Mama Lucy (ADOPTED!) weighs approximately 30 lbs. and we estimate she is around 2-years old. She is a gentle, sweet and submissive dog, who needs a quiet, patient home, and people who understand that she will need months, if not years, to gain confidence and learn how to be out in the the world.
She and her litter of five 3-week old puppies were found in a field; all very thin, and covered in fleas. However, the condition of her feet and paws, as well as her behavior, lead us to believe that Lucy was originally in a puppy mill, where she lived in a cage with a wire bottom, and was never socialized or exposed to anything except the inside of her cage. All of her puppies have now been adopted, and we have kept Lucy for several months to work on getting her more comfortable around people and new situations.
She is shy when seeing/meeting new people, and seems to warm up to men more quickly. When she is at home where she is comfortable and feels safe, Lucy is a happy, interactive, loving, normal dog. She likes her routine, and feels most comfortable when she has a crate or covered/protected space where she can retreat to when she is unsure of people and activities happening around her. She does want to be part of the action, and will come out when she gets her courage up, and then retreat again when her confidence fails her. Lucy loves meeting and having the company of other dogs. She is very happy running and playing with other dogs, and as a herder, she likes to nip at their heels while chasing with them. She is not a ball dog or one to fetch, and she isn’t a water dog (swimmer).
Lucy would be a great dog to have on property, especially in a multi-dog household. Being familiar with the vineyard property of her current foster home, she likes to follow her nose and explore a bit, never venturing very far, and then returning. She knows the come command, but if busy sniffing something interesting, she may ignore you and come only when she’s finished her investigations. If she is with other dogs she knows, she will stay with them. Once she feels a place is her home, Lucy is a good watch dog. Although she is normally a very quiet girl, if someone is approaching the house or property, she will bark an alert. She will stop barking as soon as you tell her.
Lucy is extremely food driven. She adores treats and her meal times, and will eagerly get up on her hind legs to get closer to the treat or to place a paw on your leg to ask for a treat. She takes her treats very politely, and she especially loves chewy treats, such as dental chews and Greenies. Sometimes she will nibble on her bed, almost to comfort herself when relaxing. Lucy sleeps quietly through the night, and likes sleeping in the safety of her crate. She seems to be completely housebroken, especially if given opportunity to go in and out frequently or at will. She is good in the car. On car rides, she will sit nicely in the back seat.
However, Lucy is not accustomed to walking on leash, and will strain ahead once a leash is on her. She is also very fearful in new situations, and NOT an explorer or a dog who can be taken on hikes, camping or walking in busy public places. The first time she was on leash on a suburban street, she hid underneath the first car she saw, too afraid to move or come out. If she cannot find a covered space to hide in, she will freeze up in a new place. Because of her fear of new, unknown situations, she would be a flight risk if taken very far from her safety zone, especially if there is a lot of stimuli that might panic her. If people try to physically restrain her, she may pee in fear and submission.
While she would be fine with children, we only recommend her for homes with dog savvy children, who are 7-years old and above, who will not scare her with erratic and noisy behavior. Lucy is currently on property with chickens and a pig, and she doesn’t take any interest in them. We believe she would also be fine around cats.
Our girl is extremely bright in so many ways. She is a very special girl, and we are seeking the right adopters, who will continue her very slow socialization and introduction to new situations and people.