His Puppy Wasn’t What He Thought
The 18-year-old boy was so excited when he saw the sign in front of the house. “Free Puppy” it said, so he walked up to the door and knocked. Ane when he looked into the puppy’s eyes, he knew he’d be taking this sweetheart home with him.
He named the dog Neo and quickly fell in love with him. But Neo was immediately quite the handful!
Neo didn’t take to house-training like he should, and going anywhere in the car would make him so nervous, he’d always have accidents. Neo also only loved his young owner. He was very skittish around other humans, and demanded an unusual amount of his owner’s time and attention.
While his owner loved the dog, he was a full-time college student who worked full-time, and didn’t always have enough time to satisfy Neo. Neo often chewed and clawed his way to escape and play with the neighbor’s dogs. The neighbors would end up patiently caring for Neo until his owner returned.
One day, after what felt like the zillionth escape, concerned neighbors took Neo to a shelter to care for the dog until the owner returned. A keen-eyed shelter worker noticed something different about Neo that made her suspicious.
Neo’s Mystery Is Solved
“One morning, before our animal welfare campus opened to the public, I was outside with another staff member,” Maureen O’Nell said. “I saw a couple walking a long-legged canine to the front door. It wasn’t his body composition that made me notice, but his behavior. Neo was completely avoidant of human interaction. The couple walking him seemed, as best as I can describe it, perplexed.”
“I approached the couple and asked, ‘You know that isn’t a dog, right?'” Maureen said. “They responded, ‘we were wondering.'”
Now it all made sense! Neo’s escape skills, his need to join other dogs and try to form a pack, how he ‘imprinted’ on his owner, but disliked other humans. . . Neo was a high content wolf dog.
After researching laws in their state, they learned it is illegal to own a wolf dog there (unless you are Native American). So they quickly found an organization who caters to these special animals. They talked with the owner who agreed that going to the wolf sanctuary as they recommended would be the best option for his beloved pet. “I told him I was proud of his decision,” Maureen said. “His boy had a wonderful life ahead of him at Wolf Connection.”
Upon arrival at the sanctuary, Neo didn’t need or want time to get used to his new surroundings. He jumped right in, making friends with the center’s alpha female and participating in the nightly howl.
Neo, happy at last, had finally found his pack.
credit: The Dodo