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About ObeytheBC

  • Birthday October 11

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    veterinary medicine, nutrition, crafting, reading, and - of course - stockdog work

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  1. Originally a verbal correction (her name, a "hey") would interrupt the behavior temporarily meaning she would back off and circle. Now, the verbal does not always work, probably because it is difficult to always catch it so I can't make it consistent. I have only tried verbal correction at this time - she will not dive in at him while she is near me and I have not thought of another way to correct her. Also, in verbally correcting her, the male dog will back off the toy as well and come to me which takes away some of her focus until he is engaged again. The verbal correction does not last.
  2. Alright experts (which is every one of you because you have all been in this far longer than I), I have a behavioral question/issue and would really like some feedback and/or input. If I have put this in the incorrect topic, please let me know. So, I have four Border collies. A 6 year old male, a 3 year old female, a 2 1/2 year old female and a 5 month old female. The 6 and 3 year olds I have owned for the past 2 - 2/12 years and the other two were just brought in 3 months ago. It has been rough transitioning from a 2 dog household to a 4 dog household (with my very first puppy at that). So I am pretty sure I am doing something wrong or am not seeing something. Here is the issue. I purchased a 2 1/2 year old female nursery dog. She had been owned by a very nice gentleman and his family since she was about 5 or 6 months old. She had a brief life in the house and, from what I garnered (and can not be held to), she has lived in an outdoor kennel/run situation where she would be taken out for chores or to work (or go to a trial) but otherwise was left in her kennel. I do not think she ran free with a pack of dogs very often. I am going to go ahead and insert my token: I do not feel this is unfair treatment or abuse, I am simply telling you the facts. Now that I have her, I run things a bit differently. Since I only have 4, they often get turned out together to run, play, and go to the bathroom. They are crated separately when we are not working, training, playing, etc. Dogs may be turned out individually, with 1 or 2 others, or as a full group. This is how I have always done things, but that is because it was just a group of 2 dogs. This new dog is showing some behaviors that I do not quite understand. The behavior is ONLY focused on my male dog. I have tried to recreate it with the other females and it does not happen. She fully focuses on the male dog, following him around, checking to see what he is doing, etc. He often likes to have a toy in his mouth (he is a huge fetch fan) and when he does, she fully focuses on him. If you take the toy and move it side to side, the other three dogs follow the toy, she follows him only (does not look at the toy, never attempts to get the toy). She instead will jump in his face and bite at him (a very loud snap of teeth, has made contact at least twice, has taken away fur as well). If he is simply walking with a toy in his mouth (no human involvement), she will do the same thing or will circle him widely and then dodge in to bite at his face. If he is laying down with a toy there, she does the same thing but not as often - this may be due to the fact that if he is simply laying and holding his toy (and not focused on enticing someone to play or fetching the toy) he will defend his possession with a growl. When this has happened with her, she immediately backed down (and was never going for the toy in the first place) and moved to circle him or lay down. Obviously, there is no fetch when she is out. But I do not understand this behavior. It is not over the toy, she has no interest in obtaining the toy. I would imagine it is some sort of controlling or herding behavior. But I can not figure out how to get her to switch her focus. I do not care if she has toy/ball drive. That is the last thing on my mind. I simply need her to stop biting at my other dog's face and would prefer to find a way to train it out of her instead of just managing the problem by taking away all balls and toys when she is present or separating her out from the group. I would appreciate any insights or ideas on how to correct this. I really enjoy this dog as a working dog, but part of the reason I purchased a female was because my male will handle abuse from girl dogs (if a male were to attempt even the slightest amount of controlling behavior towards him, there would be a fight). It was never my intention to have him bullied or harassed by another dog. Thank you in advance for your feedback.
  3. All four are locked away in crates at night. And no comfy beds for them either, just maybe a towel (since they will all just ball it up into a corner anyways and anything foam or stuffing filled equals a fun destructo-toy). Boy don't I sound mean compared to all these other homes!
  4. Congratulations on a new puppy! I am also about to pick up my (first ever) puppy, so I am eagerly reading the suggestions. I second the question of what height does everyone recomend for the x pen? Does anyone have preferences for a long line for the puppy to drag in terms of weight and length (or suggested material - leash vs. twine vs. biothane)? And this will probably sound like a silly question, but about what size crate does everyone start out with? I know you can use dividers, but for a typical border collie puppy, what should the crate size be from the beginning?
  5. I can't share any experiences with you BUT have you looked at having it compounded? When drugs go on back order or become hard to get your hands on, compounding pharmacies can fill the gap. Sometimes having a drug compounded is actually less expensive than purchasing it as a generic or as a brand named drug - but not always and certainly not if it is a drug on the $4 Walmart Generic list. I might give a call over to Wedgewood Pharmacy or some other compounding pharmacy to look into it if the drug has worked so well for you - or ask your vet to do so for you. (I am a vet tech so calling the pharmacies are second nature to me.) Good luck.
  6. I am going with the majority on this one - collar with ID, preferably riveted on if they are prone to loosing tags, and a microchip for back up. I work at a vet office and it would probably shock you the number of people that love to bring in a dog they found and decided to keep. They don't know the situation of why that dog was running loose but automatically assume that means the dog is unloved and unwanted, so they decide not to contact any authorities or even look for an owner and just keep the dog. The state I live in has rules about this, so if they tell us (note I said IF THEY TELL US THIS), we refuse care (non emergency, people just bringing in as a new pet needing shots, etc) and tell them they have to contact the animal shelter in thier county/city, and post about finding the dog on 2-3 venues (craigslist, flyers, and newspaper). Most of these people have no idea that they can not just keep a dog because they found it, that it is property and you have to try and find an owner. I find that a dog with a collar is a more apparent way to tell those types of people finding and keeping dogs that there is an owner. Microchips are great but you can not physically tell without a reader if they are chipped or not. Had one such situation occur where we scanned the dog when they brought it in for vaccines and it was chipped, able to call the owner, and have a reunion. People who found the dog were quite sad they did not get to keep thier new friend. Equally, just a microchip means nothing. It HAS to be registered with the owner info. My first dog from the shelter (where here they only have to be unclaimed for 10 days (this is if they have a form of ID on them, it is less without a collar or microchip), I am out of town for longer than that a lot so imagine if you don't know about your dog missing immediately) had a microchip but it was not registered so the original owner was never found. I personally use a relatively inexpensive collar ($10) I bought from Gun Dog Supply (http://www.gundogsupply.com/) made of "TufFlex" which has the "look and feel of leather" but is which is virtually indestructible and maintenance free. TufFlex cleans up with a damp sponge, resists mildew and bacteria and therefore is odor-resistant. This vinyl-coated webbing also keeps its flexibility in cold weather. I get the style with the center ring that has a rollover design for your dog's safety. Plus, Gun Dog Supply does a riveted ID on each collar with the purchase. The type I get is linked here. http://www.gundogsupply.com/k-9-komfort-center-ring-w--dee-3-4--collar.html I really like that swimming and getting into water does not affect them, plus when they have rolled in something nasty, I can clean the collar very easily (and quickly) and get it back on the dog without having to toss it in the washing machine.
  7. I am not going to comment on whether you should or should not - I will leave that to people who have far more experience than I do. But, I did want to make a few comments about working ducks, especially in relation to a young dog. First of all, not every dog will work ducks and how they work ducks may differ from what you see on sheep. There are dogs that will act like ducks do not exist on thier radar, dogs that do not see ducks as working stock and will be likely to chase/bite/kill the ducks, and dogs that will actually be more confident on ducks and show more natural prowess on them. I personally own a dog that has LOVED ducks since she was first introduced to them - works ducks very naturally and a dog that did not see ducks as stock (initially - he now works them like all other livestock, but would choose to work other livestock if he were given that choice). IF you did choose to get ducks for herding, you would definately want some lessons under your belt so that you could understand and stop unwanted behavior. You might want to take lessons on ducks as well (if you can find somewhere local) prior to purchasing ducks as well so that you can see what your dog will do while you have an experienced person there. Plus, working ducks is VERY different from sheep - thier balance point is the size of a pin, they tend not to fetch (you have a very big effect on the ducks and your effect changes with time and your interaction with them). Equally, ducks work differently depending on the type of duck you get. I personally would not use Runner ducks. Runner ducks are more upright and fast, turn pretty quickly, and can be very exciting for a puppy. Thier speed may sound like a good thing, but if you are trying to get good work from your dog, especially with you as a beginner and your dog as young as it is, it makes it hard for you to see anything. I have worked several different ducks. Muscovys (sp?) are slower and seperate out easily. They flock better when young, but as an adult they are happy to each move at its own pace. Nice thing though is that they are pretty quiet working ducks. Peking (sp?) flock nice and tightly and move at a great pace. These inexpensive ducks are probably my favorite to work - however they are VERY loud so if your dog is right down behind them, they may have a hard time hearing you over the noise. Call ducks are very small and can vary in thier flocking ability, but if your grass is too high or uneven, it slows them down considerably. I do not enjoy working call ducks personally. I hear Welsh Harlequins, Roan (Ronin, sp? - really wish my computer weren't acting crazy right now or I would be double checking spelling and "breed" names), and Sweeds - I hear these work great, similar to my review on Pekings. I have worked a few crosses of these and they all flocked tightly, moved at a nice pace that still gave you time to react, but I do not think they are quite a loud. My good friend happens to own several of these ducks and, a part of farm chores there is to put away the birds at night. The dogs gather them up and put them away, which is how I started learning to work them. And as I said, I have a dog that actually prefers to work ducks and is very natural with them in a way that she is not with sheep. But ducks are different - definately not sheep - so I would be looking at learning how to work the ducks (in addition to sheep) if you are going to try to use them as your practice livestock. Otherwise, I won't comment on the shoulds and the should nots - leaving opinions to working ducks as a practice livestock to the experts on training up dogs. I am still learning. Edit : I forgot to even mention flight. If the bird can fly, it will. You will have to clip wings in order to avoid flying away as they do like to do if they have that option. Runner ducks and Pekings do not fly. I am sure there are others that do not, but those two I commented about so will add that bit.
  8. Epilepsy is a very difficult disease to deal with. I adopted an Australian Shepherd who started seizing after I had him for about a month or so. He did have a severe form of epilepsy - he had cluster seizures (sometimes 2, other times up to 5 in less than a 4 hour period), always grand mal, approximately every 2 weeks. He ended up on Zonisamide and Keppra, but I never got his epilepsy under full control. After I had him for about 9 months, he had a "stroke" like event that resulted loss of deep pain and paralysis in 3 out of 4 quadrants of his body where upon I elected humane euthanasia. The only test I did not have performed on him was an MRI. During those very tough months trying to manage his epilepsy, I found the Canine Epilepsy Network's discussion forum to be invaluable - both for information and for support from others dealing with canine epilepsy. Here is the link. http://forums.cvm.missouri.edu/cenbb/ There are many new medications with fewer side effects that can effectively control epilepsy. I also strongly recommend a consult with a veterinary neurologist - although, speak with your vet first because sometimes you can have some of the tests a neurologist will want to do performed at your regular vet for less cost. As to Trifexis - if you talk to the reps of Elanco (the company that makes Comfortis and Trifexis), there was an epileptic dog in the study that had a seizure during the use of Comfortis, thus the label. I know some dogs with epilepsy that the owner chose to use Trifexis or Comfortis with no problem, others had the problem. I would talk to your vet and discuss the use of Trifexis with the neurologist - as they may have you use a different product or, depending on seizure severity and frequency, feel that Trifexis does not affect your particular dog.
  9. VetGen (vetgen.com) offers DNA color and coat testing aka ChromaGene! You can test for just one or several colors. To test for red, the cost is $55 to sate your curiousity on if your dog carries a red gene. http://www.vetgen.com/ordertests.aspx?id=Border Collie Yeah, I was told the whole if it looks red in sunlight, it carries red. I have a dog that carries red, he is blue black as can be in the sun.
  10. I haven't tried it yet - and you would probably have to be careful with weather and all, but others have suggested freezing plain yogurt in the kong. If it works, then that would be a really digestible and easy on the stomach filling. Kong's website also talks about plain applesauce, mashed potatos, canned pumpkin, canned pumpkin mixed with bananas, canned pumpkin mixed with kibble, scrambled eggs and cheese, yogurt/oatmeal/peaches, chicken/rice/peas/carrots/gravy, peanutbutter/bacon/bananas, and even a recipe for easy digestion that has canned pumpkin/shredded apple/flaxseed/salmon broth. Here is the link for the kong recipes website. http://www.kongcompany.com/recipes/
  11. I just put a Seresto collar on my two a few weeks ago. The product does work when wet, but it is important to note that the flea aspect of the collar will be decreased to a 5 month duration if it is chronically wet - ie. bathing a dog or swimming the dog more than once a week. This does not effect the tick aspect of the collar. I live in a heavily tick infested area of SE Virginia and, on a day where I pulled close to a dozen ticks off of me standing in the grass, my dog was moving through the tall and thick grass/woods/brambles working on blind outruns and I only found 3 dead ticks on him. A good thing to note is that there is currently a $20 rebate on Seresto collars purchased through veterinary hospitals. Something to keep in mind price wise. As to Scalibor collars, we used to have those in the clinic and they seemed to work great, and were unaffected by the water. Unfortunately, I saw more topical reactions to the Scalibor collars due to the dust of the collar. Seresto collars are very different as they are wider grey collars that do not have the white dust falling off of them. Scalibor collars have been available in the US for about two years, and for a yr in europe before that. Seresto collars were available last year in europe and debuted here in the US at the beginning on 2013. Scalibor collars do take 2-3 weeks to be fully active while Seresto collars take 48 hrs and offer a repelent aspect. All in all, another tool out there for those that need it. I certainly love that there is now Seresto collar for cats - making it the second tick option out there for cats (Frontline being the other option). For those that don't know, Frontline is also releasing the new Frontline Tritek this month in VA. It has been available for a while in 8 South East US States. It features the same ingredients ( (s) methoprene and fipronil) as Frontline Plus, but also includes cyphenothrin. This will increase flea kill to starting in 5 minutes and tick kill to starting in 1 hr.
  12. Abdominocentesis- or tapping the abdomen to draw out fluid is actually not a horribly painful event. I know, we can't tell how much pain a dog experiences and we think of the same procedure on us and imagine how painful it is. But, I have performed several abdominocentesis and the dogs/cats actually feel relief from the procedure. If your dog is uncomfortable, your vet may give them an injection for pain or for slight sedation to make the process easier but most vets will do this on a case by case basis since we don't light to do much sedation on dogs with heart problems. An abdominocentesis is mostly putting a large needle or catheter through the abdominal wall where the fluid has accumulated and is short enough not to actually bother the intestines or any other internal organ. Some vets do this with feel and experience, others use an ultrasound to guide the needle. However, what you have to remember is that the fluid will accumulate again and this is ONLY a symptomatic relief of a side effect of DCM. It is not a solution or a treatment to the true problem. Perhaps you could ask for a referal to a veterinary cardiologist who may be able to give some insight to other drugs and options for your dog. Unfortunately, problems with the heart are mostly treated, never cured. But a cardiologist (if you don't have a cardiologist, internal medicine specialists will be able to help too) can give you another opinion and will probably know if there are any other or additional therapies you can try. You could also talk with an alternative medicine vet - looking at herbal treatments, how to adjust diet and lifestyle, how to support your current treatment. I do not know off the top of my head, but they would also be able to discuss if accupuncture might help as well. Good luck with your dog.
  13. Before I duck, cover, and peak behind the sofa to watch and see what gets written about that, I want to point out one very basic thing that is the core of why everyone here is so adament about breeding for herding ability. Everything you love about the breed, the intelligence, speed, trainability, willingness, the want to please, the want to work, the general WANT TO all exists BECAUSE of what it was bred to do - which is to herd, to be able to go a mile away from the handler and think on its own to bring in the livestock, to want to work as a partner but ability to also think on its own. Every single one of those so loved charactersistics is because it was bred to be a herding dog. If you only breed for size, or speed, or anything but those characteristics for herding, you loose what makes a border collie a border collie. The very thing that makes them so adept, so versitile, all originates from what makes them the most amazing herding dog. That is all I really want to point out, but brace yourself for what may come next.
  14. So I am assuming that your contract does not actually state or make a guarantee that your pup would be genetically CEA clear. My guess would be without a statement of that effect, there is no recourse. But, not to stir the pot or anything, is there a reason that you are angered by your dog being a CEA carrier? That just means that if/when you breed, you has to find a clear dog to use as the stud. I know that there is some debate with CEA for the fact that this can randomly (or not so random I would guess) mutate back into a gene line. I do not personally know of anyone who had that mutate back, but this is why testing is available. I think that I would focus on the dog at hand and the future. There are plenty of clear dogs out there available and then, if you are looking to keep a pup out of her, you can just test the entire litter if you absolutely do not want to have a CEA carrier prior to choosing your pup. That is if you feel that being CEA clear is your most important selection tool. I have a CEA carrier male - it just means that should he ever be bred, I would make sure that anyone desiring to use him as a stud would have to have cleared the female. Now, once again, not trying to stir up the to breed or not to breed pot or the what we should choose for when we select breeding animals pot. Or, you could always talk to the breeder about how unhappy you are with your puppy and seeing if you can return it. You can't change your dog's CEA status after all.
  15. Due to the recent weather, the ground is too wet for parking or to make a suitable trial field. We will be rescheduling - please stand by for our new dates.
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