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  1. All went well for the first while. I love this dog! She learned in a few days with a complete amateur like me on chickens almost as much as my first collie learned in two weeks with a professional on sheep (not the trainer's fault, Darcy had drive just not a lot of talent). We now have a good start on our directions as well as 'look back' and 'get out', unfortunately that is where we are going to have to stop. The chickens have figured her out and now when she approaches they hurry off in all directions and simply refuse to come back. Ceile was going to force her will upon them but I thought that might prove fatal seeing as gentle isn't one of Ceile's attributes and the clacking of her teeth in their general direction could be heard quite a distance away. Oh well, it was fun while it lasted.
  2. Well, that was a good bit of fun! I had some small exercise pens available and corralled the chickens in there. They were too busy eating the grain I sprinkled in order to get them out of the garden and into the pen to worry about a dog so, at first, Ceile didn't think it was worth much of a look. I thought it was going to be a bust but I stuck a broom handle over the fence and stirred them up a bit. Once Ceile began to run around the outside things got a little more lively. I was so thankful for a little banty hen that was determined to keep as far away from Ceile as possible. Without her excitement I think Ceile would have given up but instead we got to a place where she was readily changing direction when I asked her to so, woohoo, a win. I will work on it again tomorrow. Hopefully the larger hens will be busy enough to keep Ceile happy to continue. Having the exercise pens was perfect, no teeth could reach the birds and I was able to let her know that biting at them was not acceptable without turning her off or putting the birds in danger. Gentle Lake, thank you for the encouragement. I was kind of nervous in giving this a go but I'm glad I did. Ceile is a very happy dog right now.
  3. I was supposed to take Ceile to sheep and a good instructor in March but due to covid -19 we are stuck here at home with only chickens. She's keen to work and actually began gathering on her own ( she was supervised but not being commanded). This wasn't just following a chicken, she'd been doing that for three days and then decided they should all be together. I have done a bit of herding in the past but never started a dog although I know the theory and have watched numerous videos on starting dogs. I'm not sure the chickens are a good place to try and teach come bye and away though. If I could get those commands on her I'd be set for continuing. Just not sure that's possible without larger, hardier stock. Any suggestions would be welcome.
  4. Turns out Ceile is either allergic or highly sensitive to both corn and wheat. She's doing much better with time and probiotics and has gained a reasonable amount of weight. I can still see her ribs but at least the neighbours can't from their balcony so that's okay, lol. The photo is from our walk a couple of days ago.
  5. He's beautiful. That's what all my other border collies looked like at that age. I used to call Darcy "Bean" because she was so thin; all tall and no width, lol. That's a nice weight. I used to tell people in my obedience classes to keep their dogs on the thinner side then scare them with the stats on hip dysplasia just for good measure. It worked for a lot of them, not all unfortunately. My aunt used to think that if her dog showed any kind of a tuck up it was starving to death. Instead her dogs always carried about an inch of fat over their tail head. Mom and I tried many times to explain but she just liked her dogs fat. This is Ceile at 8 months just before her weight plummeted. She's almost back to this which will make me very happy.
  6. I know right! I hate getting stopped on the street and told how skinny my dog is. Most of the people are well meaning and good when I just tell them, "yah, we're working on that". Some I know would report me for abuse if they knew my name. Lovely world we live in. I had her on less food just after I wormed her thinking that would solve the problem but she had a sudden growth spurt and started eating everything, paper, hair off the floor and mushrooms to name a few! That was terrifying. That's when I boosted her food until we settled on what she's eating now. That's another thing, obviously puppies grow fast but she had some pretty crazy growth spurts. She would go to bed with a level topline and wake up with her butt an inch or two higher in the morning. I used to say she looked like that werewolf in Harry Potter she was so out of proportion. Lol. Anyway, sorry for being surly - have a lot on my plate right now. Happy news is Ceile and I will be starting herding training this month. A little stress relief for both of us.
  7. Let's start with this. My pup NEVER has a distended abdomen after eating. My point in talking about the dachshunds (who were greedy little sneak thieves and not fed large doses of food on a regular basis) was to point out that a dog who was over eating to the point of getting diarrhea would almost certainly show physical signs of it, such as a distended belly. Again you can barely FEEL a difference between a full belly and an empty belly on my pup, let alone see one, ever! Skinny - this pup was, for a time through some major growth spurts, skeletal. No disrespect meant but I'm talking almost Auschwitz thin (just so you can have a picture of what I'm talking about). I got her to gain a little weight in spite of the on again off again diarrhea that she had, had since I brought her home at 10 weeks old but it wasn't easy. I went to the vet who treated her. She got much better but I still needed her to gain a few pounds; skeletal doesn't go away overnight. I don't believe it's normal for a dog who is supposedly getting too much food to be skeletal. Like you said, your dog got some extra cushioning going on when you overfed him. If I am supposedly feeding my dog so much that her belly can't contain it all then she should be a rolly polly sausage, not a bone rack. Next: If you read my last post, you would see that everything has basically settled down. Let me make this more clear. My dog appears to be getting better. She had other food with no ill effect - no gas, no diarrhea, no problem. Her irritated intestinal tract, it seems, was just needing an extra long time to calm itself. She is still eating 2 cups of food twice a day (good high quality food that I researched before giving her) and isn't having the issues that she was prior to her treatment with panacur. She is still thin but her ribs are a little less noticeable. I trust in a short time she will be a perfect weight. As for your older male dog eating less than my smaller, younger female allow me to explain how this works - not all dogs have the same metabolism. I have, with only short time spans in between, always had a multi dog household. I have raised and trained many dogs of several different breeds over the last 40 years and I can tell you that even litter mates will have different nutritional needs of the same food and require it to be measured accordingly to keep them at a healthy weight (that's healthy, not fat). My concern was that she was eating and NOT maintaining a healthy weight. Now, at 11 months, she has pretty much stopped her speedy upward growth which will make a difference. This will be another factor in why your older dog eats less - he is not growing! As for testing for giardia: Should she return to having stinky, smelly, diarrhea, I will look into it; that is why I took her to the vet in the first place. Until that time however, I will continue to provide her with probiotics and as much good healthy food as is needed to keep her the brilliant, gorgeous, trim speed demon she is.
  8. We've had a ton of snow which means the place we used for her to relieve herself was constantly being cleared away and I've kept her out of the barnyard since last treating her for the giardia and worms. Now that the snow is melting we are able to use a different area for her to relieve herself and the grass is only just beginning to show around the buildings so I don't think that's it although I understand what you're saying and I understand it may still be a place of reinfection. I've gone back and looked at everything and in the meantime kept feeding her little bits of apple since that seems to not affect. I'm not convinced that a dog won't have an allergic reaction to things until after they are a year old. One of the reasons I changed her food the last time (besides the soft stools) was because she had begun scratching her ears and chewing at her paws. I changed food and that stopped. I waited a week or so and gave her a little of the old food (because I hate to throw things out if I don't have to) and she began scratching again. It contains corn and wheat. I have allergies and sensitivities to food and I know that if I eat a lovely piece of yeasty bread I have about fifteen minutes until I start sneezing and scratching my eyes out. Twice now, since changing her food, she has been given a Timbit (doughnut hole for those who don't know) and ended up scratching at her ears. Not necessarily proof but certainly suspicious. I also can't see that I was over feeding her with the two cups a feeding. I've had dachshunds who could eat more than that. They looked like footballs after consuming huge amounts of food but they never pooped themselves. Ceile eats a meal and you can't tell she's eaten anything at all; no round tummy, you can barely even feel it. I would think an overfull stomach would at least show a little. This last week I had some left over beef and tried giving her a bit of that for three days in a row. This time there was no reaction. I'm thinking her gut was just so irritated it's taking a long time to settle down and heal. At 11 months she's done most of her growing so if I can get a little bit of something else into her she should be able to maintain at least enough not to see her ribs. Otherwise she looks amazing and has an endless supply of energy so I'm going to try a little more beef and probiotics and see what happens. Thanks for all the help. It's good to be able to sort through all the thoughts and opinions born of other people's experience.
  9. Thanks, I hadn't seen it. Gave it a read and actually feel better. My other young collies had heavier coats, Ceile is smooth coated. It's possible they were just as scary skinny and I just couldn't see it.
  10. She's only just coming 11 months. She was wormed the day I picked her up at 10 weeks old. She had a belly full so I wormed her a second time after the right amount of days had passed. She was spending a lot of time at my mom's sampling chicken, duck and horse droppings but she was also having a terrible time with her food. I changed food, which helped but didn't clear it up. Because of all the dung she was tasting, I wormed her again when she started to drop weight rapidly and became almost skeletal. I fed her three times a day but had to measure it exact or she would end up just spraying the lawn with liquid. Soft and squishy she could hold on to, the other just ran out of her whether she was trying to go or not. I changed feed again and it got a little firmer, but I had to cut the kibble back. I started trying to add meat by itself. Small bites were okay, more than a treat though and we had a problem (but always gassy, that never changed). That's when i took her to the vet and got the panacur. Everything firmed up after that and most of the flatulence cleared up, but I still can't give her any extra meat. I can see her ribs. She plays hard and her coat is in good shape so it seems like she's doing okay nutritionally, it's just a matter of getting a bit more into her. She's a tiny little thing, 27lbs, but the max I can give her in dog food without upsetting her system is 4 cups a day. It's a good food too. She is eating twice as much as what my last adult collie ate and we are just barely maintaining. After the weekend when she plays with my parents Vizsla for hours, she always drops a little, thankfully we don't have many play times like that Monday to Thursday so her body has a chance to try and catch up. I thought, because of the worms and the panacur, that probiotics would help. They helped a little with the gas but she still gets the runs if I increase the feed. I still want to try a "better" probiotic just in case it just wasn't right or enough for her. I honestly expected the apple to soften things up but it had little to no effect that way, and it didn't give her gas. I count this as a good sign. I could change food again but I hate to do that so soon, especially when she's finally solid. And it's so hard to find a good food that isn't laden with legumes, potatoes and the like.
  11. Thanks, that's kind of what I was thinking, just giving the kibble and the probiotics for awhile and hoping she didn't turn into a complete bone rack. I did slip her a few bites of apple the last day or two and so far so good, so you might be right, allergic to almost everything. That would be my luck, I don't think I've ever had just a normal dog.
  12. Thank you, I went and looked that up and I think I'll give that a try.
  13. I did this for my pom, basically he ate what I ate so I knew exactly what he was getting. He also only ate a 1/4 cup of pretty much anything so cooking for him was easy, lol. I would love to do this for Ceile but every time I give her a taste from my plate the kids start opening the doors and windows!
  14. I don't know about her parents. Her Mom was imported from Ireland and Dad is still there. I never asked the breeder because of the litters I've know in the past. My pom's mom has a moderately sensitive tummy and his sister gets diarrhea from everything and yet he has literally eaten tinfoil (and so much more) with no ill effect. There is another type of probiotic that I can pick up. It's supposed to have a higher efficacy than others (or so the claim goes). I'll go check it out and see if it's worth the cost. Something else I wondered: If she has a sensitivity to one of the ingredients in her food, but not an actual allergy, then that might keep her belly in a state of potential turmoil without it showing up in other symptoms couldn't it? Bah! I hate to change her food again, it took so long to find a good one.
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