A Detroit dog shelter will soon be offering an fairly unusual pet for adoption: a hermaphrodite dog, which the shelter’s director hopes might provide therapy for transgender residents.
“In my experience I’ve never seen it before,” said Kristina Rinaldi, the executive director of the shelter, Detroit Dog Rescue.
The dog is a silvery-gray pit bull mix named Cody, who arrived at the Detroit-based rescue shelter on Tuesday. The dog was listed as a male, but upon inspection Cody turned out to have both sex organs.
Cody also arrived from the city’s animal control facility with a serious case of pneumonia, and was soon moved to Greenfield Animal Hospital in Southfield, where the dog is still being treated.
The name “Cody” was already assigned to the dog upon arrival. Rinaldi has asked DAC to ask about the dog’s history but hasn’t heard back yet.
Cody is not yet available for adoption, and will have to pass a behavioral test to see if more training is needed before finding an owner.
And while the dog has both sex organs for now, the adoption process usually involves spaying or neutering a pet beforehand. In Cody’s case both may happen, but Rinaldi said that staff is checking with specialists at Michigan State to seek further advice.
At least until then, Rinaldi said she would be willing to use the dog at events or in speeches for transgender residents in the hope that the dog could provide any kind of support.
“Cody is still going to live his life out like a completely normal dog,” Rinaldi said. “Cody’s going to be a great pet for somebody.”