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About DebnKirk

  • Birthday 10/02/1956

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  1. I made my own Access database. But then, I'm a computer geek.
  2. The net we like for winter is designated P/N. One strand is hot, the other is ground. We've been lucky not to have huge snowdrifts and it's kept it's charge. In the summer we use it with the other netting, and just connect both leads to the hot wire, then all the strands are hot. Good luck. Debbie in WV
  3. Last summer I added two 1/2 Kiko does to my brush-eating sheep flock. Kiko goats are parasite resistant like my Katahdin sheep. They were raised on a dairy goat farm so they are very socialized and have been taught to keep their horns off people. They're in electronet with the sheep, and they're silly, funny, comics who eat pretty much anything up to 5' high. They're easy to handle and tie when I want to hold them aside and work the sheep, etc. I can also tie them up in brushy areas to eat while I'm working on the property. When you drive up, they do start bleating, also when they hear noises like car doors, so they make pretty good alarms. They can be loud! On the downside, because of their upbringing they totally blow off the dogs and refuse to be rounded up with the sheep. They will headbutt the dogs, and push the sheep out of their grain (which is why I tie them with their own pan of feed.) They are not easy keepers - two 50# does are eating almost 3# of goat feed a day and they're still thin. Since they need copper, I built a creep feeder 'hut' in the middle of my paddock so they can get in to their mineral, as well as get out of the rain (I have no building for the sheep -- just windbreaks. The goats know when the electric fence is off, and if you untie the fence instead of climbing over and re-hooking the electric, they'll be out of there. I've shocked myself numerous times when I've forgotten I've hooked the electric back up after climbing into the pen. Debbie
  4. They are liver-ish, or at least hogs ones are. Was not impressed. Maybe chicken-fried with buffalo sauce???
  5. I just went through this exact thing with six new totally wild sheep I purchased. They all are on unfenced rented property. We had two (who were too dumb to run far) in a 100x150 electronet fence with a solar charger (our usual setup). Inside the fence is an 8x8' cattle panel pen at the downhill side of the netting, in which they are fed and released each night. This makes them easier to catch, and habituates them to getting into the pen when needed. As each of the escapees turned up outside the fence, we'd sneak into the electronet through the back side, pen the captive sheep, then go open up the electronet into a HUGE Y shape... imagine the penned sheep at the bottom "tail" of the Y. Then send the fittest person (my husband in this case) on a huge "outwalk" and have him go deep. Very deep. And stay off the pressure on the flighty sheep. The captives act as a magnet, and each sheep ran directly to his buddies, leaving us to put the fence back up and turn it on. This worked for us four times over the past four weeks. The last sheep corralled was just like a deer, and was captured exactly one month after escaping. She's very lucky not to have been eaten by a coyote or dog. Good luck!
  6. This post was lost last week so I thought I'd re-do it. I have a changedetection.com link set up for several websites, including the articles written by Patrick Shannahan. He just posted a new article whose second paragraph hit me like a ton of bricks: Many a student has said to me, “I feel so guilty. My dog could be doing so well with someone who knew how to handle him.” I calmly tell them that possibly the reason the dog is with you, is not to win trials, but to teach you about dogs, dog handling and sheep, so you can do well with your next dog. He then went on to explain how handling Riggs at the Nationals embodied this philosophy. You can read the article at http://www.patrickshannahan.com/unexpected.asp I have a young dog whose sibling(s) I am sure will be in the Nursery Finals this year. Meantime, we've had any number of reasons not to be out training, including a broken leg (hers, not mine.) I feel awful that she's not out there burning up the trial field, but in the meantime I've seen her do some work that my older dog wouldn't do, and my untalented dog couldn't do. And I'm finding out that *seeing* is the big first step to understanding, and doing. So I want to thank the breeder of my wonderful girl for entrusting me with her, and thank Patrick and the other clinicians who give unselfishly to us beginners as well as seasoned handlers. Debbie in WV
  7. I've not had whistle panic, but this past winter I discovered that chapstick and whistles don't go together.
  8. GunDogSupply.com carries leather-look Tufflex collars which stay a little cleaner than the clear-coated nylon collars. They will also include a 4-line engraved brass tag free. All at a reasonable price. http://gundogsupply.com/blk9koceriwd3.html
  9. I think you're assuming a lot when you say "trained." I've sent dogs out for training with a "big hat" Open handler. One, a rescue dog with little talent, came back after a couple of months and is still a long way from driving. The other, a well-bred bitch with a lot of talent, has a month of training. While she can drive, she's nowhere ready for a P/N course. Neither am I. Now, if I get crazy, and rich, and over the winter send the talented dog for six months' training, I'll probably be in P/N instead of N/N. Or maybe even Ranch! Ask me how many months of Open handler training I've got in the dog when I show up at a trial next year, especially if I'm still stuck in N/N. Debbie
  10. I'd also have a test for tick-borne diseases. I had an intermittent limper, and after 3 x-rays it turned out she was positive for Lyme.
  11. I use the Mini-mite, too, but I have a hard time keeping the rechargeable batteries from dying. Recently I had a rescue foster come in with a bunch of grooming equipment, etc. I rolled my eyes when I saw the "As Seen On TV!!!" Pedi Paws grinder, but I tried it seeing as how yet another dremel battery bit the dust. I had to twist off the "safety cover" but by golly it worked! It's slow and quiet, and even my squirmy girl didn't mind it. That fact, combined with the replaceable (C?) batteries, makes this thing a keeper at my house.
  12. I did a Google search for use sheepdog whistle and found a lot of helpful links. I practiced in the car for six months before even thinking of trying it out on my dog. Even then I have to keep remembering not to use too much air - your whistle will launch itself out of your mouth leaving you sputtering!
  13. I wouldn't use "Stop" as I watched a person at a trial recently who used it and bystanders and later the judge remarked to her that it sounded like she was losing control of her dog. Of course she was, and she was using a panicked tone of voice, something we all have done at one time or another. Not a good impression. I wondered at the time about her using the bird-dog "Whoa" in that circumstance, or "Stand".
  14. I also have a Toyota Matrix and I too was hit from the rear by a driver going about 40mph. I had one Corgi in a plastic crate just inside the hatch, and the rear seats were up. The dog was shaken up, but all of the doors on the car stayed closed, and everything inside was a jumble. I had $4400 worth of damage, including a bent rear axle. Once insurance paid for the repairs, I traded it in.... on another Matrix. The only thing I changed was buying a model with 4wd and side airbags. You can't be too careful out there!!! Debbie
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