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Everything posted by Smalahundur

  1. I am not overreacting, and still being civil(as you saw I didn´t name anybody in this responce). just trying to get a handle on this forum. As you know my opinions are clear, bc breeding for looks is not a good thing, actually i think that breeding for looks is a bad idea for any race...look what happened to the poor german shepherd. My only clear concern is irritation of seeing someone asking a normal color genetics question to get "the working dog lecture", totally irrelevant, as there was no talking of "looks over ability"breeding. Especially for newcomers pretty off putting. As I said does one need a justifying disclaimer? I get the impression that the working breed community (of which I count myself a very green member) seems to have some pretty serious insecurity issues...
  2. Who owns the border collie breed? In my humble opinion rest the responsibility to keep a good working breed solely with the breeders (and buyers) of working bred dogs. And for the record that´s where my interests lie. There is an interesting parallel in the Icelandic horse breeding, the good old heavier built reliable farmer´s type is quickly disappearing (which I personally think is a pity), to make way for a more high strung lighter build sporty type, not very suitable for the rough sheep rounding up time. But no market for the former type (at least no cash market). Are the breeders who make their money with the "sport horses" to blame? I don´t think so.
  3. Soooo,correct me if I´m wrong but it´s forbidden to talk color genetics on this forum? I mean I got my collie because I own sheep, but I am not allowed to be interested in other characteristics of my dog? When I innocently asked a question about hair type here some know-it-all responded with a haughty reply about how I dared to consider that in my choosing of this dog (Ididn´t), and how I should have thought of his working ability first (the litter in question was selected because of working ability of the parents). Is it really necessary to put a huge dislaimer (Yes, I select my collie´s on working ability and etc.) before daring to ask something about anything other than working ability, so that the thread doesn´t get hijacked and deteriorates in yet another discussion about the crime of breeding for looks?
  4. No that would be an other question. There is a subtle difference you know.
  5. Thanks for all the advice, my conclusion is it´s probably best to concentrate on getting a group of yearlings dog-broke and starting Táta on them. @sueR, yes "quality training assistance" sounds great, but it would involve moving to the UK The only man I know about who gives instruction here does this only in the form of clinics (I attended one before I got my pup). Living here in the icelandic country side is practically impossible without a "do it yourself" attitude, which among other things led to me being my own farrier...But I´m not totally on my own, the mentioned friend has pretty good dogs, and the guy who bred his dogs though not being an instructor is very succesfull with his dogs, and willing to lend us both a hand.
  6. Hi, I have a young BC, named Táta, who is just over four months old. I got her because I´ve been running a small sheep operation the last couple of years (total 72 ewes and rams), and after attending a local clinic got convinced that a good herding dog could save me a lot of work( and irritation), also I think it´s a very interesting skill to learn. At the moment we are working at the basic obedience stuf (you know,come, sit, stay, down etc) which is no problem (my wife and I do have experience with dog raising, first BC though). Also I´m studying the theory , read books, look at video´s and surf the web. This has at least given me a certain understanding of the theory of herding (yeah I´m expecting the praxis to laugh at me....) Anyway, the plan is to start Táta on sheep somewhere after late may (that´s the end of our lambing time). she´ll be over eight months then (and if she doesn´t seem ready then , later). I organized things so that I will have a group of yearlings that will be lambless, they should become "dog training" sheep. Probably will get a friend of mine who has working collies "prep" them for me. I just had this idea that might be stupid or not to put before experienced trainers here; would it be smart to start a young unexperienced dog on bottle lams? We usually have one or two each year, and the neighbours would be more than happy to get rid of one or two of theirs. We keep them in a group and feed them with a "lamb bar" bucket., so they are not so human bonded as bottle fed would be. So what do you people think, smart or silly? I myself am a bit weary of my own idea because I´ve never heard it mentioned before (and there might be a good reason for that, like for instance too stressfull on such young motherless lambs).
  7. You talk about getting some land and then buying some sheep. If I understand right you want the sheep because you want to trial with your bc, of course nothing wrong with that. But I would like to caution you that there´s more to keeping sheep than buying a piece of land and some bales of hey for the winter, you are getting yourself into a whole new time consuming (fun!) hobby. If you allready considered this and studied the ins and outs of sheep keeping then consider this a presumptuous remark for which I apologize beforehand...
  8. Just asked my wife (she´s a vet, sheep farmers are her main customers), her opinion is that it´s doable. Not much to add to the good advice in the posts above concerning stress.
  9. They are all mutts. I don´t have anything against mutts, we actually own two (besides our newest resident Táta the BC), they didn´t cost a penny (but are priceless...) A fool and his money....
  10. Good luck with your unexpected winterlambing. I am a bit surprised to read about people who plan winterlambing so early (didn´t Debbie mention this is normal lambing time for her) in notherly regions. This is by no means meant as criticism, merely expressing my own ignorance. I started my "career" as a hobby sheepfarmer here in Iceland and know relatively little about foreign methods, but we have our lambing not before beginning of may, and that´s barnlambing. We do around the clock checks, and seperate lambing ewes immediately from the group.
  11. Not pretending to be an expert on breeding, but it sounds to me that everybody would be better off looking elsewhere...
  12. Small update, the choice has been made, and wasn´t difficult, as there were two female pups left to choose from, who were both pretty fluffy (as were all their siblings). One pretty shy, the other one came straight away for greetings and petting. We´ve had her a week now, and we all like her very much. I have good hopes she´ll take after her dad, a big rough coated BC. Her name is Táta, pics are being made and when the faster net connection Icelandic telecom has promised for a loooong time now comes through (supposed to be done november 09, now they tell us not to be sure it will be this year... ) they will be posted. Oh yeah Paws, that picture is priceless....
  13. I will surely follow your posts, especially because you are going to work non dogged icelandic sheep. I´ve got a flock of 72 of those and plan to start working with them some time next summer or autumn (depending on when Táta is ready). Looking forward to reading about your experiences.
  14. Thanks for the friendly welcome. We just entered the next fase; We got a little border collie! She´s called Táta (classic icelandic name for a female dog, pronounced as "Tauta"). She comes from a local farm, from working parents. She´s a smart little girl, and pretty relaxed, sleeps most of the time .
  15. @Sincereartisan,ehm yeah, I jumped a bit too much on that, sorry, and yes I get your point, no offence taken, and chilling. Nice dogs btw, I assume they are yours?. And I also see now that a smoother coat has its advantages, beside the fact my wife likes that better Thanks for all the input.
  16. To your first point, I´ve lived on this sub arctic island for fourteen years and I have yet to see a BC, no matter what its coat looks like, shiver, so I´ll admit it, I just like the medium coat look better... Which brings me to your second point you make, no mistake despite above statement, working ability is everything looks come secondary (why? well read this: http://www.bordercollie.org/boards/index.php?showtopic=26592 ) So the pup being from working parents is a "goes without saying" thing to me . Don´t forget being a newbie doesn´t necessarily mean being stupid you know. Asking a question about coat doesn´t mean nothing else is considered.... Other than that thanks for your quick and useful answer. I also see now I was talking about a medium coat, the problems you describe with snow I've never seen here, so probably what I considered "long" is more like medium, probably don´t even see those "really long ones" here in the rural area´s.
  17. I might go early next week and look at a litter (see how carefully I don´t say "pick up a pup" ). One parent is a long coated BC, the other short. As I´d prefer a longer coat (no, I am not gonna -gasp- show him, but this is Iceland, so he or she will have to work under pretty cold/wet conditions...) So my question is can one tell on a pup that´s about 12 weeks old how its coat is gonna turn out?
  18. I can only give you their german name "ungarisches zackelschaf".
  19. Thanks, and yes that´s him, he´s called Gunnar Einarsson. I didn´t know he also went to California. I understand he worked a couple of years on big sheep farms in New Zealand, I think he also said Australia. He also travelled to Great Brittain, and imported most of the dogs he´s breeding with from there.
  20. I´m new to this forum ( have spend some time lurking though, there´s a wealth info here, the search function has already prevented a lot of silly questions..), and I´d like to introduce myself. I live in Iceland, though my wife and I are not Icelanders (our two kids are though). Since a couple of years we´re living on a farm owning a small flock of sheep (66 ewes, 6 rams and growing). The whole animal hobby started way earlier with horses by the way, we´ve got nine of those. We also have two (non BC) dogs and a cat. Icelandic sheep farming is very different from that in my home country (the Netherlands). Here after lambing time the ewes and their lambs are simply send on the highlands where they roam free all summer and are rounded up in september (slaughter time) after that they are usually grazing on pasture until weather gets so bad they are put in the stable for the winter. This rounding up is mostly done on horseback but quads are getting more and more popular where the land scape allows use of motorized vehicles (luckely most of it doesn´t so the horses won´t retire soon). These are the so called “göngur” the longer ones take a couple of days, nights spend in shabby mountain cabins. I couple of weeks ago the main “BC man” of Iceland gave a sheepdog clinic near our place and though I don´t own a BC I decided to attend (also cheaper without a dog...) Well this really perked my interest and it´s inevitable now; I need a good Border Collie. So now I´m basically studying the theory of working with stockdogs, reading books and websites. Several posters here recommend the book of Virgil Holland, so that´s on its way. I read the icelandic translation of “the farmer´s dog” by John Holmes , but wasn´t too impressed (original unrevised edition don´t know about the newer versions). So now the next step is to get a border collie, but that´s something that certainly “in case of pup” has no hurry. Ambition is first of all to train a good useful farmdog, but who knows, there has been some trialling done here in Icelandic so maybe in the long run...?
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