well, their curiosity sometimes gets the best of them. When you mix the two, you have a great escape artist, one with the cunning ability to outsmart you at every turn. Just when you think you have us confined, we find a new innovative way to check out the neighborhood. Cheyenne and I gave our neighborhood a run for their money one morning. It took mommy and two ex-marines 4 hours to find us. We traveled several miles to a neighboring schoolyard, trekking through ditches and woods to get there. Since we don't bark or make noise, finding us was made even more difficult. If it were not for the fact that I am pure white and stand out like a sore thumb, they may have never found us. To make things worse, Cheyenne was not wearing a collar, she tends to get hers stuck in her mouth and does a crazy dance trying to get it off of her such that mommy does not leave a collar on her for fear of her hurting herself. Well, after a 4-foot chain link fence and, later, a 6-foot privacy fence did not successfully contain us, mommy resorted to the invisible fence. There is a lot of controversy regarding the use of invisible fences, some think it is inhumane. Before we were allowed to check this fence out, mommy took the shock a couple of times to see what it would feel like to us. After deeming it "not so bad", she had the fence installed. To her way of thinking, it is better for us to get a little shock every now and then, than to wind up out on the street and possibly get hit by a car, picked up by the dogcatcher or taken by individuals who do not understand us or do not love animals like mommy does, we could wind up in a very bad situation, we could even wind up being put down. As far as the shock goes, we do not even need to wear our collars anymore, we got the message after a couple of shocks and stay away from the fence. This is a good thing because, as I stated earlier, Cheyenne has an issue with collars that could prove to be dangerous for her as well. If you decide to go with an invisible fence, keep in mind that signing up for the automatic battery delivery is not always necessary and can prove to be costly when you may not need the collar after the first few shocks. So, if you want to contain us, it is well worth the money to invest in an invisible fence, they have come a long way and have an improved version available that is much less troublesome than it was in the past and more successful in keeping us safe inside our own yard. If you would like more information about the invisible fence, please click here. Thank you and please keep us safe, it is your responsibility because we don't know any better and it is sometimes instinctual for us to wander off.
Spirit thinks he is the leader of this pack. In time, I will be handing this blog over to him and you will be hearing from him on a regular basis. You may even hear from Cheyenne and Sundance on occasion so keep checking back to see what they have to say too.
This site will be dedicated to the care and upbringing of a wolfdog in your home. Living with wolfdogs is not easy, they are very much like a dog but different in so many ways.
They are escape artists so great fencing is a must.
They love to dig, again, not just a good fenced in yard but a yard that resembles Fort Knox.
Digging isn't just for boredom, it is part of their natural instincts to build a den or a cool place to lay down. Keep in mind that mine are being raised in Florida so there are many holes in my yard. Spirit and Cheyenne dug a hole and started putting dried palm fronds over it as seen in the picture below. It rains a lot in Florida so they decided to move their den to a safer, drier area underneath my patio slab. You could hide a body in there. I think they are digging a tunnel to the front of the house and I expect to hear them knocking on the front door one day as if to say "I am out, now what do I do?" The holes under my house are so widespread and deep, I am surprised my house has not fallen in yet but......they would not go in there and would not allow their puppies to go in there if it was not safe, right? I hope so.
Speaking of puppies, one of the pups got caught in one of the dens and I had to call the fire department to come and dig her out. They were very nice about it and even tried covering the holes back up. It didn't take long for Spirit and Cheyenne to dig it out again. Woe is me!
My lawn guy hates me or if he doesn't, he should. He gets his mower stuck in a hole every time he does the yard. Not to mention the stuff that goes flying if you know what I mean. With four dogs in my pack, things happen.
Yes, four dogs. Sierra is a rescue dog that I have not mentioned until now. She is not a wolfdog and really does not like the others too much. She tolerates them. I am trying to get a picture of her but she is afraid of the camera but I will keep trying.
Because of health issues, I had Cheyenne spayed. I am very sad about this but if you have ever had puppies, you know how much work it is.
And did you know that everything you touch is considered edible? When Spirit was a pup, he destroyed a coke can. Luckily he did not swallow any of it, that I know of. They have such a keen sense of awareness, I can bring something into the house and it has to be checked out by everyone. I can move something to another location and they become immediately aware that something is different.
If I go out with family or friends and give hugs which I like to do, I get sniffed over real good once I return to the den.
Wolfdogs are also very fearful animals. Anything new is considered a threat. They don't make good watchdogs because of this. They typically don't bark and only communicate through howling and strange noises so barking at an intruder is out of the question although their body language is pretty significant. The neighbors can't complain that my dogs bark all the time but there is some howling going on, hopefully they will think there are some wild animals on the loose in the nearby wooded section. The only time I got a neighbor complaint was when I had 9 little puppies in the back yard. They were practicing their howling techniques. I must admit, it was a bit noisy.
So, I brought the puppies back into the house and it cost me a futon, some drywall, some baseboard, decorative pillows, socks, shoes and so on. Like I said, anything I touch is edible. It is as if I said, "I touched it, it is okay, go ahead and eat it."
And forget the baby gate. They jumped over that even at 6 weeks of age. But.....on the other hand, Sundance is scared to death of the baby gate and I use that to keep him in his room.
Sundance is very smart. We have a nightly ritual that we play out. I tell him it is time for "bed" and he comes up on the couch for his bedtime scratching and hugging session, then he gets up and goes to his bedroom, goes in, we shut the door, put the baby gate up and he does not come out until morning. He is capable of opening the door on his own hence the need for the baby gate.
He is also afraid of the broom, it is evil apparently. I had it leaning up against the wall when it fell over and landed with a loud bang onto the floor. He was frozen to the spot, would not move until I removed the broom.
In addition, he must have a fear of heights or something and, if he was growing up in the wild, he probably would have been left behind long ago. He is afraid to jump up on things and, once he does get up on something, he is afraid to jump down or even step down. I am not sure if this is because he can't tell how far away the ground is or if he gets dizzy when looking down; either way, he would not have been able to climb cliffs and over rocks and such in the wild, thereby leaving him behind. When he gets stuck somewhere, he cries and howls a lot so his pack members would have shut him up by now. I did get a neighbor complaint about someone crying all the time over here, must have been him.
Cheyenne on the other hand, uses her dog house as an elevated position above the others. She jumps up there very easily and hangs out. She also likes to jump up onto the patio table. This makes Sundance cry some more.
Poor little Sierra gets cornered by the three of them occasionally. She takes pretty good care of herself though. I know they would never harm her but she is not so sure about that so she shows them all the teeth she possesses and gives them a little growling which usually works. The wolfdogs have respect for snapping teeth.
Anyway, I will be sharing pictures and stories with you. I have a lot of pictures of the puppies in their new dens with their pack members. Cheyenne and Spirit had 18 puppies in two litters (one little guy was stillborn) so I found new dens for 17 puppies and have heard from a lot of them. They all seem to be doing very well, are in loving homes and having some great adventures. That is all I ask for them, love and understanding. They are not dogs, they are wolfdogs and should be treated as such. From here on out, Spirit will be in charge of this blog so if you have any questions, ask him, he will love howling back at you.
Thanks for visiting our blog and, if you own a wolfdog, patience is a virtue and if you are thinking of owning a wolfdog, do your research, see my links section and read up on these wonderful animals that can lovingly wreak havoc on your life.