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Choosing the Right Dog > An older dog won't bond with a new owner!!?

Somerwynd- Tell Tail

Mr. Personality
 
 
Barked: Thu Jul 18, '13 7:25pm PST 
I don't think there is any difference. I adopted two senior dogs a few years ago - ages nine and ten. They really bonded with me instantly. I adopted them sight unseen from across the country and met them at the airport and it was amazing - they ran right to me as soon as we let them out of the crates at the airport (Atlanta has a grassy dog run where they can be offleash). It was love at first sight for all three of us. Despite the fact that both dogs were deaf I was able to get a CGC with both less than six months later. They were just really bonded and worked well with me. I only had three years with one and four years with the other, but I have never regretted adopting them or our short time together. Every day was a treasure. I would definitely adopt an oldster again.
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» There has since been 8 posts. Last posting by , Jul 21 7:09 am

Choosing the Right Dog > Spaniel Specialists -- Speak Up!
Somerwynd- Tell Tail

Mr. Personality
 
 
Barked: Thu Jan 3, '13 6:42pm PST 
Well I had a golden (13 years) and have numerous close friends with goldens and I have to say that spaniels (clumber and sussex at least) are a whole level up in the velcro/neediness level. Sussex in particular are incredibly attached to their owners. None of my spaniels have been aloof, but some can be with strangers. But all of my spaniels have been very one person oriented. I.E. their world rises and sets on their chosen human. Sussex in particular tend to have issues with SA. And a note on Sussex - they might be too large for what you want. Adult Sussex tend to be in the forty to sixty pound range. One of my Sussex boys was only 40 lbs but he was the smallest Sussex I have ever seen (dog or bitch). They aren't tall, but they are heavy boned. Sussex surprising are a very healthy breed despite the small breed pool. They are very difficult to breed, but once they are a couple of months old they are hardy and have a good lifespan. I know when I went to insure my dogs the rate for Sussex is very low (while clumbers have the highest rate - they do tend to have more health issues). You might want to check insurance rates for Boykins or other breeds you are interested in - that will give you a good idea of what insurance experience is with vet bills for the different breeds.

If you like Boykins, I would say definitely try to meet some in person. We have a lot end up in rescue in this area so that might be an option for you if you want to go that way (maybe try fostering one first?). But having watched and photographed field trials for both goldens and boykins I have to say Boykins are a lot more dog. They are like little bees whizzing around nonstop. Incredibly fun to watch, but you have to live with that.
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» There has since been 5 posts. Last posting by , Jan 5 4:17 pm


Choosing the Right Dog > Spaniel Specialists -- Speak Up!

Somerwynd- Tell Tail

Mr. Personality
 
 
Barked: Tue Jan 1, '13 7:01pm PST 
I have two Sussex spaniels and a Clumber Spaniel. This is my third Clumber and I am active in the breed so have a fair amount of clumber experience. Don't be fooled that Clumbers are laid back and low key - they are really high energy clowns. But they do have an off switch in the house which is nice. But they are large (many bitches even weigh in 70-80 lb range, males are larger and heavier). They have a lot of stamina and can just go all day, just not at a frantic speed. They drool and shed (24/7, 365 days a year). Really they shed a lot - it boggles the mind how much they shed. They are great with other dogs. They are very soft dogs personality wise - they crumble if you even raise your voice at them. They are quiet dogs and don't bark a lot (though they do grunt and woo). In fact if mine barked three or four times a year that is a lot. There is no breed split between field/show. Many top show dogs also hunt. At the last National they had eight dogs who were either CH or GCH who had MH titles. They do really well in tracking, though they don't typically excel in obedience smile I adore these big clowns and can't imagine my life without them.

I also adore my Sussex. They are a lot spicier in personality than the Clumbers. They are also very vocal - they bark a lot (and bay, and woo, and grunt). My Sussex have been a lot more dominant dogs than my Clumbers (who have all been laid back wooses). They are also high energy clowns with an off button. This is also a breed with no field/conformation split. They also do well in tracking and there are a number of search and rescue sussex out there. They also drool and shed (a lot!) so not a dog for a neat freak. They are soft personality wise, but not quite as much so as the Clumber. My Sussex are quick to learn but get bored easily with any repetition and then will "turn off". I hope to always have a sussex in my life. They can be very hard to find - you might need that long to get a puppy.

As for Boykins, we have quite a few in this area and I have seen them at hunt tests. I get calls from the local rescues because they know I have "rare" spaniels. IME, these can be very, very high energy spaniels, bordering on the neurotic. If you focus this energy they can be good dogs. But I have never met anybody who keeps one as a house dog. Rather they are hunting dogs and kept in kennels outside. The breeders I spoke to at hunt tests said they are just not placed as "pets". They really, really need a job.

And a note on English Cockers and English Springers. The dogs I have met at hunt tests are very, very different from conformation dogs of those breeds. They are very high energy and have little physical resemblance to what you see in the conformation ring. I wouldn't have even known the breed if I hadn't checked the program in many cases. And again a lot of the extreme field types are not suited as "house" pets. The breeders/handlers I talked to said they are really kennel dogs. That said there are some very nice ESS and EC of conformation type that still hunt and do dog sports. You just have to look to the right breeder.

I don't have as much experience with Field Spaniels, but I have been seeing a lot of nice ones lately.

I am a total spaniel lover - they are what makes my heart pitter patter. But I like velcro dogs who are very dog friendly, who I can do outdoor activities with, but have an off button. I also am not overly obsessed with neatness. They are great dogs if they fit your lifestyle.
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» There has since been 10 posts. Last posting by , Jan 5 4:17 pm


Puppy Place > Bringing Home a Special Needs Puppy

Somerwynd- Tell Tail

Mr. Personality
 
 
Barked: Thu Dec 6, '12 7:06pm PST 
Have they looked into Wobblers for him? It's more common in larger breeds, but a possibility. I've known a few doberman breeders and this is unfortunately a problem they have encountered (its also common in certain horse lines). It can be hard to diagnose - really need an MRI in addition to x-rays. If this is the problem there are surgical remedies (sometimes).
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» There has since been 3 posts. Last posting by , Dec 13 7:46 pm


Choosing the Right Dog > Irish Setter in the city?

Somerwynd- Tell Tail

Mr. Personality
 
 
Barked: Thu Dec 6, '12 6:53pm PST 
I have a clumber spaniel and two sussex spaniels, and have to admit that I am enamored of all spaniels. They are just lovely personality wise and most have a good off switch (I'd stay away from the field springers and english cockers and the boykins who are much higher energy and not suited for apartment life IMHO). This is my third clumber and my previous two (both boys) would have been great jogging partners (I don't jog anymore but used to jog 5+ miles a day so have a good idea). My current Clumber is a really heavy boy and wouldn't handle it as well. A girl would be fine with jogging. And sad to say there are a lot turning up in rescue lately... Sussex are higher energy little clowns (relatively little - about 40 lbs). Higher energy than the clumbers but still with a good off switch. My only caveat with clumbers and sussex is that the shedding and drool are a turnoff for some (and might be hard to deal with in a work environment). I've been seeing a lot of really nice Field Spaniels lately - and the red ones look almost like a mini irish setter if you like that look. And there are some lovely springers (Welsh and English) and english cockers. Good luck whatever you decide!
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» There has since been 1 post. Last posting by , Dec 6 8:12 pm

Choosing the Right Dog > Oh these aren't even close but how do you choose??
Somerwynd- Tell Tail

Mr. Personality
 
 
Barked: Mon Aug 13, '12 6:39pm PST 
Have you considered a German Wire Haired Pointer? I know several breeders and these are really nice dogs. And they aren't that popular or too expensive. In fact I knew several breeders who would put a championship on a dog, get all the hunting titles and then place the dog for free in a pet home. My handler bred them and she said they had a really hard time placing well bred, health tested puppies because the scruffy look makes them not so popular in pet homes. But they are very similar to appearance to some of the dogs you mentioned. The ones I've met have been very sweet and very trainable, not too hyper and would make a nice pet.
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» There has since been 0 posts. Last posting by , Aug 13 6:39 pm


Choosing the Right Dog > Help Me Find A Breed..

Somerwynd- Tell Tail

Mr. Personality
 
 
Barked: Sat Jul 7, '12 1:49pm PST 
I love the English Cocker suggestion but you need to make sure you get bench rather than field bred. I take pictures at field trials (specifically spaniel trials) and the English Cockers are definitely a split breed. If I hadn't looked in the catalog I wouldn't even recognize a field bred english cocker as being part of the breed. They are like a field bred English Springer on speed. I have talked to a few field English Cocker breeders and they say they are not house pets - they are serious working dogs. On the other hand I have known many lovely bench bred English Cocker that make great pets. I would love to have one some day.
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» There has since been 1 post. Last posting by , Jul 9 6:24 am


Puppy Place > Introducing Teller :)

Somerwynd- Tell Tail

Mr. Personality
 
 
Barked: Sat Jul 7, '12 1:37pm PST 
Thanks! He is such a sweetie smile We just went swimming in the pool and he loves it. He is the most confident puppy. Its getting better between him and my thirteen year old Wilson. Teller just gets too excited sometimes and its too much for Wilson. I've been careful to give the puppy time outs when this happens and I'm making sure I get a lot of one on one time with Wilson.
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» There has since been 4 posts. Last posting by , Jul 19 4:34 am


Puppy Place > Introducing Teller :)

Somerwynd- Tell Tail

Mr. Personality
 
 
Barked: Wed Jul 4, '12 11:40am PST 
Teller is our new Sussex Spaniel puppy. I brought him home last Thursday (flew to Denver, CO from Pensacola, FL to pick him up). He is the sweetest puppy. And so smart! He is 8 weeks old and is almost potty trained (only one wee accident in the last two days). He is walking on his leash beautifully and just being a good dog. He can get excited and mouthy, but that is getting better too. I am so happy with how confident this little guy is - nothing phases him. In the airport he was totally brave, our thunderstorms haven't bothered him, and even the fireworks are no big deal. Such a good boy smile The only issue has been his older brother Wilson (age 13) is not so excited about him. Teller is just too much energy for Wilson. But we are working on that and he doesn't try to hurt him. This is my first puppy in about 12 years so I am really pleasantly suprised at how good Teller is so far. Knock on wood!
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» There has since been 14 posts. Last posting by , Jul 19 4:34 am

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