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Everything posted by RemsMom

  1. I hope this experience doesn't discourage you from fostering in the future. From what you have posted it seems like you and your wife would be great foster parents. I think I have a bit more experience then you and I have better resources (I have a car and I know four trainers that deal with major issues with rescue dogs on a daily basis). But if someone handed me a dog like yours I would have to send him back, there is no way I would feel equipped to handle his issues. I have an almost three year old border collie. I adopted her from a rescue 18 months ago. I'm glad I didn't know about all of her fears because I may have not adopted her and missed out on one of the sweetest dogs ever. When I adopted her she was afraid of almost everything. I can't tell you the number of times I cleaned up a puddle on the floor because she peed all over herself from fright...or the number of times I carried her away from a situation that she was so terrified she wouldn't move. I soon learned to manage her and her fears so she didn't go over threshold, and that wasn't easy. Just two weeks ago I walked into the training center and was confronted with a two year old little girl wanting to come and pet my dog. My dog is terrified of small children and I had to finally yell, "Stop!" before a parent came running to pick up the child. The parent looked a bit alarmed and I had to explain that my dog was terrified of small children. Really, who lets their toddler run up to a strange dog? I guess I am trying to say that there are a lot of wonderful dogs out there that are in desperate need of a foster home that you will be perfect for. I think you would have been able to handle my rescue without any problem. Take care and good luck. I think you and your wife will be great foster parents to a needy dog.
  2. I would call the rescue and tell them he has to go back today. The rescue should have done a better job evaluating his needs before placing him with you so don't feel guilty for asking them to take him right away.
  3. Natasha has hurt her feet on a few occasions with a large flap of skin ripped from her pad. When the pad is super sensitive I use vet wrap to hold on a baby sock. The sock will allow air to the pad and helps with healing. Once the pad heals a bit I don't have anything on the foot in the house and for protection outside use a baby sock with a hair band to keep it on. Dog pads tend to heal quickly but I have to admit the first time it happened I panicked because it looked so horrible and sore.
  4. With my puppies my first priority with housebreaking is getting them trained to go outside and not in the house. Once I accomplish that I worry about teaching them to go while on a leash and in a certain area of the yard. Training can start now just keep it to short sessions (if he starts ignoring you he could be overstimulated or tired) and always positive. Puppy classes are a great way to teach skills in a distracting environment and your puppy will get to interact with lots of other puppies and people. I almost never bathe my collies. I don't bother bathing unless they get stinky. On the rare occasion they get muddy (I live in the desert), I just rinse them off. Your pup is adorable. What a charming, little guy!
  5. I didn't think about the sizing of the Front Range harness until I read Maralynn's post. When I ordered the harnesses my collies were just a little over a year old and and according to the Ruffwear chart were on the upper end of the XS. I ordered S thinking that both girls would fill out a bit as they got older and was really worried that I had made a mistake and the harnesses would be huge but they fit well and still do over a year later.
  6. I have the Ruffwear Front Range harness for both my collies. I have had the harnesses for over a year and have been really happy with them. The harnesses stay in place really well and there have been a few times where my one girl has worn her harness all day for three days in a row (agility trial and she doesn't compete) and she has been comfortable. The harnesses stay put with a lot of activity. My pups love to run.
  7. Reading your post I feel so sad and happy at the same time. Sad that you lost your best friend but happy that you adopted a sweet little frightened dog and he became your best friend.
  8. Having your dogs crate trained is really helpful with small children. I was able to teach my children from a very young age that the crate was doggie's house and they were not allowed to bother the dog. The dogs learned too and would run to the crate when they needed a break from the small people. How do your dogs travel in the car? How will they travel in the car with a baby in a car seat? I would decide on that now and begin training your dogs so that when baby arrives there won't be any drastic changes. And get a stroller so you can start training your dogs early to walk along. Any training issues that you have been ignoring tackle them now. Pulling on leash, not coming when called, ignoring basic commands. I think most dog owners have gaps in training but with a baby in the house you will need a dog that you can rely on to listen to you. I think the above advice from Urge to Herd is really important. Have someone/place reliable to take care of your dogs if something unexpected happens. My son was born on Saturday morning and was scheduled to go home Sunday morning. It was thought that he had heart trouble and we had to stay at the hospital until we could get an appointment at the children's hospital on Monday which got us home Monday afternoon (No problem with his heart, he is a healthy 22 year old). And my sister ended up needing an emergency c-section with her second child (nothing tragic, my niece just decided to try to enter the world feet first). Congratulations on your new addition! Enjoy every moment, just like puppies children grow up too fast.
  9. My two are smooth coat and tolerate heat really well. Like others have said I think how well a dog does in the heat has a lot to do with excitement level. I like to take my collies to the park a couple of times a week. I take the chuck-it and they have a great game of fetch getting to run full speed without fences getting in the way. Now that it is warmer (I am in the southwest) I watch the temps. and make sure we are not out at the park if it is above 75. However, tonight as the sun was going down and my backyard was shaded I took them out for a couple of hours. They have a plastic child's pool to cool off in and I don't play with them, I let them decide how much they want to play. It was 100 when we went out and they chased each other all over the yard only taking break ever once in a while to get a drink and cool off in the pool.
  10. I found it interesting how close Kira is in size to my Natasha. 9 weeks - 7.5# 12 weeks - 10.5# 16 weeks - 17# 18 weeks - 20# 24 weeks - 23# 8 months – 27# 14 months – 29# She just turned two and weighs between 31# and 32#.
  11. I have the Ruffwear Front Range harness for both my collies and I really like it. http://www.ruffwear.com/Front-Range-Harness?sc=2&category=1131 They both love to run and sometimes pull like sled dogs (my fault for not taking the time to train) but I haven't had any issues with the harness rubbing or causing discomfort. Just wanted to add that the harness isn't cheap and my rescue Mattie did pull out of it once but she was at doggie daycare and afraid and had to pull hard to get out of it, she has never pulled out of it when with me. I can easily get three or four fingers under the straps and the harness still fits well. I have had four different harnesses for Natasha and she has never pulled out of any of them. Mattie is a bit of an escape artist when she gets frightened. I wouldn't think you will need to worry about your dog escaping the harness. Mattie's issue is that she is a rescue and is frightened by everyday things.
  12. ^^^ I'll second that, Kylie is so adorable! I had to look up show 'n' go, I didn't know what that was.
  13. You have a really adorable puppy. Until Natasha was around 10 months I used to put her down for naps just like I did when my children were little. I would make sure she had some fun activity, give her a couple of dog treats and water, take her to go potty, and then put her in her crate to nap. My son was away at university at the time so the crate was in his room. There was no reason for me to go there so Natasha could nap undisturbed for a couple of hours. If I didn't put her down for naps she wouldn't rest. Any movement from someone in the house would cause her to jump up to see what we were doing and without rest she became a little monster, half dragon, half shark. Thankfully, she outgrew this and now I have a dog that will happily nap and ignore what we humans are doing. I also used a stuffed Kong frequently at the age. I would fill the Kong with a mixture of plain yogurt, pumpkin, and a bit of peanut butter and freeze it. It kept her busy when I needed a few minutes of peace.
  14. ^^^ When my German Shepherd was a puppy I asked my vet what I could do to help keep him from having issues with his hips (I had the vet x-ray his hips and all was good but I was still worried). She told me the best thing was to not let him get overweight and said she would only have half of her practice if people would keep their pets at a healthy weight. A number of years ago I thought the AKC was the gold standard for a well bred dog I thought that all dogs were bred with health and temperament in mind. Now I know better and am saddened at what conformation breeders (and breed clubs and the AKC) are doing to man's best friend.
  15. Glad it worked and I am going to remember this for future reference. The vet charges a small fortune to make a dog vomit. Unfortunately I know this from first hand experience.
  16. I have had a total of six dogs in my life. Number five was a BC puppy and I loved her so much that when she was a year old I adopted another BC from a rescue. I was thinking that I wanted another dog but not a puppy because they are so much work....I'll get an adult dog, that will be easier. I love my Mattie and I wouldn't trade her for the world and if I had to do it all over again I wouldn't even think about it, I love her so much. But she wasn't easier. From what I have been able to piece together with my observations, the information I received from Mattie's foster Mom, and the observations of a trainer at the doggie daycare center I use when I need to be away all day we all think that for the first nine months of her life Mattie must have lived in a kennel with very little interaction. Mattie is so sweet and she works hard to understand how to live in our human world but everyday life is often overwhelming to her. I think the foster did a horrible disservice to Runa by telling you that she "sneak" pees. I was assured by Mattie's foster mom that she was completely housebroke but there were lots of accidents in the beginning. We were accident free for months until a couple of weeks ago when Mattie had two accidents within a couple of days. I didn't see her but I knew it was her. At first I couldn't figure out why, after so many months, we were having accidents. I finally figured out that on both days I had been gone all day running errands (Mattie was home with my son and daughter). Mattie is my dog and she gets very stressed when I am gone so my conclusion was that she is experiencing separation anxiety and that is the cause of her accidents. If I thought of Mattie's accidents as "sneakiness" I would have never realized what the real issue is. "The Other End of the Leash" is one of my favorite books. It really helped me understand how to communicate with my dogs. Thank you for adopting Runa.
  17. Natasha will retrieve anytime and anywhere. It is her favorite game. We got her at nine weeks and only had her for a short time when my oldest kids wanted to teach her to fetch. Natasha knows "bring", "give", and "put". "Bring" is the command to drop the ball at my feet, "give" means put the ball in my hand, and "put" is the command to set the ball on the ottoman (the way my husband likes to play fetch out on the patio). My husband is a pushover when it comes to a game of fetch and Natasha knows it. Often he will be in the living room attempting to read and will have half a dozen toys next to him on the sofa. Natasha will keep bringing him toys and piling them up next to him in the hope that she can convince him to play. My rescue dog, Mattie, doesn't understand fetch at all. I think I will try CptJack's trick and see if it works with her. I wonder if retrieving is hardwired into a dog. My first GSD lived to fetch but the GSD I have now really doesn't care about retrieving (except that he likes to get the tennis ball and hold it between his front paws just to upset the collie).
  18. What a great story. I'm glad you were able to find him a happy home.
  19. Online there was a conversation with a Doberman Pinscher owner in the UK. They said they had met many people from the US that said they would leave the breed if the US went to the no tail docking and ear cropping like the UK. I just can't understand that mindset. I wish I could have met your unusual Collie. I find his look intriguing.
  20. So handsome! He would fit right in with my two girls. My daughter told me she would love to have an Australian Shepherd. I have no problem getting a rescue with a docked tail but I will not get a puppy from a breeder with a docked tail. I really wish the United States would follow England and stop chopping off tails and cutting ears. I feel if God/evolution (depending on your beliefs) gave animals certain tails and ears that we humans shouldn't mess with them.
  21. Chene, Thank you for organizing this and all the video links! I love that there is basic to advanced. Natasha tends to learn new things really fast but Mattie (my rescue) tends to take a bit more coaching to learn something new. I really appreciate that you have taken the time to put this together. I can't wait to get started.
  22. Until my daughter started agility and I began reading books by Patricia McConnell I didn't know how much easier it is to teach a dog to respond to a movement versus a verbal signal. I finally understood why my very sweet, but not always the smartest, Miniature Schnauzer looked confused when I asked her to "sit" but did a perfect "hi-five" after not doing the trick for about seven years. I often wonder how much I could have taught her if someone had explained to me that she needed a physical cue.
  23. ^^^Natasha has learned her basic commands in German because that is what I use with my GSD. Natasha knows quite a few tricks. We did lots of trick training over the summer when it was too hot to go out but as soon as the temperatures cooled we abandoned that for play time at the park. We are boring when it comes to the crate command and just use "crate". But for quiet (stop barking) we use "Quiet Coyote" and use the hand signal that is used for "dog" for shadow puppets. It was a silly thing that my adult daughter learned as a camp counselor and taught Natasha. I would love to join a trick challenge thread. I think it would motivate me to practice (kind of like my daughter and needing those weekly lessons even in the summer or the instruments never get practiced).
  24. Congratulations! He is a very handsome boy!
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