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urge to herd

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  1. Definitely block off furniture. You might try hiding the toy in another room and reinforcing for finding the toy and bringing it to you. Then you hide it again. You'd need to train a solid fetch first, of course. Finding games are a lot of fun and work off some energy in a good way. If there are nose work classes available to you, check those out as well. Ruth & Gibbs
  2. Agreed, Amy Coapman. As experiments go, I got what I needed ~ confirmation that he's a healthy weight and I can take that to the vet for the next visit. Ruth & Gibbs
  3. One of my all time favorites, GL. Thanks for the New Years Eve giggle. Ruth & Gibbs,
  4. The great Weight Gain Experiment is coming to an end. Fed him the satin balls for a week now. No change in weight at all, AND he's pooping even more. The stools are well formed, no problem there. It seems this boy is doing well at around 38 pounds. I'll probably use up the satin balls gradually, phase them out. Not worried anymore. Thanks for the input and support, folks! Ruth & Gibbs
  5. I agree with what others have said. In my experience, what border collies need and crave is doing something as part of a team with a human. That can be agility, nose work, herding. tracking, etc. Years ago there was someone on the board who had a bc trained for tracking humans. He was in law enforcement, and his girl turned out to be very, very good at tracking. He was able to work her for several years in that capacity. The only think I can remember seeing is that b collies don't necessarily work well as guide dogs for the blind/handicapped. Too much change, too rapidly in environments, I think. And I could be misremembering. Give her something to do WITH you, and odds are she'll be fine. You can teach her silly tricks even. There are a TON of dog trick sites on the Web. there might even be some info about training dogs to work chickens. Good luck ~ let us know how you get on with her. Ruth & Gibbs, who was trained to work sheep and has lived quite happily as a pet for 9 years or so.
  6. So I made the meat mixture this afternoon and just gave Gibbs a very small amount with dinner. He has no problem at all with a little meat mixed in with his kibble. The veterinary hospital is close to where I live, so I can pop in and weigh him whenever. It's pretty cool, it's a step on scale in the lobby, so no appointment necessary at all. Will keep you all pup-dated. Aschlemm, I hope you find something that works for your dog. Ruth & Gibbs
  7. No worries, Aschlemm. The back pain was a while ago, a few years at least. He was pretty much on 'bed rest', the Gabapentin the vet put him on helped him relax. It just gradually got better. I actually did try swimming therapy with him for that, now that I think about it. There was an RVT in my area who had an above ground pool that she used. He really, really hated the water so we quit that. Maybe that could help your dog? He's on Gabapentin again for his knee/acl damage. R & G
  8. That's pretty cool. I've not had a dog who noticed much besides motion, smell, and sound. Did you get a pic? Ruth & Gibbs
  9. Gibbs turned 12 in October, so not ancient, but definitely a senior. My other b collies have gained a little weight as they aged and I've had to really watch what how much they ate, I'm used to that. This is my first time dealing with unanticipated weight loss. I've remarked previously on the Boards that Gibbs has had more skeletal issues than my other 3 b collies put together. Lower back pain so bad he almost couldn't stand, shoulder pain, and the tear in acl ligaments in both knees. I think there's another issue that my memory banks won't pull up right now. We are frequent flyers at the emergency vet clinic. You'd think these dogs have secret pocket calendars so they can look at an upcoming 3 day weekend and say, "Ooooh, time for an emergency trip! Ruth & Gibbs PS - Amy Gibbs says thanks for the extra scritch. He soooo loves getting his rib cage scratched and massaged.
  10. Yep, I get that. Gibbs has weighed 40 lbs, or very close to that, for years. His ribs have always been 'feelable' but not prominent. The reason the ortho vet remarked on it was that he'd lost a couple pounds in 2 months, and I was feeding him the same amount I always have, about 1 and a quarter c of kibble divided into 2 meals. Plus treats, those are never in short supply. I'll start with just a couple oz of the satin ball recipe added daily and then take him to the same vet to weigh him after a month. Will keep you all updated. Ruth & Gibbs
  11. Thanks, D'Elle! Chicken is a main stay in this house. Will buy some tomorrow. And I'll look at satin ball recipes as well, I'd forgotten all about those. Pupdate will follow! Ruth & Gibbs PS - I don't object to feeding raw, I just don't want to mess with it. The satin balls sound like a good compromise.
  12. Gibbs is a little too slender, a pound or 2. The ortho vet remarked on it when I took him for a check-up a couple weeks ago. I've tried simply feeding him a bit more, all that does is make him poop more. He's getting Costco brand kibble and about a quarter cup of training treats daily, if not more. I'm not going to do a raw diet. He's got a great appetite, good coat, bright eyes, etc. There's noticeable muscle wasting in the left thigh, which has the knee with worst damage. Ideas? Ruth & GIbbs, who is always happy about the prospect of food. Any food.
  13. I'm in Northern CA, about an hour from San Francisco. Our high temps here have been mid 50s, Farenheit, to lower 40s, which is a fairly moderate winter for us. Further inland it's much colder. We've also been having a good amount of rain, I'll have to look to see where we are as far as total rainfall to date this rainy season. Will let you know. Summer temps can reach high 90s and above here and there, mostly in August/September. Ruth & Gibbs ETA ~ Nov/Dec of this year we've had a total of 9" of rain. Nov/Dec of 2018 was 6" of rain. Our dry season is from about May through October every year. If the first 2 rainy months predict Jan - April, we may have close to 40" in the 19/20 rainy season. And, we could have floods again.
  14. You can also randomly toss in some easy trick training right after the paw cleaning. If you search for dog trick training, on these boards or on the Web, you'll find scads of silly, easy things to train your dog to do. If you have another way to quickly engage in her in some activity with you that SHE finds rewarding after paw cleaning, that's another plus. These dogs LOVE to work as part of a team with their human. It does take a few extra minutes but might be worth it. Ruth & Gibbs
  15. Nuno, one more bit of advice: try one thing at a time. If you start doing several different things you won't know what makes a difference or doesn't make a difference. Easier to discover what is working if don't throw it all at her at once. Good luck! Ruth & Gibbs
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