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Everything posted by BayouBC

  1. All of my dogs have Home Again chips. One, Kodah, also has an Avid chip, because that's what his breeder used. I put in a HA as well, since then I can update all of the dogs' information at once. I didn't think about it until immediately after about, "Well, what if they scan the Avid?" HOWEVER there is a big flaw with Avid chips. They might have corrected it by now, but at least as of 3 years ago it still happened regularly. Their chips tend to migrate. And it's not just a few inches to the side. Kodah's Avid chip is literally dead center on his chest. It's not doing a lot of good there. Personally, I highly recommend having chipped dogs scanned every year at their annual exam, regardless of what brand you're using. That way you know it's in the right place (HA can move too, it's just not nearly as common), that the chip # is correct, and that it's just plain working. I can't imagine it would be easy, but I have to assume that a chip could be broken or cracked in some freak accident/collision. There's nothing worse than trusting something that's not actually working.
  2. One problem I've had with plastic kennels is when dogs are determined to get out and manage to bend the metal door either in or out. Anyone know if the doors are stronger than the typical plastic kennel's?
  3. Like Angie said, it's just great that Danny landed somewhere safe, both with MABCR and you. I just still wonder how the group that went to Indiana did, since that was the only batch that didn't go to a BC rescue so there wasn't a lot of information about them.
  4. Do you know what rescue Danny originally went to? I don't remember seeing pictures of him, so I'm wondering if he's one of the dogs from the first seizure that went to the all-breed in Indiana. Tim, it's great to see and hear that Zoey's doing so well. She was a doll. We only have one Swafford dog left here at GHF, but Willow won't likely be leaving since she has severe epilepsy and an OCD spinning behavior. She's a special girl, but there's nothing like seeing her break out of her little world and start to follow around one of the other dogs (it's one of her "games") or her randomly picking up a jolly ball to play with.
  5. That too, but I actually meant it more in the sense that they've been breeding exclusively for sports without looking at the all around dog. I DO know of cases where dogs from "good" sport breeders end up in rescue. It happens directly or it happens after the dog's been handed around a few times to friends/family/other agility people.
  6. If the working breeders can't voice their opposition to this, though I think they have more of a right than anybody, then how about those doing border collie rescue? Rarely do you see a well bred working border collie end up in rescue, at least around here. It happens occasionally, but it's not the norm. What you do see ALL THE TIME are border collies that have been so overbred for "sports" that they're screwed up. All they've been bred for is running fast, and, yes, that even goes for some of the really well known sport breeders. You put them next to a working bred BC, and you wouldn't think they were related if they didn't at least look a little bit alike. And while you may think that "to each thier own" and people can do what they want to do, rescue is just seeing more dogs bred like this that most people can't handle (responsible pet purchasing is a whole 'nother discussion), and the problem is only getting worse. So I'll make the argument for breeding only for working ability till I'm out of breath. But a large accomplishment for you means nothing when it comes to deciding to breed your dogs. It's great for YOU, and I'm sure you were thrilled, but it says little about your dog's actual abilities.
  7. I could be remembering wrong, but I could have sworn that the four dogs he was allowed to keep WERE spayed/neutered before being released. Regardless, there were five adults this time, so he's added at least one. The one good piece of this is that he got busted quickly this time, so hopefully the adults and puppies aren't in nearly as bad of physical and mental condition all of the others were in.
  8. I'm in the Northeast as well, and we take dogs from PA all the time, including owner surrenders. So I'm also speaking from experience.
  9. I just want to chime in on this piece. Maybe I'm misreading it, but it sounds as if you're saying owner surrenders can never be trusted, and they're all dogs that are going to eat somebody. Maybe I'm being silly, but I find that statement ridiculous and a dangerous one to put out for people to read, because someone is going to believe you. Can owner surrenders be aggressive? Sure. But so could a dog coming from a shelter. Where do you think at least half of the dogs in a shelter come from? People surrender them there instead of to a rescue. There's no difference there. Being surrendered directly a rescue is no more a sign of aggression than anything else. This is where doing a temperament test on a dog and getting as much information as possible is key. Otherwise you have no idea what you're getting, and it's Russian roulette by dog. I've known MANY owner surrenders that were nice, happy, non-aggressive dogs. People are trying to do the right thing and find their dog a safe place to go and find a new home. There will always be the owners that don't want to take responsibility for their biting dog and try to pass it off to someone else, but those people dump dogs at shelters frequently too. Those dogs just generally never make it up for adoption. On the issue as a whole, I'll admit that I have a soft spot for the damaged ones. My oldest and first BC is fear aggressive, and #'s 5-7 were "unadoptable", though they're not the kind that will just run out and bit someone if given half a chance. As much as I hate euthanizing a dog, there are some that just can't be placed. I'm more of the opinion that you have to look at each dog on a case by case basis. Who did the dog bite (owners, kids, strangers, men/women), severity of the bite, situation they were in, how many times have they bitten, etc. I think most people, especially dog-savvy rescue people, know when a dog's bite history is problematic or a one-off. That's why I'm not a fan of blanket policies.
  10. I'm going to try it. I'm kind of bummed though, because I only have a touch not an i-phone, so I won't be able to use the whistling part (touches don't have microphones).
  11. I've seen a number of non-Flexi brands that jam and break without a whole lot of use. The money's worth it to go with the Flexi brand. I think the only time I've seen them needing to be replaced is if the dog's been allowed to chew on the line, and that's the handler's fault not the leash. Personally I don't see much need for the really long ones (26 feet) unless you're walking in a fairly open area that's not a neighborhood. If you're walking on trails, 26 feet means you're going to be getting hooked around trees or brush a lot. If you're walking in a neighborhood, I think it's too long considering there's always at least a little traffic and you can never reel the dog back in fast enough from that distance if you REALLY need to. There are also the belted vs cord versions. With the corded ones you have to be careful with the line, because it can and WILL give you a friction burn or even cut you if you get caught up when the dog's moving fast and hard for something. The belted versions are great, but they're a definite no-no if your dog EVER chews on the leash. It's much harder for dogs to chew on the cords since they're so skinny (doable but harder). And strength-wise...I guess I'm overly cautious. I stick with the weight recommendations from the company. I'd never use less than a "medium" with a BC or equal-size breed. Smaller might work fine, but why tempt fate?
  12. Strange as it is, I'm pretty sure there's a picture of an Aussie that I adopted out as well. In the Full Gallery, the "Breeding My Dogs", I'm almost certain the first picture of a red tri Aussie is Otter. Funny, since I know for sure he's not with this guy, and I saw him loose his testicles so he's not breeding for anybody. The three red tri Aussies are also not the same dog. He also has a picture of JJ as a puppy that he also lists as a female puppy in the "puppies for sale" gallery.
  13. The reality is that debarking doesn't even really "fix" the problem in the sense that people think it will. If you live in a neighborhood and the problem is your dog barking inside, then maybe it will make the bark quiet enough so your neighbors don't hear it. But if you live in an apartment complex and your dog is constantly barking, your neighbors will still hear it even if the dog is debarked. I've seen enough debarked dogs to know you can hear them through a wall, and most apartment complexes don't have thick enough walls to make a difference. I think it's probably the most pointless, lazy, selfish surgery you can put your dog through.
  14. I'm glad to see a lot of people like it. Kodah's been on the Orijen since probably mid-spring (Wellness Core Ocean before that), and he's been doing great. But even though he's outside almost all day most days since he comes up to the barn with me, he's getting a little thick in the middle the last month. It could just be a weight fluctuation or even that he's slowing down a little - he IS 6 now, it has to happen sometime - but I can only imagine that it'll get worse over the winter when they're not out as much. So I'll try the Acana for the older guys, Kodah, Pith, and Reece, and probably keep Duma and Tweed on the EVO for now. Things are good. The dogs are all happy and healthy. This is the time of year when they're out on the trails a lot more since camp season has completely ended, so they're all thrilled. Who cares if the water's getting a little cold? Not them. We're still getting some warmer (60's, even a low 70's last week) days popping up, but once it stays cold they finally get it in their heads that the creek's just a little too cold for swimming. Before long it'll be snowshoe weather, so that's something to look forward to. And I'll be shocked if I ever see you say you've switched Chesney off of raw! Never going to happen. Even though I haven't been posting anywhere much, I pop on and read a good bit. He looks like he's doing great. You still eventually looking for #3? Ahh...my favorite blue boy! Of course, he was my only blue boy, but the title will stick regardless of any others that come along. Congratulations on the baby! I'm glad he's enjoying the baby. What does Zoey think of her? I love hearing about dog owners with new babies where it's working well. It makes me want to just smack the people that get rid of their dogs just because they're having kids.
  15. I'll offer one last suggestion that's actually contrary to what Journey said. Maybe she can offer her reasoning, and then you can decide for yourself. When it comes to picking a prong collar, I would actually recommend picking the kind WITH the clip on the chain part. The ones with the continuous chain require you to seperate the collar at the prongs in order to put it on, while the snap/clip kind allows you to put it on more like a regular collar. With the continuous chain type, the regular seperating of the prongs tends to weaken and loosen the prongs so they don't fit as tightly. I've seen dogs wearing them on walks and suddenly the collar just pops open where the prongs have loosened, and the dog is free as a bird then. The main problem is that they're not always so loose that you will notice before you're on a walk and suddenly your dog is loose. I would worry that my dog would get loose at the worst possible time (near lots of traffic with just the right distraction to pull him towards it).
  16. I've never used them for this purpose myself, but I've known a couple of clients through vet clinics who had deaf dogs that wore collars. They didn't use a special type of collar (not sure if that's what you found on the deaf dog site). They just used regular e-collars that had a vibration only setting.
  17. Of my five, four are currently eating EVO and one is eating Orijen 6 Fish (staying off chicken and beef). Over the winter here the dogs aren't out as often or for as long as they are the rest of the year, so I'm thinking of bumping down to a little lower protein. Both EVO and Orijen's protein percentages are in the low 40's. I've looked at a number of foods, and going by type (grain free), quality, and price Acana is looking like the food I want to switch to for the winter. It'll probably be Pacifica (for Kodah, the non-chicken dog) and Prairie Harvest (for the others). Both are low 30's for protein. I've really liked the Orijen, which is made by the same parent company, and I like the parent company over all for a number of reasons. Two big ones being that they don't use random ingredients from all over the world, and they make produce the food themselves instead of sending it out to be done at another commercial facility - both of which mean they know what's going into their food. Since I've never used it myself, I just wanted to see how many people have first hand experience with it. Like it, love it, one formula over another, etc. I'm crossposting this on the BC rescue board too.
  18. I don't know about "white" knuckle bones, but I like USbones.com . The quality is great, and their knuckle bones and bully sticks seem to be bigger than those I've seen from other companies. The prices are great too. On top of that, you can also pick the rescue of your choice (so long as they've registered with the site) to receive a donation equal to 25% of your order.
  19. For about as long as I've known who Swafford is, I've noticed that he seems to turn out some odd looking puppies, much like the ones in the videos. They just don't look right or healthy, which would fit considering some of the health issues his puppies have ended up having (second hand knowledge from people who have bought puppies from him). Especially the puppies' heads...the shape and proportion are just strange, Border Collie or otherwise. That's kind of what I was thinking. It made me think of a really poorly done temperament or drive test. I've never used PVC pipe, but it seems like what the guy's trying (badly) to do. I could be wrong, but I don't think he even usually has AKC puppies. This is one of the guys (I won't even honor him with the term breeder) that the ABCA kicked out a few years ago for fraudulent breeding practices. Also the one that had the website www.abcbordercollies.com that the ABCA sued for the rights too. Now Swafford and a bunch of the ousted backyard breeders are big pushers of one of the new registries. Might be IBCA, but I don't remember. Unfortunately for everyone and all the dogs involved, he has an extensive system set up. He doesn't just sell puppies locally or fly them out to people. Unless something's changed in the last year or so, he also sends litters or breeding pairs to "foster homes" in other states, where the people then sell the puppies from there and they get a cut of the profits. So while people shouldn't be fooled into thinking the "foster home" is a quality breeder, the buyers still don't see the magnitude of the operation or the worst of the conditions the dogs are kept in. They just think they're buying from a NORMAL backyard breeder (still not good though).
  20. Pith was originally from a pet store, but bounced a couple of times before coming to me as a 12 week old puppy. His papers are in one of the boxes I've yet to unpack from the move, so I'll only give you the basic information that I remember. pet store: Just Puppies location: Laurel, MD registration: ABCA breeder location: Missouri Again, I unfortunately don't have it handy, but probably 2-3 years ago someone had posted on the BC rescue board about a website that you could plug in all of the pet store information and puppy information, and they could track back to the breeder or puppy mill and give you some information about them. As it so happens, Pith didn't come from a puppy mill. Instead he came from a farmer that allowed their working dogs to have a litter each year. He'd sell puppies locally and then any "left-overs" would go to the pet stores. So not the worst of the worst origins, but not good. The pet store he came from sold exclusively puppies (hence the name) and some limited supplies aimed at the new puppy owners. It happened to be right next to my bank, so I'd stop in every other week when I deposited my paycheck and play with the puppies. I felt bad for them, so I figured I was at least one "normal" person that would come play with them every so often. I'd seen Pith in the store and played with both him and his sister. I don't know if there were more than just the two originally or not (I still wonder what happened to his sister). Long story short, border collies don't sell well in Laurel, MD pet stores, so after a couple of weeks, they dropped the price to rock bottom and someone bought him as the "cheap puppy" - $100 versus the ones $800+. Pith was high drive, even for a BC puppy, so, surprise, surprise, he didn't fit in the home. He moved to two other homes before being surrendered to the vet I worked for (if you can't take him, we'll just have to take him to the shelter). He'd left the dam at about 6 weeks of age, was bought at about 8 weeks old, and came to the vet at about 12 weeks. Talk about a lot of traveling, home changes, and stress for a young puppy. Fast forward over the next 6 years: Pith started showing signs of serious fear aggression at about 10 months of age, which got progressively worse until, after a lot of work, it got better to the point of being mostly managable (it will never be "fixed"); Pith had his first seizure at ~18 months old and was diagnosed as an Idiopathic Epileptic about a month later after continued seizures; Pith is extremely and increasingly sound sensitive - thunder started when he was about 2.5 yeards, gunshots and fireworks just about 7-8 months ago. There are a number of lessons to be learned from Pith, but the big two (at least in my head) are #1: Just because a puppy is ABCA registered doesn't mean the puppy store is reputable. They can still get ABCA puppies, though I'm sure these days BC pups are more likely to be AKC or CKC or whatever else at a pet store. #2: The puppy can look and seem perfectly happy, normal, and healthy for a while. There is obviously something wrong in the way Pith's brain is "wired". There are just way too many things "wrong" with him that are neurologically based. I love him to death, and he's the one that started me on the Border Collie road, so I'd never, ever change my mind about keeping him. BUT he's damned lucky he ended up with me, because most people wouldn't have stuck with him. The epilepsy and sound sensitivity are one thing. The fear aggression is a whole 'nother story.
  21. I agree with a lot of what's been said. Honestly, my guys are rarely on leash, and even that's usually just a single dog - Pith if there are strangers around, going in and out of the vet, etc. But if you are having to leash them all, it can be a hassle. That's really at any number over 2 though. Is that a reason not to add a third or fourth? Not unless the dogs are going to constantly be on leash all at the same time. Even then, you can get into a routine with three leashed dogs pretty easily for walks. Reece, Pith, and Kodah all know their "spot" (left to right, Kodah, Pith, Reece) for leashed walks, but they walk in front of me on semi-taunt leashes or else I'd probably end up tangled in a leash and break a leg. With playing together and odd-man-outs, Reece is the oldest and he really doesn't play with any of the other dogs. You'll see random bouts of interest, but they don't last long and they're restricted to the two oldest dogs behind him, Pith & Kodah. He played a lot with Pith when he was younger and played with toys all the time. That seemed to stop around the time that the original #3, Parker, came along, but that was also about when Reece hit a year old. I do wonder sometimes if he would have held onto those behaviors if it was only him and Pith or if this is just the personality he was destined to have. Reece didn't love Parker, so having a third dog that he was more into might have helped. Pith, Kodah, Duma, and Tweed, however, are play-whores. It doesn't seem to matter what dog it is...they wrestle. Right now, it's the constant change over between Pith, Tweed, Summit (foster), Misha (foster), Duma, and Kodah. It's like tag-team WWF. One gets tired, another one jumps in. Then there are the pile-ons where there are 3+ wrestling at the same time. Two weeks ago, you had two other foster girls in on the mix. Wrestle Mania never sounded so appropriate. Rarely do I see a dog, my own or a foster, sitting on the sidelines looking like they're being left out (unless they're not the type to play with other dogs). Kodah started his actual "puppy class" for SAR at about 4.5-5 months old. That was pretty standard with that group, though there were dogs starting all the way up to 2 years. You'll learn a lot going through the process with Z, and most likely figure out things you want to do differently the next time. That's a reason to not start training two at the same time. Another consideration: do you want your two working SAR dogs to be this close in age? Regardless of when you start little Laddy, age is often times the deciding factor on when to retire a dog or start cutting back on the length and types of searches they're doing. I think Z's a little older than I'm remembering (time flies...I still can't believe Kodah's 5), so maybe there's more of a difference between them. But having a wider gap in ages between your two working dogs can be nice. As one is getting close to retirement, the younger dog is still going strong. That's all assuming that Laddy has the drive and temperament you want for SAR. I know if you decide to keep him, it won't matter if he excels at SAR or if it's not his thing. But if you really WANT #3 to do SAR work, that's a factor to keep in mind. There are always going to be fosters that you fall in love with and can see staying forever. You don't have to keep each one that falls into this category. You generally CAN'T keep every dog like that, unless you want a huge pack of dogs.
  22. Don't lump all rescues into one. It really depends on the group. Some just don't have the ability to evaluate a dog for homes where they'll be used as full-time working dogs. Some have decent access to evaluate dogs for sheep, geese, etc if given the time to set it up. Most don't have the experience to say they'll make good SAR dogs, bomb-sniffing, etc, but usually interested handlers know what they're looking for. I'm not saying anything about you, since I don't know anything about you. BUT it's also not uncommon for the "working" applicants to not always be what rescues are wanting for their rescue dogs either. You get a lot of applicants that have farms, no fence, aren't all that far from a road or have decent traffic coming onto the property, and it's the norm for the dog to be loose outside by itself. Some dogs do great in this situation, but a lot of rescues DON'T. I've seen a lot of dogs with AMAZING working potential that are also MAJOR car chasers. So the typical farm setup just doesn't work for them, and finding a dog to fit there is difficult. I would imagine these people often times do get frustrated. "Our dogs have always lived like this so what's the big deal?"
  23. The term "borders" actually slipped out of my mouth a couple of weeks ago, and, while still in mid-conversation, I'm running it over in my head going, "Where did that COME FROM?" I usually use BC on the computer, whether in e-mail or on boards, just because it's faster and I'm often using it more than once. When speaking, I probably use 95% "border collie" and 5% BC. It's that internet lingo slipping into my vernacular.
  24. Sometimes it's helpful to just ignore things that you find out of place. Otherwise we end up with 3 pages of snarking back and forth, and that's REALLY not productive for the person asking the question. Personally, I have three dogs with issues of different kinds - dog aggression, fear aggression, and aggression when handled (what would you call that?), and, hey, I laughed. Sometimes humor HELPS during serious situations. Sometimes you just have to laugh to keep from crying (nice cliche there, huh?) For the OP, my boy with dog aggression is similiar to your dog's reaction with other dogs, though it's a LITTLE easier to predict. He's 99% fine with three of my boys, but is having serious problems with the newest addition. He can also sometimes be reactive with dogs that are not members of his pack. He also will redirect frustration into aggression towards a "low-man" dog if they're nearby. He's been on meds for about a year, and we've walked up the ladder of medications. We started with Clomicalm/clomipramine, and it really didn't help at all. Prozac worked for a little while, but after about a month or so, it stopped helping. He's been on Xanax since about June of '08. It worked really well for the first couple of months, and then we needed to bump up his dosage a bit. Is he "fixed"? No. Is he much better and much more predictable? Absolutely. Until he started having problems with Tweed, he was hardly ever reacting. Now it's still mainly only happening with Tweed and isn't affecting his interaction with the other dogs, my own, fosters, or others he meets. I haven't seen any lethargy or dopiness on any of the three medications. Honestly, he's really been free of side effects entirely, at least so far.
  25. I'm so sorry to hear about Zia. She lived a great, happy life with you though, and her last days were spent having fun and doing what she loved (as anyone can see from the pictures). I'm sure you're completely overwraught with grief and a thousand other emotions right now. Try not to blame yourself. Tragic accidents happen, no matter how careful owners are. One of my boys broke into Rimadyl once and overdosed as well. He was just lucky in pulling through it. It's unfortunately not an uncommon occurence. You did everything you could for your girl, and she knows and loves you for it.
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