Age: estimated age 1-2 year
Size/Weight: 70 lbs.
Color: Lemon Belton
Breed: English Setter
General Foster Comments: Meet Big Mack! He’s a beautiful, young setter who was found as a malnourished stray in Kentucky. A good-hearted soul took him to the humane society and they got him into A&B to make sure he got a great forever home. Mack is pure love; he is a sweet, sweet dog who wants to be near his people. He is very much a “velcro” dog and his new family will need to be prepared for wet nose marks on the back of their legs after sudden stops. Like many setters, he has some separation anxiety, especially after transitions.
Socialization/training: It appears he has had zero training. We’re starting from scratch and he’s picked up “sit,” “lie down.” This is an area where Mack’s new family will need to be prepared to keep working with him. He has been on a portable e-collar while outside.
Good with Children: Yes, BUT Mack is not the dog for a family with young children or a household expecting to have more babies. He is a big, playful puppy who runs/jumps along with kids when they run and likes to playfully nibble when he’s excited. He’s mostly learned not to jump up, but mostly is not never. While he’s doing all this in play, getting knocked on your can and mouthed by a dog twice your size does not necessarily feel playful to little kids. His perfect home would be a family with kids probably older than seven and kids who are experienced around dogs and not skittish.
Good with Dogs: Yes. He’s very friendly with other dogs in the house and neighborhood dogs as well. However, he is not a good match for a home with small dogs; he played too hard with an older toy poodle and gave him an injury.
Good with Cats: No. At first introduction to foster cats, Mack rightly jumped back about two feet. Weeks later, his fear turned to intrigue and progressed to full-time cat obsession. While he hasn’t tried to eat the cats, he has soft-mouthed them and his stalking of them has become problematic. For instance, he learned how to open lever door handles to let himself into the basement cat safe-house. He really needs to meet a fierce cat with claws intact, but in the meantime, recommend adoption only to a no-cat household.
House-trained: Yes! Surprisingly, Mack has had rare accidents since coming to his foster home despite appearing unfamiliar with house-life and having stools that would be categorized as “water hose.” He goes to a person and does a funny sound (like he’s trying to talk) and/or goes to the door when he has to go out. It’s only when his cues were missed that he urinated by the door a couple times over a couple months.
Crate-trained: No. While he can be forced into an XL crate, he does not like it and it takes some effort and inertia to get him in one. He sleeps on the floor in the master bedroom at night and is fine. For time alone, he’s been confined to a mud room and seems to do well, though he whines when he’s in there. He wants to be on the bed and furniture, but he’s not allowed, though he still tries to sneak up on the bed when someone vacates.
Leash-trained: Yes. He pulls a bit and he’s a strong guy, but not unmanageably so. He’s a pretty good walker overall.
Activity Level: Moderate. He’s young and playful and will need to be exercised, but he’s not a hyper dog. For his age and breed, Mack is actually quite calm and tends to lay down by people’s feet inside if there aren’t cats nearby. He’s a play hard/sleep hard puppy.
Fence REQUIRED: Mack will need to be trained on an electric fence only. It has been witnessed that he can jump over a 6’ fence!! He can walk over a 4’ chain link fence and seems to have some prowess climbing gates as well. This is a big deal; part of his separation anxiety seems to be wanting to get to his people no matter what. During a five-minute errand on a beautiful fall day, Mack was put on a second story deck instead of being crated or confined. When foster mom got home, Mack had gotten out and the gate was still shut! When his people were working in the yard and had him on the deck with the other dogs, he was trying to jump over the side—a long drop!
Behavior: Everything seems new to Mack! He looked at us like we were crazy when standing at the top of the stairs for the first time. He’s volunteered for pre-washer on dishwasher duty and seemed pleasantly shocked that there was food on the counter. Poor guy wolfs down his food; he has clearly experienced hunger as a stray. This is a very, very sweet dog. Loves people and the affection they give him. Wants to be close all the time. He is very skittish at any loud noise, so seeing him as a hunting dog is a longshot. We have also ruled out a career as a rocket scientist. But, if you want a loving companion dog for individual or family, he’s a great candidate.
Medical History: Mack has been fully vetted and recently neutered. Heartworm negative. He came to his foster family with a terrible case of diarrhea but was parasite free. A round of antibiotics and some bland food got him back to normal. He may be a dog with a sensitive stress stomach; those pups often have a change of stools with a change of venue, so be prepared for that. Mack had a terrible case of fleas when he was taken in as a stray. The hair on his lower half was almost completely gone. He’s flea-free so his pretty coat and feathering has come back nicely. He’s put on ten lbs in foster care and is a nicely, healthy weight now. He’s a beautiful dog.
Adoption Fee: $300.00
Foster Location: Madison, WI
In most cases, volunteer transport is available for your adopted dog to within 2 hours of your home.