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Sorrows

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qhridinGA-  Thanks for the suggestion!  They are beautiful.  I always worry about heavy coats down here.  Which do you think has a thicker coat, Bouviers or Tervurens?  The funny thing is that my husband doesn't like a short coated dog.  He even wondered about Standard Poodles, but I think the Bouvier is better for farm work.  As far as grooming, Maddie, our Springer Spaniel, is perfect.  She has hair that needs regular brushing, but she doesn't have a double coat.    

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Our vet confirmed that our barn cat, Bagheera, has fibrosarcoma.  She has about 3 months.  She is 11 years old and holding her weight.  This tumor came up fast.  Three weeks ago, I couldn't feel anything unusual when I picked her up.  Two weeks ago, I felt a knobby hard growth, about the size of three acorns, on her scapula, near her neck.  This week, it has spread around to under her right front leg and protrudes even more from her back.  The cause is any sort of traumatic break in the skin (vaccines) and probably, a genetic predisposition.  It isn't the vaccines themselves.  Even injecting saline can cause it in studies.  

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LC the poodle will do farm chores if that is what they are raised to do.  From my understanding they can be very versatile dogs.

So sorry about your cat.

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Sending *thoughts/purrayers* for Bagheera and her family.

The Swedish Vallhund looked very nice.  I like their markings and sharper features over the Corgi's.

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24 minutes ago, Heidi n Q said:

Sending *thoughts/purrayers* for Bagheera and her family.

The Swedish Vallhund looked very nice.  I like their markings and sharper features over the Corgi's.

 I had to look them up, I'd never heard of them.....and, now I want one.. hahahaha

 Oh and, Heidi?  Don't ever change your avatar!  

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Well, it's fun to look at exotic dogs, but it is so complicated (and expensive).  I hope there will be a mutt waiting for us.  Herding types at our pound are extremely rare, but we'll try later this summer.  

In the meantime, I contacted the local lady who helped me train Luther to herd sheep and cattle.  She raises herding dogs.  Maybe she can help.  

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The Bouvier will have a MUCH thicker coat than the Terv.  The terv will be much more like your GSD type coat and they will not just continue to grow if not groomed.  

The Bouvier has to have their furnishings cared for unless you keep it shaved.  Shaving a wire coat is not recommended as it ruins the purpose of the coat to protect the dog.  Plus shaving it makes it not look like a Bouvier.

Standard poodles are fun.  Many people say they are intelligent, but they are more biddable than smart and most are kind of dingy.  They are no longer really bred for a purpose.  I am sure there are some that still hunt with them.  They are fantastic family dogs and very gentle.  They are like living with a big bird as they sort of bounce around and are so light in bones.  

I know a Terv breeder in Georgia and also one in Ohio.  I know a Bouvier breeder in KY, but his just never blew my hair back.  They were boring and kind of dumb.  It could just be his, but the coat work was more than I would ever want.  They just sat there. 

When we ever get a house again, my plan is another Rottweiler.  I had one that lived to be 15 years old.  I know a very wonderful Rottweiler breeder in Chattanooga.  Her male is #5 rottweiler and he is everything you wanted in a Rottie and also a farm dog when he is not on the road.  He is kind to everyone he meets, but he loves his owners, his handler and also my daughter who travels with him sometimes.  He is watchful without being overly assertive but you know without a shadow of a doubt he will protect his.  We are at the top of the list for one of his puppies. 

 We have Great Danes now, 2 of them, but they are 9.5 years old and almost 9 years old.  The fire and stress on my oldest one is taking a toll on him and I worry.  He has not eaten a full meal since we lost our house.  In his younger years, he was one of the best all around farm dogs I have ever owned.  He was gentle, fair, stayed out of the way of tractors and appropriately protective and loved trail rides.  He kept up all day with me, and he still keeps up now but he is having muscle weakness.  And he looks very old now.  At night, he is exhausted and slouches when he stands.  He also refuses to eat any joint supplement.  A danes usuable years are fairly short, but they are excellent dogs.

Another breed on my list for home guardian is a Giant Schnauzer.  Those are also an amazing breed with steady character.  

For small farm work you cannot beat a terrier, but I would not get one from me if you have chickens, cats and other small farm animals.  

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Here is a bouvier getting groomed.  The cream or wheaten color, I forget what they call it.

20180512_131348.jpg

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Wow.  I know there is a lot of work for that breed. 

We came up with a list of interesting breeds as a family.  Doberman (natural ears), Kelpie, Giant Schnauzer (natural ears), Belgian Tervuren, and mutt, lol!.  We also did some online quizzes for fun.  Some of the same breeds kept coming up.  

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Kelpies are fun, also Koolies both breeds are high drive.  

I know a good dobie breeder, I am not sure if she keeps any ears natural though.  

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2 hours ago, qhridinGA said:

Kelpies are fun, also Koolies both breeds are high drive.  

I know a good dobie breeder, I am not sure if she keeps any ears natural though.  

 Wouldn't it be up to the person who purchased the puppy, whether or not the ears were cropped?

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46 minutes ago, equicrzy said:

 Wouldn't it be up to the person who purchased the puppy, whether or not the ears were cropped?

You would think so...but, no, sadly.  We already walked away from one Bouvier breeder and one Dobie breeder because they insisted on cropping the ears of all their puppies.  

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Now that I think about it, by the age they are cropped, some will have an idea on what they will be doing and who the puppies will be going to and might not be a big deal to leave one natural.   Ears are not done until 7-9 weeks.    

Both of my danes are natural earred.  They are pets only and I did not want to fool with taping.  I do wish my biggest was cropped.  He has injured his ears 3 times from shaking his head and smacking them on the counters.  It took weeks for it to heal and it was downright nasty getting it to heal this last time.  I finally glued his ear to his head with tear mender to stop him from shaking it and continually busting it open.  He has very large natural ears.  Like a scent hound.

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Bouviers are great dogs but they do have a lot of hair. I stripped mine while I was showing him but resorted to clipping when we stopped showing. It was easier on both of us and, since he lived in the house, the waterproofing/weatherproofing in his outer coat did not matter anymore. Huggy Bear was, as his name implies, a lover of all people but would stand his ground when needed. Big, booming bark, and at 100+lbs, he was imposing to say the least. Mine had very low drive as he was produced by a breeder of bench dogs, the working dogs from working lines have much better drive and are good stock dogs when trained properly. They tend to be quite heavy boned and between heavy stature and heavy coat are not well suited for the heat in my opinion.

When we were looking for a trail dog after our Malinois passed, we narrowed it down to a Dobie or a Dalmatian. I have had several Dobies and love them but the appeal of the Dalmatian won and that is what I have now. I was looking for a short coated, light colored working dog that would have the stamina to stay with the mules in the mountains and would not be too scary to other folks in the camp grounds. I would not have cropped ears on the Dobie, no cropped tail if I got to the breeder early enough to stop it. I don't really have anything against tail or ear cropping, I just like the natural look and think they are less imposing when I am out in public with them. I may still get a Dobie somewhere down the line.

My Dalmatian is everything I wanted and more. He is smart, willing and somewhat needy (which translates to wanting to please and having a great recall, lol). He is somewhat standoffish with strangers at first, not aggressive, just not wanting to be approached until he knows you better, is pretty good at herding and has learned to watch the equine body language. He barks when he thinks it is needed and, I have no doubt he would protect us if needed. He is the energizer bunny and is always ready to go and, being mostly light colored, the heat is not as hard on him as on a double coated or dark colored dog. 

Standard Poodles are great dogs. They are, in my experience, intelligent and willing, have great stamina and are good family dogs. I've never tried to teach one to herd, but I don't know why a person could not. They are high energy and do best if they are kept busy, I've met some slightly neurotic ones on the show circuit but I think that was boredom more than anything. They are easily clipped if trained from the beginning. I removed them from my want list because of the hair and the need to keep one clipped though. Everything in my pasture has stickers, thorns,etc. and, having had a standard poodle before, I knew I would not be up for keeping one clipped so I opted out.

Another breed that made my short list was Rhodesian Ridgebacks. I've never had one or really been around them but my research led me to believe they would make good farm dogs if bred well and trained appropriately from a young age. They are hounds though, with all the unpopular hound traits as well as the popular so some serious research may be in order before considering this breed. Short, thick hair, somewhat light colored and renowned for their strength and loyalty they fit the bill mostly. My son went to meet a breeder and see the dogs when I was looking and he has decided that is what he wants for a family dog. He was blown away by this breeder's dogs. 

I promised myself, I would not get another double coated or dark colored dog as long as I was working full time. They cannot keep up with the equines in the summer in triple digit heat no matter how well conditioned they are and it is not fair to make them stay home every time I have a day off work. I will be outside if I am off work! 

GSDs and Rottweilers are my breeds of choice but they struggle so in our heat so I am just doing without right now. Maybe when I can no longer ride like I do now, I will get one of each to keep me company in my old age!

Our local shelters are also over run with terrier types. I like them but have no desire to own one. 

Good luck in your search. Whatever you find will have a great life with you, I have no doubt. 

 

 

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kdrown, thanks for the info! 

I think it will come down to which breeds are available near us.  I was fine with buying a GSD from afar, but I knew the breed.  If I get something on this list, I would like to meet the breeder and find out if they have avoided the common health problems in the breed.  Bouviers sound like they have a short lifespan.  I didn't realize they were that big.  We don't want to say ' goodbye that soon.  I'm also spooked about getting a Dobie, if they have a tendency towards bloat, like GSDs and Great Danes.  That was a horrible experience.  

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