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I have a question for those who do frisbee. I saw this video and was concerned. Im wondering if I have a reason to be. I've heard that doing a lot of jumping as a pup is really hard on their joints. It says that the pup is 11wks old. Im just worried this pup is going to injure herself with all that repetative impact. What is your opinion?

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Poor litlle thing! She's so cute, but I, too, fear her joints shortly. I was very careful not to do stuff like that with Ouzo until he was 1 year old, and even now (14 months), I try to limit his jumps. Yes, it comes naturaly to jump as a pup, but the owners should know better...

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Oh, the poor little thing. The rollers and stuff are fine to a point, but the jumps and vaults are just going to lead to tragedy if they don't take it easy. Border Collie joints have to mature as gently as possible for maximum health at adulthood - soundness doesn't just happen by magic.

 

It's so easy to just let your pup chase a ball or disc, teach it to jump, etc, when the real training that should be happening at this age should be developing a relationship and teaching the pup self-control and respecting leadership. You might not end up with as "driven" a dog, but you'll end up with a partner rather than a sport machine to be tossed aside when its worn out (whether you keep it around or not).

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Some Border Collies don't fully mature and stop growing until they are 3 years old, so even a 1 year old probably should not be jumping. Personally, I don't like to see serious frisbee at any age. Just look at poor Brock. It is very hard on the joints, even when done carefully.

 

I don't let any of my dogs jump to catch toys, I don't even let them pounce on them. I take mine into the hay field and throw the ball or frisbee into taller grass so they can't see it. Then I send them to find it. Sniffing around for it slows them down and spares their joints. It also makes them think so wears them out mentally. During warmer weather I throw their toys into a lake or pond.

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That is abuse.

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I was advised not to do anything that would encourage jumping until a Border Collie is at least 2 years old so as not to damage the joints unnecesarily. That being said, any dog that is extremely athletic and participates in any sport like frisbee, agility, etc., may have more problems with age than a dog who lives a "normal" life. Just look at all the retired professional athletes limping around. Some are virtual cripples. Border Collies do plenty of jumping on their own before they are two.

 

Kathy Robbins

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Mine jumps on his crate and stuff but I don't throw toys for him to jump up and catch. I might throw a frisbee for him once in a while but nothing to often. I figure if he loves chasing the ball why not just d othat until he's worn out?

 

I have a question, kind of off topic but I hope you don't mind. How long before your dogs get tired (ie. panting, breathing hard, things like that?) Black Jack gets somewhat tired around ten to fifteen minutes of throwing the ball. I know he's still putting on a little weight so could he just not have a lot of energy?

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I always heard that you should not let a pup jump off of any thing they could not jump up on. Like a bed, couch, etc. and that strenuous excercising should be a very slow progress up to the age of 18mos.

 

WyoBC, panting, especially with BCs, does not indicate being tired, it means he is hot! And BCs, having their own little nuclear reactors built in, get hot way faster during play etc. than most dogs. always be aware of temp and how much heat your guy is dealing with. DON'T let him get too hot! To get a good idea of how hot Black Jack is, hold the bottom of his paw in your hand. If the outside temp is cold. his fur may feel cool to the touch. But the paws won't lie. :rolleyes: Of course, it has just been MY experience! Have fun!

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So if it's cold outside his paw should just be cool and he's still ok? Does the same go for summer months?

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When I take the dogs out at night and the temp is around 35-40, I willl check Jacksons paws after he has been on the small porch(its where he always goes after returning frizbee)for about a min. sometimes they will be just warm, but as e play longer they get distincly warm! So if your guy just ran through some icy/snowy ground they will be cool at first, so you need to let them be out of the super coldness for a min b4 checking. In the summer get a kiddy pool and keep water in it. If he does not take to it right away like Jackson, just wait till he gets pretty hot, then have him get in the pool and put him in a down. It only took Jackson two times to figure out it cooled him off! And dont forget to checktemp of the water! In the summer, Jackson can heat the water up pretty fast, and we have well water!

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My two love their pool and the running through the sprinkler, in the summer to cool off. During the hotter summer months we play in the early morning or mid evening when it is coolest.

 

They even have a bowl of water available outside everyday when we play in the winter even though it's like 20-30 outside...lol.

 

We play ball for about 30-45 mins at a time. Taking breaks throughout as they need to.

 

I usually wear out first what with the health probs so I will sit for a few mins and they will lie down and drink some water. Then it's back to ball playing! :rolleyes:

 

They love to roll in the snow and run through the icy puddles here, to cool off too. So I just throw the ball through the water for them to get it.

Even so, after about 15 mins they are still panting so they do need monitoring I agree.

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Perhaps someone should post a comment on the site about the possible damage such activities are going to cause to such a young pup? Try to educate the owner and keep the puppy from permanent damage? Perhaps put in a link to this discussion thread? JMHO

 

WWBC

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I'm trying to think how to phrase such a comment diplomatically. It really does need to be said before people start copying this guy.

 

The sad thing is that I think this person is one of GA's top level competitors. I'm not sure how much good it will do for this pup, unfortunately.

 

Does anyone have a link to some veterinary or sports medicine information on letting joints mature before doing this sort of thing?

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The sad thing is that I think this person is one of GA's top level competitors. I'm not sure how much good it will do for this pup, unfortunately.
Yikes! How do you become a top competitor in canine frisbee without learning the basics of canine joint health?!?

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Maybe by going thru a lot of puppies/dogs..........until you get lucky enough to keep one sound past it's second birthday? Probably not til it's fifth...........

 

WWBC

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Well, I just added a comment. I think. It didn't let me say much but I included a link to a Chris Zink article I found. I think. It's not showing anything yet - maybe it takes a while to process. :rolleyes:

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It looks like that puppy might be jumping too much, while fetching the rolling frisbees looks fine. I believe that jumping at odd angles, spinning, somersaulting, and landing off-balance, especially on an uneven surface, can injure even an adult dog. Those kind of frisbee activities seem to be awfully popular. But why even do it? If the dog likes to play frisbee, why not just throw the frisbee safely over safe terrain? After all, the dog doesn't exist just to entertain you. I think it is every bit as interesting to let the dog demonstrate what an expert center-fielder it would make. Great eye, great jump on the ball, makin' it all look easy.

 

As for keeping cool, I notice that if there is water available -- tub, ocean, whatever -- the dog will often voluntarily sit in it to cool off. A good way to self-regulate!

 

Daisy cooling off:

cool.jpg

 

Going for a good catch:

almost.jpg

 

Dogs being dogs (that's a tennis ball in Daisy's mouth):

Canines2.jpg

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Originally posted by ShoresDog:

As for keeping cool, I notice that if there is water available -- tub, ocean, whatever -- the dog will often voluntarily sit in it to cool off.

I wish someone would explain that to Skip! I have done everything I could think of and regardless of how hot he is, he refuses the pool! Maybe a few more trips to the creek.

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Why do people fret so much about developing drive in their BC? If its a decent BC, it will have drive, work ethic...more than you'll ever require I bet. What you do *need* to develop is self control, and mental and physical soundness as an adult.

 

People who have to throw a frisbee over and over ad nauseaum have issues with OCD. They really should buy a sheep farm so they have more to do LOL

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Well, not everyone can buy a sheep farm! And my border collie, anyhow, is much mellower for the rest of the day if she gets a good hour's worth of exercise at some point in it. What are your suggestions for daily exercise if you think fetching is a bad idea? I'm open to ideas!

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I think it's more the idea that you have to obcess over the ball or frisbee, especially in a pup, in order to have a BC with the drive to do something. Just because you want a frisbee dog doesn't mean you have to do all frisbee all the time from day one...

 

I use a ball for exercise some days, and I have sheep. Right now our place is MUD, and lately I've been driving over to take care of the sheep. And since I don't want to bathe the dogs, or clean the car daily, they're on limited sheep time 'til it dries up or freezes over....

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Well, you certainly don't have to obsess about the ball or frisbee with a puppy to get an adult that likes to play! We got Daisy when she was 12-18 months old, plus or minus, and she didn't have a clue about playing with them. Or anything else! But she certainly gets it all now, 2 years later.

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For a pup, long stretches of fetching are inappropriate and unhealthy for mind and body both. Long walks, puppy tricks, manners, and pretraining for whatever sport or work you will pursue, are plenty to keep a baby pup mentally stimulated. "Go lie down" and "STAY" are really great tricks to teach right about the time when that drive starts to kick in.

 

Divide toy-focused games into different games with different rules and goals. One of my favorites is the dog has to hold a stay while I roll the ball or frisbee away, and then the dog gets to go get it. Or they stay in a down position while I run away, and they have to wait until I release them - they run and grab the toy from me. Fribee games include going around, through the legs, over the knee (urk, can't do that one very well any more - it would be great exercise for me but now my dog is 47 pounds . . . :eek: ). Flyball games include teaching a dog to put all four paws on a target, catch a ball "popped" at their face (tossed, first, then popped between thumb and forefinger). Adult dogs can also chase balls over low jumps placed in doorways - that was something we did to increase stamina in our citified dogs before we got a farm. We're lucky - many doorways in our house line up so I can sit almost anywhere and throw a ball for Ben and Zhi.

 

I'd go to great lengths to avoid encouraging a Border Collie's tendency to obsessive compulsive behavior.

 

I know what you mean about not needing to foster that drive. As far as I know, Cord wasn't really played with much before he arrived here at six years old (certainly his teeth don't look like a six year old ball nut). He sure didn't have a clue what to do with a frisbee. He chased down maybe three rollers, then caught a few low gliders, and now he looks like he's done it his whole life. Except I, ahem, haven't really enforced that whole bring it back concept. :rolleyes:

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