Age: 7 months
Breed: Miniature American Shepherd 
Gender: Male
Weight: 17 pounds

– Experienced (and active) owner (herding breed preferred)
– No apartment, condo, townhome (shared wall living)
– No children

– Friendly, confident canine sibling (not overly dominant)
– Fenced in yard (for safe zoomies)
– Sport or training focused home

Eli is a seven-month-old Miniature American Shepherd who is ready to start looking for his forever home! Don’t let his small size fool you (17lb and 15”), this boy has energy and spunk to spare and will need a home who can help him channel it appropriately. He loves his morning walks with the “big dogs” and has no trouble keeping up with them (typically he gets 1.5-3mi each day), he is currently working on leash etiquette and has improved drastically since entering foster – he still needs some work on pulling, not barking at other barking dogs, and wanting to chase all the bunnies, but has a nice natural heel when he’s relaxed and one-on-one (or with just one foster sibling). In the evenings he spends most of his time wrestling or zooming around with his 2yo Aussie foster sister, in brief training sessions (he is awesomely handler oriented), and finally hanging out with a bone or some cuddles (this boy LOVES his person and is perfect lap dog size!) to wind down before bed.

Eli falls on the moderate-high level of the energy spectrum and will need a home that can keep up with him! He would likely do well as a very active companion or as a (beginner) sport dog. His foster home is working on his tug drive and figuring out fetch, he LOVES to chase the flirt pole and use his nose, so lure coursing or nosework/barn hunt seem like pretty natural fits right now. His initial intro to dock diving was also very promising, he showed no hesitation following foster mom into the pool down the ramp and even had some tiny hops off the dock – provided foster mom was in the pool to encourage him (did we mention he loves his person??). As his toy drive and understanding of what is being asked of him improves (both in training and maturity) there is very little this fearless little fellow won’t be able to accomplish with the right handler! Given his general athleticism and springiness – flyball, agility, and disc are other options he might be well suited to as he matures.

Eli is VERY food motivated and is learning that fingers are not part of the treat and that you have to wait your turn (rather than snatching from your foster sister) and has picked up some basic commands very quickly. He is *technically* crate trained and will *usually* go in for a snack and has never had an accident. He is still working on going in on command and suffers from FOMO if he thinks his foster siblings are getting to do something cool without him (this is the main reason for no shared wall living, he will let you – and surrounding counties – know that he is displeased with his imprisonment.) Typically, at night and during the work-day he may complain for a few minutes but quickly settles and sleeps. He is working on house training and seems to be picking up on “if I go to the door when I gotta potty they let me out to potty!” but is still currently taken out every 30-45min when his foster fam is home with lots of praise when he goes.

We do feel Eli would be best suited to a home with herding/working breed experience as he has some anxiety likely due to lack of exposure prior to foster. He does not seem to have been handled much and as a result does not do well with being restrained (think nail trims, vet visits, being kept from going through an open door, etc) and immediately hits panic mode. While he is young enough to overcome this, it is something best handled by someone with experience (and with the help of a trainer if necessary) for his safety and success. His foster is slowly working with him through this, but it is not something that is fixed over-night and his forever home will need to be prepared to continue to work with him. He’s already shown improvement in his crate and car anxiety (on his recent dock trip he rode the entire 4 hours with barely a peep) so we know with the right handling and training he will be able to come out the other side a truly AMAZING little dog.

Eli is currently fostered in Charlotte, NC and is up to date on vaccines, preventatives, and is microchipped. His adoption fee is $325 with a $200 neuter and training deposit that will be refunded upon proof of enrollment and neuter by one-year-old.

If you are an approved applicant and are interested in Eli, please contact the adoption committee. If you are interested and not yet approved, please complete an adoption application.