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Last week my kids went to the pound with a family friend. Our daughters Taylor and Brooke have been bugging us about this dog (Cooper) from the shelter. They have been asking us to adopt him.
He is 1 year old and he is a wolf-hybrid. From what I know a wolf-hybrid is an offspring of a domestic dog and a wolf. He looks like a wolf and i'm sure he acts like one also. I'm not sure if that's safe.
I mean, it's a wolf! I have 2 dogs already and they're pretty small so I don't know how that would work out. Does anyone know about the behavior of wolf hybrids and if they are a threat in any way to people or my dogs?
If you want to get these breed do your research first. Any dog at any shelter, learn about its past. I just got my second wolf hybrid puppy. He is wonderful and full of energy. I have been around wolf hybrids before this. I had good and bad times with this breed but I love them. My blueheeler/wolf hybrid is hardheaded but she is like my child. I've had her five years now. She's good around kids but she doesn't like them pulling on her ears or tell. It's only been three year for her being around them though so she still learning.
Ok, A lot of misinformation on this page, not a lot of science.
First of all, a wolfdog is not a breed.
The thing to understand with wolfdogs, is their behavior is individually predictable, but not breed predictable. What this means, is if you get an excellent wolfdog, that is what they are, an excellent wolfdog. It's important to understand, that aggression in wolfdogs comes from dog genetics, not wolf genetics.
Wolves are very non-aggressive to other wolves, or to humans in the wild as it would be detrimental to the pack. Dogs on the other hand, can be very aggressive, and are much more so than wolves, particularly breeds that were bred specifically for their aggressive qualities. So aggression in a wolfdog tends to be related closely to the type of dog the wolf was bred with, and how high the content of wolf is. The higher the content of wolf, the lower the chances of aggression as wolves are less aggressive than dogs.
The next thing to understand is prey drive.
Dogs have prey drive, and wolves most definitely do. However dogs by and large are not very good hunters having been bred to depend upon humans. Wolves on the other hand make very good hunters. They are apex predators. What scientists have discovered as the main difference between dogs and wolves in tests, is that dogs will look to humans for guidance and instruction where as wolves will or may not.
We bred dogs for submission, to us, humans, and for dependency on us. Dogs have a gene for this, Wolves may not or may have a lesser developed one, or a more primitive one combined with others, that in breeding, we modified, to have them look to us humans as the Alpha pack member all the time. So dogs are very trainable and easily obedient compared to wolves. What all this means in a wolfdog or wolf hybrid is a mix-up.
You may get a wolfdog with dog dependency and trainable genetics, with a wolf coat, health, bone structure, and physical appearance, and intelligence.
You may get a wolfdog that likes to dig your yard to china, is impossible to housebreak (wolves pee outside), has a high prey drive even towards small dogs, cats, and possibly children, and possibly high dog aggression if it comes from a biting, or aggressive breed of dog.
In other words, depending on the pup, you may get the perfect pet, with perfect health and superior trainability and intelligence, or a beast that's unmanageable for most except a strong personality or Training professional. It depends entirely on the individual wolfdog.
That is the way it works.
In the same breed, some pups may essentially be unadoptable, needing to stay with the breeder the rest of their lives, while others of their litter mates may be perfect, or superior even animals. You have to take it on a case-by-case basis, and analyze each animal differently. Their behavior *is* stable, but on an individual level, not on a breed level.
You can't view them as a breed, but as an individual wolfdog. So as far as adopting one is concerned, like adopting any animal, you need to spend time with the animal to identify it's behavior personality to see if it's a good fit for your family. Just like a herding dog isn't appropriate for a small apartment or as a housedog with children (a herding dog will try to herd your children by biting them) so to you need to match the wolfdog to your personality and family needs.
Both dogs and wolves need discipline.
Dogs get it from humans, wolves get it from the alpha members of their pack. If you are going to own a wolfdog, you need to be serious about being an Alpha pack leader. I recommend a Halti (now called a Holt) brand head collar, as well as a German pronged collar for checking them. They need to be taught to heel, and obey, and who the boss is. If you can do that, they are a great animal.
If not, they may not be a good fit, and some wolfdogs are only a good fit for people who understand wolfdogs and Wolf behavior. Some are great family animals, some are better suited in a wolf enclosure. It all depends on the dog, and the animal. If you're serious about adopting one, get to know the animal, do your research, and find out more about wolfdogs. Wolfdogs can be great companions, if it's the right fit for you and your family.
They definitely do not make ideal pets. Take it from someone who owned one. They have a high prey instinct and are very destructive.
Read more of my experiences with my wolf hybrid on my blog. Http:// morepetpampering.net
Some states like Michigan do not even permit ownership of a wolf hybrid. Do your research before you adopt one.
Wolves are like pit bulls they are actually really kind and gentle but people think they are killers when they are not. It also depends on the pound. What is the name of the pound?
Can a Wolf hybrid be trained to stay in the house?
By wolflover17 from Folsom, NJ
I got one as a pup and he's been a great dog. The mother was a wolf... the father must have been a husky mix. lol The picture is of Buddy and we've had him for over 10 years now.
We did have another one a long time ago and he liked to attack the smaller dog. We had to give him back to the pound. Wasn't worth it to us.
So I guess it depends on the temperament of the wolf/dog...?
I've heard of it being done, and of it failing. My vet trainer says it can be done, but is better with no children around. Also, your renters/homeowners insurance may not cover you.
Wolf hybrids can be great pets. Never ever confuse them with a dog though. No matter how long you have them, or how well behaved they are, or any of the other "how wells" you can come up with, they are still part wolf. And the natural wildness is still in there somewhere. I had a full timber wolf once and he was great. However when my first child was born, he was overly protective of the baby. It got to the point that I had to lock the wolf up in order to care for the baby. We gave him to a large zoo in the area.
My brother also had one that was 1/2 timber wolf, 1/2 shepherd. She was also a fantastic animal. But my brother always told me that she could not be trusted around small kids (mine were teens at the time). And when her time came to die, the wolf took over in her and she went off to die alone, which is what wolves do.
Personally I don't believe in breeding hybrids of any kind, and I'm very much against breeding wolf/dog hybrids. I feel strongly that wolves belong in the wild, and dogs belong with families.
I have a 30% white artic/timberwold 70% siberian husky who is the sweetest dog you will ever meet. She is a favorite at the local dog park!
It is hard to train any dog to stay indoors. Mine is an inside dog, and she does really well with listening to me. We just recently moved to a new home and we were keeping my dogs out back (I also have a shepard mix) and the husky kept getting out. I never noticed because she would always go back inside before I got home. The neighbors told me! We just put bricks to where she couldn't get out. I think she always went back because my other dog couldn't get out with her!
My husky is easy to train but stubborn! She only does what she thinks there is a point to! Good Luck!
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This is Hutch, a Siberian Husky and Wolf mix. He's not my dog, but he thinks he is. He's 6 years old and, until this past March, lived chained to a big tree across the street in a neighbor's back yard. His real owners don't believe in inside dogs. He has a doghouse, water, and food. That's what the law says he should have, and that's all he had.
I'm a dog lover and have 3 dogs of my own. Hutch would spend his days watching me interact with my dogs. He had very limited human contact, no obedience training at all, and had not been socialized. His owner noticed that Hutch was constantly watching me, and said I could come over and pet him whenever I wanted.
To make a very long story short, the owner, for some reason or another, has been in prison since September. What little attention Hutch ever got was now gone. So I started wandering over there every day to get to know him and would bring him dog cookies. My first problem was he always jumped and was constantly knocking me down. I'm learning how to walk again myself after coming down with Transverse Myelitis, so my balance isn't the best to start with. I taught Hutch the only way I would pet him was if he faced away from me, so I could pet him. Within a couple of weeks, I started brushing him, too.
I talked the owner's father into getting the yard fenced. For the first time in his life, Hutch was unchained and able to run free. My first few times in the backyard with him running free was pretty rough. I left a spray bottle of water on the gate. Anytime I entered the yard, if he jumped on me I gave him a squirt.
For a few weeks, all I did was give him cookies, brushed him, and just basically earned his trust. I had serious doubts about my own sanity whether I should even attempt to leash train him or not. Imagine a 70 pound Mexican jumping bean on steroids; that's a really good way for me to describe Hutch. But he had such a sad life, that one way or another I knew I was going to teach him to walk on a leash.
The year before, I lost my beloved Parker who was a 135 pound Black Lab and Rott mix at almost 11 years of age. I still had all the stuff that I had trained him with. I decided to teach Hutch to walk on a Gentle Leader, which is sort of like a head harness for a horse. It will stop any dog from pulling it's owner. It took me 45 minutes the very first time to put it on Hutch.
Ready or not, I opened the gate and out we went. Hutch acted like I was killing him, he did the death roll, up and down the street. I was waiting for one of my neighbors to call the police about animal abuse. Neighbors drove by very slowly and asked if I needed help controlling him. I knew my first walk with him would be rough but not in my wildest dreams did I ever expect this. On a good note, all his craziness actually tired him out. For about 5 minutes, we had a very enjoyable walk.
By the time we got back, I decided since he was so tired, I might as well ruin the rest of his day and promptly gave him his first bath. For a dog who has never had a bath, he did great and he cleaned up so nicely.
He quickly learned he had to wear the Gentle Leader, if he wanted to go for a walk, and he had to sit still for me to put it on. By our 5th walk I was using a regular leash. He matched my own gait, as I walked with a cane. If he started to get head strong all I had to do was tell him, "easy boy", and he'd slow back down. It was a whole new world to him to get walked every day. No matter how sore I was or how bad my legs hurt, I still walked him. When it rains, he sits by the gate and knows I'll still come.
He's a runner, and if he escapes it's very difficult to catch him, so I started training him on a retractable leash when I walked him. It also gave him a lot more freedom to sniff and do what dogs do. My next project was teaching and enforcing the "come" command. I carry a treat pouch and throughout our walk every 5 minutes, I'll call out, "Hutch come". He learned very quickly that hot dogs were a good thing. He now knows the command, and he knows he has to sit for me to attach the leash and sit for me to remove it when we get back. He has truly come a long, long way since I started working with him.
He wasn't socialized as a puppy, so he does not play well with other dogs. He's jealous of my dogs, and my dogs are jealous of him. Speaking of playing, none of my dogs ever played with any of Parker's old toys, so I gave them all to Hutch, not thinking I would actually have to show this dog how to play. He hadn't a clue. When and if his owner returns home, Hutch is going to be a totally different dog. I write to his owner, send him pictures, and keep him updated on everything I've been doing with his dog.
As I write this, I am covered with poison ivy, because I always give Hutch big hugs, and apparently there must be some poison ivy in his backyard. Last night, I walked him very late in my pajamas, because it had rained all day. So there I am hobbling down the street, near midnight with Hutch on the retractable leash, and he sees a rabbit. All my training went in one ear, out the other, and he yanked me off my feet. I fell down, and he was running top speed to catch the rabbit.
The retractable leash caught up with him within 10 feet and hit him in the butt and scared poor Hutch half to death. He just stood there, terrified to move, and I can't even begin to imagine what he must of thought. I wasn't hurt, and he now has a whole new respect for the retractable leash.
This afternoon I walked him early ,because we were suppose to get a lot of rain later on. As luck would have it, he saw another rabbit. But lucky for me it was still daylight out. I was able to give him a quick correction, and we continued on our walk with no problems.
A few days before, my legs were hurting really bad. I asked my husband to walk over to get Hutch, and bring him to our house. I would give him a short walk, just to keep my promise to myself that he would always be walked. As I sat on my front porch, I was sort of curious if Hutch would listen to my husband or not. For the next 5 minutes, I watched my poor husband, who is a big guy, get jumped on. Hutch who was very obviously happy to see him but did not listen to him at all.
Another neighbor was also watching, and we both covered our mouths so we wouldn't be heard or seen laughing. He finally somehow attached the retractable leash, opened the gate, and Hutch ran to me, dragging my husband behind him. My husband was holding the 25 foot leash and told me he had everything under control.
Not only did Hutch run to me, but once he got there, he sat as pretty as any show dog could, and got his piece of hot dog.
Though I am a dog person and used to show in Obedience, I knew nothing about Siberian Huskies and did some research on them. First off, they love to dig. I sort of knew that because there's two huge holes in Hutch's backyard deep enough to bury a person or two. They're also stubborn and it's like you have to earn the right to be their master. I'm not saying I earned that right, but when he escaped the other day after someone left the gate open he returned to me, when I shouted out for him to come.
Like I said, he's not my dog. I like to think of myself as his care giver, foster mother, or at the very least he views me as someone he respects enough to obey. I always go over there when my dogs are having their own dinner, so I'm not taking any quality time away from them. Also, when we walk now my neighbors stop, say hi, and pet him.
I'm always asked if he's the big white dog that used to be tied to the tree. All the kids in the neighborhood love him, because he's super fluffy and soft. For a dog who has never been around anyone, other than his owner, he is so gentle with kids. I can't save all the dogs in the world, but for at least this one dog, I do make a difference.
I am so glad my husband isn't a computer person. If he read this and knew that I've been bringing Hutch over when it's over 100 degrees, he would truly think I lost my mind. Lucky for us, I can leave my 3 dogs in the den with the TV on, put up a doggy gate, and close the den door. I put up another doggy gate in the kitchen, and close all other doors. Hutch falls asleep under the ceiling fan, and is as good as good can be well, at least for me.
Anyway, thank you for reading this. Other than my neighbors, no one else knows I've been working with Hutch. What I wouldn't give to spend time with the Dog Whisperer who I greatly admire. I wonder what he would think of Hutch.
By CaroleeRose from Madison, AL
It has been 4 years since your final post. I read every word and comment I almost felt like a fly on the wall. You should get double angel wings. Hutch does and will always know you love him and vice versa as a vet u know it's just how dogs are. For giving , and never forget. I am hoping you are well and wondered if Hutch was out of that environment or how he is doing. Did you get the Dobie? We had Dobie/Shepard crosses. It was intentional. My then boyfriend (a biker in a well known national club) and his brothers bred for the Dobie look but Shepard personality. It was actually a good cross. Anyway I am asking about you and Hutch. Hope u get this.
Stryker was a 7 year old Wolf/Husky. My daughter needed a soul mate, and in AZ, came this glorious wolf/dog who understood her. He was there before her marriage, children, and she understood him just as well.
Grace is a 2 year old Husky/Malamute/Timberwolf. One of our friends bred his dog and Grace was the puppy I fell in love with. We weren't looking for a dog at all, but I couldn't watch someone else take her.
Dacoda is a 1 year old Siberian Husky/Timber Wolf mix. I got Dacoda right after Christmas last year. While taking a walk around the block I saw a bunch of white fluff balls running around in a neighbor's backyard. My curiosity got the better of me and I went over to investigate.
Dakota Star is now 18 months old. She is a Timber Wolf/Husky. We are wolf/wolf dog rescue and she was born in our compound. She can do anything she wants.
Merl..not by choice! He is 9 months old and an American Wolf Husky. I was in the wrong place at the WRONG time!
Dakota Star - Wolf/Husky Photo. Dakota Star is a 1 year old Wolf/Husky. We are a wolf rescue and have a pack of 12. . .
Trigger is 6 months old. He is Malamute/Wolf. I rescued him from a dirty and infested home. I got him when he was 3 weeks old