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About Mary&Sully

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  • Location
    Leesburg, VA
  • Interests
    Hiking... Lots of hiking!
  1. In addition to USDAA (for all the reasons above) I absolutely adore the ASCA trials. They let any dog in, even though it's the Australian Shepherd club, AND they allow training in the ring. So - if your dog blows a contact you are allowed to stop the course and work the contact (as long as you aren't obnoxious about it and stay within the course time limit). In my experience the people are awesome, it's a much smaller trial and my sensitive dog does much better there.
  2. My boy is the reason I started running and now I run half marathons! He and I train together and run about 20-30 miles a week So, I am a big supporter of running with your dog. My pup is soft, so when he gets over-aroused I ignore the behavior and keep running. If he is very overly aroused, I give a firm "ENOUGH", tighten the leash by raising straight up (like you see in dog shows, not chokingly tight). For some reason, the reminder that I am there and in charge is enough to shake him out of it (this is all done while running still) and he gets over it. Certain things will spark the over-arousal, even when you think you've nipped the behavior in the bud, like cold weather, drizzling rain, ... Okay, by far the best item I have purchased in a long tome: http://www.irondoggy.com/Runner_s_Choice_Hands_Free_Dog_Leash_p/runners_choice.htm It's a waist leash with tons of hand holds and two different "bungees" that dissapate pulls - perfect if we spot a deer or squirrel, it gives you enough time to react and lessens the impact. I also second the harness for anything over a few miles, one with a little padding. Just be sure it doesn't rub anywhere. Also, be sure to either run by water or bring some. Sully is much happier when he gets a mid-run swimming break Happy running! Beware - you'll get hooked!!
  3. The puppy is a 12 week old, 25lb male Husky. While my mother has some experience training Guide Dogs, she has never dealt with a problem dog or even one that has not been specifically bred for service work (her pet/pushover Golden doesn't count!). Not that I am the expert, but I try to learn as much and my exposure through agility training has made me aware of different personality dogs and the training joys/obstacles that go along with them. I know enough to know to realize that I don't know nearly enough about training I was very disappointed when I was talking to my mother about this - she seems to have a carefree attitude and believes that it will all work out (probably her biased exposure to family-friendly Goldens). While I believe very passionately about good breeding practices my mother does not. We had a small spat (maybe a little more than small) when she asked me what was so horrible if they did get the puppy from a puppy mill breeder as those dogs need rescuing, and rescue dogs make great therapy dogs according to the newspaper. She didn't have a clue about local training clubs and didn't seem to agree with me that she should have the dog tested (like a hospital service dog certificate) before bringing it into the school. I think that the people reading these boards (as well as myself) hear therapy dog and we envision the dog sitting with mentally ill, emotionally troubled children. A dog that will have to take hair pulling and accidental tail squishes and wild children running up in their face. From my mother's attitude, I am hoping that when she says "therapy dog" she means a dog that will sit in the corner of her room and occasionally get patted on the head. She does live in the South, things are much lower key down there. I am trying to get over our spat and try to help out, it is just very hard dealing with her excitement over the super cute puppy when I am so nervous about it. I'm trying to let things go, understand my mother and others may never care enough about breeding practices to relate to my discomfort in this situation. I feel like I need to be more positive with her in order to mend our relationship and to be of some help with this puppy.
  4. Thanks everyone for your input... A husky/malamute would not be my first choice. This is a very complicated situation, more so than I realized when I first posted. Apparently the principal of the school is rather impulsive and the deed is done (puppy gotten). While my mother is liable for the training and control of the dog, apparently the principal believed she had all the power in the choosing process because she was footing the bill. The reason she (principal) wanted a husky was because the school mascot is a husky. Which, I tried explaining, should not matter. If you want a therapy dog, get the best dog for therapy. But she wouldn't budge. And so I offered, no begged, to help (ie control) the search for the puppy by insuring the correct breeder and lines that may have a temperament better suited for therapy than others. The principal believed that since she read huskies have been service dogs, that the breed was wonderfully suited for it and any husky would do. Besides, my mother and I are dog trainers, we can "fix" anything. She came home with a puppy from I breeder I literally begged her not to consider. This breeder has gone from 0 dogs to 14 huskies since 2006. She jokes about "collecting on of every kind of husky". She has had 7 litters since January of this year, one from each of her females who do not have health testing and only some of which are registered. At first, I believed this woman to be a puppy mill - now I believe that she is just extremely ignorant, irresponsible, and in way over her head. But - the puppy has been given to the school and according to the principle, "You can't beat a free dog". Now- we are stuck with this puppy my mother has been tasked to train in order to bring to an elementary school specifically for special needs children. I wonder how expensive the "free" dog will be if it is temperamentally unsound and we find out when it bites a four year old autistic child. Even after attempting to educate people, my mother included, they still seem to completely overlook everything when they have a cute puppy in their hands. This has been a very upsetting experience for me.
  5. So I know this isn't a border collie question but... My mother is looking for a therapy dog for the elementary school she works at. Her principle has okay'ed and the permissions are in place. The dog will accompany my mother at school and interact with the kids/ be present during therapy and such. The dog would be trained by and live with my mother, who has experience raising Guide Dogs for the Blind. The school originally wanted a Husky, but I am recommending a Malamute instead just based on temperament. However, I have no experience looking for reputable Malamute breeder and need some advice! Can you look for a working bred Malamute and do I want one for this purpose? I don't trust the AKC stamp and I find myself shying away from breeders who talk about the physical attributes (seem to be breeding for masking) but this is *very* prevalent. Also, Malamute rescue seems to be smaller scale than border collie, and I need to be sure and get a young dog that can be properly socialized for the elementary school. Can anyone with Mal/Husky experience point me in the right direction? Thanks!! Mary (Just a quick brag - my young/soft bc just got his first agility title, I'm so proud!)
  6. Look into ASCA trials (Australian Shepherd Club). They are open to non-members and allow training in the ring.
  7. -My roommates and I moved into a townhouse with four dogs. We fully intended to get a dining room table - but the dogs wrestle in the dining room. And so we eat on the couch - who needs a table in the way? -Whenever a dog is bad in the house (accident/chewing) I have never once thought it could be my dog. -I love my dog to death and don't particularly care for one of my roommates dogs. I try to tell myself it's because of the aggression issues / pottying in the house, but truly I just can't stand the dog's personality. Besides, Sully doesn't like him either and that's good enough for me. -I refuse to feel guilty anymore about feeding my dog from the "table"(couch); giving him treats for good behavior, and going up to pet him and walking right past the other dogs. -I routinely drive to petsmart, tractor supply, or petco just so Sully can get out of the house. I also go to outdoor restaurants just so Sully can go out to eat. -Vacation is not vacation without Sully. My bf and I went away together- to a dog friendly beach in an off-leash town where Sully slept with us every night. -MY birthday present to myself was agility equipment. -The only thing I have found that keeps Sully calm during storms is to bring him in my bed and literally lay spooning him with one leg slung over him. Even if it is just raining we have to sleep that way. -I learned to love tolerate jogging because I was getting into shape and it was the only exercise I could do with my dog every day. -I have started telling children he is "mean" when they ask to pet him in order to scare them away, because children make him nervous. -I encourage my dog to jump on me, my couch, my bed... I taught tricks for him to distinguish which piece of furniture I would like him to jump on. ' That is all for now - I'm sure there are more!!
  8. Young female on Washington DC's CL. ABCA, only 17 months. I could go and see her this weekend if anyone is interested. She is beautiful - would love to take her if I could. The post: CL Post
  9. What you are describing is my biggest fear... My dog has thunderphobia which began progressing at an alarming rate when he was about a year and a half. I do have the thundershirt. I trained and had him wear it during normal circumstances. I believe it takes the edge off; but do not expect a miracle. Before the shirt he went I could not sleep through a thunder storm because he would literally scream (from the bathroom tub of course). Now, he has decided the closet is his go-to place and though there is heavy panting; he doesn't scream any more. I'd try it! Mary
  10. Are spectators allowed? Would be happy to donate a spectator fee!
  11. DO NOT DRAG!!! My pup was unsure about the teeter, and the instructor pushed too far too fast forcing him up and allowing it to drop the whole distance. Sully wouldn't go back to that facility, I couldn't even get him in the door. This was about 8 months ago and he just did the teeter at full height for the first time on Monday. It started slow, at my new facility we had to treat him for coming near it, putting one foot on a super lowered teeter, putting two feet n, so on until we slowly were able to start raising it. I've spent two hours a week for the past 6-7 months repairing the damage a forceful trainer has caused. Slow and steady is much easier!
  12. My dog hated the crate with a passion for a long time. What I hadn't realized was that despite the dog blanket I was putting on the floor of the metal pan in the wire crate, every time he moved the pan would shift and make a little noise. He was literally terrified to move too much in the crate when alone because he HATES the metallic noises. Once I realized this (dumb mom) I wrapped the whole pan in an old blanket so that there wasn't the metal on metal noise, and it has helped substantially. You'll need all the crate games ans such other people have mentioned, but this may help a little!
  13. These are mine! I love the tongue on this one! Here he just looks so happy to be doing agility I just took this today on our hike, <3 the smile
  14. For the pet barrier I love the WeatherTech Pet Barrier. It was super easy to set up, completely adjustable, and left no marks on my car when I took it out. It makes no noise either, which is important for my noise sensitive guy. For the cargo liner I use Lloyd RubberTite Cargo Liners. It fits my car perfectly and I haven't had a problem yet! Cheaper than the 'pet liners' out there. Hope this helps!! Mary
  15. I realize that this is an old post, but I had a question about papillomas and didn't feel the need to make a new topic. My dog (abt 2yo) has one inside his ear, right where the ear meets his head at the top. The vet squished it off the when I first found it, but within 3 weeks its back and much bigger than the first time( about the size of a robin's egg). My vet wants to put him under and burn it off so it doesn't come back. However, I think I read above that some of you waited and the papilloma went away. Will this happen or should I just go ahead and bite the bullet and have it removed? Thanks! Mary
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