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About DogsAndTheMob

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  1. Advice Please: I'm interested in 9wk old puppy for rehoming

    Here’s one more thing to consider: Who is responsible for costs if the puppy develops parvovirus or another infection after you take it home? An initial vet check might not pick up an incubating infection.

    The current shortage of small dogs may not continue. In fact, I worry that a lot of dogs will need to be rehomed in the next year or so, because people who’ve bought dogs during lockdown can’t manage them when they return to work, and because other people are struggling to care for themselves and their families under the stress of longer working hours and/or less pay.

    Given the seller’s keenness to sell the dog interstate, my biggest concern would have been that it wasn’t his to sell - either that it was stolen or that it belonged to a relative or partner who didn’t want to part with it. There are so many people looking for small dogs that he should have been able to sell it locally. I wouldn’t assume that a purebred dog will be more expensive than a crossbred. Crossbred puppies are being advertised for outrageous prices, given the unlikelihood that their parents have been health tested. Breeders occasionally need to part with adult dogs, and sometimes will reduce the price to place the dog in its ideal home. Rescue is another source to consider. The advantage of of getting a dog from a good-quality rescue organisation is that they assess each dog’s health and temperament before they place it. Where-ever you get a dog, be careful. Look for documentation to support what you’re told. Breeders should show you veterinary certificates for the parents of a litter, depending on breed. Hip, elbow, eye and heart certifications are common for many breeds. Puppies should have been checked by a vet before sale - particularly small breed puppies which are prone to luxating patellas.. Rescue organisations should be registered charities.
  4. Dogs can backtrack. When I was competing in tracking trials (a few decades ago), we‘d walk back along the track with my dog trotting ahead of us once we found the track-layer and it was quite common for my dog to track back to the start. Also, most handlers training for UD and UDX Obedience seek-back teach their dogs to back-track. However, I’m not sure that police handlers would ask their dogs to do so, because it’s contrary to what they usually require. On the other hand, if the dog picked up the back-trail I don’t think the handler would stop him following that track.. After all, how would the police even know it was a back trail rather than a reversal of direction by the person they were tracking, or someone else?
  5. New mutations : an ethical question

    I disagree. I have painful memories of sifting through pedigrees for a relative, looking for potential Border Collie stud dogs that didn’t descend from the first known carrier of ceroid lipofuscinosis. Almost every dog was descended from that dog within 4 generations. The best we could find was 4 generations descended from a half-sibling of the “source dog”. It was later suggested that another unrelated, and very popular, stud dog had also been a carrier. I can’t imagine trying to sift through half a century of pedigrees or even trusting that there were no pedigree mistakes within many generations with so many different breeders producing puppies. DNA testing provides a much simpler tool for identifying, and potentially eliminating, genetic diseases. If I was buying a Labrador puppy and was concerned about CNM, I would be looking for a puppy from DNA tested parentage.
  6. In the United States, AKC breed clubs and the Orthopaedic Foundation for Animals have collaborated to develop lists of recommended tests for many breeds. Adherence to these requirements is regarded as fundamental to ethical breeding over there. https://www.ofa.org/browse-by-breed In Australia, I’d only use this list as a guideline, and check with local breed clubs. Australian breeders may not be required to do the same testing - sometimes for good reasons. There are population differences, including health differences, between countries in the characteristics of various breeds. Also, some specialist testing may be less available in Australia. I’m not sure how many board certified veterinary cardiologists there are in Australia, for example. Incidentally, you may find this register interesting. It lists hip and elbow scores by pedigree name for many Australian dogs. However, dogs can have superb hip and elbow scores and not be listed on Orchid, so ask the breeder if the puppy’s parent’s have been scored and make sure to view the hip and elbow report(s). http://orchid.ankc.org.au/Home/SearchResults
  7. Golden retrievers and exercise

    If you’re looking for an on-lead jogging companion, a Brittany might suit. They’re a Hunter-pointer-retriever breed and in the US they’re used by hunters on horse-back. Off-lead, they’re variable in their tendency to stay close. My girl runs far and fast, despite extensive training and obedience competition success, but some other Brittanies stay close to their owners with little training. My girl is great with other dogs and people, which seems to be typical of the breed. I’ve been to breed meet-ups and all the Brittanies I’ve seen have been very social. of course, you need to check the parents’ health testing status.
  8. Golden retrievers and exercise

    I’ve just noticed Sandgrubber’s comment on cooling down via swimming. My son’s goldens have opportunities to swim during their walks.
  9. Golden retrievers and exercise

    I follow goldenretrieverforum.com (a mostly US based forum with expert commentary by conformation breeder/exhibitors) and I think that would be on the low side of their recommendations for exercise. I get the impression that even the conformation bred goldens there are a lot less mellow than Australian goldens. My son and daughter-in-law have two goldens from mostly European lines, which they take for long walks in the bush. Their dogs set their own - mostly much faster - pace and I’ve never seen them flag, even on the hottest days.
  10. Exercises for low impulse control

    You might find this blog by Denise Fenzi useful. https://denisefenzi.com/2013/08/impulse-control/ The video is a great demonstration of using the dog’s biggest motivators as both temptation and reward in teaching impulse control. I routinely use food rewards to teach impulse control. When I’m teaching a stay or a watch-me exercise, if my dog breaks position as I bring the food towards her, my hand with the food moves quickly behind my back. Once she’s in position again, the food reappears. If she’s struggling to maintain focus as the food comes close, I hold the food at a less distracting distance and bring a second reward around in my other hand in a way that prevents her seeing the alternative reward until it’s close enough for her to take without breaking position. Here’s another example of using what the dog wants to teach impulse control: I live on a farm and my young dog didn’t get much practice in informal loose-lead walking. She was either off-lead or formally heeling (which I taught off-lead). Just after I realised she had a problem with pulling instead of loose-lead walking, I stayed at a B&B with a garden full of rabbits. I taught her loose-lead walking in a weekend. I walked around the garden with her on a harness and long line, following rabbit trails. Every time she pulled on the line I stopped and walked backwards until she took some steps towards me. Then, with the line loose, she got to follow the rabbits again. When, inevitably, a rabbit hopped out and she lunged towards it, I shortened the line and took her inside the B&B. She quickly learnt that impulse control gained her more of what she wanted. It sounds as if physical activity may be your dog’s thing, so perhaps you could use some age-appropriate agility, retrieving or “fly” around a pole as both temptation and reward.
  11. Lameness in 13.5 yo husky

    I had a couple of thoughts when I looked at the videos. I’m not sure that they’re correct but I think they’re worth mentioning. The first is that he looks a little down on the right pastern - possibly more so than the left - and that may be the point of weakness when he stumbles. I’m not sure about the best way to treat that in an older dog. An expert in canine nutrition might have some ideas. Ensuring his toenails are very well trimmed may also help adjust his gait and relieve any strain on his pasterns. The second thought is that the harnesses (and the heavy lead in the first video) are hampering his movement. A flat collar might be preferable, provided he doesn’t pull against it and twist his neck.
  12. Adolescent dog throwing tantrums

    I agree with Tassie. Also, wherever there's a potential link between a desired behaviour and an aversive (e.g. Recalling > stopping off-lead play: jumping in the car > leaving the fun place), make sure that most of the time the desired behaviour is followed by more fun. So you might ask him to jump in the car, then do a spin or puppy push-ups or stay while you walk around the car before you give him permission to leave the car again. Depending on the set up, you might even make jumping into the car part of the agility sequence - like a pause table. Edited to add: I also have a crazy girl, but at three years old she's still got time to grow up sooner than my first BC, who was 16 before he outgrew his crazy behaviour. The crazy ones are the most fun to train.
  13. Adolescent dog throwing tantrums

    I haven’t encountered this behaviour but my general approach to unwanted behaviours is “this will not profit you!” My response would be to quickly tether the dog to a tie-out or something nearby, then walk away and look busy nearby until the dog is on his feet again. Remembering that any emotional response could be a “win” for your dog (or, alternatively, increase any stress component of the behaviour), keep your response as low-key as possible.
  14. Am I being unreasonable?

    Thank you. I think I’ll buy on-line next time.
  15. Three months ago, my 14 year old border collie was diagnosed with heart failure and prescribed Cardisure. The medication price - $386 for 3 months supply - was a shock, but I didn’t see any other option. I phoned last week to order another box of Cardisure and was told they had it on the shelf waiting for me. I collected it and paid another $386. I was looking up information on Cardisure this morning when I saw an ad from an on-line pharmacy - same manufacturer, same packaging, same 10 mg dosage, same number of tablets (100). The price was $185. I understand that vets have overhead costs to cover but more than doubling the counter price of an already expensive medication doesn’t seem reasonable to me. What do you think?