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Laurae

What happens after you've given a dog away?

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Have any of you more experienced folks ever given one of your older/retired dogs to a novice to help them learn? Was it then difficult to watch them struggle with your dog? Did you ever think they might be ruining the dog? Ever regret your decision?

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Hi Laura,

I've not given a dog away but I was the recipient of such a dog and I can say that I am truly grateful for all I learned from her. It was a bonus that I always liked her, and once I started going to her owner to get help with my then youngster (now 6 as of yesterday) and she got to know me, she gave me her retired open dog. She also agreed to help me with her, so I don't think she really had to watch me struggle so much. I don't know if she ever regretted the decision to give the dog to me, but I would like to think not. She knew that her dog was going to a great *forever* home and I got a chance to learn from a trained dog. I think it was a win-win situation, for both the humans and the dog. That dog has now retired a second time, but I have a friend who has one of Twist's pups and she uses my retiree when she needs to get things done around here that her youngster isn't quite ready for. So that two-times retired open dog is helping to train yet another handler. She'll never leave here though as I promised her original owner that she had a home for life with me, and that's fine with me 'cuz I love her just fine!

 

Now I'm a bit of a control freak myself, so I think I'd have a *really hard* time giving one of my open dogs away when it was time to retire them. I might use them as "schooling dogs" for people who come here, but I don't think I could rehome them. That's why I have so many darn dogs! But I don't regret that either....

 

J.

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Laura,

 

I didn't give my dog away, but sold him about a year ago, for a lot less than he was worth to a newer/novice person. The reason that I felt comfortable doing it was because she came with excellent references and was willing to fly out about 1000 miles one way to spend time with me & the dog. (I was getting divorced & wanted to be able to pick a good home not just sell to whoever came along first.)

 

I don't think that she could ruin him-she's reasonably close to a good trainer & goes there for training and she could always ask me for help. Besides dogs seem to be able to bounce back from mistakes that we make with them.

 

After going out to her house & staying for a few days this fall, I saw how happy they both are and knowing that she's learned from him is even better. So no, I don't regret it.

 

Each situation is different and if you're thinking about doing it, make sure that it's a good decision for everyone involved. Good luck!

 

Laura

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Hi Julie,

You are one of my favorite success stories! I have placed many of my older dogs with friends/students and it gives me the greatest pleasure in the world to watch a dog I trained go on to help someone else learn about trialing.

 

To the person that originally asked the question, I personally always placed dogs with the stipulations that julie mentioned ie home for life, in the house, spare no expense for vet care and I know all the ppl I place with quite well...(it has worked out great with one notable exception, and even that ended up ok) Same holds true for most of the dogs I sell/sold...quite a few I sell with buy back rights so I can make sure I know where they end up...

 

Anyway, just had to chime in to Thank Julie once again for taking care of my Jill girl...! :rolleyes:

 

Sam Furman

Front Runner Border Collies

Tucker, Fred, Tak and Kat

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Aw, thanks Sam. And Miss Jilly-Roo says "hi!" She's been a real blessing. (She's parked on the couch with Jimmy right now.) I should add that Jimmy also uses Jill for basic chores like holding the sheep off feed bunks when he has to do the feeding, etc., when I'm traveling to trials. He gets a blast out of the fact that Jill just knows what to do, especially since his handling style is a bit unconventional, as in "Jill, you need to hold them back there and don't let them get past till I'm done here" (all said with his best redneck farmboy accent) and she figures it out and does the job! :rolleyes:

 

J.

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I bought Libby from sam (tucknjill) just over a year ago. Stipulations...she lives in the house, gets worked and gets spayed. I love her to death (could do without the licking and rolling in yucky stuff)

 

she has been great for me; I have learned tons from her and just late this year moved her up to Open. It has helped me teach my other dogs because i have gained skill in handling

 

Libby has had to learn how to work 300 sheep; she would pick up 20 sheep, pick up 20 sheep, pick up 20 sheep and than stop them all at the gate; that was interesting; she has little problem with....she'd like me to get some lighter sheep....my big stroppy commercial sheep are sometimes providing very photogenic moments (ie no one is moving); she has started to move stroppier sheep and my handling has become much better.

 

My friend Louise let me borrow her retired open dog for a year in pronovice. Kit taught me lots as she lets me know when she thinks i'm doing something wrong....i'll give her a whistle and she'll give me the .....are you sure, that might be a disaster...Kit could pretty much pen sheep her self....I now have the "picture" of what should be done.

 

Thank goodness for people that will sell their open level dogs to help us learn.

 

cynthia

 

p.s....Sam, libby says hi and its getting to be winter...she needs to make a trip south

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Now I'm a bit of a control freak myself, so I think I'd have a *really hard* time giving one of my open dogs away when it was time to retire them.

 

That's my issue. I considered selling Benny during grad school because I felt he wasn't getting enough work and was coming up to retirement too. I'm glad it didn't work out, and now the idea of giving up my aging gentleman makes me teary eyed. If that dog had an odometer it would have turned over 3 times now <laughing, but a little sad>.

 

I think as you have dogs longer, and have more dogs coming into retirement the issue becomes more forced because there simply isn't enough sofa space....and the little bits of work you used to keep a single senior properly fit are now divided between more and more dogs.

 

A good sensible placement with all parties best interest in mind can be great, and there should be little cause for regret.

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Thanks for all your thoughts. I am coming at this from the opposite perspective—I am the novice who has the dog now. I treat him very well, if I do say so myself, with regard to vet care and general quality of life, and I will be his forever home. My questions were the result of some painful soul searching on my part, after a work session with his former owner that did not go very well. I was under the impression that she thought my lack of sophisticated handling skills were really harming Craig's attitude toward his work. I was afraid she was regretting her decision to give him to me. We had a long talk, and I think it was more a big misunderstanding on my part. Thank doG!

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Hi Cynthia!

 

God I miss my little Libby...Hug her for me :rolleyes: Jilll too but at least I get to see her from time to time.

Anyway, you ought to get up wiht Andrea and come with her when she comes in March (not sure when you are lambing though?) Anyway, you are welcome anytime....would love to see Libby...make sure she wears her booties in all that awful canadian snow...! :D

 

Laurae (sp?)

The only time I would regret a placement (and would revoke it for that matter) was if someone was not being kind to my dog..I can take mistakes on the part of the handler but not if they were being nasty to or about the dogs. Not all are created equal and they all have their faults and not all handlers are created equal but I want it to be a happy learning environment for all concerned..I dont care if they ever win any ribbons or complete a course, just that all are having fun. Anyway, glad you got it worked out with your friend...

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Laurae (sp?)

The only time I would regret a placement (and would revoke it for that matter) was if someone was not being kind to my dog..I can take mistakes on the part of the handler but not if they were being nasty to or about the dogs. Not all are created equal and they all have their faults and not all handlers are created equal but I want it to be a happy learning environment for all concerned..I dont care if they ever win any ribbons or complete a course, just that all are having fun. Anyway, glad you got it worked out with your friend...

 

Thanks Sam. I'm not ever nasty to a dog, just kind of intense and a bit clueless, I'm afraid...

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