When it came to making the decision, she was well prepared. She had done her research and thought everything through. She researched the breed and met the dog’s parents. She had done everything perfectly right.
But she grew concerned when her puppy outgrew his bed, collar and lead. According to all the research she had done, this was not supposed to happen.
Yumna Salojee was a South African woman and for the first time in her life, she was in a pretty stable position. She worked hard to make this possible for herself. She was relieved to finally have a good job and a nice house without having to worry about her financial situation. She was exactly where she wanted to be.
But something felt missing in her life. She didn’t want the latest tech, or a fancy car and designer boots, she only had one thing on her mind.
Yumna wasn’t really a material girl. She had always just wanted a loyal companion by her side. Growing up, her parents refused all pets, but she wasn’t living with her parents anymore. She knew that her next step would be to get a dog.
She knew it was a decision she would have to live with for an average of 15 years, but she wanted that. She had already made up her mind.
Yumna wasn’t interested in any specific breed, all she wanted was a puppy. She loved dogs in all shapes and sizes.
But now she had to find a breed that would best suit her. She thought about getting a Toy Pom because it wouldn’t need as much space as, say, a Labrador, but she was finding it hard to choose.
It took her weeks to research different kinds of dogs, she wanted to be sure of her decision.
Eventually, her mind was consumed by olden retrievers, pugs, beagles, shih tzus, terriers, collies and all kinds of other dogs. It seemed like the more she scrolled, the harder it was for her to choose.
She wanted a friendly dog that would like children and animals, so she looked up different family dogs, such as Golden Retrievers, Labradors, and Newfoundlands.
But they were just too large for the amount of space she could provide for them. So, she started looking into medium-sized dogs such as border collies, spaniels, and beagles. That was when she found one dog that stuck out high above the rest.
She was delighted when she saw the picture of a Siberian husky. She had never seen anything that cute before.
She instantly started googling the breed and shared information pages on it with friends and family. She loved how wolf-like it looked. Where did these dogs come from?
They are actually one of the oldest Arctic sled dogs. Thousands of years ago, the Chukchi Tribe in Russia selected these huskies.
Some believed that they were bred from Spitz dog and wild wolves. Yumna’s heart was set on it, but her head was screaming ‘no!”.
Huskies aren’t hard to find in South Africa, but Yumna wanted to try and rescue one from a shelter.
She called every recue shelter close by and asked if they had any Siberian huskies, but no one seemed to have any. She couldn’t wait. She knew not to trust backyard breeders, but she decided to ignore her suspicions and to go ahead and call one.
After making a few calls, she found a breeder whose dog had just given birth. She left the house immediately, se was far too excited to wait any longer.
She could tell the puppies were only weeks old. Their eyes hadn’t even opened fully yet! They were all laying with their mom, except for one.
They were little balls of fur, snuggled against their mother but the runt was struggling to climb over his brothers and sisters.
Yumna reached down and lifted him into her arms. When he looked up at her, her heart melted. This was her dog. But he was so weak and tiny. Would he make it?
“I fell in love the second I held him,” Yumna shared. Unfortunately, Yumna had to say goodbye to the love of her life, who needed more time with his mother.
Her heart ached more and more with every passing week. She showed a picture of him to every dog owner she met in the park. “He’s called Tydus. It means great, giant warrior,” she couldn’t contain her excitement. When the big day finally came to pick him up, she was in for a surprise.
Yumna knew Siberian huskies were medium-sized dogs. When she brought Tydus home for the first time, he had already grown six times in size since the first time they met. He quickly got acquainted with his new home.
Yumna pulled out all the stops with a personalized bowel, a soft bed, and a basket of toys to keep him occupied. Yumna thought she was ready for parenthood but she was in for a massive surprise.
Siberian huskies are famous for their friendly personality and intelligence. Tydus had a big personality—forever playful and cheeky. He was hard work, but he was worth it. As the months went by, Tydus continued to grow, surpassing every dog in their area.
Male huskies usually weigh 45 lbs and stand at 20 inches.“Giant” huskies can sometimes reach 65lbs. Still a puppy, Tydus weighed an impressive 120lbs. Yumna was starting to grow suspicious.
Yumna had to train Tydus; fast. More of a bear than a dog, the friendly giant was too friendly with strangers, often jumping up to greet them before knocking them to the ground. Tydus was never shy.
He loved attention but Yumna worried he would accidentally hurt a child while out for a walk. “His fluffiness is the first thing that catches attention, then his size,” she explained. But his frame and energy levels continued to grow.
Yumna met other huskies in the dog park since and they looked similar to her Tydus, but they weren’t the same.
The other huskies she’d encountered were half his size, and they had much shorter fur. That was when she knew something was wrong. She decided to order a dog DNA test and finally get to the bottom of it.
Yumna opened the package with shaking hands. She’d sent Tydus’ swab sample off for DNA testing. Now that the results were in, she feared the worst. If Tydus was not a husky, then what was he?
She unfolded the letter, read the first few lines, and her jaw came unhinged. Her suspicions were 100% correct.
It turned out that Tydus was actually an Alaskan malamute. The DNA test explained everything. Although Siberian huskies and malamutes look similar and were both bred to pull sleds on frozen terrain, malamutes get much, much bigger.
Male malamutes often weigh more than 100 lbs. But Tydus wasn’t an average-sized malamute, he was huge!
Although Yumna managed to train Tydus how to behave in public, he’s still her big baby. His hugs knock her to the ground and he jumps on her lap just as he did as a puppy.
Unaware of his size or weight, Tydus can’t help but show his affection. He still plays, runs, and jumps, just as he did the first time he arrived home for Yumna. Now 4-years-old, he still hasn’t grown out of his playful ways.
“I don’t think he will get any bigger now, and that’s okay. I might get crushed if he does!” Yumna has managed to train this giant warrior.
But in the comfort of their own home, he still remains the playful puppy she fell in love with all those years ago. Yumna always knew her boy was special. She decided to share him with the world. And when it was time to welcome a new member to the family, he couldn’t have been more excited.
Yumna and Tydus adopted Trez, the Congo African grey parrot. Yumna decided to share their small family portrait online and became an overnight sensation. The “Trez and Tydus” Instagram account now has over 150,000 followers, all infatuated by their unique little family.
Yumna always knew Tydus was special, so she was happy to share him with the world. “Wherever we go, even just for a walk around the block, we get stopped and asked about his size, age and most often, ‘What breed is he?’ I guess it’s not often that you see a lion-dog walking the street.”
“If his looks didn’t get your attention, his personality definitely will,” Yumna explained. “He has an amazing soul that earns everyone’s affection. He’s a little charmer … or giant charmer.”
Their small family has become an internet sensation, sending hearts all over the world into overdrive. And Tydus has no problem sharing the spotlight with his best friend, Trez. These two are definitely destined for fame!