Shepherds of Thuringia

(Page 1 of 2: Viewing Diary Entry 1 to 10)  
Page Links: 1  2  

Choosing a breeder

March 2nd 2013 6:42 am
[ Leave A Comment ]

This is a timeline forensics of why knowlege if family lines, and testing is critical. deep family history knowlege all contributed in saving a life.
A genetic condition that could have been passed along was stopped because of routine ultrasound screenings on apparently healthy dogs.

Here is a timeline to demonstrate an actual dog (MINE) of how health testing works, the importance, how open communication health networking of other breeders and owners makes a critical difference.

Timeline:
Dec 28 2005 Tuck Born
2010- Completed health Testing
2005 SEARCH and RESCUE Certified, TD, CD, TDX titles
2006, RN
2008 Champion (Also winning 5 breed specialties)
CHIC OFA-Elbows OFA-Cardiac OFA-HIPS OFA-THYROID OFA-PAtellas OFA-Kidneys OFA-PRA CERF
2010 Becomes father
2011 Tuck's mother died of splenic cancer at age 7, then siblings follow suit
Tucks father died of Spleenic cancer at age 14 1/2 (Tuck was frozen semen and father died in 2004)
2012 Tuck's puppy diagnosed with renal agenesis by ultrasound and dye studies
Discovery discloses this is a hereditary incomplete dominant gene. Further study with familial history points out the patterns associated with the renal agenesis gene has been there the entire time unrecognized, starting with Tuck's mother, imported from Norway, who had problems carrying litters to term, with absorbed puppies, mummy puppies, detached placentas, undeveloped puppies, and puppies that died within 1 day of birth,
Malnouriashed uterine horns,
When Tuck was bred, the bitch had a previous history of normal litters. When bred to Tuck, the history of dying puppies at or shortly after birth continued.(2010) Necropsies were not done. In retrospect, upon discovery of the renal agenesis in Bob, and looking back on the familial history, everything came together in 2012. The only thing missing was the necropsy on thse dead puppies, which would have confirmed bilateral renal agenesis.

Several generations were born of puppies dying at birth. There had been no earlier familial history of this until Tuck was born, and it's suspected this gene was imported with Tuck's mother. Making Tuck a carrier. When he became a father again, the puppies dying at birth, PLUS BOB's discovery that he had renal agenesis pinpointed Tuck as the Renal agenesis carrier. Almost assuredly through his mother (Already dead by the time of discovery) Tuck has two normal kidneys and cleanly passes the OFA kidney test) -- So does Bob, who has one kidney. OFA Screening does not catch this condition

Dec 2012 A routine screening shows a small node

 

Shepherds of Thuringia part II

November 30th 2012 4:11 am
[ Leave A Comment ]

The Shepherd relationship is through the Shepherds of Thuringia that were part of the foundation stock in Every German Shepherd. You will never hear of Elkhounds in German shepherd makeup, and German Shepherd Breeders will deny it. But the Elkhound influence is a large part of the makeup of the Shepherds of Thuringia, which is documented, and will then give you credibility when you make a claim to German Shepherd breeders that they ARE related. One of the founding breeders who was using the shepherds of thuringia, also happened to breed Elkhounds! Coincidence? I think not! Some of the problems with the Thuringia dogs is, that damned curly tail, that still crops up from time to time in the breed and gives GSD breeders fits. Another thing they didn't like about the Thuringia dogs was that they tended not to have as high a drive and strong of a work ethic. (wonder where that came from!) and tended to be far more independent minded (hmmmmmm) And these undesireable characteristics were usually associated with the curly tail, which is why the GSD breeders wanted to breed out the curly tail. The dogs with the curly tails also may have carried stronger elkhound traits that the GSD breeders wished to do without. Hence they picked on the tail :) What was bad news in the GSD was GREAT news in my life. My elkhounds are working dogs., They work for a living. They have to work to get breakfast. They have very strong drive, but when I ask them to stop working they dont have that insane quirky nervous nature. They lie down and go to sleep. To me.. there could be no better dog. They are just right. But I laugh when I look at the traits in the GSD that dismayed early GSD breeders, and definitely see those traits in the elkhound that they tried to breed out. Never the less.. GSD breeders can't deny the Elkhound influence. Elkhounds also have a strong natural herding tendency. (Something desired in the GSD) so I guess the Shepherd has some of both. The Shepherds of Thuringia were well know to be GOOD working dogs if trained and socialized very early. (This is true of the Elkhound as well. They generally tend to be very independent, stubborn at times, and to harness their working capabilities as a working dog.. early socialization and channeling is very important if you want a serious working dog relationship with an elkhound)

 

War Dogs -Vietnam

November 18th 2012 5:45 pm
[ Leave A Comment ]

I was at a tack sale with our Mounted Search and Rescue group. Bob and Tuck were sitting on one of the tables being available to pet. Some man came up and said. AN ELKHOuND!!! I smiled that he knew what they were. And he said.. They are the BEST DOGS.. I said he was an Army military k9 handler in Vietnam. and I listened to hear what he had to say. I asked him to sit down, and he did. Tuck and Bob both fawned all over him, and the feeling was mutual. He sat down to an afternoon of sharing a remarkable story.

I have to share it with you.

He went on about three dogs that he handled during his tour of Vietnam. He told me that War dogs were not brought home from there.. They killed them when their tour was up. This disturbed me. Two of the dogs he handled were German Shepherds, and the other was an Elkhound, named Freya. I recalled someone else recently making a reference to Elkhounds being used in Vietnam as tunnel dogs. Having the experience with heat and Elkhounds that I have had.. I really have questions about how dogs hold up in tropical heat and working.

I asked him how his Elkhound did in the heat. He said.. not too bad. And as a working dog handler, I knew we could speak the same language.

He said his dog was a mine sniffing dog. When we discussed working as mine sniffing as compared to tracking, he said Tracking dogs don't/CAN'T pant while working trail, thus they have no way of cooling themselves. (Yes, I knew this) but mine sniffing dogs work intermittently, sampling sniffs. Mine sniffers, work a little, and pant a lot. Which is why explosives dogs are able to work in intense heat. I've always wondered. Now I know.

He went on to tell about his Elkhound, and his Elkhound was the best dog he ever worked with. He said the Elkhound would not work on lead. Off lead, she was just the best, most reliable dog of any he had handled during his tour of duty in Vietnam.

But, as soon as he snapped a leash on her collar.. she was done. (my experience with Elkhounds too, and probably the thing I like best about working with them. When you flip the switch and ask for work... they work themselves into the ground. and just don't quit. until you flip the switch off.. and they turn off completely and vanish within inches, and you don't even know they are in the house, even though they may be surrounding you everywhere on the floor.

He said, he would work 2 weeks in the field, and then rotate back to camp for 3 weeks. He had 11 days left before coming home, and was really worried about the fate of his dog, knowing they never sent Vietnam war dogs home.

He finished work for that day, and a Boat came down the river after him and two other reconnaissance men working with his team. He was done for the day. He snapped the leash on his dog, and they all walked to the boat picking them up.

And then it happened. They had not cleared the area to the bank between them and the boat. The dog was no longer working, and failed to detect a problem.

The second man in line stepped on a land mine. Two men, the elkhound were killed, and the man who was speaking to me, had lost his leg in a land mine explosion.

He pulled out a picture and showed me his dog, WITHOUT QUESTION... it WAS an ELKHOUND!! I asked him to please scan this picture and email it to me. I'd like to share it with my Elkhound friends. I felt it was a valuable piece of breed history. I only had a piece of scrap paper, and scribbled my name, email address, and snail mail address and handed it over to him. with him in uniform.

I'm so excited. I have had so much troubles with tracking elkhounds in heat, I never could wrap my mind around working an elkhound as a scenting dog in the tropics.

Until he explained to me the difference of scenting style of the mine sniffing dogs as compared to the trailing dog. He reassured me that the Elkhound as a tracking dog in the tropics probably wouldn't work. He said the Elkhound was not a common breed, but his elkhound was not the only elkhound used in the war effort.

He enjoyed working with the elkhound, because they had keen noses, worked until they were told to stop. Were very conscientious and accurate (I've always said the same thing. just differently phrased.. it's the incorruptible character thing)
When an Elkhound stopped.. it stopped. A great thing for me, easy to live with.. but a very fatal flaw for two men and the dog that day.

He said the Elkhound worked hard, was easier to carry out than a 100 pound Shepherd. It took far less to feed in a war, where they carried everything on their backs for the two weeks they were out. The food efficiency of the elkhound was phenomenal, when it was the handler who had to carry all supplies for two week outings.

They did not take as much room. They turned off, and weren't constantly whining, like a shepherd often did. The TURN OFF factor was far less likely to tip their position off in proximity to the enemy.

He said his elkhound went boldly and confidently everywhere. But she was always very careful how she placed her feet. Where the German Shepherds and Labs were almost clumsy with their feet in an oafish kind of manner.

I never gave these qualities a thought, but they did make sense. It also corroborated the report a few weeks ago of someone else claiming to have an Elkhound as a tunnel dog in Vietnam.

I never thought of Elkhounds as being war dogs, beyond sled dogs of historic fame, but not ever in modern war area circumstances, and certainly NOT in the tropics.

I just had to share.
I keep checking my mail, hoping he scans that picture.. and no, it's not here yet, or I would have attached it.

I had a great afternoon listening to War stories of a Vietnam Vet. I bet he never had such a rapt and intense listener. I thanked him for sharing.

 

Alzheimer's and Patient Care, Service dogs, and Search dogs

October 25th 2012 7:20 am
[ Leave A Comment ]

It's been a long time since we posted last. We've been busy training, and I was busy taking care of dad with advanced alzhiemers.

Bob was in training to be a Search and Rescue dog, and we trained on Dad every single day. Not on purpose. He became a tracking dog. He also became a great article dog. I would turn him loose at night, and he would collect around town, all the things that dad distributed.

The funny thing about alzhiemers, is they don't feel they are home. Home is where they are precious, competent and whole. Their self assessment is not good, but they are aware that things are not right, and they keep trying to go back to that place that they knew as sanctuary. This is the reason Alzheimers patients are famous for escaping.

Dad thought we had built a town that looked like his, and recreated a house that looked like his, and stole all of his stuff and put it in that house. He felt compelled to get it out, so he could take it all "HOME". He hid it all over town. Tuck and Bob were turned loose in the town nightly and collected his stuff. (not all of his stuff.. because it was never all found. It's probably in someone's house. In a town where no one locks any doors, Dad felt everyone's house was his.

The dogs tracked him down and very often found him in someone's house when they werent home. When they were home, they called, and we didn't need the dogs to find him. Tuck and Bob became excellent alzhiemers patients finders. Most search dogs do not like tracking cancer patients or alzhiemers patients because of the high amount of chemicals in their systems.

Dad became more and more irascible as his disease developed, only taking him for rides calmed him down. Nursing homes would not take him because 1)he would not keep his clothes on, 2) he thought every woman was mom, 3) He was violent when restrained 4) he broke windows and TV sets (thinking they were windows) trying to escape. Home care was the only option. When he went for rides, he would suddenly open the door and get out of the car --while it was moving. He would tear out door panels, grab steering wheels, grab gear shifts. Because of this, mom and dad were killed in a car accident December 13 2011.

We sorely miss my mom. The good memories of my dad are now returning.

In the meantime, Bob is a certified Search and Rescue dog. A very good one. He became a MASTER trailing dog at age 6 months .. I believe the youngest master trailing dog of any breed ever. Perhaps because he performed REAL searches, every single day. I credit Dad for this. Dad trained (purposefully) my first Search and Rescue dog, Danny. He trained my second one Tuck, although it soon became apparent not competently, Tuck became very good at finding things, and I became an expert at believing my dog, no matter what the track layer said. Dad trained both Tuck and Bob totally unintentionally, and often was very upset at their unerring ability to find him.

BOTH dogs learned to watch him carefully, Dad became annoyed when we followed him around watching him day and night. (We had to) The more we followed him the more angry and violent he became. The dogs learned to watch him, and report to us when he was getting into trouble. They followed him around, and became alert dogs. When they were there.. They prevented many issues from happening.

I wouldnt take them there a lot because the noise levels in the house were so high, it made both mom and dad deaf, and they insisted the TVS be so loud so they could hear. BOTH dogs have suffered hearing loss because of this. I wore ear plugs in the house, when it was my turn to watch dad (every other day.. trading shifts with my sister) At the end of the shift, I'd go home with ears ringing and head aches. This is why the diary did not continue, Life got in the way

When the dogs followed dad around, they stuck with him like glue. He thought they were his best friend and were our most valuable dad monitors. They made life easier for all of us. Mom wanted to keep them there all the time. I told her the noise levels were why they couldnt. Their hearing had been affected. Bob was only 6 months old and had hearing loss because of noise levels. She promised to keep the levels down, and they always creeped back up.

IF it weren't for the noise levels, Mom and Dad (well, mom anyway) would still be alive today.Mom Begged me to keep a dog there constantly, because they were so invaluable managing dad. Dad found them comforting friends, not realizing they were spy monitors relaying every move they felt was inappropriate when out of our eye sight. They allowed him privacy and us respite, and still kept him out of trouble. Dad never did figure out how we always knew he was getting in trouble when the dogs were there. And when he was sleeping, they both learned (on their own) to sleep in a doorway that blocked his access to the rest of the house so they could rest while keeping him out of trouble. Both Bob and Tuck still to this day sleep in doorways... which is very annoying now, but we understand why this has happened, and instead of getting mad, I thank them for their badge of service

 

Alzheimer's and Patient Care, Service dogs, and Search dogs

October 25th 2012 7:19 am
[ Leave A Comment ]

It's been a long time since we posted last. We've been busy training, and I was busy taking care of dad with advanced alzhiemers.

Bob was in training to be a Search and Rescue dog, and we trained on Dad every single day. Not on purpose. He became a tracking dog. He also became a great article dog. I would turn him loose at night, and he would collect around town, all the things that dad distributed.

The funny thing about alzhiemers, is they don't feel they are home. Home is where they are precious, competent and whole. Their self assessment is not good, but they are aware that things are not right, and they keep trying to go back to that place that they knew as sanctuary. This is the reason Alzheimers patients are famous for escaping.

Dad thought we had built a town that looked like his, and recreated a house that looked like his, and stole all of his stuff and put it in that house. He felt compelled to get it out, so he could take it all "HOME". He hid it all over town. Tuck and Bob were turned loose in the town nightly and collected his stuff. (not all of his stuff.. because it was never all found. It's probably in someone's house. In a town where no one locks any doors, Dad felt everyone's house was his.

The dogs tracked him down and very often found him in someone's house when they werent home. When they were home, they called, and we didn't need the dogs to find him. Tuck and Bob became excellent alzhiemers patients finders. Most search dogs do not like tracking cancer patients or alzhiemers patients because of the high amount of chemicals in their systems.

Dad became more and more irascible as his disease developed, only taking him for rides calmed him down. Nursing homes would not take him because 1)he would not keep his clothes on, 2) he thought every woman was mom, 3) He was violent when restrained 4) he broke windows and TV sets (thinking they were windows) trying to escape. Home care was the only option. When he went for rides, he would suddenly open the door and get out of the car --while it was moving. He would tear out door panels, grab steering wheels, grab gear shifts. Because of this, mom and dad were killed in a car accident December 13 2011.

We sorely miss my mom. The good memories of my dad are now returning.

In the meantime, Bob is a certified Search and Rescue dog. A very good one. He became a MASTER trailing dog at age 6 months .. I believe the youngest master trailing dog of any breed ever. Perhaps because he performed REAL searches, every single day. I credit Dad for this. Dad trained (purposefully) my first Search and Rescue dog, Danny. He trained my second one Tuck, although it soon became apparent not competently, Tuck became very good at finding things, and I became an expert at believing my dog, no matter what the track layer said. Dad trained both Tuck and Bob totally unintentionally, and often was very upset at their unerring ability to find him.

BOTH dogs learned to watch him carefully, Dad became annoyed when we followed him around watching him day and night. (We had to) The more we followed him the more angry and violent he became. The dogs learned to watch him, and report to us when he was getting into trouble. They followed him around, and became alert dogs. When they were there.. They prevented many issues from happening.

I wouldnt take them there a lot because the noise levels in the house were so high, it made both mom and dad deaf, and they insisted the TVS be so loud so they could hear. BOTH dogs have suffered hearing loss because of this. I wore ear plugs in the house, when it was my turn to watch dad (every other day.. trading shifts with my sister) At the end of the shift, I'd go home with ears ringing and head aches. This is why the diary did not continue, Life got in the way

When the dogs followed dad around, they stuck with him like glue. He thought they were his best friend and were our most valuable dad monitors. They made life easier for all of us. Mom wanted to keep them there all the time. I told her the noise levels were why they couldnt. Their hearing had been affected. Bob was only 6 months old and had hearing loss because of noise levels. She promised to keep the levels down, and they always creeped back up.

IF it weren't for the noise levels, Mom and Dad (well, mom anyway) would still be alive today.Mom Begged me to keep a dog there constantly, because they were so invaluable managing dad. Dad found them comforting friends, not realizing they were spy monitors relaying every move they felt was inappropriate when out of our eye sight. They allowed him privacy and us respite, and still kept him out of trouble. Dad never did figure out how we always knew he was getting in trouble when the dogs were there. And when he was sleeping, they both learned (on their own) to sleep in a doorway that blocked his access to the rest of the house so they could rest while keeping him out of trouble. Both Bob and Tuck still to this day sleep in doorways... which is very annoying now, but we understand why this has happened, and instead of getting mad, I thank them for their badge of service

 

Shepherds of Thuringia

July 15th 2011 8:17 am
[ Leave A Comment | 1 person already has ]

Shepherd of Thuringia
The German Shepherd descended from the Shepherds of Thuringia. These dogs were much smaller, had small erect ears, curly tails and were grey in color. They were stocky and small in stature. They were independent in nature and required much socialization. They were natural tending herders. They were gentle in nature and extremely intelligent.

Friedrich Sparwasser's Frankfort kennel was working on perfecting the perfect sheepdog. He also raised Norwegian Elkhounds. He used Swedish Sheepdogs, which were lighter, light built body, and lighter bones. I will be scanning and posting one of the earliest Champion German Shepherds from Friedrich Sparwasser'skennels.This is Peter von Pritschen, who was also from Thuringia. Peter was SZ 148 KrH PH, and was the champion in the year 1902. He was an example of a perfect working with all desired psychological as well as physical features. He was born on 14 December 1900.

Captain Stephanitz (Father of The German Shepherd) required a breed that would have the best and most desirable qualities . Both the Thuringian and Wurttemburg sheep dogs were first exhibited in a show held at Hanover in the year 1882 – the year that marked the beginning of the evolution of a dog that was having a mind blowing ability to control herd of sheep. Drastic steps were taken to synchronize these varieties of typical sheep dogs in one single breed. Intelligence and Utility were the watch words for the breeding program. Selective breeding was one of the determining factors in the project. Selection was made on the basis of the degree of shepherding qualities the dogs used to possess. Those dogs were selected that had the typical shepherd qualities, such as expressive heads, moderately lighter weights, good bones and good gait. The dentitions were to be quite strong. The bites were to be quite resistant and such that it would redirect the sheep to the desired direction without damaging. Dogs with erect ears were chosen to get the sound and noise and especially the shepherds’ commands from distant more accurately. This was how the selection was actually made for the perfectly selective breeding program. The German Shepherd Dog as we know today did not really appear until after the Second World War, although the project on the development of a perfectly working dog had already started by the Prussian cavalry captain Max Von Stephanitz. Planned and scientific breeding for correctly blending the blood of best of both worlds had produced enough outstanding specimens, and the breed that is today known as the "Deutsche Schaferhunde" - German Shepherd Dog had gained popularity by fast pace.

 

Texas EquuSearch

June 25th 2011 9:54 pm
[ Leave A Comment ]

There is so much professional jealousy that this is a putoff. It seems as if every organization is always hating on someone.

I participated in a search managed by Texas EquuiSearch yesterday that brought all agencies in, taught the locals how to use all the local, regional, and even national talent available, manage the media, and pull support for a large search, in terms of hardware, software, everything a search needs, funding, food, even down to sunglasses and sunscreen and bug support for a long term search. They did this quickly, efficiently, with no interagency egos detracting each other and worked like a well oiled machine. Instead of egos conflicting with each other, they directed all talent in a focused and positive manner. It was a pleasure to work with them.

I wish all agencies would work this well and constructively together. KUDO'S to Texas EquuiSearch and all those who worked well together.

Detraction is distraction. Hating on people only detracts from yourself and your team. It sullies YOUR reputation. It makes you look like someone others want to avoid. Lets use resources positively.Take the resources available. If a team falls short, instead of shaking fists and heads and saying how miserable and useless they are, take them by the hand and offer helpful suggestions for improvement. This would help the SAR community for all and focus on the end goal. Saving lives.

 

Expectations -Danny Story

May 6th 2011 9:54 am
[ Leave A Comment | 4 people already have ]

One day, browsing a used book store in Greenville. At the side of the store by the house, at that time there was a dog tied to a dog house. Danny and I walked in the store to browse. Danny , my always present companion, as is his son, Tuck, is now; picked up a book and brought it to me. I could see the discernment and disapproval of the store proprietor at the thought of a dog handling the merchandise. No biggy, all books were ten cents. If she thought a little dog spit was going to ruin her dog eared book, I'm be happy to spent the ten cents and put her mind to rest.



So when Danny presented me with the book, I handed him ten cents with instructions to go pay for it. He exchanged with me, the 10 cents for the book, and then took the money up to the proprietor, stood on his hind legs and handed her the dime over the counter..



Not sure if she was shocked or amazed. But she was not expecting that. She said, it was as if he selected his own book! Well obviously he just did.



She said Dogs aren't interested in books. thinking of how if she weren't imprisoned in stereotypes, she might know of the joys of quality time children who can't read themselves, do enjoy being read to. by their parents. Thinking of that poor unstimulated dog tied outside to a dog house, I asked her, how she knew? Did she ever read to her dog?



Thoughtfully, she said, "no"



I told her, dogs are a product of our expectations. If you expect a lot of them, they excel. Children, for instance, if you tied them out to a dog house from infancy, and treated them like a dog, you would expect them to grow up an unsociable animal. A child is, what you invest in them. Same with a dog.



Tuck, who can read up to 10 words off flash cards, (more or less, admittedly he forgets, if we don't practice often.. he has reading retention issues) and works in therapy in the schools assisting in the reading intervention program has driven this home, between both dogs and children regarding expectations.



A friend of mom and dad's who was diagnosed with severe retardation, recently died of her congenital afflictions. She aspired, and graduated National Honor Society, and Valedictorian of her class, simply because she never was told that with her disease, she could never achieve. No one locked that box that forced her to live in those expectations. She achieved, because no one ever told her that she couldn't.



Same with Danny, and same with Tuck. Instead of locking their limitations, we have explored the world's potential together.



It's been quite the journey.

 

Border Patrol -Tuck story

May 6th 2011 9:52 am
[ Leave A Comment | 1 person already has ]

When I took Tuck to Border Patrol when he was just a puppy. I had a special invitation to take training with them. They looked askance at his being there, simply because he did not LOOK like the rest of the power breeds in the border patrol kennels. His perfectly curled white fluffy pompom wiggling happily made him look prissy, and they called him a foo-foo dog. And when you looked down the long kennels of power breeds and saw him standing there,admittedly, you instantly picked out the dog that they called a foo-foo dog.

His name on the kennel was never recognized as TUCK. Kennel handlers assigned to him all called him Foo-Foo and I always sensed disapproval. But when he worked, he was what i thought as AMAZING. But they never ever acknowledged what I thought of as successes. When he finished, he was only ever allowed to run once, He was never allowed re-do's like the other dogs. There was never any criticism, or comments. When he finished, he got a check mark, and they said, NEXT. I thought they hated him, because the only thing they ever said about him was calling him Foo-foo. or Phu-Foo.



The other handlers got constructive help. They got to redo the course. They got many retries. It was as if we were invisible, except for that mocking Phu-foo that replace'd Tuck's name on the kennel assignment roster.



So after a week of training, graduation day of certifications were passed out. They went through the roster. They started off calling dog and handler forward.



Comments followed. Get another dog. Your dog shows potential, but needs more work, recommended he stay another session. Your dog passed, and will be assigned "X". The entire class roll call was called off, and Tuck and I were never recognized until the last dog. I thought we had been over looked somehow. I was disheartened. With each passing handler and dog team called off from the roster, my heart sank, and had this deep git wrenching feeling. I thought Tuck had performed the best of all dogs there hands down. But they apparently hated him and mocked him. Finally they came to Tuck (who should have been at the TOP of the roster, but never mentioned)



And their said. Phu-Foo Dog: Assigned to HERE. Congratulations! We'd like to keep him. Although we suspect that we cannot.



It was that instant that I finally realized that they LOVED him!And relief and exhalation washed over me confirming to me that his foundations and work were solid all along. He was the youngest dog there. I nearly collapsed in relief after the tension that had built all week. I had thought what I perceived to be what was wanted was not. I was relieved to find out Tuck met what they needed.

 

Tuck and Cluck

June 25th 2010 7:23 pm
[ Leave A Comment | 1 person already has ]

The Norwegian Elkhound has been known as a farm dog for 6000 years, and still is today. Their duties entailed herding of reindeer, hunting bear, the Great Elg, and protector of the family farm from wolves.

The herding / tending characteristics passed down through their progeny as vikings swept through Europe, and through the Thuringia lines developed the Modern German Shepherd. The herding instinct became much more developed, as was the drive, but the German shepherd owes it's Incorruptible character, basic color patterns, and yes, herding instinct from it's ancestral Elkhound. Yet today, the German Shepherd breed curses the trait we prize so much, that ****ed curly tail!

Because of an error in translation throwing the elkhound into the hound group, people tend to forget that they are a herding breed.

My dogs have worked every thing from sheep, ducks, cattle, horses, and the critter Du Jour are the new pullets. Being floor raised, these poor birds don't know how to go to roost. Teaching a chicken where to go at night can be a real chore. Already I have lost four birds to Foxes when they did not find their way home.

This is where Tuck comes in. The chickens want no part of the barn at night. Outside they are in danger but convincing them to go to roost is far from their widdle biddy imaginations.

HAving a dog that moves quietly among them, and then urges from the rear, blocks, corners, cuts, an really makes the nightly work of putting the recalcitrant chickens to bed not only easier, but enjoyable.

I love watching him use his gentle touch and powers of persuasion as we work as a team. A point, and word "hold", "GET EM", "CORNER" and he artfully forces, one by one each chicken to it's nightly roost.

I watch in amazement, as he seems to know exactly the right place to be, and exactly the right amount of pressure to apply.

Working with him is like a dance. It's instinct and in the ancestral blood. I know I didn't teach it to him.

 
  Sort By Oldest First

Tuck


 

Family Pets

Reka
Bob

Subscribe

(What does RSS do?)