Meet Detroit (aka Puffy) and Kit, cousin heeler dogs.
Henry brought her home from work completely out of the blue one day in the summer of 2005. We hadn’t talked about getting a dog, and we weren’t exactly prepared for one, but one of Henry’s former clients was going to “take her out back and shoot her”. He said she had gotten stepped on by a cow when she was young, and from that time on, she refused to work cows. She was of no use to him, so the jerk offered her to Henry, and he couldn’t say no.
When she came to live with us, she was soooo skittish and shy. She was especially sensitive about feet and sticks. Though she obviously had been abused, she quickly grew to be hyper loyal and extra responsive. Her breed can sometimes be aggressive or standoffish, but this girl is smart but loving and mellow. I can’t say she enjoys our kids (she was part of the family first), but she does a great job of tolerating them and is defensive when she feels like they’re being threatened. She comes with me pretty much everywhere, chilling in the car when we do errands or waiting patiently nearby while I’m doing my woodworking.
To this day, Kit is terrified of cows. I think she’d make a pretty good sheep dog with some training and experience, but without our own flock of sheep, she probably won’t ever realize that potential.
This is Detroit. Her mom was a red heeler, and her dad was of unknown origin. She’s eight months old.
This is my brother in law Trevor with Detroit when she was about six weeks old.
Henry saw a poster for “Free Heeler Puppies” in February and immediately called his brother. “You have to go get a dog.” It wasn’t a question. Trevor picked Detroit up the next day and took her home. She looked like a sausage, a very cute sausage. Kit wanted nothing to do with her.
Now that Detroit is almost as big as Kit, they’re much better friends. Sometimes their play looks pretty vicious, but it’s mostly just a lot of open-mouth teeth baring but no actual biting. I think it’s good for Kit to have some spunky young influence in her life, but every once in a while, she’ll nip at Detroit when she’s tired of puppy games.