Name: Whaley
Age: 10-11 months
Breed: Australian Shepherd mix
Gender: Female
Weight: 40 lbs.

Say hello to Whaley! Whaley is a super sweet 10-11 month old red merle female Aussie mix with a full tail. She’s on the smaller side for an Aussie, and we guess her healthy adult weight will be around forty pounds when she’s done growing. This precious girl was bounced around a lot during her first eight or nine months of life, and while she needs a patient handler committed to continuing her training and socialization, Whaley has not let a little adversity dampen her spirit in the least! By our estimation, Whaley belonged to at least three different people before being surrendered to rescue. It wasn’t her fault she had a rough time – she was a victim of poor planning and Craigslist “free dog” ads.

Nevertheless, Whaley is a fun-loving cuddlebug who would love an active mom or dad who has plenty of time to spend with her. She would likely not do well in a situation where she would be left home alone for 8-10 hours at a time, but she could handle a full-time working parent if accommodations were made for lunchtime potty breaks and exercise (so long as mornings and evenings were full of training and play time). Whaley’s foster mom has been working on her basic obedience, crate training, and house training with success – while she doesn’t love the crate, she settles down quickly. Her house training is coming along with plenty of structure and sticking to a routine, and she loves training time (especially with toys!).

Whaley is fostered with other dogs, and gets along well with all of them. Since she came to foster, she has shown no aggression with other dogs at all; however, she can be a bit pushy when she wants to play, and she will sometimes bark in other dogs’ faces if they don’t wrestle with her when she wants them to. She’s not always savvy with canine social cues (though, she’s getting much better!), so sometimes she doesn’t pick up on another dog’s warnings to buzz off. Because of this, Whaley would do best either as an only dog, or in a home with very tolerant dog siblings. Dogs with less patience may become frustrated with her antics and lash out if not watched carefully. Whaley has also done well with dog-savvy cats – she will chase a cat that runs, but she’s shown no aggressive behaviors toward felines.

Despite being a very friendly, sweet pup, Whaley would not do well in a home with children under the age of 8-10. She is easily excitable, and when she gets amped up and ready to play, her first instinct is to start nipping/nibbling. While these are not “aggressive” behaviors at all, a herding nip can still be quite painful – especially for a child who doesn’t understand. Since coming to foster, Whaley has been learning not to nip people, but she’s a puppy and still doesn’t always think before acting. Overall, Whaley’s interactions with people are very positive and enjoyable. She seems to prefer men, but she is her foster mom’s shadow during the day.

Whaley does have a peculiar gait, so CHAR had a vet take x-rays and inspect for any structural issues immediately upon coming to rescue. It turns out that Whaley has beautiful hips, and the vet thinks that she may have some very mild neurological issues