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Everything posted by BNM1980

  1. My dog is pretty good in all other areas but still goes so berserk around new people that it is impossible to do anything but physically restrain him. I know the idea is to make him sit quietly, and only then let the new person pet him. But that sitting quietly just never happens. It does not matter whether the person in question is interested in him or terrified of him. He loves everyone, madly, maniacally, and indiscriminately. Suggestions please! My fellow park-goers are at their wits end!
  2. Yesterday Blake was set on by a large brown dog outside a hardware store, and, like the big softy he is, ran between my legs. The Korean owner (a different dog culture prevails here) watched laughing, as if it were all a big joke. I gave the dog a very swift kick in the ribs and thankfully it yelped pitifully and ran indoors. I honestly thought it was going to attack me after I kicked it. And just for the record, I carry a large box-cutter and I too will not hesitate to slit the throat of any dog that attacks me or my dog or my family.
  3. He's very cute. I especially like the red bandana.
  4. In my experience, the more time my dog spends off leash, the better he is off leash. I think you have to wait for the novelty to wear off for the dog and for it to become normal to have freedom. Otherwise, it's almost like they think, 'Ha ha ha! I'm finally free and I better make the most of it. Who knows when it'll happen again.' And this usually translates into totally blowing off your recall.
  5. Thanks Root Beer. I'll give it a shot.
  6. I wanted an athletic, energetic, biddable, medium-to-large dolichocephalic dog with a rough coat and an outgoing personality that did not have a reputation for aggression. A border collie simply fit the bill. Also, hailing from New Zealand (a country, by the way, with more sheep than people) I had had a lot of contact with border collies and always loved them. In fact, my great-uncle was a national champion at herding events. One experience in particular stands out: I remember seeing a man in the small rural township where I grew up with his border collie. It was walking to heel off-lead. The man walked into a shop without so much as glancing at his dog, and his dog simply sat at the door and waited for him. Then he came out of the shop with a newspaper and the dog heeled and continued walking down the street next to his owner. I watched all this in total awe, especially since at the time I was walking my poorly-trained cavalier King Charles spaniel who pulled so hard on his lead he literally gagged himself and gasped for air the whole time. I know this has a great deal to do with training but it was something I never forgot and ever since characterized my view of the breed as the coolest dogs in the world.
  7. Hi Nancy, I'd never heard of a farm collie before. Wikipedia doesn't have anything on them, but according to its border collie article, many border collies 'can be traced back to a dog known as Old Hemp' and another dog called 'Wiston Cap.' The sires of these studs were initially referred to as 'working collies' or 'farm collies' before the word 'border' was added around 1860. Does that sound right to you? And in that case, isn't a farm collie a border collie by another name? But then the History of the Farmcollie on the site you link to says, So I guess if the dog in the video is a farmcollie, it is at least an extremely close relative of the border collie. And I agree with you entirely about the baby elephant.
  8. I was looking at some historical footage of vaudeville routines on YouTube when I saw a dog that looks suspiciously familiar. What do you think? The dog in question makes his entrance at about 2:55, right after the roller skating baboon. And please note the leg-weaving with the sorry-looking baby elephant!
  9. Okay. I take your point, Sue. A border collie is right in his element working stock. So I guess that means the rest of us just have to work extra hard to keep our BC pets happy. And if we do work extra hard, as I think you seem to agree, we can also have content dogs.
  10. I guess we have a different understanding of what logic means. To me it is a priori and does not imply inference from personal experience, but I'm not going to argue the point. And anyway, since you say this, we are not in disagreement. It was never my intention to exasperate you. Sorry!
  11. If you are right (and for all I know you are) that is truly incredible. But surely this same behavior is transferable to some other equally challenging activity? Is it reasonable to make an analogy to the human capacity for learning a language? And just as the cognitive and dental fundaments innate in humans lend themselves to any language, so the mental and physical traits of the border collie can lend themselves to a variety of other mentally challenging and physically demanding activities? These are not rhetorical questions! I'm really asking!
  12. Hi jdarling. Thanks for answering the question. Just to reiterate (and correct me if I'm wrong) you believe that herding sheep is a more natural activity for a border collie and that dogs that herd are therefore happier and more satisfied than those that do not. I do not work livestock or do agility. I simply dispute this argument on logical grounds. I imagine you reason that herding is analogous to hunting, and more importantly that the skills involved have been breed into these dogs for generations. I do not deny that therefore working dogs are probably very satisfied. However, I think that for you to deny that border collies can be equally happy doing other jobs is to grossly exaggerate the precision of selective breeding.
  13. Well, one quote-stack deserves another, I guess. Are you saying that whether or not she agrees with my statement depends on whether I do agility? That's seems odd. Yes. But the fact is, few dogs are now involved in the activities they were breed for. Huskies seldom sled, pit bulls never bait bulls, and setters rarely set. To argue that border collies that don't herd are necessarily dissatisfied animals is to argue that 90 per cent of dogs are necessarily dissatisfied. I think that is a ridiculous argument. Clearly, that comment was not directed at you but the hypothetical—and, I assumed, non-existent—person who would insist that dogs had evolved teleologically to serve human sheep farmers. I do not claim knowledge and experience. I may have come across a little didactic, but like everyone else, I'm just offering my two cents. You don't see the link between my denying that herding is more natural than other human-motivated and controlled canine activities and an implied refutation of Coyote's argument? Perhaps you should read my pervious post again, or ask your border collie to help you. (Okay, that was a joke!) I accept that. But I doubt that this, or any breeding program, can be so selective that border collies are physically and emotionally dependent on herding. After all, if the prey drive can be adapted one way, it can be adapted another. Which activity do border collies enjoy more? We need to get one on here to settle that question.
  14. I believe this is called side-stepping the question. I said simply that dogs did not evolve to herd sheep for human farmers. That statement is completely incontrovertible, unless you know less about biology than a border collie. My point is simply that TC's equation between "behavior that comes naturally" and "canine happiness" is very, very fuzzy. Fetching my slippers, watching television, jumping through hoops or herding sheep for a whistling farmer—none these activities are really "natural behaviors" for a dog.
  15. Yes it is, bcnewe2. Thanks for pulling up the info. Funny the word tick is not mentioned once in their product description. I'm gonna have to talk to my vet.
  16. Tommy Coyote: your argument falls apart when you follow it through to its ultimate logical consequences. According to the literature, the herding instinct is the hunting instinct without the kill. If your argument is that border collies are happier herding because that is what they have been bred for over hundreds of years, you invoke this unintended corollary: That the happiest dog is one that is hunting in the wild with a pack because that is what they have evolved to do over millions of years. And I have seen borders on sheep farms in New Zealand that went bad and got a taste for blood and I can tell you that they are supremely happy and satisfied up until the point when it is necessary to destroy them. Herding is a trained behavior that serves human ends. That the dogs enjoy it is purely incidental to the farmer. And it is no less alien to a dog's evolutionary purpose than chasing a tennis ball or weaving through cones.
  17. Maybe I should make a video and post it.
  18. BTW, in2adventure, the topical treatment my vet is giving me is Advocate by Bayer, not Spot On. It contains, 100 g/L Imidacloprid 25 g/L Moxidectin
  19. The same thing could be said about any breed that has been bred for centuries to perform a specific task and has subsequently become a popular family pet. Do you pity huskies that don't go sledding across the Alaskan tundras? Do you look down on red setter owners who don't use their dogs to set and point gamebirds? Do you feel contempt for pit bull owners who do not use their dogs for badger and bull-baiting? You're denying the versatility of the animals. In fact, it's a kind of breed-specific essentialism. I'm sure many border collies who don't herd but are involved in any of innumerable activities that have been developed solely for the dog's enjoyment are just as happy as working dogs. In fact—and here's a revolutionary notion—perhaps some of them are even happier!
  20. I had a puppy that not only ignored recall but would run away from me when I tried to catch him and turn it into a chasing game. Using a combination of an 8 meter line and treats worked for me. 1. Let him run around. 2. Recall. 3. Tug lightly once if ignored (but do not haul dog in like big game fish). 4. Praise, treat and repeat. For me it took about 1 month. My dog is now 11 months old and has a pretty reliable recall.
  21. Blake follows all his other commands pretty quickly but is still leg weaving very slowly. It's kind of like he does one and thinks that's the end of the command, waits until I tell him to do the next one, moves through my legs, stops, and so on. He doesn't seem to get that I want him to do a continuation of weaves until I tell him to stop. I'm already putting a lot of energy into the command and using lots of praise and treat-jackpots. Any advice?
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