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Aiko

1-2 yr old male Siberian Husky

Aiko was originally found as a stray by the AZ Humane Society – he’s incredibly petite at around 35lbs, and estimated 1-2yrs old. He was completely unsocialized as a puppy and has an innate fear of humans that we have been working to get past. The amount of progress that he has made in the last 3+ months is nothing short of incredible, however any adopter must know that he will never be a “normal” happy-go-lucky, in-your-face puppy… during that crucial phase of puppy development, he never got the exposure to humans that he needed and he will probably always care this instinctive fear in him as a result He is very cautious in all of his interactions with humans, and will still freeze and bolt when startled, even with people he trusts. 

When I first got him, Aiko wouldn’t even come inside. As he gained more confidence, he started to pop his head in the dog door to watch intently with curiosity. THEN, he moved on to “yelling” at me from a distance (adorable husky-talk woos in his scratchy voice). Over the last few months he has progressed to a point that he now moves freely throughout the home. It took him over a month to venture upstairs to the bedroom, and another month to start sitting on the couch with me. He will lay against me on the couch and be at ease, but when I move to pet him he still instinctively tenses up in fear, and then relaxes again when he realizes he’s just getting head scratches. I jokingly ask him if he wants to snuggle every day, and he usually just glares at me and turns around and walks away – he truly has such a personality, he cracks me up!

Once he gets comfortable, he is ALL husky under that cautious exterior. He will wake you up by wooing from a few feet away, or sniffing and booping your toes with his nose (that’s how close he usually dares to get, and he sure feels brave and proud of himself when he does!). He is INCREDIBLY mischievous, and good at it too! He will sneak onto the counter and steal food when he thinks you aren’t looking, and loves to take his toys outside through the dog door and arrange them in piles overnight. He’s a big fan of shoes… and has even been caught chewing on baseboards. Of course as soon as you catch him and scold him, he gives you a look that says “what, it wasn’t me!” – he is still very much a puppy! He also LOVES mud… if there’s a muddy spot in your yard, he will lay down and take a nap. He is always watching and waiting for his opportunity to get into trouble, but he is so endearing about it that it’s hard to get mad at him!

Aiko absolutely needs at least one other young, energetic, playful dog in the home. He is completely comfortable with other dogs, and also literally the most tolerant dog (of other dogs) that I have ever met. He LOVES my goofy 1.5yr old husky and they wrestle with each other half the day. He also loves the little 9-week old puppy and lets her climb all over and sit on his back with great patience. He is gentle with the baby, and knows to give the senior dogs their space. I cannot say enough good things about his interactions with other dogs!

He seems to do ok in a kennel, though in all honesty I haven’t really shut him in one and left the house. I’m almost always home with him and have a pretty husky-proof house… I’ve also learned that shoes are just shoes, and chew marks add character to most things…. He needs someone who does not value physical items over pets, is tolerant, patient and home a lot. 

With a dog door, he is mostly potty-trained, though he does sometimes pee on carpeted areas and seem confused when caught…. This has improved a lot over time, however if he goes to a home without a doggie door, I do believe there will be quite a bit of potty-training growing pains while he learns.

He doesn’t do great on a leash or out of the house still. He completely freezes in public and just curls up in a ball in the closest thing to a corner that he can find. He won’t really walk and mostly just tries to run away or hide. He has had to be carried in and out of the vet’s office when we have gone. He needs someone who has the time and patience to work on socialization, walking on a leash, and introducing him to public places more.

He also needs to be double-leashed AT ALL TIMES when not secured in his backyard. We also would HIGHLY recommend a GPS collar for him – because of his incredibly skittish nature with new people and in places he does not know, he is a massive flight risk and would be extremely difficult to get back if he were to get out. We are recommending a home with no young children because of his skittish nature. He is NOT aggressive, but he has snapped when he has reached a point of extreme fear… it’s been more of a flailing terrified “please let me go” type situation getting into and out of the car and not directed at anyone. He’s never broken skin and he would never actually try to hurt anyone; his go-to is much more just collapsing in fear, but because of how different he is from a typical dog, we are going to be extremely picky about where he goes.

If your application for Aiko is declined, please understand that we are being overly cautious, requiring he has a home with a VERY securely fenced yard, at least one other young, playful dog for company, someone who is home a lot and who has experience with either fearful/under-socialized dogs, or husky-experience and a whole lot of patience and understanding. I know this is a tall order, and this guy is so important to me that I’ll hold onto him until the right home comes along. 

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NO YOUNG KIDS
CATS UNKNOWN

If you are interested in “Aiko,” please fill out the adoption application following the link below.

His adoption fee is $350. He comes vaccinated, microchipped, and neutered.
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