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Everything posted by wuffles

  1. Anne I just read through Boof's thread The not knowing is very difficult, and I send you strength to make difficult decisions about your lovely boy. Edit: Just wanted to add, Satch's main problem with surgery was that his tumour had ruptured, so he did suffer the effects of blood loss and anaemia. Apart from that he seems to be doing quite well, touch wood.
  2. Thanks Clover Anne I am so sorry to hear about your boy. Can I ask how the lesions were found? Let me know if you have any questions about the splenectomy.
  3. Thanks Diva. I'm sorry to hear about your boy. Satch was fine on Thursday night and ate his dinner, went to bed, then all of a sudden got up and started acting strangely. We actually suspected bloat so off we went to the emergency vet for x-rays but it must have only just ruptured as they looked normal. Our local vet on Friday morning was very thorough and the spleen was out by 2pm. Edited to add: We think that him being such a drama queen probably saved him. He's not exactly the stoic type ;)
  4. Hi all. My beautiful big 8 year old boy has been diagnosed with hemangiosarcoma of the spleen. The tumour had ruptured so his spleen was removed last Friday with no evidence of metastasis, but we are aware that it is almost certainly there somewhere. We've opted not to go with chemo for a few reasons. Looking for other people's experiences, good and bad. What can we expect? He's still recovering from surgery at the moment. He's a huge sook so lets us know (very loudly and dramatically) when he is not feeling well. I'm not sure if he will go downhill gradually or it will be sudden, and not knowing "how long" will be very difficult.
  5. Just putting it out there - my 3 year old Aussie would still destroy all the things you've listed if we left them in the backyard with her. She does obedience/rally/agility, lead walks, off lead walks, to the dog park... Anyway, she gets rotated treat toys (Kongs, Busy Buddy range, plastic bottles, cardboard boxes, ice blocks) and a walk before work, every day without fail. It does help. Potplants would still be fair game though :laugh:
  6. I know you've removed your post but thought I'd respond anyway. Aussies are pretty full on and the only thing that stopped mine being a pain was interacting with known adult dogs who wouldn't put up with her crap. Feel free to PM me if you want.
  7. I have one of the more difficult Nina Ottoson toys and even my, um, "spethal" dog worked it out in a few minutes. They love it, but they do work them out very easily :)
  8. Everything in this range is great: http://www.busybuddytoys.com/View.aspx?page=dogs/products/toys/busybuddy My favourite is the Squirrel Dude with kibble inside.
  9. We love our Rogz Podz bed, but I'm not sure their largest size would be big enough. My big mutt fits in it, he's 70cm at the shoulder and 35kg.
  10. Hee hee. I have an Aussie with lots of white, and I am constantly being told how "lovely and white" she is. She looks really yellow to me, because I know she hasn't had a bath in, errr, no comment. Edit: I even get it from vets, who also comment that she's nicely groomed... when I had been stressing in the waiting room that she hasn't been brushed in weeks and needs a good bath...
  11. Mine are in the backyard, but as we're on a corner block it's essentially the same as a front yard. Not always cut and dry (for the record, we have a retaining wall and huge hedge beside our fence, with no gaps, but my dogs will bark at passers by on occasion).
  12. What do you mean when you say he has been "aggressive" towards the pup? You described a growl and an air snap, but has he done anything more than that? Both my dogs are quite quick to growl at an unruly pup but they will not hurt them. My older dog does NOT like other dogs initiating body contact when he is lying down and when we got our puppy, she was made to know that very early on on their relationship! However, I am confident in my dogs' temperament around other dogs and find their behaviour very predictable. If you are not confident about how your dog will react to other dogs the best thing to do would be to get a trainer out to see their interactions.
  13. I used a front attach harness with my girl which was very effective - it wasn't a correction to her, it physically stopped her from pulling as when she did, she went sideways instead of ahead. As Aidan says, she did learn to pull sideways, but it still allowed for much better control than a flat collar. Many people at my dog club have had lots of success with front attach harnesses (and even haltis, shock horror).
  14. My sports dog gets a 40 minute walk 5 days a week which includes 10 minutes on leash and 30 minutes off leash. She gets at least two ~15-30 minutes free running sessions with a group of dogs (she is a little feral so this is often quite intense exercise) per week. And one session per week of 45 minutes road work. In reality, she doesn't get all that much on leash exercise. In addition, she gets rally and/or obedience training at least two sessions of 30 minutes each week, plus extra each day. She's very fit and well muscled even though, for her breed, she doesn't really get that much exercise. However, I think the rally and obedience exercises which include rear end awareness and balance games, contribute to her muscling quite a bit. My senior pet dog gets 20 minutes of roadwork 5 days a week and at least one session a week of free running/play. To be honest I think that he needs more free running but as he's not good off leash, that is limited. I do make sure he gets that at least once a week though, as I think it's important to keep his joints moving.
  15. Training = games in my house. Obedience games involving finding heel position, fast pace, lots of turns, throwing food, funny shapes, running to hidden rewards, retrieves with different items, scent work, distraction training with toys/noises, learning new tricks, sequencing tricks together, flirt pole, teaching to go out and around objects like a cone, rally type exercises like heeling backwards or pivots, speedy position changes, 2 food game, short agility sequences, ummmmm... my dog loves training, I wonder why :laugh:
  16. There are quite a lot of components to a Fo8 so they need separate training from plain heelwork. Have you done any rear end awareness work with Milo, for example platform work? For Fo8 the dogs (especially big dogs) really need to understand that both their front and rear ends need to stay in heel position, so they need some rear end awareness. That would be my first point of call :) I started off as Cleo says, telegraphing my moves in a huge way - then phase out the telegraphing as you cannot do it in trials (although I still make sure my shoulders turn with my body). When a dog is on the outside, they need to speed up, and when on the inside, they need to slow down (and to complicate matters, we need to stay at the same speed!). So I also trained an exaggerated speed up/slow down. I would speed up when the dog was on the outside and throw rewards forward to encourage faster movement, then slow down with the dog on the inside and reward in position or slightly behind the dog. Of course once again, I then needed to phase out my speed differences. Also, practice Fo8 without the dog. Make sure your speed is constant, your hands stay in the same place, your eyes are focussed on where you are going and your shoulders move correctly with the rest of your body. Video yourself if you can and be surprised at how you look :laugh: And just one more tip re: the food in the hands... if you haven't already, start doing some training with remote rewards (eg. in a container in your bag, sending him to them) so that he gets the hint that he can still get rewarded without the food being right there in your hands ;)
  17. I think she might have to make a few trips to Canberra if she's willing :laugh:
  18. I've spent 5 years telling people, when they ask about my dog's breed, that he is a "big black dog". I certainly don't need assurance of breed, but I'm still curious. I'd get the test done to satisfy that curiosity if I could justify the cost. But as I can't, my dog shall forever remain my "big black dog" :D
  19. I use a plain collar at agility with no tags, and a Rogz multipurpose leash. You can clip it around your shoulders/waist while running. I have a Comfortflex harness. I can confirm that it doesn't rip an Aussie's coat or rub, but it does restrict movement slightly which is another reason (besides safety) that you cannot do agility with a harness.
  20. Here's my little Aussie Shepherd mismark. It's not really an uncommon colour but is a disqualification in the show ring due to risk of hearing/sight problems (Ava has no issues as her skin is quite pigmented). Both her parents have the typical irish spotting pattern (one blue merle and one black tricolour). Aussies come in heaps of colours - including dilute blue and red merles, merles with dilute "patches", ee reds, bi colours... rainbows!
  21. The Australian Shepherd standard allows any eye colour or combination including flecks and marbling. However, it also sets out the correct expression and as previous posters have said, eye colour can affect expression.
  22. One of my dogs would be quite happy to sleep outside, in fact, I think he'd prefer it.
  23. I use Fido's :) My girl doesn't have sensitive skin though.
  24. My dogs enjoyed the food and their condition on it was brilliant. However, my younger dog experienced some inexplicable health issues that started when feeding the food, which stopped when I switched to another food. Could have been coincidence, who knows. People who say that the food didn't suit their dogs aren't making up stories or lying, they're just telling their experiences. To be honest I wouldn't have even mentioned the above issues if some people weren't trying to make me feel bad or guilty for thinking BH might not be the best food for my dogs. It just leaves a sour taste in my mouth. Other foods haven't suited my dogs either but I just move on!
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