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jenfitzh20

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About jenfitzh20

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  1. Penny, I just wanted to chime in, I know this is a bit late. I too am having coyote issues right now. Class is in session for the pups apparently as a neighbor saw 2 coyotes attacking my sheep at 8am one day on her way to work, one adult, one pup. Seems my LGD was dozing near the barn and the sheep were at the other end. Neighbor laid on the horn, scared the coyotes and alerted the LGD, no one got hurt. The yipping is going on dang near all night right now, all 3 LGDs are barking their heads off most of the night and I haven't had a problem (knock on wood) at night. Seems they might be wising up to the fact that the LGDs like to nap during the day. As for the electronet, its been a true lifesaver for my sheep. I put my lambs in it between my 2 breeding groups on either side and the lambs are snug as a bug behind it with my youngest LGD in with them. I don't worry about them at all. Its also very VERY helpful for creating seperation in a hurry if you need a small pen for new sheep or need to seperate for whatever reason as well as rotational grazing. I don't think any shepherd should be w/o a few rolls of electronet. Jen
  2. I can't view the video so I can't comment on if he looks chunky or not but I agree with the others, have his thyroid checked. We had an adopted rescue dog that was training in SAR and for a couple of years. The adopter had issues with his dog aggression and she was doing everything right. Got the thyroid checked (at the suggestion of one of our volunteers) and low and behold, it was off. The meds helped but the behavior was now ingrained so unlearning it has taken some time. Last I heard though, he was doing a lot better and with all the work and training they're doing, I've no doubt he'll eventually be fine. So just keep in mind if it is his thyroid, doesn't mean the behavior will go away instantly once he's on meds, just means you know what helped it develop and retraining will be much easier. Jen www.dreamcatchersheep.com
  3. I'll just put my 2 cents in here as I have 2 very noise sensitive dogs. After the 4th of July, my working dog has become even more sensitive and we had a really severe storm a few nights ago (2 solid hrs of lightening and ear splitting thunder) that has obviously effected both dogs. Because all this is happening at night, they now refuse to stay outside when its dark unless I'm with them. So I've started playing frisbee with them after dark (tricky, beware of obstacles!) and I've been working my girl on the sheep at dusk, as long as I can still see enough to work her anyway. During hunting season, I'll always take the opportunity to work her and if she tries to shut down on me, I just do some more intensive close work with her, do my best to wear her out. The more tired she is, the less likely she is to be afraid. This seems to work for my dogs but its something i have to stay on top of and keep addressing because I don't think it will ever go away, just something I have to manage. Good luck! Jennifer www.dreamcatchersheep.com
  4. Thank you everyone for your kind words. Yes it has been a very difficult time for both of us, I can only imagine how hard it was for my friend to go home without her boy and to deal with all the memories of him there. She has a really rough time of it and took off work the end of the week to come back out to the farm. Its much easier here, lots of ways to take ones mind off of things and be surrounded by other animals, horses, sheep and of course plenty of dogs. Bo Peep, I'm very glad this may of been a help to you, thats why I posted it. We all get into a routine and often don't see the obvious dangers that are right in front of us. Kristine, I hope your husband does read my post for both of your sakes. Trust me, you don't want to temp fate on this one because it'll rip your heart out. Thanks again everyone and be safe, Jen
  5. I'm sure this warning has gone out before but I feel compelled to send it out again. Obviously we know our prescriptions meds are dangerous to our pets. I think sometimes we forget just how dangerous they can be nor do we think some of our pets would ever even try to get into them. Well, we found out tragically just how deadly they are and how inviting they can be to a curious dog. My friend came out to my place for the weekend. I'd been keeping her dog, Mick, for her because she had a foster pup that he didn't get along with. Mick is the brother to my Nora and they were raised together so my place is basically his second home. He'd been with me for 2 weeks. When she arrived, we brought her bags in, set them down and we went to dinner. She had put her drugs in her overnight bag and her dog found them. He was not the type of dog to get into things but he did that night. Only thing I can think is that he thought they were fish oil pills because they were capsules and were in a similar bottle and we give our dogs fish oil capsules regularly and they love them. By the time we got home from dinner, it was too late. The drugs were already in his system and we couldn't get him to vomit. He died 3 hrs later at the ER. It was a horrible horrilbe experience that I don't want anyone else to have to go thru. He had grand maul seizures like I've never seen, screaming in pain, thrashing, trying to bite us. I've never cried so hard in my entire life. Thankfully we were with him when he died. Rest in peace Mick, we love you dearly and miss you terribly.
  6. Hmm, thats not good. This ewe is a bit of a pet to her owner (she's not my ewe) so I doubt she'll be culled anytime soon (plus I love her fleece!) but we may not breed her if thats the case. Thanks for the info. Jen
  7. Yes, I've seen him nurse several times but it takes a few tries for him to get his mouth around it and hang on. Her bag is large but no larger than the other ewe that just lambed last night (we got a set of twins later in the evening!). We'll keep an eye on him and make sure he's getting enough milk. Jen
  8. Yes, mama is a pretty lady and honestly, she's not that big. She's no bigger than our cheviots. She was halter trained as a lamb (not by us) so she's pretty easy to handle. Although she wasn't too keen on being caught yesterday to check her milk. BTW, I know its not a great pic to see her bag, but is it just me or does this ewe have unusually large teats? None of our other ewes have teats anywhere near as large. They look like a dairy cows teats! They're so big the poor lamb (and he's not tiny by any means) had trouble getting his mouth around them. Everyone thats seen her has commented on how large they are. NorthfieldNick, is this a cottswold trait?? Jen
  9. Just had to post a pic of our beautiful new lamb, very first for us and we're terribly excited! He is a Cottswold/Romney/BFL. Jennifer
  10. Rebecca, Curious as to why you dislike pyrs? No intention of talking you out of your dislike but I'm wondering why if its a reason I should consider since I too am looking for a LGD. Because they are the most affordable, thats what I've been looking for...would LOVE one of Janets or Mary's pups but its just out of my range right now and doesn't seem right to spend that kinda money on a dog when I need to put it towards fencing...and a new roof. Jennifer
  11. Excellent advice Beverly, I appreciate it! Especially the part about going out with a change in attitude on BOTH our parts. I know its me that I have to fix as much as it is her confidence. My loss of patience doesn't help matters but thankfully as quickly as she shuts down, she forgives me and starts work again. I will do what you've suggested and let you know how it goes! Jennifer
  12. I have a fiber flock that consists of BFL, Cheviot and Shetland. Those of you that have or know Shetlands, will probably understand my pain here. They are just a different kinda sheep. They tend to flock fairly well together (mine do anyway) but not with the rest of the flock. When I bring my dog, Nora, in, they seperate out into their own little group and can be pretty darned fiesty and at times will face off with the dog. Nora is not the most confident dog so this is very disconcerting to her and she tends to deem them invisible most of the time. Her siblings usually do the same but they're not my dogs and I NEED Nora to get them. I've tried pushing her back towards them but she just gets more and more adamant that they simply do not exist and her confidence threshold begins to disolve, my temper flares and well, there you have it, she shuts down. I've told myself I got this dog for a reason, to soften ME because I can loose my patience pretty easily and she is forcing me to develop more. Thankfully she rebounds pretty quickly as long as I check my impatience and regain my composure. During our chores, I ask her to push the flock to the shed while I fill the troughs with grain. This has been a good excercise for her and is, I think, helping build her confidence. However, if one of the "shets" slips past her to the outside, she simply ignores it and focuses harder on the ones in front of her like she could use the excuse that, "geez sorry, didn't see her slip past!" Yeah right. I will mention that Nora sometimes has power and isn't afraid to use it but she usually has to get POed for that to happen and I"m not exactly sure what the criteria is for that (and she holds a grudge...currently against my ram). I"m trying to teach her a "look back" command but if she doesn't WANT to look back...its pretty hard to teach her to. Its as though if she does look back she'll turn to stone. I believe this is related to the previous "pressure" question as she also is repelled by other pressures and I often have trouble getting her to complete a flank close to a fence (or near shets). I know this little dog has potential, I've seen her do great things. I have more potential to screw her up than properly train her but at this point I need her help so she'll have to make do with me. She is 3 yrs old btw. Jennifer
  13. I have a male that was a tennis ball chewer (no more). His cannines are stubs, I know all about worn teeth. We got a dog in couple of years ago, he was around a year old. Of course we can't prove anything but the way the teeth were, it was very even and clean, no rounding, just straight across, not the first time I've seen it but usually it was on an older dog so I just wrote it off as wear. Even our vet didn't think it was just wear from chewing. Didn't look like any other worn teeth I've ever seen and I've seen a lot. We've gotten dogs in rescue that someone has tried to train as a stockdogs. Give them a command, usually you have to play around to find out what commands they use, and they actually do it...consistently. Just because a dog is in rescue doesn't mean its never had any training, just means that someone no longer had use for it or the dog didn't "cut it". These dogs generally come from the Ozarks. Can't convince me that someone can't/wouldn't do something to a dog that would seem impossible or too painful. They can and do. Jennifer MKBCR
  14. "we file their teeth down, so that they can't hold on.." We have gotten a few rescue BCs in that have had this done. Theres a distinct difference between worn teeth from chewing on chains (or whatever) and teeth that have been filed or cut down. Jennifer MKBCR
  15. Ditto to RDM, very reluctant to place 2 females in the same household, 2 males, not so much. I personally live with 5 dogs, 3 females and 2 males. The 2 males do not like each other but do not fight. The 2 eldest females (6 & 7 yrs old, the 7 yr old is the alpha) don't like each other and will fight in an excited situation (someone knocking at the door etc) but on general do OK. We just never leave them alone together. The alpha and my youngest female get along beautifully, mainly because the youngest is very submissive to her "queen" and wouldn't DREAM of challenging her over anything. Its all about temperament, if they blend well and they are of the same sex, I see no problem with it. Like someone else said though, the breeder knows these dogs. I'd listen. And yes, intact will make a difference. We brought a new 5 yr old rescue over for socializing (he has ehrlichiosis and can't be neutered just yet) and I thought my male was going to have a heart attack. He's not fond of other males anyway but one with BALLS???? I think not! Someone once said to me "males fight for points, females fight for keeps". Very true in my experience but then I'm not around intact males that much. Jennifer www.mokanbcrescue.org
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