Foster Dog: Shiva
Foster Dog Location (city): Virginia Beach
Age: 4 (?)
Health concerns: None
General Activity Level: Medium plus
Interaction with dogs: Excellent with males. A little slower to get used to other females
Interaction with cats: Not good
Interaction with children: Teenagers, great. Youth or younger, unknown.
Physical fence required? Not sure, but suspect yes.
Suitable for an invisible fence? Uncertain.
How many hours are they able to be left alone? Eight plus.
Able to climb stairs? Yes, but we only have a few stairs into the house.
In need of obedience training? Could be quite helpful.
Personality and additional information:
From the moment Shiva (pronounced Shee-va, as best we understand) arrived at our foster home at the end of January, she has acted like she’s been a citizen her whole life! Fresh off the plane from Turkey, she shows a ton of the fantastic traits we all love to see in a true Golden.
First off, the vet found no medical issues with Shiva when she arrived. Our contacts in Turkey tell us that Shiva used to have mange and skin issues, and about eight months ago they shaved her completely and treated both aggressively since then. Now that she’s moved to the United States, she has an amazing coat, bright eyes, and an energetic disposition. She is probably a few pounds overweight for her size, but a good diet and her own (encouraged) activity level should trim her down quickly.
Meeting our two dogs and another foster dog, Shiva was initially cautious but generally friendly toward everybody. For the next 2-3 days, she settled in pretty well, though she did try to establish some dominance with the other dogs on a few occasions. This involved a few growls, some mounting behavior, and a little jealousness for attention. The bunch of them have sorted it out, as expected, but Shiva still likes to get first in line for attention from people. She has since merged very well with the pack here, playing nicely with everybody. Nonetheless, this girl seems to have a pretty independent spirit, and she should do well as either a single dog, or with other dogs in a household.
Shiva has all the playfulness you’d expect with a Golden; loves to chase a ball, frequently meets us at the door with a chew toy in her mouth, and she’ll wrestle and chase the other dogs with the same gusto as the pack. When going for a walk, she’s pulls a little on the leash, but after the initial few blocks she gets into the pace of the walk and trots happily along. Sooner or later a rabbit or squirrel scent will cross her path, and she’ll turn hard to try to follow. She will get back on the walk with a correction on the leash. She rides easily in the car, and jumps right up if you let her know she is going for a ride.
Breakfast and dinner are Shiva’s favorite times of the day, never turning her nose up at a meal. She often attempts to get to the bowls of the other dogs if they are fed first, and has to be blocked from doing so, as verbal orders to leave them alone do not typically work. However, when she gets her food, she is a clean eater, and anyone can pick up or move her food bowl with no aggressiveness from her. Shiva’s big vice is some counter surfing, so it’s important to keep food out of reach on counters and tables. Probably to be expected given her history as a street dog who had to scrounge for food. She will get down if you tell her :”No”. Fortunately, her slightly smaller stature makes it harder for Shiva to get at food pushed away from the edge.
All in all, a classic Golden. Welcome to America, Shiva! Let’s find your Fur-ever home!