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gcv-border's Achievements

  1. Woo Hoo! I hope it helps you on your journey. Please report back.
  2. This just popped up on my FB page (because I follow Denise Fenzi on FB). She is doing a webinar about 'Calming Games for High Arousal' on Thursday, July 29. Only $20. https://www.fenzidogsportsacademy.com/self-study/webinars?fbclid=IwAR0F4hSbB8bkVCEXbzyCmnMLKlelhQ0P_2aqpysAvJpnZUqMTVc9hDotKDI You must sign up before the webinar, but if the time doesn't work for you, I understand that you will be able to access the webinar for one month - but you won't be able to hear the live Q&A.
  3. You may not be 100% to blame for Tucker's behavior. As you know, he came from a kennel that does not have good breeding practices. Temperament is another attribute that can suffer when using poor breeding choices. His anxiety/reactivity may be, in part, due to lack of socialization, but there is also a strong genetic component associated with temperament. You will never know how to parse out the blame. Regardless, you can only deal with the dog in front of you - not assign blame. In addition to some of the other techniques suggested in other posts, look up Denise Fenzi's reactive dog class. She is a nationally famous, well-regarded dog trainer that offers on-line assistance. I have heard excellent reviews from people with formerly reactive dogs. You have to put in the work, and my guess is that the dog will require close watching and some retraining throughout their life. Good Luck.
  4. With respect to his interest in herding: First, I agree with others that have expressed the opinion that a 7-8 week old puppy that chases a few goats around indicates absolutely nothing about future herding ability. I would have suspected any breeder that told me that (a red flag). On the other hand, I would give him more time to show if he does have interest in herding. Bring him with you when you go herding with other dogs (or if you go to a sheepdog trial). Tie him near the action if possible and observe his behavior. If he seems scared, he is too close. Keep him at a distance where he can comfortably show interest (hopefully) in the sheep without the pressure to interact with them. If he does begin to show interest (one time, 2 times or 6 or more times), you (your trainer) could try a low pressure introduction to sheep. i.e. bring him into a round pen with docile sheep to see what he does, but don't push him to do something. A good trainer should know what to do. All is not lost. I have heard of some dogs that don't turn on until 18-24 months.
  5. I am sorry to hear of Tucker's problems, but give you props for giving him quality medical care. Sometimes it can be necessary to use a drug to calm the pet enough to be examined by the vet. I do not know how Ace is viewed as an anti-anxiety med, and others will know more. Regarding getting a dog from such a kennel as you describe: although frowned upon here on these Boards, breeding for color doesn't necessarily produce a dog with health problems if appropriate genetic tests are done on the parents to insure that (known) genetic-based diseases are not passed on. (Note: I !00% agree with not breeding for color as the main reason for a mating.) However, it is commonly known that inbreeding is highly correlated with a multitude of problems, with skin issues being one of them. Do you know the breeding practices of the kennel you purchased from? Do you have contact with any other owner of a pup from the same litter as Tucker? You could reach out to them and ask about their pup. I have heard good feedback about using Apoquel for skin problems. Note: I checked out the website for Jawanna, and there are a lot of red flags.
  6. I have heard good things about Gunner and Ruffland (previously RTK) crates. Gunner is double-walled so be certain about your measurements - inner and outer.
  7. I am glad you want to be prepared, but don't overthink it. Just keep it simple. Definitely keep her on a long line if there is no fencing. That will prevent any major incidents - chasing livestock or gripping them. And since she is on a long line, if she shows too much interest in the livestock and doesn't pay attention to you, then you can employ distraction/training strategies to redirect her attention. Personally, I would expect her to be very interested in the new sights and smells. If she wasn't, I would be worried. Keep it fun and light and don't expect perfection. Let her have a good, and safe, time. Just re-read your OP. Regarding the muzzle: I think that would be totally unnecessary if she is kept on a long line. Just keep her far enough away from the livestock. Using a muzzle is like going to DefCon 5 without transitioning through 1-4.
  8. Agree with above suggestions. You will probably have to try several strategies to see what works for your dog - and the strategy may differ depending on the circumstances. As you have probably read many times on these Boards, it is best to start training the behavior in an environment without distractions (i.e. NOT anywhere near where agility is happening), then gradually add in time and distractions. One strategy I have seen several times is to teach the dog to remain calm in an open crate and/or an elevated platform - which you might be able to transition to a flat rug/towel on the floor. The logic behind this is that by giving the dog boundaries (the elevated platform), the dog is more focused and more controlled and is better able to hold their stay. For example, I saw a top sheepdog handler who trains multiple dogs at one time. She has half-barrels around the round pen. The dogs are expected to stay on their barrel until their name is called - and yes, this is while other dogs are taking their turns working sheep. Yes, it probably will take a LOT of work when starting with a dog already over threshold in certain situations. Good Luck.
  9. Beautiful pup. How is he doing? Time for an update. Grin.
  10. Just saw this post. I tried my border collie a couple of times on my alpacas. My dog is not an experienced herder, but he does have a lot of try and push. One time, I tried to herd 7-8 male alpacas into the barn. They decided that they were going to gang up on the dog and actively tried to chase him down. Poor dog tried his best, but he was only one against 6 or so alpacas trying to run him down or kick him. If he was more experienced, the outcome may have been different. Another situation was when one female alpaca escaped through a gate that had been left open. She was loving the green grass and didn't want to be herded into the barn by me, nor was she interested in being lured back inside by pellets. Tried the dog. Again, she did her best to attack/kick him, but he stood up to her and kept trying to move her. After a minute or two, she did decide to move back toward the barn. Alpacas definitely do not like dogs. Some will run from the dogs, but others will stand up to a dog. I don't think that using a beginner dog on alpacas is doing the dog any favors. i.e. it is not teaching the dog appropriate herding skills.
  11. Thanks for posting. Working dogs are so impressive.
  12. Braden -- Great report. I agree with D'Elle that you have accomplished a lot in a short time. It is highly possible that he will continue to improve to the point that you don't have to worry (as much). I would buy a vest that says "please give me space". Hopefully that will keep clueless owners away, and let them know to keep their dog away too. It may give you and Braden a bit more space so you can continue to work on desensitization. With respect to agility lessons: They are NOT a time for socializing. Every dog should be on leash and/or under the handler's control, and should not be allowed to go up to any other dog. Same goes for agility trials. Both are very stressful environments (trials particularly), and the dogs feel it, and even the best of dogs can be sensitive about their own space. It is expected that all dogs are kept on a short leash unless working in the ring, or walking in an area away from the action. The other handlers WILL appreciate you keeping space between your dog and theirs because they do not know your dog and are aware that it is a stressful time for all dogs. [And other handlers should also be keeping their dogs under control.] If you want to take agility lessons, I don't see why you can't based on what you have described (and pups and new dogs are generally kept on a leash/long line for a foundation class anyway until they prove they are in control). Talk to the instructor about your concerns.
  13. From a quick look at the link, IMHO this 'sheepballs' thing is more about training the dog to play with the largish ball in a specific way, than the ball. Cynically, I think it is just marketing to sell the ball. I don't see why several other types of balls couldn't be substituted (i.e. jolly ball)
  14. Check into the protection used by Flyball competitors. Not only do they protect against injury, but some of them are really cool designs.
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