Dog of the Week
|The Wolfdog has been bred |
to be a domesticated wolf
I'd always dreamed of meeting one. They are a hybrid of German Shepherd and Carpathian Wolf, the original hope was that they would have the physical strength and stamina of a wolf and the obedience of the German Shepherd.
In 1955, the Czechoslovakian government bred them to be military attack dogs. I had thought a wolfdog would have a sharp-toothed ferocity. So, never in my wildest imaginings, did I think I could rub and play with one.
I got a lovely surprise when I cuddled this chap. He can only speak Czech, but like all dogs, he understood a gentle tone. True to wolfdog form, he cannot bark, but has a low whistling whimper that sounds like a human doing a throaty, 'hmmmmm'.
His owner told me that the wolfdog has a very tricky and long adolescence. When puppyhood ends and youth begins, they become rebellious, testing their owner and being deliberately naughty, so as to find out what they can get away with. Perhaps, the characteristic that defines them the most, is their zero-tolerance for isolation. Unlike a German Shepherd, they cannot abide being sequestered in a dog kennel for any length of time. It is unnatural for them to be alone, owing to the pack instinct they inherited from their wolf ancestors that would have roamed together in the wild. For this reason, I wouldn't own one as a pet, it would be too much of a time-commitment to fulfil their emotional needs and recreate a pack-like environment for them.
Other people have great sights of the world that they'd like to see, or celebs that they want to be photographed with. I'm happy to seek out the esoteric breeds of dogs that are marvels of nature.
One good thing is that I'm becoming less of a dinner-time bore who drones on about my love for dogs. I went out for a lovely meal in Paddington where me and some friends shared plates of the best seafood, and I resisted the temptation to wax lyrical about the Czech wolf dog...
The Czech that bounces...