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dreizehn

Name ideas, 1st time owner help

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Hi everyone! I’ve been a longtime (and I mean really longtime) lurker here, but never made an account till now! So hi!

I live in southern Ontario, and at the start of September I’m about to pick up my first border collie!

1. I need some naming help! 

Hes a male blue merle who’s got lots of nice big spots on him (see photos) Right now I’m really liking the names River, Haiku, Dipper (as in the Big Dipper constellation — I have a cat named Orion), and Quinn (this one the least). I like the nature/outdoorsy names for sure. I like how River reflects his blue but im not totally set. And other ideas?? :rolleyes:

2. Advice for when I first get him

Ive gone through the various first time/puppy threads but I’m just wondering what you would suggest as the first things I should do with him! Trainingwise, socialization, leash, etc. I’m hoping that he’ll be able to be off leash, to be outgoing and not fearful.. any thing I can do to start shaping that? (Obvs some pups are more sociable than others, but there are things we can do to help!)

i grew up with 2 Siberian huskies so I’m well aware of the whole “when your dog is smarter than you...” complex. 

 

Thanks in advance!

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Welcome to the Boards and congratulations on your beautiful pup. I love me a merle. :D

I love any of those potential names, though like you, Quinn is perhaps my least favorite -- not because it isn't a great name (it is!) but because I like the others even more, though I do like Quinn's meaning.

Honestly, my recommendation is to first just give him a chance to adapt and get to know you and his new home and to bond with you. There's no need to be in a big hurry to start formal training. He'll be learning right from the start, of course, so you don't want to encourage behaviors that you won't appreciate when he's grown. But to begin learning to be clean in the house and not get into inappropriate things is enough for the first week or so.

Discourage nipping when he plays by yelling Ow! in a high pitched voice and stopping play and ignoring him for a few minutes, just like his litter mates have been doing.

One thing I do heartily recommend to all new puppy parents is to calmly and quietly praise for quiet periods, even if the puppy isn't necessarily choosing them, such as when he's just tired out form playing and collapses for a nap. This is a great way to let him know that these times are appreciated and valued behaviors every bit as much as things he does in the active times.

Re: collar and leash -- he probably won't like the collar right away, so just put it on him and let him get used to it before adding the leash. With the leash I let the puppy just drag it for a bit, then pick it up and walk in whatever direction he's going at first before using it to control his movement. These are big changes for a puppy that I like to let him ease into.

Keep us posted with how things are going . . . and more pictures when you get him!

 

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Ooh I'm so excited for you!

I love River the most. So much I wish I'd thought of it. I actually wanted to call our boy Shadow but my kids didn't like it. Dipper is quite nice, especially the way it links with Orion, but would people accidently call him Dippy?

I'm not an extremely experienced dog/collie owner but here are some things we did that I think have had a good outcome (now 19 weeks old):

The crate. I wasn't going to have one as I hate cages, but the first night every time we put him into his bed and tried to creep off to our own beds he climbed out and bounced after us. Eventually I barricaded him into his bed and the next day bought a crate. He was used to sleeping/living in one with his littermates and so was quite happy at bedtime to be put into it and go straight to sleep. This was at 8 weeks old, at about 16 weeks we left the crate door open and he now sleeps in his daytime spot overnight with no problems at all. We needed the crate in those first few weeks because he was very explorative and chewy and I didn't trust him to not chew the cables.

We got outside off leash time almost from the beginning. When our puppy first came home he was small enough that we could put him down on a fairly large piece of grass knowing that if he ran off we could easily catch him, it gave us the confidence to let him go a little way from us without panicking and to practice calling him back. We took him out nearly every day for a short car ride and to meet other people and dogs. We also go places and just sit and watch the world go by, this seems to be more tiring for him than running around the garden playing with his toys.

I think 'Sit' was the first command he learnt, it was quite easy to encourage him into a sitting position and on four small meals a day he quickly learnt to sit for his food.

We've only had our puppy for 11 weeks, but it already feels like forever! The first few weeks I worried that I'd made a huge mistake. I was exhausted getting up in the night and early for toileting, he chewed everything he could including us, if we moved he nipped us, including our faces and he pooped ten times a day. Now a lot of the behaviours I worried about have melted away and as new ones appear I can deal with them more calmly although I think its going to be a work in progress for many months yet.

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Welcome...........Geesh I wish I had thought of River. Thats a great name. Enjoy your time with him. They are a hand full for awhile for sure. What a pretty boy he is!

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Congrats on the incredibly cute new pup!

I named my puppy girl Mancer, which is short for Necromancer, which is one of my favorite songs. I will always name my pups after Rush songs... being from Southern Ontario I would guess you can appreciate that! :D. But of the names you listed I would choose Dipper. Partly because I prefer unique names (I've run across several named River), but mainly because I like how it keeps in line with the celestial body theme. Plus I just think it's a pretty cool name.

As for early training, I will just add that the first thing I trained Mancer to do (literally on the ride home from the breeder) was to give kisses. I thought it was a great way to introduce the training/verbal command interaction, as well as helping us bond right off the bat.

Good luck with your puppy!

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7 hours ago, jami74 said:

The crate. I wasn't going to have one as I hate cages, but the first night every time we put him into his bed and tried to creep off to our own beds he climbed out and bounced after us. Eventually I barricaded him into his bed and the next day bought a crate. He was used to sleeping/living in one with his littermates and so was quite happy at bedtime to be put into it and go straight to sleep. This was at 8 weeks old, at about 16 weeks we left the crate door open and he now sleeps in his daytime spot overnight with no problems at all. We needed the crate in those first few weeks because he was very explorative and chewy and I didn't trust him to not chew the cables.

 We got outside off leash time almost from the beginning. When our puppy first came home he was small enough that we could put him down on a fairly large piece of grass knowing that if he ran off we could easily catch him, it gave us the confidence to let him go a little way from us without panicking and to practice calling him back. We took him out nearly every day for a short car ride and to meet other people and dogs. We also go places and just sit and watch the world go by, this seems to be more tiring for him than running around the garden playing with his toys.

I definitely will be crate training - We did it with my family dogs and even if my plan is for pup to be allowed to sleep where he wants, I think its so valuable and important for pup's safety to be comfortable in a confined space (re: vet, travel, separation, etc.)

And yes I am totally on the same page as you for off leash - I remember reading somewhere a loong time ago (and I'm only 20... so it was probably 11 years ago... half my lifetime. yeesh.) that puppies until about 4 months old have the 'follow mum' instinct where they'll want to stick close to you even though they haven't been 'trained' to do so. Then the get into mischievous teenage phase and dot dot dot

I definitley have to look into good off-leash areas

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5 hours ago, Rush Fan said:

Congrats on the incredibly cute new pup!

I named my puppy girl Mancer, which is short for Necromancer, which is one of my favorite songs. I will always name my pups after Rush songs... being from Southern Ontario I would guess you can appreciate that! :D. But of the names you listed I would choose Dipper. Partly because I prefer unique names (I've run across several named River), but mainly because I like how it keeps in line with the celestial body theme. Plus I just think it's a pretty cool name.

As for early training, I will just add that the first thing I trained Mancer to do (literally on the ride home from the breeder) was to give kisses. I thought it was a great way to introduce the training/verbal command interaction, as well as helping us bond right off the bat.

Good luck with your puppy!

Hey! Woo fellow Canadian :lol: where in Ontario are you from? I'm somewhere between Toronto and Guelph

Kisses is so cute. I really want to teach him to 'sit pretty' and 'wave' hehe

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I like maintaining the celestial theme, but I'd worry that the name Dipper would morph into Dippy.  How about Rigel, the brightest star in the Orion constellation (bonus- the star is classified as a blue giant!)?  Or Sirius, the faithful dog star following Orion?

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1 hour ago, dreizehn said:

Hey! Woo fellow Canadian :lol: where in Ontario are you from? I'm somewhere between Toronto and Guelph

Kisses is so cute. I really want to teach him to 'sit pretty' and 'wave' hehe

Oh no. I'm not Canadian, though I often wish I were. I'm from Delaware down here in the States. I just meant that you being from southern Ontario might be able to appreciate me naming my dogs after Rush songs. (But of course I realize not everyone in your neck of the woods necessarily shares my enthusiasm for those 3 incredible fellows). Sorry for the poor wording. Yes, sit and wave would be very cool! 

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You pup is gorgeous! Congratulations for the journey ahead.

I second crate training, potty training and bonding for early training.

As far as names go, I have always found that dogs will sometimes find their own names.  You can have the perfect name picked out, then you meet the dog and realise it just won't fit.  I saw one of my dogs online and just KNEW his name was Oscar. Another dog we had a few possible names picked out, but when we met him he was so inquisitive and adventurous we named him George, after Curious George, which was not a name which had been on the radar before then.

As a practical thought, are you planning to do any dog sports or activities with your dog?  If you are thinking of agility or obedience, try not to use a name that is going to be a similar sound to any command you may need to use, or use one that is either short enough, or can be shortened enough, to shout out when you are running around a course and out of breath.

I must admit, all of our dogs have tended to pick up nicknames anyway.

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4 hours ago, Lawgirl said:

As a practical thought, are you planning to do any dog sports or activities with your dog?  If you are thinking of agility or obedience, try not to use a name that is going to be a similar sound to any command you may need to use, or use one that is either short enough, or can be shortened enough, to shout out when you are running around a course and out of breath

Thanks!! I’m so excited 

I live in a small city (and pup will eventually live in a bigger city during his life) so I definitely will be doing some sort of activity with him for him. I think frisbee is really cool. I don’t see myself doing anything competitive (including ever buying dog agility equipment) so only in classes probably. So his name probably won’t be a problem getting mixed up.. not naming him “Jumper” or “Weaver” hehe. But will keep in mind

Good tip on the naming tip. I agree - I really hope that he fits into one of these names cuz I really like them :D but who knows!

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I, too, like sometimes to let the dog name him or her self. Jester did. I was vacillating between two names, couldn't decide, didn't really like either one of them, but was feeling pressed to name him, as he was 2 years old and I had had him for over a week by then. We were out for a walk, and he was ahead of me. He went around a corner, then suddenly just his face appeared around the corner, head cocked, ears up, looking back at me with such a funny quizzical expression that I burst out laughing, and said "Hey you jester!" And so he was.

Dogs sometimes live up to their names. Jester did. He kept me laughing at his antics for the next 13 years.

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Photo update!!!

I pick this guy up next week, on the 5th. He'll be one day shy of 8 weeks old. I'm so excited! And NERVOUS oh my god

I think this photo was taken today, and he's 7 weeks old. Looks a bit small maybe but I think it's just the angle and the BLUE eyes. Do you think they'll stay blue?  And one thing I didn't realize, is he's got some little brown bits

 

download_20180829_173738.jpg

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As blue as those baby blues are they might just stay blue. But no telling for sure for a few weeks.

The tan markings mean he's a tri-color. They often don't show up at first, which is probably why you hadn't noticed them before.

 

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1 hour ago, GentleLake said:

As blue as those baby blues are they might just stay blue. But no telling for sure for a few weeks.

The tan markings mean he's a tri-color. They often don't show up at first, which is probably why you hadn't noticed them before.

 

Haha I’m kind of hoping that they’ll not stay blue... I prefer the ‘warmer’ brownish eyes. But looking at other pics of puppies at 7wks whose eyes are already darker, I feel like you may be right and I’m stuck with thee blues! Still beautiful of course! 

Just piercing.. I’m sure glad I’m not a sheep 

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You wanna see piercing blue eyes? This picture of Wren is hilarious.

image.png.9f78caaee4c37a787d740be6a87994d6.png

She didn't always look so bug-eyed though.

image.png.d9e7217443fe2c55d31aedc7597ce39c.png

But the blue eyes were always quite striking.

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So exciting! You have a fun but strenuous month ahead of you. He is a cute little dude. Can't wait to see more pictures as he grows.

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