Lockdown pet becomes a community connection

Lockdown pet becomes a community connection

Most people assume sight hounds like whippets and greyhounds love nothing more than to run, but the truth is quite the opposite.

Local pet owner Andrea Frank sought out her whippet Charlie precisely because she wanted a lazy dog.

“He needs to sprint around and get his energy out, and then he’ll just happily sleep forever,” Andrea said.

Charlie came into Andrea’s life towards the end of 2020, after a false start with another family who could no longer take care of him. He was her second whippet, but the first pet Andrea had owned independently as an adult.

“Life was a bit boring,” Andrea recalled of the 2020 lockdowns. “And it was just a good time to welcome a little puppy. I had lots of time to give to him and lots of time at home. That was really my motivational factor.”

Perhaps because of the lockdowns Charlie has lived through, he’s very well domesticated. A door is no barrier to anywhere he wants to go in Andrea’s house, even one that opens inwards.

“He’ll reach up and pull it towards him, and he’s like, ‘Hey, here I am!’”

At the dog park, Charlie loves to make the kelpies think they can keep up, only to outrun them at the last second. He uses his speed to his advantage, and in what Andrea described as “the greatest conquest of his life”, once stole another dog’s treat three times and ran to different corners of the park.

Despite his bold antics, the locals love Charlie. He has brought Andrea closer to her neighbours and fellow pet parents at Princes Park.

“It was something good out of a pretty weird time that we all had,” she said •

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