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Everything posted by SincereArtisan

  1. If you want a clear idea as to how big your border collie will be, check out their parents if possible. I've seen 75lb border collies, I've seen 50lb border collies, and I've seen 23 lb border collies...I think most fall in the 35-45lb range, but there are exceptions to the rule as always... Ido is 28lbs... Rune is 31lbs... But they are both very small for border collies. It varies.
  2. If you're shoving more toys in your dog's face when they're trying to get a toy that doesn't 'belong' to them, the only thing I see you doing there is rewarding bad behavior. Adding more toys to the picture is not likely to decrease the resource guarding issues you are having. Tweak is a 6mo foster in my house. A certain time at night I'll pass out rawhides for each of them. Her first experience with this was chaotic, because being a greedy puppy who didn't know how to share, she immediately tried to grab up everyone's rawhides and hoard them herself, to the point of hovering and pawing to get the others to lose theirs. I swooped in, gave her a firm NO, handed the others out and made her 'work' for hers with a few tricks. The next time she tried to abandon hers and swoop in for some one else's she got a swift pop on the butt and put in her crate with NO rawhide. The next time, she chewed on hers a bit and tried this again. Another pop, another time out with NO rawhide. And so on. After a week of this, she finally figured out that the only way she was going to be permitted to enjoy her rawhide was to mind her own business and her OWN rawhide. I have applied this rule of conduct for all my dogs when they were growing up. No one is allowed to bully another dog out of a toy, and no one is allowed to guard said toy. The way I see it, they're MY toys, I bought them, and my dogs are borrowing them. I get to say who gets what. If Ido is chewing on a toy, and Rune pounces in and tries to grab it, Rune gets told off and put in a time out with no toy. If Ido tries to blow up about it, they BOTH get a time out with NO toy. I do not dish out more toys for them to fight over. By time out, they're put in a crate that is isolated from people/dogs/activity for a good 10-15 minutes to cool off. You don't want to crate your dog within sight of the winner/loser so they can give each other hairy eyeballs until you release them. If I were you I'd start by teaching them their own space. Each dog gets their own corner, and their own toy. Start with JUST two toys, one for each dog, same size/shape/toy. As long as they mind their own business, keep to themselves and avoid bullying one another, they get to continue to play with their toy. Consistence is the key. Also keep in mind that your female could just be irritated by your puppy and trying to instill a lesson. Take a step back and put yourself in your adult female's position. Would YOU tolerate a 6yr old kid bouncing around your face, poking at you, begging you to play when you are just trying to enjoy a good book? Would you tolerate them picking food off your plate? I do not expect my adult dogs to entertain the whims of a puppy. The puppy best learn to respect the adults and their wishes the hard way and absorb some manners fast. A well mannered puppy gets played with, and a well mannered puppy plays nice. At the same time, I do not allow them to correct the pup if it is not deserved. This means if the puppy is only walking by Ido while she's chewing on a bone, and Ido growls/bares teeth, Ido loses her bone and gets a time out. (I take up the bone, I do not give the bone to the puppy.) If the puppy jumps on top of Ido while Ido is sleeping, the puppy just earned herself a correction.
  3. No baby-makin' for this little rag-a-muffin. Check out that face. Its so kissably pathetic...
  4. It wouldn't hurt to see if your vet does 'daycare'...call and explain your pup is having Diarrhea, drop them off while you're at work, to have them look after the little guy until you can pick him up. Most vet clinics I know and have worked for will do this.
  5. Such WONDERFUL news! Omigoodness, your daughters are downright GORGEOUS! How precious. And the new little peanut, congrats!!!! How to the border collies get along with the kids? You're right about one thing, you're one lucky S.O.B.! Great to have you back!!!
  6. First, take your puppy to the vet so that they can eliminate the source of the diarrhea, be it a little stomach virus or intestinal parasites. They will also likely give your pup medicine to help with it too. Second, boiled chicken and plain white rice for a few days in place if his kibble might go easy on his stomach.
  7. Oooh ho ho she is GORGEOUS! How about: Fate Eva Blip Cy ...Thats all I have right now.
  8. I'm with you here. At best my SO will mimic some of my rules and commands, but as far as consistency and patience go, he has nothing...
  9. Sounds like he is trying to bury his food... Get a bowl with slanted sides that cannot be easily tipped, place it down and discourage the tipping behavior. If he does not eat in 15 minutes, take it up and its tough love until the next meal. Ido used to do this as a puppy, and it about drove me nuts, due to her special diet that was EXPENSIVE. A week's worth of the above got her ironed out andshe now knows that when food is offered it is time to eat. Feeding to a set schedule instead of free feeding can benefit you greatly in the future if your dog should get sick. You can monitor what they're eating, and when they go off food its usually a good indication something might be wrong...
  10. A lot of sudden excitement can cause a dog to become more reactive...in a sense it will build and build until they have to take it out on something. When that something happens to be a pack mate with which there are fuzzy boundaries regarding dominance...well, one wrong move or nip can escalate very quickly, as you witnessed. Now, whether it was one stepping on the other's toes, a misplaced nip, one laying across the other's shoulders, what have you...I would pinpoint the issue at hand during the hubbub while they were 'jockying for position.' Two overstimulated dogs (who are already butting heads for dominance) in close quarters competing for attention = TROUBLE. In the future, I would teach them to cool their game a bit, teach them to enter and exit calmly. No more barreling around the house and such, especially when there is going to be competition for food/attention/toys. Teach them the importance of taking turns for what they want, in addition to NILIF. I currently run a household with 4 female dogs. I'm certain that if I allowed them to reach the point of over-excitement and over-stimulation while playing indoors there would be bloodshed. Too little space, for one, for there not to be dogs bumping pell nell into one another and pissing each other off. For another, with me as the sole provider for entertainment/attention/affection there is GOING to be competition. Thus, I do not encourage them to be bouncing off the walls excited where all those factors can enter into a dangerous equation. Its different when they are rough housing in the back yard. They have room to give one another space when some one gets offended. If toys are involved, I monitor the use of them to be sure they play fair.
  11. Whenever I see an elderly dog picking up on bad habits such as counter surfing and trash diving, I initially worry there may be some medical issue at hand that is messing with their appetite... Has he had bloodwork done recently? Or, is he on any medications that are increasing his appetite?
  12. I was in a pickle for funds and so Ido's first heat came before I was able to spay her. She was just at 11 months at the time. Monkey's situation was a bit different, as I technically didn't officially own her until she was a year, and she came into heat right around 10mo. From what I've gathered, it is more common for the smaller breeds to go into heat sooner than larger breeds. Larger dogs develop slower, so I guess this makes sense. I've heard speculation about other influences--such as unaltered males in your area marking--can bring a female into heat sooner...but I really don't know if thats baloney or not. An unaltered female dog will go into heat every 6 months, so its reasonable to assume your girl will get her first heat between 6mo-12mo...though I have not seen/heard of a dog going into heat sooner than 10months...
  13. So, picture this... Last night I'm lying in bed, reading my book, listening to my BF let the girls out the last time for the night. All is quiet for a few minutes until he lets them back in. Suddenly the kitchen erupts with: "TWEAK! Drop it! Drop...No, drop it! Drop it NOW!" ... ? Now, Tweak knows drop it...but she only knows it if you have your hands on what it is she has in her mouth. Otherwise, she attempts to entice you to play with it. (we are working on this, of course, but progress...) ...She is also famous for bringing in little prizes from the back yard, usually a stick or a rock. So, after I hear Tweak being shut back in her crate and BF walks into the bedroom, I laughingly ask what it was she was so against giving up. BF explained that she'd come running in with a frozen poopsicle. Unwilling to reach into her mouth after it, BF was employing every other manner in trying to get her to drop it so he didn't have to touch it...even resorting to picking her up by the back end and attempting to "gently jostle" it free of her mouth. The mental image of him hefting the back end of a very excited puppy into the air and trying to shake a poopsicle out of her mouth sent me into hysterics!
  14. Yeah, Pat...Ido and I waited a long time for this. She turns 4 this year. We have done so much work, only to find that the hardest part of all is finding some one we can learn from... ...I shouldn't be too harsh. He *IS* teaching us some things. But it is frustrating to see that my dog could be excelling far better if he would only let me use my clicker in class. He's just so set in his ways...for instance, he got on to me for saying 'here!' to call my dog to me. He stated: "The word is COME!" ...*sigh* I taught her 'here' (because I feel that word carries over distances better.) ...she does not know what 'come' means. Oi.
  15. They were not encouraged to do them fast, just 'walk' them, but the dog was still tripping every which way regardless. Looks like my search is on after the end of this 6 wk course.
  16. I do not see my instructor permitting me to use a clicker in class. He is pretty set and firm in his ways, and insisted if I wanted to use it at home, I am free to do so of course...but not in his class. I will try fading the clicker to another word, this way I can bring my "secret weapon" along with me to class... I like this instructor, for the most part. But there are a few things--such as this clicker issue--that set me off about him. I mean, srsly, if I havea method for teaching my dog something that works far better than peppering an obstacle with food, why not let me try it??? ...Another is we had a great dane (10 mo) in class this past week, and this dog was going through the same tunnels as everyone else... HE WAS HUGE! ...Now, I on' know if thats the accepted norm, or if they get bigger tunnels to fit their greater size, but geeeez... The same with the weave poles. This giant dog was expected to go through the same spacing as my 27lb border collie. Needless to say, the poor lummox was tripping over poles and pole guards every which way, which only complicated his willingness to do the obstacle... I can't seem to win for losing. Finding the perfect agility instructor in this town is getting more and more complex...
  17. So, I have achieved leaps and bounds with Ido using the clicker to train her to follow behind my left ('close') or right ('side') hands... But when I asked if I could use the clicker in class to teach Ido what I'm looking for on the command 'End' (which is our cue for two on two off) ...he said no. His reason? It takes away from the human/dog bond. So, now I have to figure out a way to teach her to look at ME for the end, and to stop dilly dallying around the contact looking for tidbits left behind...*sigh* We work on two on two off at home with random objects, but Ido tends to take things very literally. What she learns on the ottoman or the stairs she does not apply to the dog walk or A frame...
  18. First off...Is your dog very food motivated, or do they need something a little extra that makes them want to work for it?? IF your dog is VERY food motivated, this is easy. Use their own kibble. This prevents them from being overloaded with rich extra tidbits, and you can portion out a bit every day from their regular feedings so that they are not being overfed. If your dog isn't very food motivated, or needs something extra/different for them to work for treats...try cheerios. Its light, a good handful of them can be broken up and last you a real long time.
  19. Miss Priss Ido crosses her little paws in front of her Monk stretches them out side by side in front of her Rune just...sprawls.
  20. *sigh* I've seen parvo affect dogs from as early as 4 wks to as late as 9 months of age. What did almost all of the dogs over 15 weeks have in common??? Poor vaccine protocol. They either never received the necessary vaccines at all, or had an incomplete booster series. Titers are great and all, but the results can be MISLEADING. Particularly in the case of a puppy. Consider this.... "...we do not know the most crucial piece of information that is necessary for interpreting titers. We do not know the minimum titer measurement that correlates with protection from disease. There is another factor that complicates the use of titers. Titers measure only half of the immune system. Although it is very useful to know the quantity of antibodies circulating in the bloodstream, antibodies cannot work alone. They depend upon a different portion of the immune system (called cell-mediated immunity) to get the job done. At this time, I am not aware of any way to test cell-mediated immunity. Consider this analogy. Antibodies are like foot soldiers in the battle against disease. Cell-mediated immunity represents logistics and weaponry. If your dog has a high titer against rabies, that is the equivalent to having a huge army of soldiers ready to battle the disease. But it matters whether the soldiers are armed with high caliber weapons and advanced communications, or whether they are disorganized and can fight only by throwing dirt clods. Without the ability to measure cell-mediated immunity, one cannot truly know whether a pet is protected against the disease in question." I've never had anything go awry committing to a full puppy series of vaccines, (DA2PP @ 6, 9, 12 and 15 weeks, Rabies @ 15wks) Personally, I value socialization at an early age as well. I avoid most other puppies unless they are well mannered. Manners tend to rub off, so keep this in mind when choosing playmates for your puppy. Instead, I host frequent visits with adult, fully vaccinated and healthy dogs who can tolerate and correct puppies admirably. I also avoid dogs who frequent dog parks. I loathe dog parks, and the last thing I want is a dog carrying something home from one and infecting my puppy with it.
  21. Your first mistake was that she was off leash to begin with. For a dog with an iffy recall, ANY OPPORTUNITY for that dog to blow off your recall is positive reinforcement for doing exactly what you do not want her to do. In her case, she has just learned that by ignoring you, she got to play for extra long, swim, and hang with her buddies. Who wouldn't be pleased with themselves?? No more off leash. Put her on a really long leash, the 20-30 ft ones. When you call her, and she ignores you, REEL her in. If she comes right away, have an incredibly great treat on hand for her. This may take months before she gets it into her head that if she doesn't come when you call, you're gonna make her do it anyway...but if she DOES come, well praise and treats and love are showered down upon her. From the leashed setting, you move up to a fenced in area (with no distractions) to prctice in, then you gradually up the distractions. Do not set her up for failure and ask for too much too soon. A solid recall takes time to build upon. I also start working with whatever command I have for recall at home. Start when she comes up to you randomly, without incentive, and makes eye contact with you. I will say "Oh GOOOOD Here! What a good Here. Good Here." and provide a treat I have stowed in my pocket for just this reason. After she gets the idea that walking up to me and making eye contact gets her praise, I will wait until she is a little distracted several feet away. I utter "Rune, Here!" and shower treats and praise when she comes. If she does not come, or I have to say it twice, I go get her. Then praise. Once she has this down, you can start calling her from the other end of the house. Just remember...You want to instill in as many ways as possible that the word "Here" is NOT optional.
  22. Hold you hand out from your side, palm out...so that the back of your hand would be facing the dog at your side. Getting Ido to follow the back of my hand has strengthened her ability to read what obstacles I am trying to guide her towards. When she pops out of a tunnel, her eyes are already on what hand I have out, and it helps adjust her position as I call out 'Side' or 'Close'...she will either be on my left or right side. Its really helped our communication so far...
  23. Ido and I had our first agility class with a new instructor/facility last Monday. As some of you know, my life has been tossed around a lot the past year or so, and since that single 5 week course we took waaaaay back in Oct, Ido has not laid eyes on a piece of agility equipment since. I was apprehensive, as my description as to what Ido was capable of was a bit...well, uncertain. I knew from past experience she could *do* many of the obstacles I asked of her last October. Her off leash manners and etiquette are exemplary. She follows direction well and is very eager to work and learn. But, there was the issue that she'd not been around anything agility-wise in over a year. Therefore, the instructor was unsure of where to fit us in. Hoping we would not be too far behind, he stuck us in Monday night's class, a group of people just finishing up the first 8 weeks of agility training. Having only 5 weeks of guidance over a year ago, I must admit I was a bit intimidated...but willing and eager to see what we could do. What on earth was I worried about? Ido had this all under control! LoL. First thing, within ten minutes Ido learned to follow the back of my left hand on the command 'close' and the back of my right hand on the command 'side'...This was a bit of a challenge for us initially, because the instructor's typical method involved a smear of canned cheese on the back of the hand to get the dog to follow. Well, Ido has inflammatory bowel disease. Cheese is out of the question. Cheerios, on the other hand, are not. Of course, by the end of the night, my finger dexterity improved twofold having to balance cheerios between my fingertips and release them according to when Ido earned her reward or to keep her focus. Luckily, Ido is a fast learner, and seems to get more reward out of pleasing me than cheerios. Food has never been the biggest motivator for her. Her desire to please has always been outstanding! Ido did everything I asked of her as though she'd been born to it. Her trepidation with the teeter is still there, and she needs a refresher course with the chute. (In our first class, she loved it! I don't think she yet remembers that the fabric does indeed open on the other side. Like most things, I don't doubt it will only take one time showing her before she'll be darting through it with all enthusiasm. Unfortunately we did not have time for this last Monday.) I really like this instructor. He puts a huge amount of emphasis on the use of body language and hand signals. He will also not hesitate to call you out on what you're doing wrong. He was respectful of my dog's special dietary needs, and did not seem to get exasperated and continue to offer her other food rewards as my last trainer did. His training methods are also more geared towards having FUN while still learning what it takes to compete, which is ultimately what I want to do. This week, Ido and I have been working on 'End'...our 'two on, two off' cue for contacts, as well as 'Close' and 'Side'...the weather has put a damper on our ability to practice outside, but I am compromising with the use of stairs and foot stools. I have also begun clicker training with all my dogs, and I am swept away by the possibilities. I am commissioning my significant other to build us a dog walk that I may use to practice with, as well as a teeter board to increase Ido's comfort level over the ground shifting beneath her feet. This is addicting. I am so excited about the possibilities this opens to both myself and my other dogs!
  24. The only thing I would add is to not crate the puppy in the bedroom. Getting used to a new house, new people, new rules is all very daunting, I know...but the last thing I would want a puppy to grow dependent upon when coping with all of that is my presence wherever he/she is sleeping. I usually crate my puppies within hearing, and as close to the back door or where we exit to go potty as possible.
  25. If you blow in Ido's face, she will dart away and then refuses to look at you if you try and get her attention. She will bring things, come, do anything but meet your eyes head-on, LoL. Monkey and Ido stalk the bathroom when I am in the shower. Ido clears any stray droplets that happen to get past the curtain, and Monkey sneaks in to lick my toes/legs when I get out. I guess people-flavored water tastes better??? I was once at a reptile show, visiting a friend's booth. They did not have hardly a thing on their table. Rune was with me, leashed at my side. She has a thing for jumping up on any surface I ask her too...Well, she was a bit more focused on me than I thought, (can't fault her for that! LoL) for as I layed my hands down on the table to get my friend's attention, Rune leaps up and lands neatly right in the middle of it. The look on our faces was priceless!
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