By Hollie Bone
The owner of a rare hairless dog which looks just like an ancient Egyptian statue claims onlookers are stunned by her pet’s fascinating appearance – and struggle to believe she’s REAL when she stands still.
Full time dog rescue volunteer, Wendy Scarborough, 48, is inundated with questions when she takes one-year-old hound Fable, out near her home in North Carolina, US, as fellow walkers mistake the dog for a stone sculpture.
The mum-of-two, who looks after 16 dogs with her husband, Michael, 48, had desperately sought a Peruvian Hairless Dog after becoming enchanted by their statuesque physique and ‘expressionless’ face, finally getting her wish last May when she had Fable flown 3,115 miles from Peru.
The passionate animal lover has shared photos of her incredible canine to raise awareness of the ultra-rare breed, which was on the brink of extinction three decades ago until Peruvian breeders began to re-establish the population.
Wendy said: “We get told Fable looks like a statue a lot.
“Every time I go out with her I’m stopped at least five times and everybody says the same thing.
“They all ask ‘what type of dog is that, I’ve never seen an animal like that, she doesn’t look real and what does she feel like?’
“Everyone wants to touch her and understand her origin.
“They say she looks like an Egyptian statue and a lot of people refer to her as Anubis, the famous Egyptian god of mummification.
“Fable has such an expressionless face but she’s actually a very expressive dog when you get to know her.
“She is so unique, even though she’s mine I take her home and I look at her and I’m fascinated by her.
“Peruvian Hairless Dogs’ demeanour is very different to other dogs. They are very aloof with strangers, when Fable sees other dogs and their walkers she will stand still and often fixate on them.
“She’s actually very silly and playful with me, she’s definitely not a statue at home.
“But people probably can’t imagine that when they see her looking so statuesque.”
Having volunteered at Sighthound Underground canine rescue for six years, Wendy has amassed a family of 16 dogs with origins from all over the globe, including five Spanish Podencos, two Galgos a Golden Retriever, a Husky, a Labrador, a Lurcher, and a Persian Saluki.
After stumbling across photographs of some hairless Peruvian dogs on the internet, the animal lover was fascinated and set about trying to find one to adopt.
But with the breed falling into the brink of extinction in the early 90s, the dogs have become incredibly hard to come by, with most breeders based in Peru whose sole objective for the last three decades has been to increase the population of this rare animal.
After locating a preservation breeder last May, Wendy paid a total £1,935 [$2,500USD] to bring Fable home.
This included £1,225 [$1,600US] for Fable herself and £695 to have Fable flown from Peru to Dallas, Texas, before she was transported to Georgia, and driven to her forever home in North Carolina – with the journey taking three days in total.
Wendy said: “They are fascinating dogs because they’re not like other hairless breeds.
“You can have hairless and coated in the same litter, even if you have two hairless parents you could still have at least one coated pup in their litter because it’s in their genetics.
“There are very few breeders in the world now and there’s very few litters a year of Peruvian dogs.
“I tried for many years to get a Peruvian hairless in rescue but they are extremely hard to come by.
“Most people don’t even know about the Peruvian breed.
“A few years ago I saw some pictures of them and that’s what sparked my interest. I actually met a woman who had three of them at a dog show and I fell in love.
“I loved how still looking they are, and I found them fascinating to look at because they don’t seem life-like.
“All of my dogs are like family members, they are like another set of children to me, I can’t imagine my life without them, but Fable is by far one of the most fascinating.”