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Everything posted by DTrain

  1. I have a so-called cattle dog. He was bred to work cattle on southern Alberta ranches. He has worked feed lots. You may have seen his picture. He is bigger and stronger than most border collies I have seen. He has been bred big and powerful. I know his line well. It is a very popular line in Alberta and the western US where cattle is the common stock. I have worked cattle with him and he does not hesitate to go in for a grip and most often it is his choice. He is hard-headed so to speak. He is very fast and he likes to work fast and at times he can be a little hard to control. I have perhaps r
  2. I will take your question to ask, do I offer encouragement to the dogs for a job well done while they are working. I don't offer encouragement while my dogs are working for several reasons. I will encourage while training however. While they are actually working there is not really a time and place to offer encouragement. I do not want to distract them from what they are doing and I do not want to reward them for simply doing their job. Also, what do you reward for or encourage if the dogs are doing their job. I will offer my commands and a correction if required but in a job well done sense I
  3. I sent an email to these folks some months ago but they did not get back to me. I explained I have three dogs. One is from a well known line and he is not thunder or noise phobic nor does it seem is any other dog from his family. I have his son, my youngest dog and he shows no sign of noise phobia. He has the same mother as my oldest dog, the dog in question. But my oldest dog Mac has a different father and he is noise phobic ( or at least he was ) although his mother is not and I am not sure about his father. I am going to rule out hearing loss. I have tested Mac further and he shows no signs
  4. I spent some time working with Mac this afternoon. The next time I am at the Vet I will have him check Mac out but he shows no signs of being deaf. He is responding to the slightest noise even when he is not paying attention or expecting anything. He may be a little less alert to very low frequency noises but if he has a hearing loss it is certainly mirror. I have noticed however that his selective hearing is a least as good as it has always been. I worked with him outside for a while and he was fine until I wanted him back in the house, then of course he could not hear a thing.
  5. Mac is now seven. I had not thought of deafness because he shows no other signs. He follows his verbal commands and whistles even at a distance. He has always been good at audible commands and has a large vocabulary. I will check him further. Would he be more likely to stop hearing low or high frequency sounds. I have a very low voice. When I speak Mac will always look right at me. Is there anything else you can think of. My other two dogs are not noise phobic beyond curiosity so he is not getting any signals from them and we try not to respond when we hear a load noise so if Mac is not going
  6. I am not sure what has taken place here or why. My oldest dog Mac has always been thunder phobic. He reacts to thunder long before I hear it. For seven years whenever he hears thunder and a number of other load noises he runs to hide. He has learned to open sliding closet doors and whenever there is a storm that is where we will find him. BUT, in the past two days we have had a number of spring storms with the usual thunder and lightning and heavy rain but for some reason Mac has not responded in the usual way. He stops what he is doing but he does not go to hide. After a quick check he goes r
  7. We have been going through this with my oldest dog for seven years. We have not been able to find the cause but we can anticipate a problem. It is going to be warm in the next few days, all the snow will melt and Mac will be out running around. At some point in the next couple of days he will flare up. We will take him to the Vet for a shot, he will be on anti-biotics and we will give him Benadryl and bath him. This won't stop it but it will keep it under control. It is an alergy but we have no idea what.
  8. This is strange. No Dave did not see me fall but he may have heard me in distress. I have no idea what sounds or comments I may have made but that could explain his first reaction. He has been stuck to me like glue since and I have also noticed if I need to cough or sneeze Dave is right there before it happens. I am sure he is reading my body language when I am about to sneeze and have a lot of pain but my question is, why would he take an interest like this at all, why does he appear to be showing such concern. It is like this situation has turned on some sort of nursing instinct. He does not
  9. I started a thread some time ago about my dog Dave who seems to gravitate to injuries or similar problems. The contributions that were made to the thread set me off on doing some research on dogs who actually detect cancer. Something has happened again that makes me think this is real and there is something to it and perhaps even a little more than I thought. Last Saturday late in the afternoon I left the house without the dogs to go to my truck. The dogs were just hanging out and did not really care if I left. They came to the door but settled down as soon as I went out according to my wife.
  10. It is always a good idea to have a crate for your dog anyway as a place he or she can go on their own. Having said that my dogs have crates and they will go to them when asked but they also have spots in the house where they like to sleep and go to when they seem stressed from a storm or something. It is interesting that they have all chosen spots that could be den like. Suck as under my desk or a chair and in the case of my oldest dog who has figured out how to open closet doors, closets.
  11. Hi Joe, you would be fairly close to Burr Hill Border Collies in Tillsonburg. I am not sure if they have a boarding service but if they do that would be a great place to have your dog perfectly cared for and safe while you are away. I never leave my guys with anyone that can't provide a secure environment for them. The last thing I want to hear when I return is that one of my dogs ran away. Having said that, I go to great lengths to take my dogs with me everywhere I go. Your situation may be different but taking him with you is piece of mind. I am also in SW Ontario but too far away to help di
  12. Jader if you don't tell anyone else on this board and sorry if I need to leave out some information but I took my dog Pete, a full blown stock, herding and trials dog and turned him on to frisbee ( don't say anything ). I can throw a frisbee as hard and as far as I like and ask Pete for an outrun ( shhhhh ). He will go for it and every single time he will flank the frisbee and go to his balance point. Strange however, when I take Pete to work he knows exactly what to do. I may get an argument about this but do not discount creative training and work activities with your dog. If nothing else it
  13. Jader am I wrong in understanding that you and your dog are new to herding and you are now in the learning process, if I am wrong please ignore this. I have been thinking about this. I can't think in terms of right and left. No matter how I picture it I think in terms of a clock and the balance point is in fact always 12:00 because I set it that way. I am talking about controlled practice sessions and in real work things can be quite different. This is getting more complicated than I thought it might. Find whatever works for you.
  14. You are correct, I do what works for me and my dogs and I am passing along what does work for me and the suggestion to give it a try. I don't see anything in left and right when I am working with the dogs so I have a different vision and sense of things than you, they are not wrong, I get the job done and it works for me. I really don't care how the job gets done as long as it works for the person doing the job.
  15. Jader, sit down with a pencil and paper. Draw a circle, that is a clock. Mark an X in the middle of the circle, that is your sheep. Put two X's at 6:00, that is you and your dog. Put an X at 12:00, that is your balance point. Now send your dog on an outrun to fetch the sheep. If you send the dog clockwise that is what command. If you send the dog anti-clockwise that is what command. Since the vast majority of the time you will be facing the sheep and your dog will be at some point in front of you, you can picture everything happening inside a big clock. Don't think in terms of right or left be
  16. Sorry, it is true. There is a young lady that lives in our area who comes to walk the dogs from time to time. She has no idea how to tell time unless it is digital. She has no idea what clockwise and counter clockwise may be. She has come out to watch me work the dogs and I have tried to explain what the commands mean but I can't relate them to digital and she does not get it. We have tried to teach her but so far it is not working because she feels it is useless, why would anyone want to tell time the way they did in the old days. I think this may be part of the problem when some handlers try
  17. If you think in terms of a clock, put the sheep in the middle of the clock and your balance point at noon and yourself at 6:00. Sit down and draw a diagram with what I describe and it will be easier to remember. I don't think in terms of the dogs right or left or my right or left in fact there is no right or left. There is to me only anti clockwise and clockwise and the commands associated, away to me and come-bye. No matter what direction the dog is facing or moving I want to ask for anti clockwise or clockwise. It helps me and I tend to do it anyway to move my body slightly in the direction
  18. You would need to search the web for reviews of Elvin's DVD's. I know Elvin so I trusted his work would be excellent and it is. I like his training method and his approach to his dogs and of course he has proven to be very successful. I also worked with another trainer which was very helpful. He was able to help me considerably. I very seldom work two dogs although in my goose work I find it handy. I do have some issues with keeping up with two dogs especially when they are doing a different job but that is me. I have three dogs and they all work at a different pace so it can be tricky to keep
  19. It is not likely I will get another BC unless and I hope not I need to replace one of my guys. I have three dogs, two are fixed and one is not. The dog that is not fixed is by far my best dog at everything including work. My other two guys are great dogs but not to the same level as my best dog. The two dogs were fixed at around six months. Because of this they did not develop fully in body. I have come to the conclusion I would not consider having a male dog fixed again until at least the age of two and even then if I did not have a good reason I would not have the dog fixed.
  20. It is not likely you will raise an aggressive dog unless you provide no training or you are aggressive toward the dog yourself. I have found in the vast majority of cases of aggressive dogs it is am owner issue. You will find some great information on this board about books you can get that will help you raise, understand and train your dog. Normal behavior with and puppy and a mouth is that everything goes in and everything is tested. They understand the world with their mouths like we do with our hands. It is up to you to train what the puppy can and cannot mouth such as hands. Biting and n
  21. My dogs are very social and in some situations in their work it is good public relations. I does not really matter what command you use as long as you get the result you need. I simply use That'll Do across a lot of situations. The dogs return to me and stand or sit at my side.
  22. I like Amelia's answer. Just relax take advantage of it and go with. I have been exposed to a lot of trainers, a lot of dogs and a lot of styles and in each case I have learned something of value or I have been inspired. When I first started training I worked with a gentleman who is one of the very best in the world, he just happens to be a friend. At first I decided to just shut up and listen. As I started to learn more I discovered that I was making a contribution and we would often discuss things to find we were both learning.
  23. There is a little different to each of my dogs but I use it when I want the dogs to take a position on the stock and move on them. To my oldest dog it is almost a stop followed by a walk-up. To my best dog it is a turn into the stock without a stop and he generally looks for his balance point and takes a position to move the stock. If I repeat the word it generally slows him down. I find if I do not use the word he will generally pick the spot for himself. To my youngest dog who is training it is " there what, where, when ".
  24. Something to look forward to. There is a small spot in the border collie brain where they store crazy puppy information. As they age from time to time they will tap into this section and go into chaos mode. All of my dogs do this and yesterday they all got together to do it at the same time. We took the dogs out for some snow frisbee. I made one throw and my dogs all went for it. They don't usually do this. They normally wait their turn. My youngest dog Dave got to the frisbee first, he grabbed it and started running with my other two dogs right behind him. We have a twenty acre field next to
  25. If he is fairly new to you I would suggest letting him come out of his shell by himself. He will do it as he develops a trust level with you. Let him be close to you. I got my best dog was he was two. He was very shy and reserved. He did not associate with us much at all. I just left him alone but encouraged him to join in everything that we did. I took him with me everywhere and we worked every day. I quickly noticed a few things about him that helped me. He did not like load voices or people carrying anything that resembled a stick. I noted a few other things and I made sure that the things
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