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About PrincessJenni

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  • Birthday 12/26/1972

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    Northwest Arkansas
  1. First dog as a child: A dog of unknown breed named Snap, because that's what he did; he snapped at people. I don't think we had him very long, as we lived "out in the country" and dogs had a way coming (read: being dumped in the vicinity and finding their way to our house) and going pretty quickly there for a while. First dog as an adult: Molli the Border Collie Why a BC? I am a runner and I wanted a dog I could run with. That, along with other factors I deemed important, contributed toward my deciding a Border Collie was what I wanted. (Ironically, despite wanting a dog I could run with, I've never run with Molli because I've always been afraid -- probably rightfully so -- that she'd trip me.) Did you do research? Yes. First BC: Molli, November 2003. What made you want to get another? I was serving as a Foster Home for Addie and was only supposed to have her until she could be adopted. She was just the absolute sweetest dog, but she also seemed very sad. Her stay with me was the 4th place she'd been in a year (original home, foster home, adoptive home, me). It struck me that every time she was supposed to be somewhere that someone was supposed to love her and take care of her, she got shuffled off somewhere else, and I realized that there was no way I could do that to her. I wasn't necessarily looking for a second dog when I got her, but I fell in love with her and had to adopt her. By the way, I had other foster dogs both before and after Addie, but she's the only one who got to me like that. When I think about my life at that time, I think I needed her as much as she needed me. I've had her for over two years now, and she's been a fantastic addition to my "pack." The way she wags her full body with happiness when I come through the door at the end of the day always makes me smile, she and Molli do well together, and I swear my kitten (Zoie) thinks she's her mama!! What have you done with your dogs? Molli did obedience -- puppy pre-school, basic, basic AGAIN (it didn't take so well the first time), Click-a-Trick, and Advanced -- all before I got Addie. Mol's still a wild girl, but at age 4 she's settled down TREMENDOUSLY and is becoming a really good girl. I spent some time a couple of years ago teaching Molli to catch a frisbee, and playing frisbee in the backyard is still one of her favorite things. Addie thrives on pats and attention and doesn't seem particularly motivated by anything else -- no interest in fetch, frisbee, etc. I haven't done any classes with her, but she has benefited from what I learned in Molli's many classes, and is a wonderful, well-behaved girl. How many BC's? 2 How many do you have now? 2 What "quirks" have you noticed with all your dogs? Neither of them is a fan of the doorbell, that's for sure! Even doorbells on television set them to barking. Addie is a little shy and will try to get behind me and put her paws up on the waistband of my pants when in an unfamiliar setting. Molli used to freak out if her frisbee hit a tree or the fence before she got to it. If that happened, she wouldn't pick it up, although she'd circle and stalk it to make sure it didn't get away. Same thing if her stuffed baseball hit the wall and bounced back when I threw it for her. That doesn't seem to bother her as much now as it did a couple of years ago. My favorite, technically unrelated, Molli-Frisbee story involved the time the frisbee sailed right over the fence into the neighbor's back yard. She watched it go OVER the fence, then immediately began trying to look UNDER the fence for it. I was pretty impressed with her for that one... Molli likes to go outside and race up and down the fence line with the chocolate lab from next door. They don't bark, growl or snarl at one another; they just race back and forth on their respective sides of the fence. Oh, and Addie? Her favorite place to poop is in the mint-bed in the back yard. (It was there when I moved in.) She comes back smelling minty-fresh, so I'm pretty okay with it... City dog or county dog? Pretty much City. I have a house with a fenced back yard so the wild girls can run and chance each other silly, but there are no sheep on the scene... Addie has seen sheep once since I've had her, but showed absolutely no interest in them whatsoever. Would you ever get another breed? Maybe someday, but I think I'll always have Border Collies, too...
  2. Well, Addie did well at Daycare on Wednesday. Ironically, though, they said for the first little while that she was there, she wanted to be in a crate!!! I was happy she did well, though, because that makes that an option for her when I need to take her there. A conversation with a coworker brought me around to the fact that it stormed on Tuesday. I totally missed it. I was at my office, which is only about 10 miles from my house. I remember looking outside at one point and thinking that I should go to my car and get my umbrella because it was looking like I might have need of it later in the day. Another coworker went for her noon-time walk but missed it because just as she and her walking partner hit the trail there was a huge flash of lightning. Apparently just a little further sout, nearer my house, it really stormed. I KNOW the first time she did damage to a crate it was during a storm. I really think the second time may have been as well. This leads me to think it's not the crate that she's adverse to at all. She just doesn't like storms. Obviously it's stormed other times in the year and 9 months I've had her, and there have been times when I was home that I was pretty certain she didn't like the fact that it was storming, but she's never reacted quite so strongly before. What do you think? Could that be it? If so, what I'm going to try to do is pay attention to the weather and take her daycare when storms are expected. That doesn't help for the storms come on unexpectedly, but... Note: The weather's been nice and she's been home and crated the last two days while I was at work. I was able to come home and check on her a couple of times yesterday and she did fine. She also did just fine tomorrow.
  3. I really don't have anyone who can check on her or drop in while I'm at work. In addition to just being short on folks to ask to do that, neither of my dogs is especially fond of guests -- particularly if I'm not around. Molli stayed at a friend's house for a week when I went out of town about 6 weeks ago, and Addie stayed home with another of my friends coming by to check on her. My friend said she couldn't keep her in the crate, that she broke out every day, despite the use of twist-ties to prevent break-outs, and that she thought Addie "wanted to eat her." That surprised me because she's really MUCH better with other people now than when I got her; I suspect the problem was this "stranger" coming into her home when I wasn't here... Anyway, today Addie is going to go to doggie daycare for a tryout day. I really can't afford to take her to daycare every day, but I'm going to at least give it a shot today and see how she does. At least that'll buy me another day to figure out what to do about the crate, and/or to figure out if I want to leave her out alone. (I hate to start with all day, even if I come home at lunch to check on her.) My plan is to take her to daycare today, then when I bring her home, I'll go for a run and leave her out in the house while I'm gone. When I get home, we'll work on her being in and out of the crate some with me in the house. (She barks as if she's being tortured when she's in the crate and I'm home... I don't let her out until she's quiet because I don't want to reinforce the barking behavior, but in a year and nine months I've never broken her of that habit!) Oh, and interestingly, she doesn't destroy the things IN her kennel... She has a dog bed in there that's just fine. She also has a towel in there that she likes. Not a problem. I usually give her a greenie or a pigs ear when I put her in the kennel so she'll have something to chew on. I'm always hesitant about doing that because I worry she'll get choked, but she's never been a "gulper" so I don't worry as much about doing that with her as I do with Molli who IS a gulper... The problem NOW, of course, is that she's caused some pretty serious damage to the kennel... I've attached a couple of pictures... (Note the food OUTSIDE the crate... The first thing she does with her food bowl is dump it out. She eats the food IN her kennel, and when I let her out, she eats the food she spilled OUTSIDE her kennel... Funny girl!)
  4. I forgot to mention... She goes into her crate just before I leave for work in the morning, and I generally let her out as soon as I walk in in the evening. She's out from the time I get home, as well as all night and all morning while I'm getting ready. Today, for example, I went to the office around 10, and was home by 5:30. When she first came to live with me, she slept in her crate and never offered to do anything like she did today. Her former person claimed she tore up furniture and anything else she could get her paws on. If I travel out of town, she goes with me rather than boarding. She rides in the front seat in her seatbelt harness. I'm happy to take her anywhere I can, but I won't leave her in the car unattended, so our destination has to be somewhere that's dog-friendly...
  5. Hi, all... I've been away from the Boards for a while now, mostly because life's been too crazy for me to spend all the time on here that I'd like to. I have a little "issue" with my sweet Addie puppy that really need some input on, so it looks like I'm back... A little background: I adopted Addie a year and 9 months ago when I failed Fostering 101. I was the 4th place she'd been in a year (including her original person, her first foster home, the lady who adopted her from the Rescue and then turned her back in 6 months later), and I couldn't stand the thought of sending her on to a 5th one. She seemed so sad when she came to stay with me, but she warmed up to me very quickly. I was going through a pretty sad time in my life too, and could somehow relate to her. My thought was that every time she was supposed to be somewhere someone was supposed to love her and take care of her, they just shuffled her off to someone else. I was relating a little too closely to that and absolutely refused to do that to her. Anyway, she's been a fantastic pet for me. She and Molli are polar extremes. Molli's always been a wild and crazy girl with high drive and energy. She has, at age 3.5, begun to tone down a little bit, though, and is actually becoming a little more pet-like in that she'll FINALLY approach me for me to pet her. This after over 3 years with me! To say I'm enjoying her much more these days would be an understatement!! Addie is 4 years old. Both girls are crate trained and there have been no troubles with that until recently. Things are still cool in crate-land for Molli. Addie, on the other hand, has gotten to the point of wanting to break out of hers. Ad's crate is of the all-metal variety with a plastic tray in the bottom and a dog bed in the bottom. It's a very good sized crate and she's seemed very happy with it. A few weeks ago on a Friday afternoon I got off work early. It was a rainy, yucky day and when I came home I took a nap. Addie thinks if I'm home, she's supposed to be glued to my side. When I came in that day, though, I didn't immediately let them out. Addie began barking when it began storming outside. It hailed that afternoon for at least the third or fourth time that day, and I figured that's what her problem was. When I went in the room where the crates are a little bit later, she had red marks on either side of her nose, and a portion of the wire at the bottom of the crate was curved outward. She'd even managed to get her food bowl outside the crate. She also destroyed the collar she had on. It was in little pieces no larger than 1" in length. I'd been meaning to get a new leather collar for her anyway -- she destroyed her last one when the vet's office left it hanging on the door to her kennel when she was there for a bath -- so I loaded her up and we went to get a new collar. (She's so cute; she always stands perfectly still and holds her head up just so when I go to put her collar on. Such a sweet girl!) Anyway, she's never had trouble with the crate before -- other than having figured out how to open the door from the inside; twist-ties solved THAT problem -- so I wasn't worried about it. A couple of weeks later, I came home to discover that she'd bent the crate out in a different location, and that she'd broken the plastic tray in the bottom of the kennel. I was not exactly overjoyed, but continued using that crate out of fear of what she'd do to a molded plastic one. There were no further incidents until today... Today when I came home, I discovered that one of the metal pieces has been pried away from it's previous location and is sticking straight out. She's done new damage to the plastic tray inside the crate, AND the alignment on the crate is not longer right. What am I going to do? The lady who adopted her from the Rescue and subsequently turned her back in claimed that she had separation anxiety. I won't dispute that; that would be why she sleeps with me. For me, though, she's never seemed that upset about being here while I'm gone; it's been more about not being right next to me if I'm here. She's freed herself from her crate several times in the past and hasn't destroyed anything; rather, she met me at the door when I arrived home from work, doing what I can only describe as a full-body wag. I'm concerned, though, that if I left to her own devices all day while I'm at work, she might get busy and destroy something -- like my furniture. Does anyone have any suggestions? I'd LOVE to take her to daycare, but I'm not sure I can afford it every day, and that really would only solve the problem while I was at work. What about on weekends when I want to run to the mall or go grocery shopping, or go out to dinner? She's the sweetest dog in the world and I hate that she's obviously been distressed enough to cause damage to her kennel. I want to do what I can to fix whatever's causing her to do that, but I don't want to give her the opportunity to destroy furniture and such, either. I would never consider leaving her outside all day for several reasons. First, I just don't think that's very nice; She's a black dog and she gets hot out in the sun. It's also boring out there and she's a digger. I'm a little concerned that she might try to dig a hole to China -- or at least out of the fence... What do y'all think? Thanks! Jenni
  6. I'm so saddened to hear about Kip. I'm glad the puppies are doing well, though. I'm adding my thoughts and prayers to the ones everyone else has sent...
  7. Ironhorse, I am not familiar with the Animal Cruelty laws in Missouri, however, from what you have indicated, I suspect that the conditions those dogs have been living in would be sufficient to warrant such a charge had this occurred here. I know your first objective is to help the dogs, but I would encourage you to contact the appropriate law enforcement authorities in the area and report the situation. In many instances law enforcement is able to pick up the dogs and shelter them (or have them sheltered). I don't know if, being where you are in MO, you heard about the "Beagle Bust" in Centerton, AR, but ALL of those dogs -- 60+ of them -- were seized by the police and are being housed in shelters and foster homes pending the outcome of that case. It might be, as someone else suggested, that law enforcement might be able to act faster than the local humane society. I don't know what circumstances caused the death of the dog you saw today, but if conditions are that bad, I'd be hesitant to leave the rest of them there another day if it can be prevented. Additionally, given your description of the breeder/collecter's condition and demeanor today, it might be a good idea to contact law enforcement to see if they could do a "welfare check" on her. I'd hate for her "deterioration" to result in harm to other dogs while awaiting action from the Humane Society -- this is not a slam on the Humane Society, I'm just trying to think of other alternatives that might result in faster assistance for these dogs -- and it sounds as though her thoughts aren't quite rational, so I'd also be somewhat concerned about her possibly harming herself. Here is the link for Border Collie Rescue of the Ozarks. I'm not sure when it was last updated, but according to the website, their foster homes are currently full. They may know of other contacts in the MO area that might be able to help, though. http://www.ozarkrescue.homestead.com/newhome.html I currently have a foster puppy through BCRO, but am not sure how long he'll be with me since he's a total cutie and is drawing lots of interest. Since he might adopt pretty quickly, I might be in a position to either foster (or adopt) another BC fairly shortly, and I'd be happy to help. Like many others here, I'm so sorry you and your wife had to witness what you witnessed, but I applaud you for doing the "right thing" in response. Jenni
  8. Sounds very interesting. I've requested a kit for Molli-dog.
  9. Georgia, When I taught Molli to catch a frisbee, I started with just holding out a favorite treat to her and telling her to "take it." When she was consistently taking the treat, I switched to other things (i.e., a favorite toy, a pig's ear, whatever). Once she was consistently taking that object, I started holding the frisbee out for her to take. Once she was good with that, the game changed. I went back to the original treat and started tossing it to her to catch, eventually introducing "catch it" as a command. I again went through the use of another toy, other treats, etc., with her before I tossed the (soft) frisbee to her (generally more like dropping it from overhead than anything else). Then one afternoon I spent quite a bit of time outside with her actually tossing the frisbee. It was basically a lesson in "catch it," "bring it," and "drop it." I'd throw the frisbee and she'd run it down. Then I'd tell her to bring it to me. I had a can of her favorite treats handy, and when she'd come close I'd show her the treat, which helped to reel her in. Then I got her to "drop it" at my feet by offering her the treat in exchange for the frisbee. After about 45 minutes she was doing "Catch it," "bring it," and "drop it," without any trouble, and she has traditionally been a dog that would chase down anything but getting her to bring it back to me, or GIVE it back to me pretty much never happened. The other day we were outside playing and she caught the frisbee, took a couple of steps toward me, then dropped it to run check out a puppy on the other side of the fence. I called her and told her to "bring me the frisbee." She went to the frisbee, picked it up, and flipped it a little ways my direction and then just looked at me. I started laughing, and said, "You silly girl! That's not bringing me the frisbee!! Bring me the frisbee." She did, and the game was back on...
  10. I haven't had Molli's teeth cleaned, but several years ago, I took Beast (persian cat) in for a cleaning. They sedated him, and got his pearlly whites pearlly white again. He was a little stoned acting when I picked him up (staggering around, all but falling flat on his face, pupils dilated, groggy as could be), but that's his normal response when he's sedated for anything. (If I didn't feel so sorry for him, it would be hilarious to watch! My less sympathetic friends got quite a kick out of it.) He had to eat soft food for a few days because they said his teeth/gums would be sore, but he came through it just fine. I've been fortunate with Molli thus far in that her teeth seem to be remarkably clean. People are constatnly asking me what I do to keep her teeth in such good shape. Alas, I have no secret formula! She eats Spot's Stew, she chews on rawhides and pigs ears, a rope toy and every other dog-appropriate thing in the house to chew on. (I moved recently and a friend who helped me commented that Molli (1) ate better than she did, and (2) had more stuff than the humans in the house.) I'm not banking on being this fortunate indefinitely, but I guess because of my positive exprience with Beast's dental cleaning, I'm not quite so wary about Molli having one when the time comes.
  11. Molli came from a breeder about 2 hours away. I told him I wanted a female and he met me halfway with both remaining female puppies and I selected Molli. I've always wondered where the other pups ended up, though, because he made reference to having sold one of the males to someone who worked near here. Because Molli seems like she's on sensory overload so much of the time, I wonder about the disposition/personalities of her littermates....
  12. Madi -- i hope things are improving with your puppy. I don't want to sound discouraging, but thus far, nothing has really worked. This week has mostly been about holding her mouth shut, getting into her "personal space" and growling, followed by a sharp NO! I might as well dealing with a silk plant, for all the effect it's having. For the most part, she doesn't even acknowledge that her behavior is being interrupted. She just continues trying to bite when I let her go, so my next move has been to scoop her up as quickly as possible and deposit her in the crate. She's not happy to be going in the crate, but other than that, she's not terribly impressed. The two books I ordered and was waiting to receive did not show up until Wednesday of this week, and are goign to be my weekend reading. I have been trying to implement the program in the Patricial McConnell pamphlet 'How to be the Leader of the Pack.' For the most part, this has been a week of one step forward and two steps back. On a positive note, Molli did MUCH better in class Monday night. She was still skittish and shy, but she was better than she was the previous week. She didn't do so well when we went to practice "sit" and "down", but then we lined up and played a little game where we had to get our dogs to "sit," and later to "down." She followed my commands almost instantly. I was so pleasantly surprised. She also appeared to be making friends with Murphy, the Yorkie standing next to us during the game. He was less sure about Dirty Harry, the Welsh Corgi on our other side, but I was delighted to see her warming up to one of the other pups. When she shows a little progress, I become pretty encouraged. I am working on setting up additional situations where she can see other dogs, people, etc., so that she'll hopefully overcome some of the shyness. Now if I could just win the battle of the bite!
  13. Vicki - Yes... sigh.... You're right... That was me... sigh... The one who had to learn the hard way! : ) Although I think what breeder told me was that they were "protective". This didn't alarm me because it was consistent with what I had already read about BCs from a good number or sources. We actually WANTED a dog that would be somewhat protective (and by protective I mean I wanted a dog that would alert to unusual bumps in the night, and that would be somewhat reserved/cautious with strangers, -- watch dog-ish -- which again, is consistent with what I read about BCs). I did NOT want a traditional "guard dog" or a dog that would be big and scary and try to tear a limb off of anything and everything that moved. When I told Mr. Breeder what I was looking for in a dog he made his BCs sound like they fit the bill, and I was thrilled. At this point, I am wondering -- as I suspect you are -- if Mr. Breeder just said what he thought would sell puppies... I will say, though, that she was very sweet to everyone the first few days -- particularly compared to now. I took two friends with me to pick her up and we all handled her without so much as a squeak out of her, and she was pretty okay with my husband, too, although it was obvious that she was a little frightened and/or intimidated by her new surroundings. She pretty much seemed to prefer me to my husband, and would follow me anywhere I went. She still follows me everywhere, for the most part, although soemtimes she stands in front of me and tries to PREVENT me from going anywhere, and she has no qualms about streaking through the house on her own now. There were a couple of issues in the beginning, with the largest one I can recall now being housebreaking, but I think now that the biggest problem there were the unrealistic expectations on my part. I had read so much about how smart and trainable BCs are and how mischievous (and manipulative) they can be, and I was giving her credit for knowledge and a frame of reference that she obviously could not possibly possess at that point. I remember thinking she was being spiteful, which seems totally laughable to me now. This whole biting issue with her has really evolved and taken on a whole new life of its own, despite my best efforts to curtail it. Your point about hardwiring and genetics is part of why I am considering trying to track down the local person who purchased one of Molli's littermates. I am wondering he/she is having similar issues with her pup... I realize the other pup is only ONE of the other pups, and they could be completely different personality-wise (like my sister and me, for instance), so it might not be terribly helpful, but on the other hand, it could be very telling... I know it is going to take lots of work, but I am hopeful that I can I get this figured out and correct this behavior. You're right that it may end up being a constant correction, but if I can just figure out HOW to correct it, that would be something!
  14. jec - I was surprised when I noticed you were in AR, so I had to ask where. You are the first Arkansan I've encountered on here! I'm originally from Jonesboro, but have lived in NWA for most of the last eight years or so, excluding a two-year stint in central AR right after I got out of school. We got Molli from a guy in Clarksville. How did you find your breeder?
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