ADOPTED Protege # 0195 Sheila 7 Month Old Aussie Mix Female Iowa

Sheila (#0195) is a 7 month old Aussie mix (we suspect Aussie x Sheltie). She currently weighs around 25 pounds and our best guess is that she will be around 30/35 pounds full grown. She is tan, white and has a little bit of black peppered in. Sheila is spayed, HW tested negative, up to date on vaccinations, and on flea/tick and heartworm preventatives. Her coat has a little bit of a wave to it, and is super soft to the touch!

[frame_center src=”http://www.aussierescueil.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/06/Sheila-large-266×400.jpg” href=”http://www.aussierescueil.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/06/Sheila-large.jpeg”]Protege # 0195 Sheila[/frame_center]

Sheila is friendly and curious when she feels secure. She is more comfortable with women initially, but warms up to men as well. She likes to stay close to her people, and she follows us around the house as we go about our daily activites. Sheila would do best in a home without children under the age of 10. She is reactive to people’s arrivals, and her own arrival in a new environment. We are currently working on desensitizing and counter-conditioning with this issue, and she is making progress. Recently upon the arrival of her foster mom’s sister and her 8 year old son, she barked loudly at them. They gave her treats and greeted her, then walked on into the house and ignored her. Fifteen minutes later, Sheila was again going about business as usual, and visited both the sister who was in the kitchen, and the computer room where the nephew was on the computer, and she reached her nose under the arm of the chair to give him kisses on his hand as he played games.

Sheila walks well on a leash, but her current level of fear and reactiveness (frantic barking/rushing out to the end of the leash) to strangers and unfamiliar items would make leash walking about the neighborhood difficult. In this area she is also making great progress. Upon arrival at her foster home she couldn’t be in the yard when anyone was out and about in a four-house radius. Now she can watch the neighbors doing yard work and going about their business with her only reactions being noises in the back of her throat while she goes on with what she was initially doing before she noticed them. Sheila will require a fenced yard, both to protect her from bolting in fear, and for room for exercise until she able to handle leash walking without being reactive.

Sheila gets along fine with other dogs. She wants very much to play, but still is uncertain of how to go about playing with other dogs. She play bows and initiates some chase games, but isn’t quite sure where to go from there. Sheila goes with her foster mom several day a week to the doggy daycare facility where she works; she interacts with up to 14 other dogs of similar size in her play area, and this also gives her the opportunity to socialize/desensitize to being around other people, and to practice her arrivals/departures. She rides well in a car, and enjoys going places. There are two cats in Sheila’s foster home; Sheila likes playing with them, and they often initiate play with her, but for most cats she will be too much, so we recommend that she go to a home without cats.

Sheila is crate trained, and goes right into the crate when she is asked to kennel up. When leaving the house, she will initially bark when crated, but does quiet after 10 minutes or so. She is quiet when crated overnight in the bedroom; however if she is crated her while her foster family is home (for example, while they are eating) she will fuss for a while, as she wants to be wherever her people are. Sheila is very well housetrained, she has had no accidents since coming into foster care, and she will whine and pace at the door when she needs to go out to potty.

Sheila came to us with her lovey, which is a pink puppy named Pink Floyd. She LOVES Pink FLoyd. She sleeps in her crate with her head on him at night. If he gets left in the crate, she will sometimes scratch at the bedroom door, and when you open the door, she will run in to get him and bring him out into the living room. She never chews him up, but frequently carries him around with her. It’s absolutely adorable! She also enjoys chewing on Nylabones and Natural bones. She does not guard her toys from other dogs.

Sheila has completed a 7-week beginning obedience class prior to coming into rescue. She knows basic commands, is eager to please, and VERY intelligent.

Sheila will do best with a patient adopter who can provide reassurance, consistency, positive guidance, and a firm, structured routine, along with lots of love. These things lead her to a feeling of trust with you, and we have noted that Sheila’s reactiveness/fearfulness is decreased as she builds trust with the person she is with, and (in her mind) trusts them to keep her “safe.” When she feels like you have a handle on things, she doesn’t find it as necessary to react to the things around her. Her adoptive home needs to be prepared to continue working on desensitization and counter-conditioning for her fears so that she can continue the progress she is making. She is a charming, delightful and affectionate companion who will bond closely with her special people. She has wonderful potential and will thrive in the right setting.

Sheila is being fostered in Cedar Rapids. If you might be interested in learning more about this dog, please email Jayne at mcjayne@yahoo.com. While we welcome your questions about this dog, all adopters are required to complete a Protege Adoption Application (www.protegerescue.org/) before being considered to adopt a Protege dog; our adoption fee is $200.

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