Wendy Wheaton Cusick
I have a Wheaten or know someone with one that needs a new home. What do I need to do?
    Please send us an email with as many details as possible. Including the age of the dog, location, whether or
    not the dog is spayed or neutered and is up to date on shots. We will also need a very detailed description
    of why the dog needs to be turned into rescue. If the dog has ever bitten it must be disclosed in detail. If
    you fail to disclose this information and the dog was to bite after coming into rescue you could be held
    liable. Please protect yourself and others by being honest. A decision on whether to take a dog into rescue
    is made on a case by case basis. Please note that we do require any owner released dogs over six months
    of age to be spayed or neutered and up to date on shots in order to be accepted into rescue. If your dog is
    accepted into our rescue program you will be asked to fill out and sign a release form which will ask many
    detailed questions about the dog. Please be absolutely certain that you wish to release your dog to rescue
    prior to signing this form. By signing you immediately release ownership and all rights to the dog to S'Wheat
    Rescues. The release is permanent and final, you cannot change your mind later

    S'Wheat Rescues does not charge any fee to an owner for releasing their dog but donations are gratefully

I saw a dog in a shelter or on the internet that I think may be a Wheaten or Wheatable, what can I do?
    Please send us an email with information on the dog. If the dog is in a shelter, please include the dogs
    name and shelter number, the name, address and telephone number of the shelter and a contact name if
    possible. If the dog was on a internet , please cut and paste a copy of the URL into your email. If you are
    willing to foster the dog while a home is found, please let us know that also.

I saw a dog on your website that I am interested in adopting, what do I need to do to be considered?
    The first step is to thoroughly read the information given in this Q&A section, then read the sample
    Adoption Contract. If you feel you meet our adoption requirements and are comfortable with the terms of
    the Adoption Contract you can then fill out the Adoption Application which can be found on the main page
    of the website.

How do I know if a dog on the website is still available for adoption? What do the colored boxes with letters
    We update the website as soon as possible anytime there is a change in a dogs' adoptable status. The
    designations below should help you understand where each dog is in the process.

    Adoption in progress - all checks have been done and adopter has been approved. Dog is no longer
    available for adoption.

   Homecheck in progress - telephone interviews and reference checks have been done. Assuming                
   nothing is found wrong during the homecheck the family being screened will be adopting the dog.

   Foster home needed. This dog is eligible for a 2 week foster period prior to adoption. Foster homes are
   given first chance to adopt any dog they are fostering providing they meet all the same adoption
   requirements as any other adopter and pass the screening and homechecks. Please click
HERE for more

  This dog is eligible for transport assistance. Please click
HERE for more information.

  This dog is not available for adoption at this time. There are many different reasons why we may take a dog
  off adoption but generally it is a health reason. When the situation is resolved the designation will come off
  and they will be available for adoption.

The dog I am interested in is hundreds of miles away from me. Do you do long distance adoptions?
    We first try and find a home that is close to the dog. If that does not work out we will look at adoptive homes
    that are further away from the dog. Adopters must be willing to travel to where ever the dog they have
    applied for is located and to transport the dog back home with them within 2 weeks of being approved to
    adopt. If the Adopter cannot commit to traveling to pick up the dog we will not consider them for a long
    distance adoption. Long distance adopters must also commit to returning the dog to the rescue in Missouri
    or where the dog was picked up if we request that should the adoption fall through for any reason.

In what areas do you do Rescue work?
S'Wheat Rescues only rescues and adopts animals in the contiguous United States. Meaning, simply, we do  
not rescue or adopt in foreign countries or in Alaska or Hawaii.

Will you ship or transport the dog to me?
    S'Wheat Rescues does not ship or provide transportation for our rescued Dogs. Adopters are required to
    physically pick up the dog they are adopting. In some limited cases where the dog is small enough to fly in
    the cabin we may permit the new owner to take their new pet home by air. This will be decided on a case by
    case basis based on the personality and past history of the dog in question. Any adult puppymill survivor is
    ineligible for air transport under any circumstances. Preference will be given to adopters who will transport
    the dog by car as opposed to air travel.

Can I meet the dog prior to adoption?
    Very rarely will this be possible. If you are located close enough to the dog and the dog is in a foster home
    and not with the original owner a meeting may be able to be setup but there are no guarantees for this. You
    will be required to first fill out and return the adoption application to be screened to see if you are eligible
    to adopt the dog in question.

Can I talk to the previous owners of the dog I wish to adopt?
    S'Wheat Rescues takes the privacy of both our adopters and the people who release dogs to us very
    seriously and has instituted a strict no contact policy between the parties. In some cases the previous
    owners information may be found on veterinary paperwork but Adopters are expected to adhere to the
    privacy policy and not contact the prior owners. This clause is also part of the adoption contract.

I sent in a adoption application a long time ago but no one has called, why?
    We receive many, many apps and it is impossible for us to screen each and every applicant for every dog.
    When you are being considered for a particular dog a coordinator will contact you. Until that time your
    application is put on file. When we place a dog we search our database for applications that list that dog.  If
    you become interested in another dog after you have submitted your application, it will be necessary to fill
    out a new application. After the dog(s) listed on your application are adopted, your application is
    deactivated and you won't be considered for other dogs. We require this so that our database becomes
    self-purging and holds only up to date applications which saves us a lot of time when placing dogs. If
    something in your application disqualifies you from adopting, you will be notified by email. Please
    understand that all of our coordinators are volunteers and work on placing dogs as their personal lives
    allow. Please be patient.

Can I submit a general application or list more than one dog on my application?
    We do not accept applications that do not list the specific name(s) of the dogs you are interested in. When
    we place a dog we search our database for applications that list that dog, if your application does not list
    any dogs it will not show up when we are searching for apps. If there is more than one dog you may list
    multiple dogs on one application. If you become interested in another dog after you have submitted your
    application, it will be necessary to fill out a new application. After the dog(s) listed on your application are
    adopted, your application is deactivated and you won't be considered for other dogs. We require this so
    that our database becomes self-purging and holds only up to date applications which saves us a lot of time
    when placing dogs.

I see several dogs that are described as 'Wheatables' what does that mean?
    A Wheatable is our term for a mixed breed dog that we believe may have some Wheaten in his or her
    background. We can only make a educated guess by the look and personality of the individual dog. There is
    no guarantee that the dog has any Wheaten in it.

How do you know if a dog is a purebred Wheaten or a Wheatable?
    Sometimes we have AKC papers that will identify the dog as a purebred. Other times we just have to make
    our best guess. A dog that has a docked tail is a good indicator as well as the general look of the dog.
    There are some purebreds who are badly bred and it is hard to tell. Even having AKC papers does not
    guarantee the dog is a purebred as it is a system basically expecting people to be honest in the information
    they give to the AKC. As we all know puppymillers are not an honest bunch of people. We can only make an
    educated guess using the look and personality of the dog and any information we are given from the past
    owners or whatever source the dogs comes through. There is no guarantee that any dog is or is not a

Will we get AKC papers with a purebred Wheaten that we adopt?
    More often than not, we will not have AKC or any other papers on the dog. When we do, we do not provide
    those papers for the new owner. All dog through our rescue are spayed or neutered so there is no need
    for AKC registration. There have been cases of individuals using the AKC papers of rescue dogs to
    fraudulently register litters of puppies so all papers are voided.

Will my adopted dog be housebroken, obedience trained, socialized, etc.?
    Perfect dogs are not usually turned into rescue. There are generally some training or other issues with the
    dog. These problems are almost always caused by owners who do not properly train the dogs, socialize
    them or supervise children with the dog. We will always tell prospective adopters everything we know
    about a dog, including bite history if there is one, so the adopter can make a informed decision about the
    dog they are adopting.  In the case of a dog that has been pulled out a shelter, we will not generally know
    anything about that dogs background or past problems. Dogs that come into rescue are often traumatized,
    timid and scared.  You will need to be prepared to be spend considerable time and effort to make your dog
    feel safe and secure. This will not happen overnight. We never say that any dog is housebroken. Adopters
    should be willing and able to housebreak any dog that they adopt. We recommend crate training and
    obedience school with all adoptions. In some cases obedience school will be a requirement of adoption.
    Even if there are no issues with the dog, obedience training helps the new owner and the dog get to know
    one another and what is expected of them.

    If the dog you are interested in adopting is a puppymill survivor please make sure and visit our webpage
    Puppymill Adoptions for more in-depth information on the special needs of these dogs.

Are rescue Wheatens good with children?
    It will depend on the individual dog and his or her experiences with children in the past. Each dog is
    evaluated on his or her own merits. A dog with any history of aggression towards children, no matter the
    cause, will not be adopted into a home with children under 14 years of age. As a rule, we will not adopt to
    families with children under 6 years of age and recommend children be over 10. Wheaten Terriers are very
    often too much for small children. The breed is very alpha in nature and they treat children as littermates,
    jumping, nipping, knocking over, etc. It is very difficult to teach a young child how to effectively handle and
    correct a Wheaten which can result in a child being inadvertently hurt or the dog becoming aggressive with
    children. In many cases we do not know the background of dogs that come into rescue and we choose to
    err on the side of safety when it comes to small children. If you have young children and are not willing to
    wait a few years to get a Wheaten, we strongly recommend getting another breed of dog.

Are rescue Wheatens good with cats?
    Unless a Wheaten has been raised and socialized with cats, they can be extremely aggressive with them.
    Any history of a particular Wheaten with cats will be disclosed but many dogs that come into rescue have
    not been exposed to cats so we cannot predict how they will react. Wheatens and cats must be supervised
    closely and never left alone together.

I have read that Wheatens are hypo-allergenic and people with allergies can have them with no problem.
    There is no such thing as a hypo-allergenic dog. Some people are just as allergic to Wheatens as they are
    to any other breed of dog. However, some allergic people can tolerate and live well with a Wheaten. It
    depends on what particular thing the person is allergic to and the severity of the allergy. If the allergy is to
    dog saliva, then the dog being a Wheaten will make no difference. If the allergy is to dander and pet hair
    then they may or may not have allergic reactions to a Wheaten. Wheatens are a single coated dog and
    produce much less of the allergens but they are produced. If you are allergic to dogs, we would
    recommend spending some time with a Wheaten prior to applying to adopting to see if you react. Please
    note that for adopters with allergies we will require the adopter to spend at least 24 hours with the dog
    prior to adoption to make sure no reactions appear.

I read that Wheatens do not shed. Is that true?
    Not exactly. All dogs shed, even Wheatens. The difference is in the coat of the dog. When a Wheaten
    sheds, the hair will not fall out onto the floor and onto furniture for the most part. What it will do is stick in
    the dogs coat and if your dog is not combed thoroughly several times a week, he will develop horrible
    matts that will result in the very painful grooming sessions for the dog or having to have the dog totally
    shaved down in order to free them from the matts.

Do Wheatables shed?
    That is entirely dependent on what the Wheatable is mixed with and what type of coat the dog has. Some do
    not shed and some shed quite a bit. We can give our best guess on the amount of shedding seen if a dog
    has been in foster care. Otherwise it is best to just assume a Wheatable will shed to some degree.

I have heard a Wheatens coat is very hard to care for.
    Wheatens have EXTREMELY high maintenance coats. You must be prepared to thoroughly comb out your
    Wheaten several times a week and to make trips to the groomer every 4-6 weeks. Failure to comb your
    Wheaten completely out will result in matts that are nearly impossible to comb out and will ruin the dogs
    coat requiring the dog to be shaved down to remove the mats. You can expect to pay anywhere from $45 to
    $150 per grooming session depending on where you live and the expertise of the groomer unless you
    learn to do the grooming yourself.

Can I adopt a dog that is the same sex as my current pet?
    S'Wheat Rescues has an opposite sex only adoption policy. This policy is non-negotiable. Wheatens
    generally do not get along well with other dogs of the same sex. The females are actually worse than the
    males in this regard but either sex will fight. Wheatens are very vicious fighters and there have been
    several cases that we are aware of where a dog was killed in these fights. If you already have two dogs of
    opposite sexes, we would be unable to consider you for ANY adoption. Although we realize some may
    disagree with this policy, we must have the safety of all of our rescue dogs as our first priority.

I have seen references to a "Wheaten Greetin" on some dogs descriptions, what are you referring to?
    One of the characteristics of this breed is the very enthusiastic greetings they give. Wheatens are very 'in
    your face' with these greetings and will leap and twirl all around and on you. They can and will leap several
    feet straight into the air in order to properly great you. It can be quite a shock to someone who is not
    expecting such a physical greeting from a dog. While some people have successfully trained this out of a
    Wheaten, we feel it is part of their charm and exuberance for life and is just part of the Wheaten
    experience. True Wheaten lovers thoroughly enjoy being so joyfully greeted when they arrive home.
    Whether you have been gone all day - or only 5 minutes to take out the trash - you can expect your Wheaten
    to be overjoyed to see you and to do his or her best to leap straight up to your face and give you a kiss.

    If you don't like a dog to jump all over you and give millions of kisses, a Wheaten is NOT the breed for you.

Do you adopt in the order that applications are received?
    We do not adopt based on a numerical system. We evaluate each dog and each potential adopter on a case
    by case basis. We are looking for the best home for each dog regardless of when the adopter applied to

What is a homecheck and why is it necessary?
    Prior to any adoption being finalized, S'Wheat Rescues requires a homecheck to be completed. A
    representative of the Rescue will come to your home. He or she will be looking to verify the information on
    your application. Things like the number of people living in the home, the number and condition of the
    other pets in the home. If you have a fenced yard, the representative will check the fence to see if it is
    secure and the dog would be unable to escape. All members of the family are required to be present at the
    homecheck. This includes children and household pets.

What other checks are involved?
    S'Wheat Rescues will contact your current or past vet to verify that current and past pets were altered and
    kept up to date on shots and received proper veterinary care. S'Wheat Rescues will not adopt to a home
    that has an unaltered animal over 6 months of age. We will also check the personal references listed on
    your app. Other checks may include your local animal control and police department for any items of

I do not have a fenced yard. Can I still adopt?
    S'Wheat Rescues prefers that all of our dogs have a securely fenced yard to run free and safely. If an
    adopter can show us a plan for the proper exercise of the dog when a fence is not present we will consider
    each request on a case by case basis. However, preference will always be given to adopters with fenced
    yards. In some cases, particularly with dogs from puppymills or dogs with particularly scared, timid and shy
    temperaments, we will ONLY consider homes that have a securely fenced yard. If a dog absolutely requires
    a fence, that will be noted on their individual webpage.

My yard has an electric/invisible fence. Is that acceptable?
    No. S'Wheat Rescues does not allow the use of these types of fences with our rescue dogs. We have taken
    numerous dogs into rescue who have become aggressive and bitten after being kept in this type of
    environment. In every case the dog has stopped this behavior after being taken out of the enclosure.
    Other reasons for this decision are that these fences do not keep other dogs from coming into your yard
    and attacking the dog. Also if the dog was to run past the barrier, the shock of the collar could prevent the
    dog from returning to the yard, leaving it to run loose and be at risk of being permanently lost, hit by a car
    or worse.

    Although we realize some have not had a problem with these fences, our first and foremost concerns are
    the health, safety and mental well-being of our rescued dogs. You can see some pictures of the type of
    injury the shock collars that are used with this fencing by clicking HERE.

    We do not feel these fences are an acceptable risk and this policy is non-negotiable. A clause in the
    Adoption Contract specifically forbids the use of these enclosures at any time in the life of the dog. Should
    we find an adopter using this type of fencing after adoption we would not hesitate to reclaim the dog.

Can I and my Friend/Roommate/Boyfriend/Girlfriend/Fiancee adopt a dog together?
    No. S'Wheat Rescues only allows one owner for each dog to be listed on the Adoption Contract unless the
    adopters are a legally married couple.

Are the terms of the Adoption Contract negotiable?
    No, the contract must be signed as is with no alterations. Our Adoption Contract is written in the best
    interest of the dog which is our main concern. We urge people interested in adopting to closely read the
    sample Adoption Contract that is located on the main page of the website. Please make sure you are
    comfortable with the terms and conditions of that contract prior to applying to adopt. The sample on the
    website is only that - a sample. We reserve the right to make changes at anytime and to make alterations if
    needed for a particular dog and his/her situation. A personalized copy of the contract will be sent to
    adopters at the time of adoption.

How much is the adoption fee?
    $700 for purebred Wheatens under 1 year of age. $600 for purebred Wheatens 1-2 years of age. $500 for
    purebred Wheatens 2-3 years of age. $400 for purebred Wheatens over 3 years of age or Wheatables  
    under 10. $150 for any dog 10-12 years of age. There is no adoption fee for any dog over 12 years of age.

    Please note that these are the TOTAL FEES you will be asked to pay when adopting a dog.  We do require
    adopters of Puppymill dogs to purchase a new crate for $60 only if the adopter has requested we setup a
    transport for the dog. If they are picking up the dog themselves they may bring their own crate but all
    puppymill dogs must be transported from the Rescue in a crate.

Is the adoption fee negotiable?
    No. Our adoption fees are set to allow us to help the most dogs possible. We frequently get dogs in that
    require extensive veterinary work and sometimes surgery. Our adoption fee remains the same whether or
    not your particular dog generated large bills. In this way we can spread the cost over many dogs.

What does the adoption fee cover?
    Every dog will be spayed or neutered prior to adoption being completed. There are absolutely no
    exceptions to the rule that each and every animal must be desexed prior to any adoptions being finalized.
    They will be up to date on all shots (see vaccination protocol) and any necessary veterinary care will have
    been taken care of. Any known continuing health concerns will be disclosed prior to adoption. We cannot
    guarantee any vet records other than a shot record showing the dog is up to date on vaccinations in
    accordance with our vaccination protocol.

    Recently many veterinary colleges have adopted a new schedule of vaccinations needed. Studies have
    shown that our dogs are over vaccinated and their health is suffering due to this. In an effort to do the
    healthy thing for our rescued dogs, S'Wheat Rescues has adopted the following vaccination schedule:

    Puppies under 1 year will receive as many of the three shot series for distemper, parvo, etc. that they are
    old enough for and will receive a rabies shot after 16 weeks of age.

    Dogs over one year will be up to date on rabies (1 year or 3 year depending on last shot given) and have
    the booster shot for distemper/parvo IF it has been 3 years since the last booster.

    Dogs over 1 year with no shot record will receive a parvo/distemper and rabies shot.

    **Kennel cough vaccine will only be given if required for a surgical procedure or boarding while the dog is
    in rescue. We do not give Lyme, Coronavirus or Lepto Vaccines. These vaccines are all highly reactive and
    not very effective and it is our recommendation that these vaccinations not be given.

Is the adoption fee tax deductible?
    No. You are receiving the dog in return for the adoption fee which makes it non-deductible.

Microchipping Requirement
    S'Wheat Rescues requires that all adopters have their adopted dog microchipped and proof of such be
    provided to Rescue within 14 days of adoption. S'Wheat Rescues must be listed as the secondary
    contact. Adoptions will not be complete until such time the Rescue receives proof that microchipping has
    been completed and that S'Wheat Rescues is listed as secondary contact. In some cases the dog may
    already be microchipped and Adopter will be responsible for getting the microchip transferred to their
    name and that S'Wheat Rescues be listed as a secondary contact.

What genetic diseases are Wheatens prone to?
    Wheatens, like all other purebreds, do have some genetic diseases they may develop. Specifically PLE/PLN
    and RD can show up in this breed. Adopters are encouraged to research the breed and specifically PLE/PLN
    to understand the disease, the symptoms and the annual testing that is recommended for purebred
    Wheatens. Up to 15% of the purebred population may develop this disease during their lifetime and
    unfortunately it is 100% fatal. S'Wheat Rescues does not screen for genetic diseases unless we see
    symptoms that lead us to believe the dog may be ill due to the cost of these tests. Adopters may, at their
    expense, request that these tests be run prior to adoption. However, adopters should be aware that these
    tests will only show if the dog already has the diseases, they will not show if the dog will get them in the
    future. S'Wheat Rescues makes no guarantees that rescue dogs are free of genetic diseases at the time of
    adoption or at any time thereafter.

I am interested in fostering a dog, what does that consist of?
    Fostering a dog is a very rewarding experience. However, it can be hard work and is not a decision that
    should be made lightly. When a dog comes into rescue we may or may not know something about the dogs
    background. Even when the dog comes directly from an owner, they are not always completely honest
    about the dog. A dog is placed in foster care so that we can evaluate the dogs health and temperament
    prior to placing the dog in a forever home or completing an adoption. Care has to be taken with a dog that
    has newly come into foster care until these things are determined. Foster homes are responsible for basic
    care, food, water, shelter, grooming, transportation to vet and grooming appointments, etc.  The rescue will
    cover all vet and grooming costs as long as the foster home has requested and received approval PRIOR
    TO incurring the costs. The foster home is responsible to keep the dogs coat in good condition while in
    their care. There is a contract that must be signed by anyone fostering that details all the specific duties of
    a foster home. There is a sample of a contract that can be found on the main page of the this website.

    In the majority of the cases, dogs that come into rescue are not housebroken so foster homes must be
    willing and able to deal with this and work with the dog in housebreaking. Also in a lot of cases the dog will
    need work on basic commands, proper behavior in a home and on leash, etc. It is essential you have a
    crate for the foster dog while the dog is in your care. Even if you don't crate your personal dogs, foster
    dogs must be crated when no one is home or supervising the dog. There is no general amount of time a
    dog may be in foster. Depending on the dogs health, training issues, etc., a foster period can run anywhere
    from a couple of weeks to several months.

    If you have another dog and or cats in the home you will need to be prepared to keep them separated
    should the animals not get along. Should this happen or some other reason that the foster home can no
    longer foster, we will do our best to move the dog into another foster home as quickly as possible but this
    can sometimes take 2-3 weeks to accomplish this, this is not a situation where we can come and pick up the
    dog immediately.

    In some cases, dogs are placed in a foster home that has the intention of adopting the dog or during the
    foster period the foster decides they wish to adopt the dog. Foster homes are given first option on
    adopting the dog but they must meet all the adoption requirements that any adopter must meet and they
    must pass all the same reference, vet checks and homechecks. There is however, no guarantee that the
    foster home will be approved to adopt the dog and the Rescue reserves the right to place the dog in
    whatever home we feel best meets the needs of the dog in question.

Back to Main Page
S'Wheat Rescues reserves the right to deny any applicant for any reason or for no reason,
at our discretion. These policies and procedures are set with the best interest of
the dogs in our care as our goal. We reserve the right to change  or add any
policy at any time.  Our goal is quality of homes, not quantity.
Answers and
General Information