Need advice about getting a puppy...

Due to popular demand, here is the section to discuss everything to do with our pets. Please remember though to post any queries regarding pet livestock in the livestock section as you are more likely to get the right response there!
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StripyPixieSocks
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Need advice about getting a puppy...

Post: #189132 StripyPixieSocks
Fri Mar 05, 2010 4:00 am

Myself and OH are considering in the future getting a puppy, or to be more precise a Border Collie as it's the only dog we both really like and I need to ask a few questions.

First, has anyone owned a Border Collie here?

What is their temperament like, are the boys better than girls or vice versa?

What shots to they need, roughly how much are then and when are they scheduled etc?

Are they easy to train?

I really have zero experience with dogs as I've never had one and to be honest dogs have always scared the cr@p out of me apart from Collies so I want to make sure I know everything up front and don't get any nasty surprises if / when we get one.

I'm not going for a pure breed (?), I just want one from one of the farms around here perhaps as I prefer to see the parents in the flesh before I buy and I haven't got the money to pay for a show dog I've no interest in paying £500 for a dog nor am I interested in it looking pretty... I just want a bog standard dog lol

OH's folks have had dogs all their lives and two of them were Border Collies but they've only had males so I wanted to know which was the easiest / has the best temperament etc.

Any help / advice would be gratefully received as I really miss having pets :(

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Re: Need advice about getting a puppy...

Post: #189143 sarahkeast
Fri Mar 05, 2010 7:49 am

Pixy Socks

Yay for you wanting a dog, they are greatness. However, I would strongly warn on getting a Border Collie, if you want an 'easy' dog, this is definitely not your breed.

I have had 4 BCs, 2 current and 2 deceased and known hundreds through agility trials and other stuff. They deserve their reputation of being intense and needy. If you arent both working full time, have plenty of time to dedicate to exercise and training and have boundless energy then go for it.

They are a lot of work, but extremely rewarding. Great company, but not always easy with kids. Laid back, after a long run or walk. For an hour or two anyway.

As for gender, mine are all totally different; from totally type A and intense, loving and sometimes mellow through just plain silly and of course boundless energy. I have not noticed and gender traits that run through the breed. My male is mellow and loving, but I have known plenty of hyper males and the reverse is true of my current female.

How about a BC cross ? there are plenty of those out there. If you get an older rescue dog you will know more about the temperament and history. And miss the puppy chewing and pooping stage [ok and cute and fluffy]

I hope I havent been too negative, my BCs are great and I wouldnt have anything else. But I also like to get up at 5.30am every morning to go for an hour run before my kids wake up. I have seen a lot of BCs through the breed rescue that well meaning people just didnt realise what they were letting themselves in for.

Good luck with your quest and I hope you find a great dog that you enjoy for a long time to come.

Sarah
[and Torridon and Gwyn, and currently sleeping after a run Pluto and Mars]
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Re: Need advice about getting a puppy...

Post: #189150 Bonniegirl
Fri Mar 05, 2010 9:20 am

BCs are full on dogs that need plenty of exercise and really need to work. I'm not sure what your living arrangements are but if you haven't got pelnty of space for it to move around in, then I would say that a BC isn't for you.

We have one who is constantly on the go, we live on an 8 acre lifestyleblock(smallholding) and it's still not enought for him. He's loyal, got a great temperament, but he should have been on a real farm working sheep. I'll not get another bc as much as I love him.
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Re: Need advice about getting a puppy...

Post: #189154 prison break fan
Fri Mar 05, 2010 10:46 am

Sorry Stripey, but I agree with everything said about Border Collies, they need to work! I've always had Jack Russells until recently, when I aquired an Irish Terrier/Border Terrier cross, and she is an absolute delight. Very different to the JR's, very affectionate and learning fast. Good luck with whatever you choose and please think about all the dogs who need homes. pbf.

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Re: Need advice about getting a puppy...

Post: #189159 marshlander
Fri Mar 05, 2010 11:42 am

We had a Border Collie. My dad took him for a 20 min walk twice a day, and we four children played with him after school and took him to the park etc at the weekend. IMO they can be wonderful family dogs and it is said there's no such thing as a bad dog, just bad owners. Brandy was part of the family and not just something that was played with for a while then put away and ignored til next time.

Read lots including advice here;-
"They don’t need hours of walking every day, they just need a sensible walk, some quiet and constructive mental stimulation and a quiet to themselves where they can rest and actually enjoy their own company."
http://www.bordercollies.co.uk/aboutCollies.php
Terri x
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StripyPixieSocks
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Re: Need advice about getting a puppy...

Post: #189211 StripyPixieSocks
Fri Mar 05, 2010 11:03 pm

YAY, thanks for all your advice it will really all be taken into consideration and I appreciate you all taking the time to be honest :)

Well, I don't mind hard work with animals whatsoever, I rescued parrots and if they are not hard work I don't know what is especially the ones with mental problems! I am willing to put the time in and as we are both currently not working and if we were we'd be working from home time is not an issue for us whatsoever. I know Parrots are not hard work physically unless you're trying to wrap a Macaw in a towel to trim it's nails... *looks at scars* :shock: but intense work never-the-less which I absolutely loved doing.

We currently live in the middle of nowhere with fields and moorland all around so space is something we have in abundance and lots of walks to go on around and about rural Cornwall although we don't have a large garden really so that might be a problem initially however the pasture at the back is a public right of way and I've seen lots of people in there with their dogs playing or just walking through so we're lucky in that way I suppose.

As for the breed, I've really got my heart set on a BC as I don't really like any other dogs and particularly not small breeds like Jack Russells... just not my kind of dog I'm afraid.

Anyway like I said, thankyou for being honest... I like honesty I didn't want people to just say what I wanted to hear because I want to provide a good home so the dog would be happy as well as us and that's important to me :)

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Re: Need advice about getting a puppy...

Post: #189216 Bonniegirl
Sat Mar 06, 2010 12:53 am

It sounds like any dog will have a wonderful life with you! :thumbright:

And one thing I want to add, like you I never liked little dogs! But as well as Clyde(BC) we have Max who's a wee foxie and I don't think I've ever loved a dog quite like I love him. He's a cracking wee dog.

Here are my 3, the 3rd dog is Bonnie she's a Huntaway cross, a NZ working farm dog( who does diddly squat work!)

Image
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Re: Need advice about getting a puppy...

Post: #189228 Millymollymandy
Sat Mar 06, 2010 6:57 am

That's a lovely photo! Are you holding up a bone or something? They look very inquisitive and interested by the camera. :iconbiggrin:
boboff wrote:Oh and just for MMM, :hugish: (thanks)


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Re: Need advice about getting a puppy...

Post: #189233 JulieSherris
Sat Mar 06, 2010 7:44 am

Hi Nic, good on you for wanting to get a dog!
I've always had dogs around - my mum had 6 at one point - interesting morning poo hunt times, I can tell you!

BC's are hard work, especially in the first couple of years, but if you have the leg power to keep up with them, they're great. An obedience class would be recommended, if only to provide the dog with training stimulation.
We now have the 2 bassets & when we got Berts, our 8 yr old, we sat down & wrote a list of what we wanted in a dog - I was working 4 hours a day at the time & we only had a yard, although we lived minutes from the beach - all this was factored in & we went for a dog who would sleep 25 hours a day if need be :lol:

Any dog will respond to the owner if you start out right - As Marshlander says 'there's no such thing as a bad dog, just bad owners.'

I had our first hatched duckling in my hand last night - just 6 hours old & both our boys came, had a sniff & then Berts was quite happy to have the duck tucked under his ear while I nipped to the loo!! Even the cat just sat & watched.

If you have your heart on a specific type of dog, then no amount of advice will shift your mind - good luck with it - I love the colourings of the blue merles - even though we get chased along the road by one every time we go to the village :shock: :lol:
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Re: Need advice about getting a puppy...

Post: #189308 ADG
Sat Mar 06, 2010 8:18 pm

border collies dont make good pets they take a lot of stimulation as a breed on the whole, and they have what could be considered a lot of strange quirks, however a genuine collie greyhound is a different matter, all the strangeness and hyper activity seems to disapear, and the merles look stunning
my mates one
Image

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Re: Need advice about getting a puppy...

Post: #189327 Bonniegirl
Sat Mar 06, 2010 10:58 pm

MMM...no bone...I am in command!!!! :wink: If ya believe that you'd believe anything :roll:
ADG, they do make good pets providing the owner is aware of their needs. They are very loyal and will chase a ball til their paws bleed! :wink: Clyde would! lol Great dogs for obediance and especially agilty classes.
If I'm not careful I'll talk myself into another one. :shock:
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Re: Need advice about getting a puppy...

Post: #189332 StripyPixieSocks
Sun Mar 07, 2010 2:25 am

Aww Bonniegirl your wee doggies look almost smiley... certainly very happy :D

Julie - Awwwww to the ducklings and warm doggy ears... when I win the lottery and buy the field behind me I want lots of ducklings and chicks... I'm a sucker for fluffy ducklings though :D!!

We're definitely still in the planning / considering stage and they will get an awful lot of stimulation around this home IF we get one so there's no problem there. If I can hit the car boots to buy bright baby toys for my birds (and get the awww how old is your little one... then weird looks when I say they're not for a child but a parrot) I think stimulation for any animal we have is the least of my worries tbh.

My OH has had dogs all his life too so he's more 'in-the-know' so-to-speak but they weren't really his dogs, more his folks so owning one would be alot different.

I'm not really fond of many kinds of dogs after being terrified as a toddler being chased by a Great Dane the size of a horse... or so it seemed but BC's are one of the only dogs I've warmed too :)

Not being able to have Parrots because my OH almost died with respiratory problems last year (as some of you already know) anymore we would both love a Dog to share our lives but just as when I got my first Cockatiels I don't just want to go out and buy the first fluffy puppy I see and regret it and more to the point end up with a sad animal because I don't know what I'm doing. I just wanted to be forwarned and know what I have to supply to give the wee animal the best home it can have with us!

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Re: Need advice about getting a puppy...

Post: #189343 ADG
Sun Mar 07, 2010 9:34 am

Bonniegirl wrote:MMM...no bone...I am in command!!!! :wink: If ya believe that you'd believe anything :roll:
ADG, they do make good pets providing the owner is aware of their needs. They are very loyal and will chase a ball til their paws bleed! :wink: Clyde would! lol Great dogs for obediance and especially agilty classes.
If I'm not careful I'll talk myself into another one. :shock:


grew up on a farm where there were never less than 4 collies grandads farm next door always had about the same amount as well, and until 5 yrs ago when I got rid of my small holding I always had at least 2 so I guess I dont know a thing
which breed of dog recieves most complaints about dog bites?
which breed are often getting crossed with huntaways to try and get rid of the quirkiness?
which breed of dog is the largest stock killer?

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Re: Need advice about getting a puppy...

Post: #189345 Bonniegirl
Sun Mar 07, 2010 10:30 am

Aww now ADG that could apply to any dog not properly socialised.
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Re: Need advice about getting a puppy...

Post: #189349 sarahkeast
Sun Mar 07, 2010 11:08 am

ADG - I believe Jack Russells and Labradors are statistically most common biters. Could be just cos there are a lot of them. Not sure about other statistics.

Largely, but not always, I also believe there is no such thing as a bad dog, just bad owner. Having said that, instinct of breed purpose can be totally intense !

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