Spanish Hound/Sabueso, 5 Years Old
**NOW IN THE UK*
Sometimes we get it right, most of the time we do happily, but with this boy we haven’t and the poor thing has been rehomed 3 times and each time things haven’t worked. Let me start from the beginning.
This handsome chap is Federico, a Sabueso or Spanish hound. They are used for hunting wild boar and deer in Spain. They are related to Beagles and Bassett hounds and have the crazy long ears and long body typical of a Bassett hound but are longer in the leg. They are active, energetic dogs with a strong prey drive and need decent amounts of exercise. They are also incredibly soppy and affectionate and Federico is no exception.
The poor thing waited in a shelter in Spain for many months (he arrived skin and bones dumped by his hunter owner) and was very sad in there but he was fed well and got healthier although really struggled with being cooped up in a run. He shared a limited space with all kinds of dogs including pitbulls and he will have seen some harrowing scenes but he kept his head down and got on well with all.
He has an old injury on his left front paw which we don’t think was ever treated, he favours his front right paw when he walks but when he runs it doesn’t seem to bother him. We are going to put him on joint protectors.
On 22 February this year he had the good fortune to find a foster home in the UK and this is what his foster Mum says about him
“Fred is a big bumbling affectionate dog, loves attention also really playful. He’s big (approx 30kg) and a bit clumsy. On a Park Walk he is very friendly when people come up and pet him. He was very happy when dogs came up to him and wanted to run and play. I double lead walk him which means I have a lot more control (since he’s strong). He’s still quite nervous of just anything strange that he doesn’t understand. He loves to play with things he grabs tea towels etc and throws them around and just charges around like a lunatic.”
In his foster home he and the resident male hound didn’t see eye to eye, they were fine together outside of the home but had to be kept apart inside. His foster Mum says that it was her dog who instigated the trouble and Federico just stood up for himself. He has never had an issue with any other dog to our knowledge.
We found a wonderful home for him with a lady with a 19-year old son but to our dismay he was scared of the two men in the house, the son and the lady’s older father who was staying and he manifested this by barking and lunging at them and by guarding doorways and preventing them from coming into rooms where he was. We could have helped him through his fears there but since the lady has a lot of visitors who come to her home through her work it was decided that a different setup would suit him better.
The next attempt was a home with 3 cats. He’d done well in a cat test and once there he got on famously with the male resident dog and the humans but became obsessed with the cats who got very upset so that didn’t work out.
Finally he went to a young couple who with hindsight did too much with him too quickly – long walks, lots of training and it was too much for him and he became reactive again, barking and lunging at the man and growling at the woman when she pushed him off the sofa gently. They lost their nerve and gave him back.
So poor old Federico is back at kennels. He’s fine there and gets on well with all of the staff, no issues. But it’s a lonely existence and very expensive for us.
So what kind of home do we think would work for him. We think he’d do well with a good-natured, friendly female dog. He could well be fine with a very easy-going, non-dominant male. It needs to be a home without children and cats. And he really needs people with experience of dogs with behavioural issues or nerves of steel and a willingness to work with a good behaviourist right from the start and really to follow their guidelines, taking things very very slowly, keeping his world very small initially. Working with troubled dogs like Federico is tough but it is also incredibly rewarding when you help them to understand that the world is no longer a scary place for them. If you think you could be the person to do this for him please do drop us a line.
His adoption fee is a contribution towards the costs of rescuing him including microchip, passport, vaccinations, tests for S European diseases, neutering, parasite treatment and his transport to the UK from Spain. If you write to us please check your junk mail folder for our response