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Everything posted by SincereArtisan

  1. Nancy, I'm not as familiar with the dissolving sutures, we don't use them at the clinic I work at most of the time....but I can tell you my Rune was spayed at another clinic before I started working as a vet tech, and she had the dissolving sutures, and we still had to wait ten days. Young dogs DO bounce back quicker, (and I mean young as 6mo-1yr...dogs over 1 yr and older tend to take more recovery time, but this can still vary from dog to dog.) but like skyler said, it cannot hurt to be safe. 5 just seems too short a wait to me.
  2. Thats all I was--concerned. There was no clarification, and with the post dated several days after surgery. How could I know? I don't recall implying anyone was a moron. It wouldn't have surprised me, is the sad thing. We've had pets back at the clinic right after surgery for all SORTS of reasons, thanks to the owners... (The best was this guy who refused to put and Ecollar on his dog and restrict his activity after a major ACL surgery. The dog wound up boarding with us for 8 weeks so he could recover properly!!!)
  3. Yes, but your dog was not swimming after surgery, I'm sure. Just concerned, is all. 'The other day' didn't give any specific time frame, and this post is dated after the surgery one...
  4. TRUST me, there are some dogs out there---not necessarily our well-behaved, much worked with and obedient BCs--but quite a number of 6mo puppies that have required Ace post surgery, simply because their owners either cannot, or WILL NOT, control them. Yes, the idea of having to Ace up a dog after sx seems silly to me, too....because I have well-behaved dogs! But a number of households--particularly those with not one but TWO puppies, and children to boot--will require sedatives to get them through the 10-day recovery period.
  5. Uhm, weren't your dogs just neutered/spayed a few days ago???? I don't think this sort of off-leash activity falls under the typical 'keep them quiet, no baths, no stairs, short leash walks only for 10 days until sutures are removed' protocol that follows surgery....
  6. We have 2.5 dogs: 2 BCs and a pugaranian. The BCs are right at 2.5 yrs apiece, and the mutt is 1.5 yrs. Now, keep in mind, that the only way I could really raise all three of these pups is due to my field of work. For the most of the BC's first years of life, I worked at a doggy daycare, where they attended work with me every single day, with loads of socialization and exercise. It was still by NO means easy--try training your dog with dozens of other around, not to mention the handful or so of dogs with terrible bad habits their own owners permit. Just after the BCs turned a year, I wound up with the pugaranian, and changed jobs. I'm now a vet tech. In the morning, I'm first up and out the door. Some days I take the dogs to work with me, if I'm going to be gone more than 6 hrs. (There are days I work 10 hr. shifts.) I don't feel right crating them longer than 6 hrs during the day. If I leave them at home, my BF lets them out sometime after I leave. On days I don't work, we just let them out around 10-11am. (We go to bed late, and we always let them out last thing before bed.) They are crated until I get home. I promptly let them out, and feed them. (They get fed once a day.) I let the bird out, then check the snakes. The dogs get potty-time an hour later. Then, depending on the weather, we usually go out to one of the local parks for 1-2 hours for some off-leash ball play and all around doggy rough-housing. If the weather is disagreeable, we camp out at home, and they're pretty decent about chilling out if I throw a toy here and there. Once back, its chill-time while we eat dinner, play with the bird, and do whatever else needs done around the apt. They usually sleep in their crates, unless my BF is away on business, then they sleep with me. This is our routine, with small variances here and there.
  7. The only reason why I suggested starting with something she does NOT resource guard it to teach her the signal 'Give it.' Its good to start with something a dog doesn't deem valuable enough to guard, so you can teach your dog your intentions without risking injury to yourself. This way, when she hears 'Give it,' she knows that whats in front of her may be taken away, but no worries--it'll come right back! In fact, she gets praised for it! I've done this with a couple new puppies/fosters/rescues who have resource guarding issues with toys, and its never been the source of any confusion. Instead, they caught on quickly to even stepping back for me to reach down and pick up an item. I'll switch it out with replacing their bone with a yummy treat to teach them that sometimes what I give back is even better. This also comes in handy on walks when they find some piece of something I'd rather them NOT eat....it can even be a good transition to teaching the 'leave it' command.
  8. Another trick that could help her read your intentions involves her food, which you say she is not resource-guarding. When you feed her, set the bowl down...let her take a few bites..then say her name, and a cue word--such as "Suka, give it."--then take up the bowl, praise her profusely, then give it right back. Then try doing this with a smudge of peanut butter or canned food in her bowl, which is something more desirable than kibble. Then move on to the toys. Of course, this is if she absolutely have NO problems with you messing with her food or treats. This teaches her that though you're taking something away, its not for good, and she will get it right back, so no need to act snarky in the first place.
  9. I work at a vet clinic where we keep the spay/neuter patients overnight. This is mostly to ensure that the pain meds are indeed working, that there are no issues with the stitches/incision site by the next morning, and to see how the patient is coping with certain restrictions (e-collars, crate rest and leash walks) to see whether or not we should recommend a mild sedatives during the 10 day recovery period before the sutures come out. In 99% of cases, the pain meds work so well that the main struggle is keeping Fluffy QUIET--no jumping/stairs/cavorting/swimming etc. The remaining 1% are back to themselves in just a couple days.
  10. How proud I am of Rune! She has come a long way with her herding kitty issues. She hardly looks at them now, even with 5 foster kittens zipping about, she's dozing at my feet!
  11. Now that I think about it, yes the 12'' jump was lower than the pup's elbows. He was a big dog, and I would have never known he was 8mo if the owners had not mentioned it. I feel better, now. I definitely like the trainer. If I can find some one to go with me to the gym, that would be better...maybe some one else who wants to do agility, that would be swell.
  12. Yes, I was training at SuperDogs. It was a 6 wk course, and we learned one obstacle each hour-lesson, and towards the end of class we would sequence a few. However, I would have liked to do more one-on-one work with the instructor and the teeter, as Ido showed hesitation there. Contacts were only briefly mentioned, and as long as a dog didn't blatantly miss them, no tips advice was really given. I felt the obstacle-a-lesson was a bit slow. Don't get me wrong, I don't want to over-push or exert my dog. Its not that I feel I should get the entire foundation for Ido's future as an agility star in that one course. Other things frustrated me, too. There was nothing in the classes geared towards encouraging the drive of the dog. Every dog either walked or jogged through what they were doing. Ido would get bored, and her focus would completely fade. We ventured out to another kennel tonight who offers a variety of training, agility included. The trainer was a lot more encouraging. She evaluated Ido in the beginning, and verified she was definitely ahead enough to be in the class. She was very good at spotting what owner/dog was doing wrong, and how to remedy it. She was big on getting the dog to go-go-GO, to do the obstacle and be pumped to do something else...Ido did GREAT, it was entirely her pace, she focused so much better, and she was incredibly attuned to body language of who ever was working with her, which was new because she usually will only work for me...I guess that goes to show how much she enjoyed it. The trainer offered a ton of criticism, and I walked away feeling I learned a LOT. The only thing that made me uneasy, was there was an 8mo Aussie in the class being asked to do 12'' jumps. The owners were struggling with getting the puppy to focus, and though the trainer was doing a great job at getting the dog's attention and getting what they asked out of him, it just didn't seem right she was already putting a puppy on 12'' jumps. Granted, the dog jumped maybe a total of 12 times. 12 jumps a week, I dunno if thats considered ok. I don't know if they might have discussed this earlier. I really want to find the right trainer. I understand what you're saying about the trainer running you through obstacles so you can feel you're doing it right. I don't want to be in those shoes, and yes our trainer tonight had us sequencing several obstacles tonight, 'Dancing with your dog,' she called it. OTOH, she would stop us, critique us, show us what we were doing wrong and how to do it right, praise us, etc.... I like the trainer. What I may do, is keep up with these courses, but rent the facilities at SuperDogs to work on what we have learned in detail, further our knowledge of pros and cons via the internet, books, and hopefully forums like this..... So, does this sound like a trainer I can stay with? Or is the Aussie and the sequencing a big red flag I should be balking at??
  13. Ido graduated her Allstars 1 agility course, where she and I learned the beginners basics involving the A frame, tunnels, chute, teeter, jumps, weave poles and the walks. She took to every one naturally, though she still displays some hesitation at the teeter--but she is showing great signs at being able to overcome this in no time! The next course is 4 weeks long. Its basically going to have them set up the equipment as they would run a dog through it, and let the dogs/owners run it, all the while correcting them and adding tips and suggestions here and there. Its a $65 course. I'm torn between doing this, and paying a membership at the dog gym where this is, and training Ido further myself. The membership is $30 a month, lets you come whenever--24hrs a day, as long as it doesn't interfere with training schedules--and use their equipment. I'm pretty sure I could glean enough tips and suggestions from books and the internet. I've trained my dogs to sit, down, stay, drop on recall, wait, rollover, spin around, shake, play dead, and a handful of other useful tricks since day one. But, we're JUST getting into this. Am I going to have to prove I've passed agility classes to enter into competitions? How useful is it working with the instructor? My instructor was great and all--apart from constantly trying to give Ido cheese, Oi!--but...well, not as detailed as I suppose I would have liked. And class was SHORT. I mean, we dropped everything the moment our hour was up, which wasn't something I felt I paid $85 for. (It was a 6wk course.) I like the lady, she had great methods, but hear me out fellow BC-lovers: She owns westies. She would OBSESS over the terriers. Ido's natural ability got us hardly any criticism the entire 6wks, but I feel thats what we needed. Any one else see where I'm coming from??? She will be the instructor for the next 4wk course. I could look for another trainer at a different location, but all those I have found so far require you pass THEIR 'beginners course'....which I feel would be money wasted... Should I suck it up and go for a better trainer, or continue on my own?
  14. People correct me all the time over Ido... "What kind of dog is she? Aussie?" "No, she's a border collie." "No, I'm sure thats an australian shepherd." "Ma'am, she's a border collie. I saw her parents." "Then she must be mixed." "Nope. They come in all colors. Trust me." "Well I've certainly never seen a border collie that looked like that, and so small!" "Suit yourself." *rolls eyes* its exhausting....sometimes I wish I could just dye her merle parts black.
  15. I think something that often gets overlooked, is making sure the dog has an area of the house to itself. Somewhere the dog can get away from the baby, and relax. Not just a crate, but out of sight/sound if possible.
  16. I actually have one of those Livejournal blogs. And, I treat it just like a journal. I have been for the past 5-6 years. I have a network of friends who do the same, in varying degrees, and we all keep in touch with each other's lives--though we live so far apart. These are people I go to for advice and comfort, and whose lives I like being updated on. I started my Borderline Humans blog because I LOVE posting pictures of my critters, and they were simply clogging up my LJ...to the point it was a bit irritating to those on my buddy list to upload them constantly, particularly if they had dial-up. I still post the occasional pic in my LJ, but not so much anymore. My LJ is for me. I write in it when I need to just 'get it out' and vent a little, or perhaps I wanted to preserve a memory so I may return and visit it at a later date. My LJ identity is very selectively handed out, too. So, my little Borderline Humans blog is more of a photo album of sorts, I guess...
  17. I pounced on her directly after I heard the kid holler, and I saw her slink away, doing her best to avoid my eye contact. She'd definitely gotten the gist that what she'd just done was wrong, and she was by no means proud of it. I took the time to apologize to the dad of the kid, and checked to be sure she was ok, before heading to the car with her, verbally scolding her the whole way. Thats pretty much what our come to jesus meeting consisted of. This caught me so off guard because she LOVES kids. Both of my BCs do. Kids throw balls longer than adults, after all, and they turn into wriggly happy goo when children approach. I've seen her eyeball a kid skateboarding, and maybe a yelling running child here and there, but they could almost be categorized as looks of disbelief. I know different, now. And yes, we will be working on desensitizing.
  18. Rune bit a kid tonight. No, she did not draw blood. I did not see it, either. I heard the kid hollering, turned, and Rune was slinking off to hide behind a cooler. I know how it happened...the kid was being slung around and around by her dad, and I'd looked over to catch Rune circling once or twice. But she'd never get near the kid, really, just eyed her warily. Well, apparently she darted in and nipped the girl in the leg. The dad thinks that the girl's feet might have clipped her, but I know my dog better than that. A mistakened kick would have sent her scurrying, but the eye she was giving the twirling girl earlier makes me lean towards her overreacting at the situation. Had I known she would actually make a move on the kid, I'd have called her to me and put her in a down-stay. But she has never, ever, ever, EVER shown the inclination to bring her mouth into a situation. She rarely even gives kids the eye to begin with. They ply with running, screaming, hollering children all the time. I had just shrugged it off as her being puzzled by what all the squealing was about with the kid being spun around. Mortified, I grabbed her quick. We had a little come to jesus meetin' all the way to the car, where she spent the rest of the night until we wet home. It was the best I could do for the moment, I was livid. Tomorrow, we're going to do some on-leash training around some kid-packed playgrounds. I deem this sort of thing completely unacceptable, and I'm determined to stop it before it progresses further.
  19. She is incredible! Wow! I love the spread 'em trick, that one made me lol! One trick i have been trying with Ido, is getting her to come between my legs from behind, and place her front feet on my toes, then walk with me. Its fun and looks cool! Another on we are working on is getting her to stand in a bowl.
  20. Well, Idolon and I went to our first agility lesson tonight. It was a bit of an advanced beginners course, as your dog had to have a solid sit, down, stay and recall before enrolling. I am actually going to take one dog one week, and the other the next, and trade them off so they both get experience. Well, today, we worked on the tunnel, and the table. Ido was led up to the tunnel the first two times, held there while I went around, and then called her through. She did great. Plunged right through as she saw me. Well, then came the moment of truth...me, getting her all pumped up and excited as we approached the tunnel, ready to send her on through and meet her on the other end. "Tunnel!" I cried, directing my hand to the opening, and taking a quick step forward as I expected to rush and meet her on the other end. Well, for all the things I ask of her, I could not be asking something so simple and easy as going through a boring old tunnel. Pfft. So, what does she do? She hops ON TOP of the tunnel, and RUNS THE LENGTH OF IT to the end. At which point--STILL PERCHED ON TOP OF THE TUNNEL--she turns around, wobbling slightly, to look at me like "What?" I, on the other hand, had come to a complete halt, dumbfounded. So had the rest of the class. I called her back--yes, she ran back the length of the tunnel AGAIN--and guided her through. Later the instructor made the remark that she had never seen a dog with good enough balance that they were able to run the length of the top of the tunnel so well.
  21. Crate Train. Crate Train. Crate Train. It sounds to me like Eko is being allowed out from underneath your supervision far more often than is healthy for him or your sanity! A bigger yard will not stop him from getting into things he should not, it will only give him more space and opportunity to do so. Research clicker training, learn it, and train your dog to respond to the clicker. Try creating a regular training schedule, one that encompasses a few 10 minute intervals of 'brain tricks' and/or learning new tricks. Integrate some early morning and evening walks, and try setting aside some time once a week to enroll in an obedience or agility class. Feed Eko from one of those food cubes. Give him good things to chew, like nylabones, rawhides, and either be in the same room with him or leash him to you to assure yourself he will not be anywhere he can get into mischief. When you simply cannot watch him, or you are gone--crate. My dogs are crated 8-9 hours a day. We attempt to get out to the park for an hour or more of off-leash time fetching or a good long walk every day...if the weather does not agree, then they we work on a little training indoors. At least once a week, we have a class to go to, or I take them out for a long afternoon at the park. If this partner you are serious with is serious too, then he/she should be able to understand you love your dog, as much as they love theirs, and be willing to help you work on your routine, especially if Eko is potentially going to be their dog too. These are all the suggestions I have to offer. If I were closer, I would be happy and willing to help out...
  22. Thanks for all the suggestions! We have come a long way. I have invested in a training collar, not a prong one, but a 'choke' pinch collar. To that, I have attached a cut-off leash....so its basically a 12in handle hooked to her collar. The problem I'd had with a full leash, is she wouldn't dare do anything with it on. She knew I'd take it off eventually. And then the herding started. So, with the cut-off leash and training collar. I'd find her focusing on the cat. I'd call her name--not harshly, just smoothly. No response = correction. Have her heel, sit, down, paw...if she does all these without eyeballing the cat, no more corrections and she gets freeze-dried beef liver-treat. If she even so much as blinks at the cat during this, another correction and back to the beginning. I quickly figured out that crating her was getting me nowhere. So, if I caught her physically trying to move the cat, I'd drag her straight to the most god-awful place in the house---the shower. We have one of those solid-panel walled in showers. A 5 min time out in there did wonders. She now pulls herself away from the temptation of the cat running to and fro, and immediately looks elsewhere, and dives into playing with the other two dogs. She is more interactive with both myself and my BF. She hasn't even batted an eye at the new bird in the house-hold. Things are much easier, and much more manageable. I'm starting to see the light at the end of the tunnel!
  23. Speaking from the experience of working at several boarding kennels...I have some tips and advice. Divide the daily portions of your dog's food in baggies, and pack a little extra just in case. This way, you are sure your dogs are offered the amount they eat at home, and should something happen (water bowls accidentally dumped, food dumped with it, etc.) they have back-up food. Make it clear when your dogs eat, too, so your puppies can stay on their regular schedules. If your dogs take meds, use those human pill boxes with the days of the week divided up and all. Distribute the pills with instructions as to when they get them. Do NOT board dogs together. Next to one another is just fine. But there is so much barking and unfamiliar sights and sounds that will undoubtedly leave your pup a little stressed and charged up to begin with, when you throw two dogs in that situation, things get unpredictable. Where I work as a vet tech, we had one such case, the owners insisted their two little maltese dogs board together. While watching other dogs go in and out, they were barking and getting excited, when they suddenly turned on one another. One of them suffered a puncture wound in it's side before we could get them separated. The really sad part was the owners didn't want the other dog back, concerned that once he'd tasted blood, he'd do it again. Point is, it wasn't the dogs fault, really...he was over-excited, and he had to take it out on something. Unfortunately the other dog was there...this is why I do not like seeing dogs boarding together. They can be over-protective, reactive, a wide variety of things that you would otherwise not see at home. Do not bring bedding. 9 out of 10 times, the boarding facility has bedding. Any bedding you bring is likely to get set aside unused anyway, because of the risk of losing it among the hundreds of other bedding articles being washed on a daily basis. Do not bring stuffies. Nylabones and kongs are generally ok. Stuffies get dirty, messy, and often de-stuffed, sometimes eaten, then you must worry about impaction. One of my dogs does not destuff anything...unless she is boarding. She will shred towels, too. I would have never known it until it happened. Hope this helps.
  24. I think the OP was more amused at the dog's comparative responses to the e-collar, rather than at actually shocking the dog itself. We all know her to be a compassionate, caring BC owner, who evidently tried everything before resulting to an E-collar. As we all know, BCs are not dogs who take things for what they are...such as the OP's little terrier mix. Instead, they try to figure a way around obstacles, what tweaks they can employ to get away with what they're going for, and perhaps the OP's interpretation of her dogs actions were correct. All that aside, she was not employing the e-collar for amusement, but instead for disciplinary action. Excessive barking in tense situations--like, feeding time--can and do lead to scuffles in multiple dog households. I saw it all too often at the kennel I used to work at, and because of that I insisted that the owners not have their dogs boarded together. Too much activity and noise just sets them off, and dogs do stuff they would otherwise not do. Just like your squirrel-chasing dog, Happy needed to learn what she could and could not get away with, for her own safety.
  25. First of all, having children and breeding dogs are on opposite ends of the scale here. You came here to ask whether or not YOU should breed YOUR dog, not whether or not everyone should have kids. Lets try and stay on track before you offend more people with your opinionated views on human reproduction. We're talking canines. Not people. Now, I consider it pretty callous of you to state that most of these cattle dogs die off rather quickly thanks to accidents n the field. In all truth, if the owners are caring and take the time to train the dog properly, have a good eye for dangerous situations, not to mention provide good veterinary care, then there is no reason why they shouldn't prosper doing what they were bred to do, and retiring when the time is right. If you're so sure that these pups are going to go out there and just get killed off early by 'life on the ranches' out there, then I wonder how you can bring pups into this world in good conscience, knowing they are going to meet such a fate. Many people here who work their dogs have plenty of dogs who have reached their retirement stage and are healthy and thriving. Furthermore, has your dog had her hips/eyes checked? Any blood work? Has she ever even been tried on stock? Have you fully trained her so you are able to gauge her abilities, her pros and cons, you know--exactly what you'll be passing on through her lines??? What does your vet say about breeding her? Most vets these days are reluctant to give out breeding advice, thanks to the flood of puppies and dogs in shelters... You mentioned you got snipped because of a possibility of something being wrong with what you could pass on. Well, do the responsible thing and spay your dog, because without paperwork on her, you do not know if there is the possibility she'll be passing on something to her pups. Nuff said.
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