Take a peek into the life of Raven, our Saarloos Wolfdog, born in Berlin on november 8th, 2014.
"Raven is not your typical Saarloos, which are generally very suspicious. With his open character, he is friendly to everyone. Sometimes he can be a little to enthusiastic towards strangers. His looks can be intimidating. But he's a friendly giant."
Every dog (even every animal!) has it's own character and personality. So does Raven. While the Saarloos Wolfdog's general character exists of suspicious and shy characteristics, Raven is a very free and open dog. Wether he knows you or not, he will be greeting you like he hasn't seen you in years. This open character can be intimidating for some, and reassuring people that he's just being friendly, is not always appreciated. His love for people also means that he always prefers to play with you as a person, rather than a boring toy. He hates toys!
Raven is a dog (of course!). Although his appearance might sometimes trick you. But with relatively "fresh wolfblood", he's basically a wolf in sheep's clothing. Or, a wolf in dog's clothing, a dog in wolf - ... you get what I'm trying to say.
In 1935, Dutch breeder Leendert Saarloos (1884-1969) started cross-breeding a German Shepherd Dog male to a female European Wolf (Canis Lupus Lupus).
Although he was passionate about the German Shepherd, he found most dogs to be too domesticated and wanted to breed in more natural properties in order to get better working dogs.
The Saarloos wolfdog is a fairly large dog, up to 76 cm (30") at the shoulder and weighing up to 50 kg (110 lbs).
It is an athletic dog in build, with medium bone, and a strong and muscular body. They move lightly on their feet and have an elegant march. Its coat is short and dense, providing good protection from the weather. There are 3 colours: wolf-grey, red and white. Because the wolf-grey genes are dominant, this is the most common colour. Genes for white colour are recessive, making this uncommon although this colour is accepted. The Saarloos has wolf-like expressions, as well as a wolf-like head.
Raven grew up with children (our youngest son was born when Raven only just turned 1 years old). He also grew up with animals around him, including goats, sheep, chickens and our Billy & Willy (two Kune Kune Pigs). Of course he's still a (large) dog, so his playing and taunting can sometimes turn a little too rough. Keeping a strict eye on him definitely is an important task, making sure he knows the limits.
Raven loves to bite, nibble, gnaw, chew... It's his mission to explore everything with his teeth. But in the end, I always say it's not his large teeth that are his dangerous weapon; it's more his large nails that are a weapon of mass destruction. Wrestling with him (which he loves) will undoubtedly result in long, red scratch marks all over your body.
My name is Rowan (the one getting bitten). Together with my wife Saran and two sons (and many other animal friends around our home) we live with Raven in a small village called Breezand, Netherlands.