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havenjm

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About havenjm

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  1. That's not the concept I'm disparaging at all. It's the concept you're stuck on. I haven't slid at all, you're attempting reposition my stance by leaving out the fundamental article: "only". There is a vast difference between "dogs take joy because it makes us happy" and " dogs only take joy because it makes us happy." Again, you're failing to see the point I'm actually making, and only arguing with the point you've fabricated. My point is that people often mistake their own joy for the joy of the dog, and IMO that's due to the idea that dogs only want to please them. Numerous anecdotes and videos celebrate disfunction in dogs. The majority even. Why is that? Exactly. They are taking joy from their dog, to the detriment of the dog. This is where think you're wrong. In many people its unconscious, but just because it's unconscious doesn't mean it's the opposite of doing something on purpose.
  2. I gave voice to that fallacy after what, IMO, were numerous allusions to that mode of interaction. Would you consider it destructive if your husband thought you only existed to make him happy? Because when, in your mind, your dog exists to make you happy, the needs of the dog don't really matter. It doesn't matter that the dog needs fewer treats and more exercise because the dog is only a tool to bring you happiness, and giving a dog treats makes you happy. There are a million other examples of this in dogdom, and entire methodologies and industries have developed around exploiting the concept.
  3. Of course they love us. I'm pointing out the notion that its selfish to assume they love us for the sole reason that they get to make us happy. I think that mentality prohibits many people from giving dogs what they really need, and you end up with horribly lopsided relationships where people feel great because they're getting "unconditional love", but the dog isn't getting anything that a dog really needs. Instead they get treats because that makes the person feel good, and the dog ends up morbidly obese with chronic arthritis. Just one example.
  4. I think you've mistaken my point, almost completely. Nowhere did I say, or imply that dogs don't take joy in doing things with us, or in being with us. The fallacy that i was pointing out is in people thinking that they take joy because it makes us happy. There is a black and white difference between the two concepts. One celebrates the human/dog relationship, and the other denies the needs of the dog and makes the entire relationship human centric.
  5. I don't think I'm assuming anything. You stated yourself that this behavior went on daily. The BCs ability to focus is true. Terms like hyper and obsess become relevant when people fail to channel the focus correctly or simply allow the dog to create their own outlets for that focus. That seems like a lot of work to teach her to hyper focus on a duck instead of a fly.
  6. Julie, That does bring a little clarity to the discussion. I was working off a definition much more on the "line breeding" wavelength. "Breeding from pedigree" makes more sense in terms of this conversation. I would argue that any first time cross is pretty much a crap shoot, and that it's impossible to know how the cross will "nick" until you can actually work with the offspring. If youre hoping to improve upon the parents youre hoping that the traits combine in a way that, perhaps, adds a little biddability to the bitch's side and a little fire to the dog's side in order to get offspring that have a better blend of want to and biddability. But it's as likely that you may end up with offspring that aren't overly keen or very biddable. You only find that out from working with the offspring. Which makes your point about pups going to sport and pet homes the real crux of the issue, IMO. If you can never assess the working ability of the offspring, then you can never have an accurate picture of how successful the cross was, and be able to determine whether the breeding should be repeated. I agree that the people who are interested in pedigree breeding for marketing purposes probably don't care whether the cross produces good working dogs, but only whether they can sell all the puppies. I dont think, however, that's a reason to condemn breeding from pedigree in general. In your Wisp littermate example, i would say theres a reasonable chance of getting some really nice working dogs. I think with well known dogs its pretty easy to gain some knowledge about how they might nick, and even more importantly about the typre of offspring they've already produced. I think it ultimately comes down to whether the breeder is motivated by improving, or at least preserving, the stock working ability of the breed, or whether they're motivated by selling puppies
  7. Thanks for the advice Bill. I certainly will try to avoid signing off on anything that forces me to bastardize the concept I'm putting together. I have found a couple of programs in Massachusetts that I believe allow for grant money to be used for the purchase of land, but the grantee must match 25% of the grant. Is the process, in your experience, hellish and difficult, or do they work to help you out? Have you ever failed to get grants that you've applied for, or have you always been successful? What are the things that determine success or failure? Etc
  8. I was wondering if anyone has successfully utilized government grant programs to fund agricultural projects or development. I'm specifically interested in grants for procuring land, but would love to hear first hand accounts from anyone who has received federal or state grants for farm development.
  9. Ok. Though, if you're only increasing the randomness with respect to working ability, and shrinking the genetic material available (which line breeding does) it seems like the logical outcome would be creating more dogs that lack top level working ability while increasing the maladies that are inherent with a lack of diversity within the genetic makeup. It seems like the goal of breeding should be the opposite; breeding from dogs with genetically diverse makeups to produce dogs that consistently express a high level of working ability.
  10. I'm pretty sure there is an age old saying on this topic.
  11. I think you're over complicating things. Dogs do what works, people do what they think should work whether it does or not, and then make up all sorts of rationalizations as to why they should continue to do something that isn't working. Dogs prefer peaceful, ie fair, interaction because it works better. To humans, who seem to feed on injustice, or at least the perception of it, I can see how their interactions appear moral. I don't think thats at all exclusive to the border collie, however. I think the notion that dogs take absolute joy in pleasing people is one of the greater misconceptions in all of dogdom, and quickly leads down a slippery slope of personification and human rationalization that is unfair to dogs. I don't pretend for a second that my dog works sheep to please me. I don't pretend that he listens in order to please me. He works sheep because every strand of his DNA is telling him to, and he listens because then he's allowed to work sheep longer. When he follows me around while i hang clothes, i don't imagine he's looking for ways to please me, but that he's hoping theres a sheep in the bottom of the clothes basket and that i will give him something to do. Dogs do what works, over a few thousand years we've bred dogs that please us by doing what works for them, but i think it's selfish to imagine that our dogs exists to make us happy and often prohibits us from giving our dogs what THEY need.
  12. My question would be why you would let her continuously obsess over the window looking for a fly. If you took the time to notice she was doing it, why not take the time to teach her to disengage and channel her energy into something positive like paying attention to you?
  13. That "annoying" prey drive is absolutely essential to what the border collie is. It's your job as a responsible owner to engage it.
  14. That simply isn't true. If you're breeding from lines as opposed to individually good working dogs, you're shrinking the genetic material that you're working with. There are plenty of great working dogs that come from relatively obscure breeding, therefore outside of established lines. Restricting a program to breeding from lines limits the amount of genetic material available, it doesn't enhance it.
  15. Given ms. crawford's association with the AKC and the use of terms like the "typical" physical characteristics of BCs I would guess that she's referring to the AKCs definition of a "working dog" which most informed people are aware is a hollow title. Even though the dogs were, perhaps, bred for flyball, the chances are pretty good that they looked at a sheep at some point and therefore achieved a working title of some sort from the AKC. Perhaps in Ms Crawford's eyes that constitutes a "working line".
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