6 min read

People Find A Stray Puppy With A Big Head And The Shortest Legs

“I think she keeps meaning to change his name, but everyone has gotten so used to calling him Bighead.”

English bulldog. St. Bernard. Corgi. Mastiff. Chihuahua. Lots of people have tried to guess which breeds went into the making of a puppy named Bighead — but most haven’t gotten it right.

This past June, Bighead and his four littermates arrived at the Humane Society Silicon Valley in California when they were only 6 weeks old.

Tiny puppy on outdoor couch
Humane Society Silicon Valley

“The four of them were found as strays, and a Good Samaritan brought them in,” Finnegan Dowling, content marketing manager for Humane Society Silicon Valley, told The Dodo.

Lauren Gallagher, who works in the finance department of Humane Society Silicon Valley, took the four puppies into foster care at her home — but she took a particular liking to Bighead, who had a very unusual look about him.

Four puppy littermates
Bighead and his littermates | Humane Society Silicon Valley

While Bighead’s brothers and sisters looked like normal, puppy-sized border collie mixes, Bighead had short, stubby feet and a gigantic head — hence the name Bighead.

“There were these three very normal puppies, and there was this one puppy with this ginormous melon head,” Dowling said. “So everyone was like, ‘Oh, it’s the big head puppy.’ I think she keeps meaning to change his name, but everyone has gotten so used to calling him Bighead.”

Puppy in bath
Humane Society Silicon Valley

The reason Bighead looks different from his littermates remains a mystery, but Dowling suspects that the litter may have had more than one dad.

“It’s not unusual for litters to have different fathers, and to see a big diversity in those litters,” Dowling said.

Bighead’s unusual looks prompted workers at Humane Society Silicon Valley to get his doggy DNA tested. While they waited for the results, everyone tried their best to guess.

Puppy posing with toy
Humane Society Silicon Valley

“It’s become such a big thing about what Bighead is,” Dowling said. “There’s an internal contest with a gift card on the line.”

The results surprised everyone — even Dowling herself.

“He is 25 percent Shar-Pei, 25 percent boxer, 12.5 American Staffordshire terrier mix, 12.5 percent border collie, 12.5 percent Lhasa apso and the rest are mixed-breed groups,” Dowling said. She also made an official announcement on the organization’s Facebook page today.

Little girl holding puppy
Humane Society Silicon Valley

Bighead now has two big brothers — a Weimaraner named Otto and a Great Dane named Dozer. Despite their size difference, they both adore Bighead — especially Dozer.

“[Dozer] is really gentle,” Dowling said. “He just gets down on his belly and plays with him.”

Little dogs playing with big dog
Humane Society Silicon Valley

When it came time for Bighead and his littermates to find forever homes, Gallagher decided that Bighead wasn’t going anywhere.

“I would say that she [Gallagher] has fostered dozens, if not hundreds, of puppies for us, and has never kept one,” Dowling said. “But she kept Bighead.”

Big dogs posing with little dog
Humane Society Silicon Valley

“He’ll probably always be a short, stocky, stubby little dude,” Dowling said. “It would be interesting to see if he grows into that ginormous melon head of his. But I’m kind of inclined to say ‘no.’”

Puppy at the office
Bighead at the office | Humane Society Silicon Valley

“Bighead’s enormously happy in his home,” Dowling added. "He kind of won the dog lotto by getting adopted by Lauren.”

Gallagher also brings Bighead to the office every day, so Dowling and everyone else gets to see him on a regular basis.

Puppy posing with toy
Humane Society Silicon Valley

“He’s ridiculously spoiled because he gets carried all over the place,” Dowling said. “People are just constantly picking him up and carrying him around and taking him to different meetings. He’s a very sweet, social little guy. He’s definitely the office darling.”

As for whether Bighead will grow into his larger-than-usual head, the jury is still out.

To see more pictures of Bighead and his adopted brothers, you can follow his Instagram page. If you’re interested in getting a dog from Humane Society Silicon Valley, check out their adoption listings.