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Everything posted by Pearse

  1. My guess is the forum software got updated and the badges are a new "feature". Only the site admin can turn them off. I am both a "Newbie" for my first post (despite being here since 2004) and a "Posting Machine" (>500 posts) apparently so I am now paralyzed with indecision, unable to ascertain my place in the world.
  2. On leash at all times. All dogs will chase livestock and most can't be trusted to be recalled. A Border Collie will chase livestock. Livestock that is chased will end up getting hurt. Even a Border Collie that has never shown interest in stock will chase stock. When we train Border Collies to herd, it always starts out as chasing. Usually as very young dogs, always in controlled environments (like a round pen) where the dog can be stopped or discouraged from chasing or injuring stock. In an open field with an untrained dog, it's a disaster waiting to happen. I agree that a muzzle would be unnecessary if the dog is leashed. I would keep the dog leashed and not on a long line. On a leash, you can discourage chase behavior. A long line will encourage by giving the dog some room to chase. Long lines are fine in a training environment but for walking around someone else's farm with an untrained (and by untrained I mean not trained as a stock dog) a long line just gives the dog room to lunge after stock.
  3. "I did not see it myself, but I am sure she was leaning over him with her hair in his face and being too smothering as I have told her numerous times not to do." What other people have said. You can't trust kids not to do things with the puppy that they aren't supposed to do when you aren't watching - because they are children. You can't trust the puppy not to react inappropriately when kids do things they aren't supposed to do when you aren't watching - because it's a puppy. You are the one in charge and you are the responsible when bad things happen. Sorry that's not meant to be judgmental, just a fact. Don't let the puppy out around the children when you aren't there to supervise. It's not fair to the dog. Going to make dinner? Pup in crate. Just nipping downstairs to put a load of laundry in. Pup in crate. You could put the kids in a crate instead but that tends to be more problematic with the authorities. Besides, they learn slower than Border Collies. The dog will learn as it grows and it will learn faster when you are there to prevent unwanted behavior. The kids will learn too (slower because they are human children), so this isn't forever. It's like house training a pup. Crate - outside - crate - feed - outside - play - outside - crate. If you do that, the pup is house trained mostly by four to six months and trustworthy in the house by itself by 9-12 months. If you don't you're still getting "accidents" a year later. The same is true with the biting. Pups bite each other. Adult dogs bite pups. So, it's normal behavior. They learn it hurts and they learn to avoid behaviors that get them nipped. If you are there, you can correct the dog and you can make sure that the kids don't engage in behavior likely to get them bitten. If you aren't, you can't. A well known handler once told me " with Border Collies, you are always training, for better or worse." It's stuck with me. You need to teach the dog that the kids are off limits. You can only do that when you are there. You need to teach the kids that there are certain things they aren't allowed to do to the dog. You can't do that if you aren't there. So, only solution is no unsupervised kids/pup interactions until both have that figured out. Hard to do? Absolutely. Necessary? Yes. The pup most likely does not have a behavioral problem. He as a lack-of-adult-supervision problem and your kids have a lack-of-respecting-pup-boundaries problem (not their fault - they are young kids). As with most things Border Collie, there isn't a magic solution. It's all down to time, training, and consistency.
  4. I used to work in a lab that did research in this area. It was well-controlled research by people who really knew their stuff. They saw some minor effects in cell culture at REALLY high EMF field strengths but even then, they weren't consistent or significant enough to even publish. In animal studies, they saw no effect. They were looking at both carcinogenic effects (there was a lot of talk at the time about living near power lines causing cancer) and found none, and also therapeutic effects and found none. I'd save your money.
  5. Central Minnesota and we have seasons. In the winter, it can get down to -40C, although that is rare. Typical winter temps ( Dec-Feb) are around -10C (although lately it's been warmer than usual and temps are between 0C and 1C during the day). We usually get a couple of weeks of -20C and below in Jan/Feb. Spring and Fall are mild between 10C and 20C Summer is moderately hot with the average temps in the 20C - 30C range and a handful of days 37C+ It's moderately humid here too except when it gets really cold in winter when the moisture basically freezes out of the air. The dogs do well in the complete range of temps. Obviously need be careful when it gets over 75F/24C. In winter, they can work at any temp but usually by the time we get to the coldest months Jan/Feb, there's too much snow to work sheep or dogs in unless absolutely necessary, but they'll happily go for runs down to -25C with no bother.
  6. If your Border Collie wants to herd something (ducks, birds, horses, children, even sheep if you are not asking it to herd sheep at the time), then you need to teach it not to herd anything unless you tell it to herd. That sounds obvious, and easy, but it's neither. Border Collies instinctively will try to control anything that moves. In the beginning this is just chase behavior. With training, it becomes herding. If left alone, it results in undesirable behavior. Things you don't want herded (birds, ducks at the park, deer, children) end up getting bitten because the dog can't control them. Dogs who try to herd horses get injured when the horse stomps or kicks them (or the horse/rider gets injured). Sheep get run into fences or bitten or chased. Keep the dog leashed around other animals. Teach a recall (here) and a "leave it" command (I use "leave it") to teach them to ignore what ever it is they want to engage with. A good dog obedience club in your area is the best way to learn how to do this if you aren't familiar with dog training methods. It takes work but even the best sheep herding dogs are actually trained not to work livestock unless given permission to (yes they will try to cheat but they can be called off). It's an important skill for herding dogs to learn and those who don't are generally a nuisance. Even trained dogs are not allowed around livestock or wildlife unattended and off leash. Young working Border Collies are always kept on leash until the handler is certain that they can be called off stock reliably.
  7. Whoops - sorry. I did not even realize this was in the "Ask the Expert" section. Pearse
  8. I would never allow any dog, other than a trained livestock guardian dog, to be alone, unsupervised around livestock - ever. Any dog will chase livestock, over cliffs, through fences, or just run them until they drop. An untrained stock dog with a high prey drive, will "work" livestock to death. It's not the dog's fault. The dog will do what the dog was bred to do. So yes, it's entirely possible that your dogs killed the calf. They may have just run it around until it died. They may have bitten and worried at it until it died. Or maybe they didn't. Maybe the calf died of natural causes and the dogs found it that way. Either way, it's not the dogs' faults. They were doing what is in their nature to do. They cannot be allowed to have unsupervised access to livestock - ever. Working dogs need to be trained to only work stock when you tell them to, and only work the stock when you tell them to work. Even with a fully trained dog, I would not allow them to have any access to livestock unsupervised. Don't ever let your dogs run loose with stock around the place.
  9. At a USBCHA Board of Directors meeting on August 1st, the Directors considered a bylaw amendment proposal from the Rules Committee. The change would affect bylaw 4.3 concerning the term length for Directors, extending it from 2 years to 3 years and imposing a two term limit (maximum six continuous year tenure for any Director). The reason for the change is to provide more continuity on the Board. It is felt that because we are so spread out, it takes any new Director a year to get up to speed on how the board works and what the issues under consideration are, and most directors are just becoming effective when they rotate off. The term limits are to encourage more members to represent the membership on the Board of Directors. This change will be on this year's Directors Ballots which will be mailed out to all members on August 6th. The current board voted unanimously to accept the recommendation from the Rules Committee and forward the change to the membership with a recommendation that members also vote in favour of the change. Thank you. Pearse Ward District 5 Director.
  10. I was interested in an article I came across which said that keto diets were originally developed to treat epilepsy in humans and showed some positive effects. There are some journal articles with evidence that it might have a positive effect on dogs with epilepsy too. Was wondering whether or not anyone had experience with a vet prescribing it for that purpose and what their experience with it was.
  11. You don't need to be knowledgeable about judging. That's the judges job. However, depending on the judge, you may learn a lot about judging criteria. The only way you'd be "more trouble than I'm worth" is if you insist on talking to the judge all through the run. Most judges do not mind you asking questions in between runs (some do so it's best to ask the judge or have the trial host or course director do it and tell you) but the judge needs to focus on the runs while they are happening. If the timer doesn't beep on it's own, make sure you tell the judge when time is up quietly enough that the handler can't hear. Let the judge call time. The trickiest thing is to know when to start the timer because sometimes the way some handlers set their dogs up looks like false starts (and sometimes it is a bit of gamesmanship). If you aren't sure, just ask the judge to tell you when to start the timer. If you aren't comfortable with numbers, bring a calculator, or ask the Course Director to find one for you. Some trials do shed then pen, some do pen then shed, some do shed, pen, single. If its your first time, for the first few runs, put something to the left of the score sheet to remind you which one to mark first. Trials are always short of volunteers. Trial hosts are always super grateful to anyone who wants to help. Most judges are eager to help people new to the sport become knowledgeable and interested. Please do volunteer. You will enjoy yourself and you will learn a lot. Pearse
  12. I would give him a week, or two, with no running or jumping. If it's gone by then, gradual return to exercise (walking) and if it is OK after a week then gradually ramp up to normal exercise levels. If the limp isn't significantly better after a few day's rest and gone after a week or so, then have a vet look at it. If it was yourself who came up lame after a run or a hike, you'd ice the affected muscle or joint, take NSAIDS and rest until a week after the pain went away. Then gradual return to exercise over several weeks. I think you need to give the dog the same prolonged recovery period. They are super-athletes but biology is biology and a strained muscle or ligament still takes time to heal.
  13. John Wentz in Portage WI grazes his sheep on a ski area in the summer. Saves them money and is more environmentally friendly than using herbicide or mowing.
  14. I don't understand this comment. In USBCHA trialling, there is only one course (outrun, lift, fetch, drive, shed, pen) and the only variants are right-hand vs left-hand drive and shed before/after pen. The distances and sheep will vary but the course is always the same and there are people who train their dogs by going over and over that course every day.
  15. I thought a "Scotch Collie" was a bad Border Collie who drove his handler to drink.
  16. I hear this all the time from pet BC who come up to talk to me at trials "I have a BC, and he/she herds the children. It's so cute". My response is always the same. I tell them; "stay and watch the trial a bit, especially the younger dogs. Watch what happens when one of the sheep tries to run away from the group. The dog will chase, and if he can't figure out how to stop the sheep any other way, he often will bite. Sooner or later, you are going to have a group of kids in your back yard and one will decide to go a different way than the others. When your dog pulls him down or bites him, will you (or his parents) still think it's cute? You can't blame the dog, but you will". I explain that we train our dogs not to herd anything unless we tell them to, and that it's often difficult to teach that discipline. The AKC did have their heads up their asses when they wrote that.
  17. " I hear people complain about the same things I do with him-he always lets the person writing his check win" You know, I have heard this about a couple of judges too. So, I went and looked at the scores from a number of trials that they judged. The numbers don't lie, and the numbers just didn't support the rumours. So, before I would believe that of anyone, I'd want hard proof, and even then I'd want to see someone have a truly dreadful run and somehow win the trial with my own eyes. If I've learned anything in the 10 years or so I've been competing in trials, it's don't listen to most of the s#$t said under the Handler's tent, or anything that anyone whispers behind their hands. Pearse
  18. Pam, I'd say a a couple of things about that; First, a person I respected as a judge once chided me not to make assumptions about how fair the judging was, or how the judge was scoring the runs, unless I was prepared to sit and watch every run because otherwise you aren't seeing the runs as the judge sees them. Second, the rules say a judge must be impartial so if a judge is clearly not impartial or is incompetent, and it is a USBCHA sanctioned trial, then you can file a protest with the HA (if you are a member). You can't use video, so you'd better have a long list of supporting witnesses who would also attest to the judge's unfairness or incompetence to have any chance of prevailing. Third, make your displeasure known to the trial host or course director (privately and quietly since criticising a judge, in the hearing of other, at a trial is not taken lightly). Finally, don't run under them again if you feel strongly about it. To be honest, I haven't seen a lot of biased judging at the trials I've been to. I can think of two judges I would not care to run under or ask to judge a trial. I've seen some lazy judging, and I've seen some idiosyncratic judging but flat out bias is rare. I think, in general, "big hats'" scores reflect the overall quality of the run, not just one infraction you may have seen and grips are one of those things that will always be the subject of great debate. I prefer to invite people I respect to judge trials, and then respect their judgement. Pearse
  19. Qualifications are; you must be willing to do it, and someone must ask you to do it. It helps if the prospective judge has read the judging guidelines and has some experience running dogs in Open. How are judges chosen? Trial hosts ask around. Maybe you've run under someone before and liked their judging style so you ask them. Maybe you know them by reputation. Maybe you get recommendations from people whose judgement you trust. It's actually hard to find good judges. It's 10 - 12 hours a day for three or four days. Pays OK but not great, and most judges would rather be running their dogs. Pearse
  20. This approach will not work to prevent infection. It may work to help clear an active infection but it won't stop subsequent infection the way a vaccination would. Antibodies injected into an animal would coat the infectious organism and allow other components to attach to the organism and destroy it. It doesn't create immunological memory. A vaccine stimulates B-lymphocytes to produce antibodies. Those B-cells stick around and have "memory" so that if they see the same organism again, they react much faster to produce antibodies. The other reason this will only work once is that if the monoclonal antibody is made in mice, the dog will see parts of the antibody as "foreign" and make dog-anti-mouse antibodies reducing the effectiveness of subsequent treatments. So this might work for an acute infection where the dog is not making its own antibodies, but it won't prevent subsequent infections and it wouldn't be cheap (big pharma aside, making monoclonal antibodies is not cheap).
  21. Testing required by whom? The registry? The net effect of that is that breeders will stop registering their dogs because the cost (testing) of doing so will outweigh the benefits (marketing) of doing so. Those genetics will be lost. And, what testing? As more tests become available to we just add them to the panel? How much are you willing to add to the cost of buying a pup to cover the cost of all the testing? Right now, if we just include those things that we can test for, then you are looking at around $500/dog so $3500 on average for a litter. The breeder is going to add $700 - $800/dog to cover the cost of dogs that test positive or who don't sell for other reasons. So now, the cost of a pup goes from $500 - $1000 to $1000 - $1500 with no guarantee the dog will work. But that's just for the genetic tests. Add in the cost of hips, and clinical evaluations for BCC and epilepsy (future) and you are up to close to $2500 for a pup. >99% of those tests are going to come back negative which means that the money spent was wasted. What I would propose is that we test for the things we know are potential issues (CEA) in the population, and individual buyers can write into their purchase contract that they intend to test for x,y,z and if any of those tests come back positive then they have the option of returning the dog to the seller. Most buyers are going to be content with the knowledge that most of the things we can test for are so rare as to be unlikely to affect their dog unless there are indications to the contrary or a history in the line. Some are going to want to run every test in the book and they are free to do so as long as they can find a breeder willing to accept return of the pup if they test positive. And we shouldn't kid ourselves. A dog returned to a breeder because of a disease which causes significant morbidity or eventual mortality is unsaleable and there's a good chance that pup will be euthanized.
  22. Lori, Back in 2005, Riel had a fairly significant sprain of his ACL while training out at Chuck O'Reilly's. He did an outrun downhill and pulled up lame. I took him to the U of MN vet clinic and had him looked at by a top orthopedic surgeons there who recommended surgery. Christie suggested that we not do surgery and that I give him 100% crate rest (carried him in and out of the house, on leash when outside to relieve himself) and put him up for about six weeks and he was fine from that day forward. So, I think it depends on the severity of the sprain and how well you can manage it. There's no objective evidence that stem cell therapy or laser therapy does anything for this injury although lots of people swear by both and neither will do any harm (except to your wallet). I've asked several academic small animal vets (internal medicine and surgery) and one rehab. vet. who I think is really good. The university vets all said that they cannot recommend stem cell therapy or laser for soft tissue injury at this point. The rehab vet gave me some research papers on laser therapy that were interesting and suggestive of some effect, but not enough to totally convince me yet. Pearse
  23. flock filer is a FileMaker Pro database. Filemaker has FilemakerGo which will run on iPhone or iPad. FileMaker go can use the camera on an iPhone to scan a barcode (not a photo but actually read the barcode) into any data field. I have used it for inventory applications. I haven't tried it with FlockFiler but It ought to work. Or, you could write your own over the course of a weekend if all you wanted was scan barcode --> add notes.
  24. Below are the abstracts from four studies reported in the literature. Three report significant improvement in the symptoms of osteoarthritis in dogs fed a diet supplemented with salmon oil high in omega three fatty acids. The fourth reports no significant changes. I have not read or evaluated all four articles so I can't comment on the quality of the science. I do know that speaking with several veterinarians at a university veterinary medical center, the one thing they all agreed on with respect to managing dogs with osteoarthritis is that fish oil has beneficial effects in reducing inflammation. J Am Vet Med Assoc. 2010 Jan 1;236(1):67-73. doi: 10.2460/javma.236.1.67. Evaluation of the effects of dietary supplementation with fish oil omega-3 fatty acids on weight bearing in dogswith osteoarthritis. Roush JK1, Cross AR, Renberg WC, Dodd CE, Sixby KA, Fritsch DA, Allen TA, Jewell DE, Richardson DC, Leventhal PS, Hahn KA. Author information Abstract OBJECTIVE: To evaluate the effects of a food supplemented with fish oil omega-3 fatty acids on weight bearing in dogs with osteoarthritis. DESIGN: Randomized, double-blinded, controlled clinical trial. ANIMALS: 38 client-owned dogs with osteoarthritis examined at 2 university veterinary clinics. PROCEDURES: Dogs were randomly assigned to receive a typical commercial food (n = 16) or a test food (22) containing 3.5% fish oil omega-3 fatty acids. On day 0 (before the trial began) and days 45 and 90 after the trial began, investigators conducted orthopedic evaluations and force-plate analyses of the most severely affected limb of each dog, and owners completed questionnaires to characterize their dogs' arthritis signs. RESULTS: The change in mean peak vertical force between days 90 and 0 was significant for the test-food group (5.6%) but not for the control-food group (0.4%). Improvement in peak vertical force values was evident in 82% of the dogs in the test-food group, compared with 38% of the dogs in the control-food group. In addition, according to investigators' subjective evaluations, dogs fed the test food had significant improvements in lameness and weight bearing on day 90, compared with measurements obtained on day 0. CONCLUSIONS AND CLINICAL RELEVANCE: At least in the short term, dietary supplementation with fish oil omega-3 fatty acids resulted in an improvement in weight bearing in dogs with osteoarthritis. ----- J Am Vet Med Assoc. 2010 Mar 1;236(5):535-9. doi: 10.2460/javma.236.5.535. A multicenter study of the effect of dietary supplementation with fish oil omega-3 fatty acids on carprofen dosage in dogs with osteoarthritis. Fritsch DA1, Allen TA, Dodd CE, Jewell DE, Sixby KA, Leventhal PS, Brejda J, Hahn KA. Author information Abstract OBJECTIVE: To determine the effects of feeding a diet supplemented with fish oil omega-3 fatty acids on carprofen dosage in dogs with osteoarthritis. DESIGN: Randomized, controlled, multisite clinical trial. ANIMALS: 131 client-owned dogs with stable chronic osteoarthritis examined at 33 privately owned veterinary hospitals in the United States. PROCEDURES: In all dogs, the dosage of carprofen was standardized over a 3-week period to approximately 4.4 mg/kg/d (2 mg/lb/d), PO. Dogswere then randomly assigned to receive a food supplemented with fish oil omega-3 fatty acids or a control food with low omega-3 fatty acid content, and 3, 6, 9, and 12 weeks later, investigators made decisions regarding increasing or decreasing the carprofen dosage on the basis of investigator assessments of 5 clinical signs and owner assessments of 15 signs. RESULTS: Linear regression analysis indicated that over the 12-week study period, carprofen dosage decreased significantly faster among dogs fed the supplemented diet than among dogs fed the control diet. The distribution of changes in carprofen dosage for dogs in the control group was significantly different from the distribution of changes in carprofen dosage for dogs in the test group. CONCLUSIONS AND CLINICAL RELEVANCE: Results suggested that in dogs with chronic osteoarthritis receiving carprofen because of signs of pain, feeding a diet supplemented with fish oil omega-3 fatty acids may allow for a reduction in carprofen dosage. ------ J Vet Intern Med. 2010 Sep-Oct;24(5):1020-6. doi: 10.1111/j.1939-1676.2010.0572.x. Epub 2010 Aug 12. Dose-titration effects of fish oil in osteoarthritic dogs. Fritsch D1, Allen TA, Dodd CE, Jewell DE, Sixby KA, Leventhal PS, Hahn KA. Author information Erratum inJ Vet Intern Med. 2011 Jan-Feb;25(1):167. Abstract BACKGROUND: Food supplemented with fish oil improves clinical signs and weight bearing in dogs with osteoarthritis (OA). OBJECTIVE: Determine whether increasing the amount of fish oil in food provides additional symptomatic improvements in OA. ANIMALS: One hundred and seventy-seven client-owned dogs with stable chronic OA of the hip or stifle. METHODS: Prospective, randomized clinical trial using pet dogs. Dogs were randomly assigned to receive the baseline therapeutic food (0.8% eicosopentanoic acid [EPA] + docosahexaenoic acid [DHA]) or experimental foods containing approximately 2- and 3-fold higher EPA+DHA concentrations. Both veterinarians and owners were blinded as to which food the dog received. On days 0, 21, 45, and 90, serum fatty acid concentrations were measured and veterinarians assessed the severity of 5 clinical signs of OA. At the end of the study (day 90), veterinarians scored overall arthritic condition and progression of arthritis based on their clinical signs and an owner interview. RESULTS: Serum concentrations of EPA and DHA rose in parallel with food concentrations. For 2 of 5 clinical signs (lameness and weight bearing) and for overall arthritic condition and progression of arthritis, there was a significant improvement between the baseline and 3X EPA+DHA foods (P=.04, .03, .001, .0008, respectively) but not between the baseline and the 2X EPA+DHA foods. CONCLUSIONS AND CLINICAL IMPORTANCE: Increasing the amount of fish oil beyond that in the baseline food results in dose-dependent increases in serum EPA and DHA concentrations and modest improvements in the clinical signs of OA in pet dogs. Copyright © 2010 by the American College of Veterinary Internal Medicine. ---- BMC Vet Res. 2012 Sep 6;8:157. doi: 10.1186/1746-6148-8-157. An un-commissioned randomized, placebo-controlled double-blind study to test the effect of deep sea fish oil as a pain reliever for dogs suffering from canine OA. Hielm-Björkman A1, Roine J, Elo K, Lappalainen A, Junnila J, Laitinen-Vapaavuori O. Author information Abstract BACKGROUND: An un-commissioned randomized, double-blinded, placebo controlled clinical study was planned using a deep sea fish oil product for pets. Seventy-seven client-owned dogs with osteoarthritis were randomly assigned to supplement the food with either the fish oil product or corn (=placebo) oil. Our main outcome variables were force platform variables peak vertical force (PVF) and impulse, the validated Helsinki Chronic Pain Index (HCPI) and the use of rescue NSAIDs. Secondary outcome variables were a locomotion visual analog scale (VAS), a Quality of life VAS, a comparative questionnaire, a veterinary assessment, owners' final assessment of outcome and guessing the product given. RESULTS: When comparing the two test groups at the end of the trial (16 weeks) there was no significant difference in any of the main outcome variables but owners of dogs that had taken fish oil were significantly happier with the treatment at the end visit and did significantly better at guessing what group their dogs had been in, compared to the placebo group. When comparing variables within the fish oil group as change from baseline to trial end, there were significant positive changes in PVF, HCPI, NSAID use, Quality of life VAS, as well as in all three scores in the comparative questionnaire (locomotion, every-day situations, and skin & coat). There were similar positive trends in force platform impulse and in the veterinary assessment variables, although they did not reach significance. Within the placebo group there were significant positive changes only in the HCPI and a significant deterioration according to veterinary assessment. CONCLUSIONS: When compared to placebo, there was not a major statistically significant benefit in using deep sea fish oil as a pain reliever in our study population of dogs suffering from osteoarthritis. However, the fish oil treated patients improved significantly in many of the variables, when comparing baseline values to the study-end values within the group, indicating a true but small relief in symptoms. Deep sea fish oil supplementation could be considered a part of the multimodal pain relieving approach currently recommended for dogs suffering from OA, especially for individuals that do not tolerate anti-inflammatory drugs.
  25. too high in protein. It's been shown than diets lower in protein lower IGF-1 levels, slow growth, and reduce cancer incidence (in lab animals). Rats and mice fed a low protein, calorie restricted diet, lived much longer lives. There's some epidemiological data to show the same is true in humans.
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