Baby Stage Notes
This tan, speckled puppy has four ears, a small plant growing at the end of its spine, and spends much of its time hiding and napping. It's very clumsy and unsteady, but it seems very aware of where you are when you approach it.
Juvenile Stage Notes
The puppy has grown into a lanky adolescent canid, and has grown rows of cactus-like spikes along its sides. It spends most of its time playing, and its colors are getting steadily more vivid, with the spots blending together into stripes. The plants on its body have grown significantly. It seems to primarily use its ears and the heat pits on its face for navigation, and still trips over inanimate objects sometimes.
Adult Stage Notes
Painted Kalaks are a species of mammal that appear to have lost their endothermy in exchange for developing heat-sensing pits along their lips and symbiosis with water-storing desert flora. They hide near oases in tall grass, with only their tail-plants sticking out, and ambush herbivores. They are more active at night, after spending all day basking and sleeping while soaking up heat.
Painted Kalaks in the wild will attack large prey, and have been known to injure researchers who fail to notice one and get too close. In captivity, they need to be kept in very hot enclosures, but they do bond with their handlers and will not attack them. Their symbiotic plants can be gently harvested from without harm, and contain a gel that's extremely good at soothing burns--overharvesting, though, can lead to dehydration, as they store much of their water in the plants.