Meet red merle Australian Shepherd “Fairoaks Wikki Wikki Woo” or better known to all as “Wikki.” Named after the quirky 80's hip-hop song by Neucleus "Jam On It"....as well as meaning "fast" in Hawaiian, or wise knowledge if you think of "Wikipedia." It all fits her personality well.
Wikki was born on August 21, 2012. Wikki has a fun discovery story. One day, literally out of the blue, I had a strong desire to call my friend, who was my other dog's breeder, and ask about upcoming puppies. I had not thought about adding another dog to my home until that very moment, so why the urge, right? Anyhow, she said she was not personally doing litters right now, but gave me two names to contact. I looked them up and immediately felt Fairoaks had the style of dog I preferred. So I contacted that breeder a few weeks later to ask about the litters mentioned on the website. Deposit and application sent. As time got closer I felt "my puppy" was in the younger litter. The breeder had 2 pups from each litter open to me that would fit my sport dog needs. Wikki was one of them. On pick-up day, the breeder showed me the two from the older litter. I passed on them, wasn't feeling it for them. Then we went to the house that had the other litter. My eyes immediately went to and never left little Wikki. She was climbing the gate to come to me....no fear, tons of spunk and all about being with me. Her litter mates were just as cute but it was Wikki who was always meant to be! Now, the closer to the story.....the date I first called my breeder friend out of the blue - August 21, 2012! The very day Wikki was born!!!!
As a pup, Wikki was the loudest, most obnoxious puppy I have EVER met from the second she entered the house! I think my other two girls thought I was nuts and strongly suggested I send her back ASAP! Not a chance! Within a week, even after the utter exhaustion of starting to raise this little punk, I knew without a doubt she was my heart dog! You know, that special once in a lifetime dog that none will ever match. She was never easy, but she was a lot of fun and challenged every level of puppy raising skills I possessed. She was brave, but cautious, a quick learner/thinker and willing to try anything. Most of all, she bonded so deeply with me that our "team" was/is by far one of the best I have ever had.
Wikki's story gets deeper. At 6 months old I noticed she had developed an odd skin rash. Off to the vet we went. Meds given (blah). She got a little better but it did not go away. I was not comfortable with the next treatment so I switched vets. We started a food allergy regimen. It helped a little, but something really seemed off to me, more than just allergies. That vet was stumped too, and sort of left things hang, so I started to work with the holistic vet that comes to the club for canine spinal manipulation therapy. She made some changes to what I was doing and she got a little better again, but still not good. After all that I insisted on bloodwork. Ding, ding, big liver concern. After many, many, many tests, we found out that Wikki Woo has a very rare disease called Copper Storage Disease (Wilson's Disease in people). Rare in people, super rare in dogs, and never recorded in an Aussie before. She was now truly 1 in a trillion! Today, at her young age of 4, her condition is managed. Not curable, but with all the management she should live a full, good life.
Wikki has no idea that she is special that way. She is everything typical of an Aussie. She gets tired faster than her peers and can't handle the heat for as long, but I have her back to manage her special needs. She knows her food is different than her sisters' food. She knows she cannot have the same foods and treats that her sisters' get. But she also knows that she and her mom got this and she will always be ok. She may not be the fastest dog in her sports due to her "broken" liver, but the heart she gives to all she does certainly makes up for it. And she is nothing short of a sassy punk. I call her my scrappy junkyard dog because she can get quite intense at times in certain situations, but she is so full of life that you can't help but love her. And yes, she is one heck of a cool looking dog, and she knows it.....Doggie Covergirl and Glamour Shots ought to be a sport!
To top it off, after 4 other herding dogs over my years that didn't care for the sport, this little pistol is finally an actual "herding dog" I can work with!!! Herding is her sport of choice. She is also an active agility dog. She has a fair sense of the standard obedience exercises (she and mom get bored with being too obedient!). She has her AKC CAT title in Lure Coursing. Wikki and I have also participated in most of the club’s events – Holiday parade, sports show, MANY demos, State Fair World of Dogs, etc, the list goes on and on. Wikki is my true partner in crime in the dog world. Oh, and, she is my best massage demo dog. She comes with me to all the massage clinics I instruct. She melts into my lap as I demo how to better massage a dog.
Wikki Woo is one heck of a special dog. None will match her zest for life in my book. She is young and still learning all of her sports. We will have a lot of cool adventures together in the future. She has taught me so much more than I could have ever imagined in the dog health world, which in turn has taught me so much more about my health and view on life in general. She is not only "my dog" she is my teacher, the kind of teacher you remember until the day you die. You Rock Wikki Woo!
To see past Agility Dogs of the Month go to our Archive Page