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  1. Today
  2. Look at that team of beautiful pups!! So, we have a much sportier harness that we've tried transitioning him to - at first he was super freaked out by it, so we named it Trish and made it a toy (all of his toys have names), and eventually we were able to get it on him, but he was still kind of freaked out by it and I figured well, if you're not bothered by the old one then we may as well stick with it. Once the step-in harness is on, he's good as gold. He doesn't shut down or behave out of the ordinary; he gives a little shake and carries on with his life. It's the getting it on part that he doesn't always love, but it's not like he's resistant the way he was on Sunday all the time. What was so striking about that was that it was this sudden switch. Rather, putting on the harness is something that he seems to view it as a 20 second task to get through, but he just kind of holds his nose and does it, and it's fine. He knows to lift his paws nicely. It was only that one day that it was a struggle - it was so random! And now, all is back to normal. I do think the why of it all is something to keep in mind, but because his behavior is normal, it doesn't seem as though it's hurting him in any way. He's not trying to get it off or pawing at it or anything. That said, perhaps we will give Trish another try Thank you all for the clever collar and walking wisdom!
  3. I had bc mix tested for MDR1 (via Embark to find out her breed and other health stuff), it's easy enough and if you just want MDR1 tested it runs about 50 or so. Also if you are in contact with the breeder it may be that the parents of your pups were tested and you don't even need to test.
  4. I saw a table a couple of years ago that listed the breeds sensitive to ivermectin. IIRC, about 5% of border collies are sensitive (as compared to about 50% Australian Shepherds, and even higher percentage for Lassie-type collies). If you are really worried, you could have your pups tested for the mdr1 mutation.
  5. Yesterday
  6. This is from https://vcpl.vetmed.wsu.edu/faqs Q: What heartworm prevention products can I use if my dog has the MDR1 mutation? A: All heartworm products labeled for dogs in the U.S. have been tested in dogs with the MDR1 mutation as required by the FDA and have been found to be safe. However, some of the combination flea+heartworm preventive products (those containing spinosad) should be used cautiously in dogs that are MDR1 mutant/normal because of a risk of serious drug-drug interactions.
  7. Not sure if this would be better served in Health and Genetics regarding heartworm preventatives. I did a search and found much information from years ago on this subject, but not much recently. My vet is really pushing for me to put the 4-5 month old puppies on Heartgard....not so much for the heartworm, but for the parasite / worm control. I live in Western Pa -- not a big heartworm area. I am more concerned when I read of border collies having seizures following the use of ivermectin. Would like opinions on the use of Heartgard and what age to start. My vet says it is safe for all herding breeds (that's a quote), but I have to wonder if that information is coming from the pharmaceutical companies. Thank you.
  8. Aww you werent joking about her puppy ears. I can’t wait to see what they decided.
  9. Oh he is handsome. I wonder if his fur was being pulled in the harness? The harnesses we use are a little wider and so far everyone loves them. i don’t use collars (unless for herding) for all the reasons listed above. If they can’t use a harness we use a martingale hope I spelled that correctly.
  10. A thing you can do if you can't do a harness and don't want all the pressure on his neck, is loop the leash around his waist in a kind of slip knot: It is not ideal. It is aversive/makes pulling aversive.. I still used it with Kiran when he was killing himself on a collar (wheezing, gagging, digging in nonsense) and would shut down in a harness (so, 2 years ago or so). He no longer pulls and after some work is cool in a harness, but that get up probably saved his throat and my arms and got us past him turning into a road kill impersonator in a harness (and prevented worse negative associations). https://images.plurk.com/21g6h8b7RahIUw1yZ3ituA.jpg
  11. There's something amazing peaceful about this video. Thanks for sharing!
  12. I know! I love her naughty spots Some of them are black, but most of them are starting to turn tan, and I think it's adorable. Right now, she's enjoying the heated floors:
  13. I don't think that a collar would do him any harm. You need to keep your eyes out for things he might want to pull towards (food dropped on the floor, for example). If you see something like that up ahead, start giving him treats and continue to feed him treats as you walk past it. It will be much better for you to distract his attention instead of pulling him away from something - and it will be easier for you to distract his attention from something if you notice it first. Also, instead of pulling him away from a piece of food on the ground - say 'leave it' and pick the food up. Take it away from him. You could use a poo back to do so. I've always done this if one of my dogs REALLY wanted to eat an old sandwich, I would pick it up, throw it away and then tell the dog to sit or do a little trick, and give them a treat. That distracts their attention and gives me a reason to prasie them for being a good dog. If you really need to pull him away, I don't think it would do him any harm, though.
  14. This is really brilliant, CptJack. It really resonates with me to think about it this way. Thanks. Thank you also for this! I have some follow-up questions!! (Surprised!? ) I have read about the importance of using a harness because dogs' necks are constructed just like ours and a leash to the collar can cause them injury. When he's wearing a harness, I feel comfortable pulling him away from, say, a sandwich dropped on the street (he has a decent "leave it" but not powerful enough to avoid such a tasty street treat). But if his leash were attached to his collar, I would worry about hurting him (he's strong!). I've kind of been under the impression that attaching the leash to the collar is for dogs who never pull or need to be pulled. Am I mistaken? Question 2: Does any teeth at all mean it's behaviorist time, even though he is not aggressive? Kev has historically been protective (as in: his mouth may get on us to say "stop that, I don't like it" but it isn't hard) with things like brushing and toweling. But this stuff has improved A TON (brushing especially; we're pretty much golden there; toweling is a work in progress). I'm a believer in prevention over treatment, but I don't feel overwhelmed, or like I've done everything in the playbook of things I'm capable of doing for improvements. Then again: I also think it would be kind of fascinating to work with a behaviorist! Thank you everyone for your responses! We're back to normal this morning. I approached him with the harness for the morning potty outing, and he was a little "meh I don't really love this" and then lifted one paw nicely, then the other and we were off - normal! I don't think he has any physical injuries; I think he was having a bad hair day. Also, to clarify: it was in that brief moment that I felt afraid (the moment of trying to put on the harness, something we had done without issue hundreds of times, when he surprised me with snappiness). I certainly don't feel afraid of him in general - I mean, look at this face!
  15. Last week
  16. Agree with the above. My best advice - Love the dog you're with. Now, I know you love your dog, I don't mean it literally. But acceptance of who he is, all quirks included, is part of that love. I have learned that lesson, and it makes all of my interactions with all of the animals who come into my life, whether as my own or fosters or client's dogs I am training, so much easier. I know it sounds hokey, but really your (my, anyone's) attitude has a lot to do with how the dog . Think of a dog as bad or aggressive or difficult or stupid or what have you, and that will be the dog you have. Think of the dog as just fine the way he is, even if a certain behavior needs some work, and things are easier. Now, having said that, I don't tolerate biting, and you might want to see a behaviorist on that. But first, quit using a harness. Many dogs don't like it. I have a dog who will just sit down and refuse to go for a walk if I put a harness on him. So try a collar, maybe different kinds, find out what is OK with him. Plus, you can leave the collar on him and then all you have to do is clip on the leash. Maybe that would work for him. I would just experiment.
  17. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t6PQSKKYDTw No voice-over, shepherds speaking Italian.
  18. An 'easy' dog is, ultimately, a dog who meets the owner's expectations . A difficult dog is one who does not. If you go in expecting and even WANTING those traits, they're not difficult. If you're surprised by things you don't want, didn't expect? Difficult. I think in this, and in most your issues, your biggest problem is expecting your dog to be something that he's not, and being frustrated by that. Work on what needs worked on, yes, but try to stop comparing him to some ideal in your head and meet your dog where he's at, and accept WHO HE IS. All the training in the world isn't going to change his personality- just some annoying behaviors.
  19. If this just started up I would be talking to the vet since it sounds like he is protecting himself? Maybe he tore a muscle or strained himself? Or maybe he is just going thru a late stage fear period. Also have you brought him to a behaviorist or a trainer? That way they can help build your confidence with him so your not afraid? He is able to pick up on your feelings. Each dog is their own personality. I have had mix reactions to harnesses but my dogs seem to love their current harness.
  20. My first border collie hated being touched around the neck, and hated having his head touched. Putting on his collie was a nightmare. He was fear agressive and was afraid of many things. One day, he randomly decided he was afraid of men. That fear went away after a few weeks. Then he started to be scared of a particular wall in the house, for no apparent reason. I started feeding him near that wall, and he was fine after a month. He had his problems, but we worked on them. Some of them got better. Some didn't. I tried to fix him, but I managed to live with what I couldn't fix. It wasn't always easy, but it was manageable. I never thought of him as a problem dog. I thought of him as my dog. He was smart, caring, funny and amazing, and he is the reason I now have my second border collie, who is a puppy and is fearless and EASY. But she has her faults. All my dogs have had imperfections, but that's what made them so perfect. Also, the harness. None of my dogs have liked harnesses. Have you tried using a collar?
  21. Hi all! After 6 excellent weeks with Kevin - not much of a worry in sight! so much leash improvement! nothing to complain about! - yesterday he suddenly decided he would absolutely not let us put on his harness and collar and he got super chompy as we tried. Rather than chase him around the apartment, we left without him, came back, tried again (failed); ignored him for a while, played some games, tried again (failed); I got really frustrated and stormed off (grown up!) and while I was walking around the block, my husband took care of it (success!). Kevin kept trying to snap/bite at us as we tried to put on these things that we put on him every day, even multiple times a day! He doesn't seem to be hurt anywhere (we considered this) and he did have a bit of an extreme day the day prior (with an unusual schedule and a lot of new impressions) so perhaps that put him into a mood. But I feel like my trust is a little shaken. Kevin is a very sweet and often quite snuggly, affectionate dog. But while this was happening, I felt kind of afraid of him. He wasn't being wildly aggressive by any means, but he was protective and downright bitey. It made me think: do I have a *difficult* dog!? And what does that mean? My last bc was a rescue who I got at 10 months and he just came out of the package a dream - user friendly and ready to go! He wasn't a big fan of riding in the car but you could do anything to his body, more or less - trim his fur, towel him off, handle his paws. He was a-okay. Kevin I've had since he was 8 weeks and we have a fantastic bond, for sure, but toweling and paw handling and apparently the occasional harness-application are real struggles for him. He gets protective. We may not have worked on these things Every Single Day Without Fail since he was 8 weeks old, but I do think it's fair to say they've been incorporated not an insignificant amount into his life for the past 13 months - we work on them! So that leads me to believe that it's a bit of an inherent, naturey thing about him - he's protective of his body. Fair enough. Have you had a dog like this? How did you overcome it? Is it something you manage rather than totally fix? Does it also shake your feelings on occasion? Like I said: we can go weeks without issue. And then suddenly it's like, agh! How do I even begin to deal with you? If you don't put your harness on, where are you going to poop!? The bathroom?! I love Kevin A TON and I'm proud of all the improvements and growth he's achieved in his first year (that we've achieved together, really). But sometimes I'm like "Hmm, would I be comfortable leaving you with friends for the weekend? Maybe not if you suddenly decide you can't wear your harness?" I would love to hear thoughts and stories on this.
  22. Aaahhhhhh! That puppy tummy! She's beautiful!
  23. Mr LOVES his new friend Blossom. And she loves him. They actually play with each other...of course he doesn't understand why he gets head-butted quite so often though...
  24. In pursuit of the Gold Achievement Cup 4 of 13 Open Chances.
  25. Pixie is so gorgeous! You can just start to see hints of her growing out into a dog, like she is moving into that in between stage where she is sometimes a puppy still, and sometimes a gangly dog. That is a super fun stage, enjoy!
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