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Old 03-18-2009, 10:15 PM   #466
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Patch

Love the dog park pics! That sucks about the rule. If he's almost 12 I would just lie. I understand the rule but he's close enough. I have a dog who is very suspicious of children. She had two incidents where kids acted VERY inappropriately to her (ran up to her screaming, fell on her, grabbed at her ears and accidentally gouged her eye) and she is a nervy dog to begin with. Around other dogs though she is very well tempered and stable (she is a completely different dog depending on whether it's with people or other dogs), so when I take her to socialize with other dogs the last thing I want is little kids running around. Of course all kids are different, there are probably plenty of kids over the age of 12 who can't obey basic dog rules or understand dog body language and there are probably kids under 12 who can.
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Old 03-18-2009, 10:19 PM   #467
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Here's a silly pic of Nikon. He's got a bad habit of "posting" in front when he is stacked (show pose). Posting means he pushes forward and leans back, so the his front feet appear too far forward and the angle looks bad and unnatural. To fix this I am stacking him on blocks with his front feet on the back edge of the block. It also helps with his balance and stand-stay. He has to lose 4lbs before his big show next month (young working dogs need to be lean, the judges will want to see tuck, hips, and ribs).




This is an example of a dog "posting" in front. Ick.
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Old 03-19-2009, 04:38 AM   #468
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This is the latest addition to my family:



Patch.
Very nice. What type of dog is he?
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Old 03-19-2009, 10:23 AM   #469
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Here's a silly pic of Nikon. He's got a bad habit of "posting" in front when he is stacked (show pose). Posting means he pushes forward and leans back, so the his front feet appear too far forward and the angle looks bad and unnatural. To fix this I am stacking him on blocks with his front feet on the back edge of the block. It also helps with his balance and stand-stay. He has to lose 4lbs before his big show next month (young working dogs need to be lean, the judges will want to see tuck, hips, and ribs).
Your dog is beautiful.
He looks so... stunning? Or literally, he's a stud.

How do you plan on going about Nikon's 4lbs drop?
I gotta get my dog to lose some weight too. The doctor mentioned that my dog is almost overweight so I should be careful. The weather is getting better so I'm taking her on walks. Controlling her diet is another factor too. That's all I know though. Haha.
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Old 03-19-2009, 10:27 AM   #470
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I took this picture when my dog was shivering and constantly shaking (which I thought was due to her being cold but it was the ruptured discs)..




I thought she was cold so I put the closest item of clothing on her: shorts.
Then my mom came in 5 minutes later and thought she was cold too... thus, the blanket. Haha
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Old 03-19-2009, 12:15 PM   #471
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Your dog is beautiful.
He looks so... stunning? Or literally, he's a stud.

How do you plan on going about Nikon's 4lbs drop?
I gotta get my dog to lose some weight too. The doctor mentioned that my dog is almost overweight so I should be careful. The weather is getting better so I'm taking her on walks. Controlling her diet is another factor too. That's all I know though. Haha.
Haha, thanks! He may be a stud someday. We'll see how he does at the upcoming competition, and he may be getting his hip and elbow prelims done Saturday so I'm nervous. I don't have any reason to think something is wrong, but with large breeds you never know.

For his weight, I was told to reduce his daily food by one half cup and try to exercise him about a half an hour more each day. I've reduced more than a half cup, because I think I was overfeeding him to begin with. For additional exercise, I take him on a fast walk up to a stop sign a few blocks away, then I rev him up with a toy and he carries it home in a gait (sort of like a fast jogging pace for the dog). This is also to improve his gaiting form in the show ring but it's good exercise. Since he is still developing structurally, he cannot run more than a half mile. When he is mature I will run/bike him longer distance for endurance.

A few people told me if the dog whines about being hungry, give them some canned green beans. Few calories and it's just a filler. Nikon hasn't noticed yet, also leading me to believe I had been over feeding him.

Also, a good food can help with weight loss and maintaining proper weight. I don't use the super-ultra-premium foods but I don't feed anything that contains corn, wheat, soy, or gluten. Those things are all fillers that do nothing for the dog but add calories. Foods like Nature's Variety, Innova EVO, Taste of the Wild, Wellness Core, Natural Balance, Canidae, California Natural, etc. are all good foods without the crappy supermarket brand ingredients. I avoid stuff like Eukanuba, Science Diet, Iams, etc.

How the dog should look really depends on breed and also the muscle of the dog. Nikon is a puppy so he is not "filled out" yet, thus a dog his age should be very lean. No fat on the belly, pronounced tuck up and hips, the last few ribs visible or easily felt. A lot of dogs I see in the dog shows on TV are nearly fat and would not be considered in condition based on the breed's standard from a working standpoint.

I don't know anything about ruptured discs, but swimming is often great exercise for dogs who have joint problems. Some vets, dog parks, or dog daycares have indoor pools for dog swimming and rehab.
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Old 03-21-2009, 10:16 AM   #472
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^ Thanks a lot! I just started to re-ration my dog's food. I always give her a little scoop of her IAMs Mini-Chunks (can't recall the measurement-- not too much though), so now I'm feeding her half a scoop. Hopefully the transition will be fine.
I'm scared that because of her ruptured discs that I can't walk her too much. I've been letting her trot around our driveway, up and down, numerous times. I don't know if it helps, but hopefully when they weather stabilizes I'll take her on longer walks.

Quick question about the discs to anyone here: my baby seems sooooo much better, but sometimes after she wakes up from her random dog naps, she starts panting heavily... and she keeps panting for a long time. It worries me. She gets up and drinks a lot of water, but it doesn't seem to help.

I'm thinking it's because she's hot now, with her fur and the weather and stuff... but part of me is doubting her quick recovery. Is this normal?
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Old 03-21-2009, 11:24 AM   #473
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[quote=youtooellen;6020899]
I'm scared that because of her ruptured discs that I can't walk her too much. I've been letting her trot around our driveway, up and down, numerous times. I don't know if it helps, but hopefully when they weather stabilizes I'll take her on longer walks.
/[quote]

You are right, you shouldn't. She needs to be on STRICT rest for a few weeks (like 4-6). This is basically a compression on the spinal cord and it needs the chance to let the inflammation go down. Dogs that have had one disc herniation event are at greater risk than ordinary dogs for a repeat event, so I'm not 100% about taking her on super long walks even after her recovery.

Have you had a followup visit with the vet? Did you ever ask them about anything such as Tramadol?
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Old 03-21-2009, 02:23 PM   #474
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A few people told me if the dog whines about being hungry, give them some canned green beans. Few calories and it's just a filler. Nikon hasn't noticed yet, also leading me to believe I had been over feeding him.
Both our Collies were always pretty slim, but my aunt's American Eskimo was obese (the idiot woman fed him eclairs!), and the vet recommended that she boils some whole carrots and gives them to the dog. We do that with Samson sometimes, cook the carrots in soup broth, until they are very soft, almost falling apart and give him a bunch at a time with his dry food. Dogs apparently love them because they are naturally sweet but also really light in cals. Samson will also eat carrots raw if you grate them, but he seems to like them better cooked, warm and soft. Might give it a try if Nikon catches on that he's on a diet, heh.
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Old 03-22-2009, 10:03 PM   #475
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Good news, Nikon's hip and elbow prelim films are normal! I didn't have any reason to suspect a problem, but it's nice to know if there is one considering the amount of time and money we are putting into training he wouldn't be able to complete if he were dysplastic. Also his mother is "a fast normal" which is a German hip rating meaning the hips are "almost" normal (generally would OFA anywhere from mildly dysplastic to "fair"/no hip dysplasia). Because dysplasia is so prevalent in the breed, you can't simply say all the a2 dogs or worse cannot be bred, you would wipe out a pretty big pool of some great dogs and probably bring out a host of other issues, so instead good breeding is done carefully, considering the hip scores of a dog's parents, siblings, or progeny that have already been rated. So I am quite pleased that Nikon is clear so far, especially considering the person who did his films is known worldwide as being the top expert in the field of veterinary radiology.
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Old 03-23-2009, 11:30 AM   #476
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Yay for Nikon!!!! Did Mos do it for you?
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Old 03-23-2009, 11:41 AM   #477
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Yay for Nikon!!!! Did Mos do it for you?
Oops! Never mind I just read the blog. I'm sure your tired of me saying this but you take awesome pictures!!!
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Old 03-23-2009, 11:48 AM   #478
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Yes Mos did them. He put them on a lightbox and explained some things but all the medical terms don't make any sense to me. Basically, he said they are normal and that's all I really need to know
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Old 03-23-2009, 06:21 PM   #479
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Glad to hear your dog's doing better, ellen...hope it stays that way!

I did the veggie snack thing with my dog too, back when he was just hitting middle age and going through that metabolic slowdown. In general, I do think it's better not to do that--better to just let them go hungry between meals for awhile until their system adjusts, which it will. But if they're agitated to the point of getting destructive or something like that on account of hunger, then it doesn't seem like a bad thing to do as a temporary measure.
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Of course all kids are different, there are probably plenty of kids over the age of 12 who can't obey basic dog rules or understand dog body language and there are probably kids under 12 who can.
Our kids are all under 12 and are very competent and confident around dogs, but they've grown up with one and we've been teaching them since toddlerhood how to respect a dog's feelings and sensibilities...that there are certain things you should never do, certain ways you should never react, and for that matter certain behaviors that a well-trained, trustworthy dog shouldn't be showing either. (Incidentally, I disgree strongly with anyone who claims, as I've heard many people do, that pugs are surefire great children's companions--my own experience, and that of other pug owners I've known, is that the bossy streak most pugs have doesn't naturally mesh well with small children's erratic behavior, so on the contrary you ought to make every effort to give a pug plenty of closely monitored social experiences with kids while it's still young.) I also think that while parents not teaching kids how to behave around dogs is a bigger problem, at the same time, many are too cautious about letting even older children interact with dogs--for instance, some friends of ours won't let their very responsible and confident 12-year-old daughter hold their 1-year-old retriever's leash on even the shortest walks, because "she's not strong enough to control him." And yet he's supposedly "her" pet! I keep telling them, why not send her and the dog for a few obedience lessons together if you're worried about that, because there's really no reason why she can't do it, and you're really not doing either her or the dog any favors by pushing the idea that it's this unthinkable safety hazard.

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Anyone have any breed recommendations for a small, calm, readily trainable dog that'd make a good companion for an elderly woman with limited energy? One of our neighbors really wants a dog badly, and she has a nice big fenced-in yard, but she doesn't want to commit to more than one short walk per day nor the training difficulties of a "more challenging" breed. She mentioned that she particularly like spaniels (though she doesn't have her heart set on that) but I don't really know anything about spaniels. I've urged her to consider getting a kitten, since cats are so much lower-maintenance, but she insists she "hates cats" and what she really wants is a small dog that won't have major exercise requirements, won't be an ordeal to housebreak and won't be high-strung.
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Old 03-23-2009, 10:20 PM   #480
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Um, off the top of my head, a Cavalier? They are THE original lap dog, I believe the only dog originally bred to BE a lap dog. I actually like them You have to be very careful about their health and breeding though. Have you seen the BBC program on purebred dogs?

Greyhounds are very calm and don't require a lot of exercise, however as a hound they may not be as handler-focused and trainable as other working or companion bred dogs.

Unfortunately many small dogs ARE difficult to house break and are high strung or VERY high energy and drive. I love my working German Shepherds but a dog like a Jack Russell Terrier you will not catch me owning!

The problem with the "large yard" statement (not picking on her but I hear this a LOT) is that dogs are like human babies, they can't really amuse themselves and if they do it's usually "bad" things they find to do. Most dogs I know that are turned loose in a large yard for exercise are the ones that end up digging, barking and pacing along the fence, or doing other obsessive behaviors.

Sometimes you just get lucky though. Coke is a medium large sized dog but he is very low energy and zero drive compared to my shepherds. Honestly he rarely even needs a short walk a day. He's the perfect pet/family house dog. So maybe just going to the shelter and looking for a suitable dog would work?
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