In a couple of weeks, we'll have a new foster dog: Queenie, a (probable) Akita/pittie mix from Robeson County, North Carolina.
Queenie is very probably Crookytail's younger sister out of another litter. She was picked up as a stray in the same area outside St. Pauls under circumstances quite similar to how Crookytail was found. She has the same distinctive brindle-and-white patterning in the same shade of black-striped gray, the same white tip to her same-shaped tail, the same thick ruff of white fur around her neck, the same whorly ridge in her chest fur, the same black markings on her lips that shade to the same pink around them. The same stocky toes and the same boxy tuck to her tummy. The same floppy-tipped prick ears, although she doesn't have Crookytail's one straight ear.
It could all be coincidence, of course. We have no information about the owner, no papers, nothing really except a striking similarity in appearance (and possibly some personality traits) between the two dogs. But it's a very unusual appearance and the similarity is very close, and they were found in roughly the same area, and it is not at all uncommon for people in that area to keep breeding the same dogs, and dumping the same puppies, year after year.
There's no proof. But that would be one hell of a coincidence.
In all likelihood, therefore, I think that Queenie is indeed Crookytail's younger sister. She might be a niece, or some more distant relation... but the similarity is so close that I am inclined to guess she is most likely a full sister out of a subsequent litter.
She is currently about 35 to 40 pounds. The shelter estimated her age at 1 to 2 years. However, they estimated Crooky's age to be in that range too when I adopted him, and he turned out to be probably about seven or eight months at that point -- and he grew considerably from the emaciated 45 pounds he was then, so although I have not yet seen her in person, I am open to the possibility that Queenie might be younger than her current estimate indicates and may grow somewhat larger, too.
We'll know better when she gets here in two weeks.