July 20, 2012
Hi, I'm on the Board and the intake coordinator for Maryland Westie Rescue (MWR). While West Highland White Terriers are surrendered to our rescue group for a number of reasons, many of them come from puppy mills. My three Westies (Lucy, Idgy, and Nina) are real sweeties. However, I presently have a male foster Westie who has some unique behavior issues. He was purchased from a pet store so that guarantees that he came from a puppy mill. He is so sweet that he likes to be held like a baby yet he is as playful as the two year that he is. He sleeps nicely in the crate. When he sees me go for the cookie jar, he runs to the crate for he knows that he’ll get a good-night treat. He is very smart for he caught onto the doggie door right away and is very good about going outside when he needs. He has never shown any aggression toward mt hisband or me. He gets along with all three of my Westies… except when he is trying to get amorous with Idgy but she gives him a what-for.
Now for the bad news. I have not yet identified it, but the male Westie I'm fostering has a trigger that brings out the fearful dog. He came to MWR when he bit an 11 year old. There was a van full to teenagers and they were passing Sundance around in the moving vehicle. He became stressed and bit one of the kids. We placed him in a foster family and when the housekeeper started the vacuum, he attacked it. When the housekeeper tried to get him to stop, he bit her. One more time… a rescue Board member came over to the house and it looked liked Sundance was going to scoot out of the door. The guy reached down to stop him and Sundance bit his wrist. Sundance is a really sweet dog but I have not yet found his trigger. If we can extinguish this behavior, he will be a great pet for someone. Are you willing to take him on?
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