Tag Archives: Shepherd dogs

Belgian Malinois – How to Keep It Healthy Always?

Mornin’ Dog Fans!

family-and-belgian-malinos-on-beach

Catching sight of a Belgian Malinois and many will fall in love with in a second. Really, their appearance grabs most animal loving people. But, possessing proudly one of them, involves an active way of life. It means spending sufficient time in motion on fresh air. Because, you’d be mistaken if you think this dog will sit within your condo all day.

Just remember what you could read about their temperament in the previous section. Now, we will go through the requirements of their physical and mental health.

Dwelling Needs of the Belgian Malinois

The breed bears the not too extreme cold or hot temperatures problem-free. Their two-layered coat is water-resistant, and the under-layer helps to preserve body warmth in winter. Grooming necessities demand a lightweight brushing to get rid of lifeless hairs weekly.

Dwelling settlements for the breed needs to be arrange the way s/he has admittance to a secure, fenced-in space with shade exterior through the day. During nighttime, sleeping inside with family is their preferred way.

They require to have lively play periods within your yard and use up power via sprints or swift-paced jogs together with their owner. Besides, s/he particularly enjoys herding if the opportunity arises.

Sheepdog Background

Your Belgian Malinois canine specifically is a working dog. So, you must move not only the body – in excess of other dogs – but also their brain. S/he is almost capable of anything, provided that you set up new challenges each day.

“Short hair, long sense” – might say the Malinois owners about their favorite dog breed. And let’s face it; they would be not very far from the truth. The secret behind their success is rooted – besides the individual endowments – presumably in the shepherd dog inheritance.

The achieved results of sheepdogs in dog sports or in any dog work, as well as their leading roles, is clearly not accidental. Just think about the general responsibilities of the shepherd dog. The herding of the flock itself is by no means an easy task for the dogs.

Not just because the sheep or cows can certainly also be very unruly sometimes. But, because they should be able to solve independently certain situations. However, s/he should follow the instructions from his master, being subject in the management.

Belgian_Malinois_Police_Dog

Meantime, a range of effects work in it, some of which are reinforce; others block their inherited instincts. The development and exploitation of the protective instinct necessary for defense / guarding, however, is not so simple. Reason is that it only culminates later in a degree to get a role in training.

High Movement Requirements

As I mentioned before, the physical and mental well-being is very important for the Belgian Malinois. Their build and toughness make them capable to fulfill serious tasks: avalanche rescue, military actions, narcotics/scent detection, police K-9s, personal guarding, security works.

Besides, the Malinois is suitable for doing all kinds of dog sports, such as ball games (fly ball), hunting practices, skill and obedience trials. And don’t forget that s/he makes the excellent family companion, if their movement need fulfilled.

The foregoing also showed that the Malinois is a temperamental and agile animal inherently. That’s why I don’t recommend it for everyone. Merely with a walk, or playing with a ball is inability to exploit the intellectual and physical capacity, and burn off pent-up energy.

Again, I stress the need for joint activities. The bored Belgian Malinois becomes dissatisfied, and this may lead to inappropriate behaviors. It’s therefore, unavoidable to spend the sufficient time for a thorough socialization at their young age.

Choosing a Malinois Puppy

My friend, to discover the diversity between the pups at first glance, get to know their different individuality is a great experience. However, it touches us even deeply when you start to feel special affection for one of the fur-babies.

As we observe the little puppies, one of them caught somehow caught our eyes. Possibly you may begin to be afraid of him from others, or, on the contrary, moved by its misbehavior. However, do not forget to check the puppy’s reactions.

Experience shows that this time will help if you rattle a bunch of key, or playing with a rag while you’re watching the designated puppy’s reactions. I use to sit between the litter (in work clothes, of course) and lift him or her up to see what s/he does.

Puppies with good nature are merry and nosey, interested in approach folks and being hold by them. Best policy is to select the middle-of-the-road pooch. Avoid the one that’s conquered its litter-mates as well as that’s hiding away from you.

Check the Parents

Furthermore, try to meet the pup’s dad and mom to be convinced they’ve nice temperaments that’s cozy for you. In general, the mom is the accessible from the two. Encounter litter-mates or additional relatives of parents can also be useful for assessing just what a puppy will probably be as an adult.

Naturally, you should check the origin and veterinary papers, too, before adoption. Discuss the breeder thoroughly over the required accommodation, eating habits and so on. If all is well, only, then bring home the Belgian Malinois puppy.

Prospective owners should know that the Malinois is not an average type among the Shepherd dogs. S/he’s a wonderful creature that requires a lot of love and “dog sympathy” from puppy-hood to grown-up age.

If s/he receives all of these, then it will be as it should be: bold, balanced and friendly dog who is trustworthy, kind playmate for the kids, and surround the whole family with constant gentle love.

Health Aspects

Nothing reveals more about that the Malinois had to meet the performance-driven requirements always than its good health. Serious illness which would be typical in the variety is not known. Despite its stock brokers humiliating speed lifestyle, there are species at the age of 10 – 12, which are working yet.

Hopefully, this condition will remain so, even though there are concerns that due to the markedly increasing popularity, the Belgian Malinois will also be diluted. To prevent this from happening, please, choose it for you only feeling a sense of commitment towards the breed, and you take the dog training at least as serious as the Malinois itself.

Have many successes,
Alex Sparrow

* Sources: dog shows, Malinois breeders, owners, experience.

Thanks to Talk Our Dogs Readers & Subscribers!

Hi everyone!

I’m writing this post on Friday – the day before the weekend. The weather is spoiling us with brilliant sunshine. We deserved that because we saw the rain clouds only during four days. I decided this article will be other than most of the previous. The reason is twofold. Firstly, I’d like to say to thank you for my subscribers publicly for their support. Secondly, I intend to give you here some additions to my “about me” page.

Saying Thank You

To start from the beginning, it wasn’t easy for me to unbosoming myself to the world. I’m not so extroverted like a celebrity who shares even their bedroom affairs with the universe. And I do not declare myself an expert. I just love the animals and that feeling started sixty-five years ago – at least, so I recall.

And believe me, I’ve seen a thing or two during this period. I like to write about dog topics occur in dog owners’ everyday life. Due to that concept, you may find fewer chit-chats in my articles, although I’m not an opponent of building relationships.

Far from it! Nevertheless, only so much time is in a day for me besides other commitments I’ve. However, as I experienced, you, my readers and subscribers appreciate the meat in an article. I tried to write about dog-related topics I had the pleasure to get to know so far. But I try to keep up with the latest trends as well.

I also got several feedbacks on this in emails and comments, and now I’m saying a Big Thank You for your kind support!

About Choosing Topics

As for the choice of subjects, before I started this site, I was thinking about pre-programmed, themed topics. Not much time elapsed, and I found it is better for the readers – and myself, too – if I’m dealing with the problems arising daily. Due to that, I have no shortage of subjects. And that’s the reason if one or other category contains more or less articles.

For instance, you meet different dog persons during walking with your canine. You can do discussions when you’re purchasing dog food, toys, equipments, etc. for your favorite in stores and markets. I often got topic ideas when meet other canine owners in a club.

Moreover, I’ve to mention the dog races and shows I visited occasionally. Furthermore, my habit is to discuss with vets and staff of a shelter I worked as a volunteer before. One of my engagements is reading pet-related news on the net.

Of course, my dog owner or prospective canine keeper readers also suggest topics which they are interested in. I ask you, my readers and subscribers, keep this good habit in the future, too. Please, do not hesitate to ask, I’ll try to do my best to answer your questions.

About My Love for Dogs

As you may know from the above, my parents familiarized me with animals as a little kid. There were different domestic animals in our household, among dogs as well. Furthermore, my grand dad dealt with flocks at that times, so I met shepherd dogs, too.

In the household, I spent my childhood, there was a Hungarian Kuvasz called Swan. She was a very good sidekick, and allowed me a lot. I loved to be with her, and my parents educated me being responsible to Swan. I took part in her feeding, watering, cleaning and exercising.

Due to the bonding developed between the two of us, I was mentally down when she passed away. I became bedridden. Medicaments were ineffective. One of the sheepdogs of my granddad was the right medication for me. I often think back to that fur balls with love; he was Curier, a Puli. 🙂

How It Continued?

In my further life, I met many kind of dog breeds. Some of them lived in my kennel, others I met in the shelter mentioned above. I’d be in a big trouble if I should have to count their numbers. Apart from that, there are quite a few breed stood close to me.

Just name a few besides above mentioned:

Lobo – Bernese Mountain Dog

Doris – Boxer

Bear – Komondor     

Courier – Puli

Roll – German Shepherd (rescued)

Manu – Siberian Huski (rescued)

Ficus – Mudi mix (rescued)

Nero – Mixed breed (rescued)

Tik-tak – Wirehaired Foxterrier (rescued)

Zizi – Labrador / German Shepherd mix (rescued)

Anyway, they are those canines I wrote about in my book, too. Of course, dealing with different dogs wasn’t cloud-free always. The solution of problems from time to time helped my progress in dog keeping as well. So, what I know about dogs nowadays, I collected from living with them.

And now there are few pictures from the city I live: (pictures open in new window)

This is the County House – main entrance

The City Hall

This is the Art Gallery

The Theater Szigligeti

View from the walker bridge

P.S.: I hope I could give you some addition to know who I am. But, if you’ve any question, topic proposal, constructive critics, etc. please put hesitation aside and speak your mind in the comments. I’ll do my best to satisfy your needs. Thank You!

Dewclaws Should Be Remained or Removed?

I’ve heard already different opinions about that dogs’ dewclaws should be remained or removed. The topic came up recently when a Jack Russell Terrier owner asked for my advice on this. I asked the lady about the age and health of her doggie as well as behavioral habits, and housing conditions. As her pooch is three months old, I recommend her to consult her vet and when the time of spaying her animal arrived, perform it as well. But let’s look at the matter more closely.

What Are Dewclaws Actually?

dog-paws-with-dewclawsMost dogs are born with a vestigial fifth claw on the inside of front paw. This is called a “dewclaw.”  In the United States, for most breeds, this tiny dewclaw is removed soon after birth. In Europe there are people who believe that dewclaws should not be removed.

On that breeds where dewclaws aren’t character types, usually only single (i.e. one piece on one foot) used to appear. And it is very rare bony,  usually is just a piece of skin with tiny claws. It is easily separated, so breeders often truncate that on newborn puppies.

Why Removing Is Recommended?

Dewclaws have traditionally been removed for reasons of safety for your dog. In many breeds, the dewclaw is attached rather high up on the leg, far above the other nails on the paw. It does not wear down during use.

The dewclaw can grow big and become quite sharp. Thus, it’s much easier for it to be entangled on things than the other nails. When the dewclaw get stuck itself on something, it can injure your dog. In the worst cases, it can rip or tear right off your dog’s leg. I also have seen examples of this earlier.

Of course, all of a dog’s nails – including the dewclaw if remained – should be trimmed regularly. That will help prevent the nails from catching on anything. But, even when the dewclaw is kept trimmed it is often set off from the leg and likely to get stuck on something.

Most people in the United States believe that the dewclaw does not serve a useful purpose anymore. Furthermore, that it is simplest to remove it soon after birth in order to avoid injuries.

When Remaining Is Accepted

I’ve to say that I met a few French sheepdogs. They were Great Pyrene (Chien de Montagne des Pyrénées), Beauceron (Berger de Beauce) and Briard (Berger de Brie) breeds. These animals have a dewclaw not only on their first but on rear legs as well.

These French shepherd dogs have five toes in their front feet, and set six toes on the rear. That’s their breed standard and they use those dewclaws sometimes. However, these dewclaws are bony and stable, settled at least 4-6 centimeters high above the pads.

There are some people who maintain the beliefs that dogs use the dewclaw to balance themselves when making sharp turns while running. And I am inclined to accept this.

Namely, I’ve seen agility competitions where the dewclaws were beneficial. Simply, they can grip when dogs are jumping or hitting the ground. So, the dewclaws can help in the tight turns that significantly influence the scoring.

The Declaws Removing Action

Dewclaws are usually removed when puppies are three or four days old. A breeder typically takes the mother into the vet’s office to be checked after whelping. And the  pups go along at the same time to have their dewclaws removed.

The entire process of removing the dewclaws on a litter of puppies only takes a few minutes. The vet places a hemostat on the dewclaw to make the area numb. And then he picks dewclaws off at the joint. A small suture is applied. The puppies are ready to go home very shortly.

It may happen that the dewclaws are left on, and they need to be removed later. However, then the process does become much more serious and requires surgery. The removing method is similar as above mentioned, but the vet applies Neosporin and bandaging over the wound.

In this respect, it’s a lot easier, and in the best interest of your puppy, to remove them during the first week. Anyway, in Europe there is some opposition to removing dewclaws just as there is opposition to docking tails and cropping ears. They consider dewclaw removal “mutilation” of the dog.

The European Convention for the Protection of Pet Animals opposes many traditional methods of caring for dogs and other pets. However, the tenets of the convention have not been accepted by all European countries.

My Take on It

As we can perceive from above, the picture isn’t unambiguous. I know hunters and people actively working with dogs in Europe. They usually truncate not only the dewclaws (if they appeared at all), but the fifth toes of the front legs as well.

As for my dogs, I’ve made removed dewclaws by a vet always. When I did breeding before, the situation was similar. I’ve stopped the breeding long ago but always made removed my dogs’ dewclaws.

If your dog doesn’t break it down, and it doesn’t cause damage, you’ll need to check periodically its developing. If it is too big, or it hinders the move – possibly it may have been turned back like an eagle’s claw – it must pick off with a nail clipper tweezers. A professsional groomer or your vet will do that in no time.

P.S.: It’s your turn: Has the topic attracted your attention? What are your thoughts or experiences about removing or remaining of dewclaws? Speak your mind in the comments below. Thank You!

The Australian Shepherd Dog Breed

The Australian Shepherd – or otherwise named Aussie – is a courageous, fond, stylish and dynamic breed within the Herding Group. These medium-sized doggies have a physically strong construct. They are capable of work exhausting all day. And they don’t victimize endurance and pace by that. That is due to their sturdy body and marvelous agility. This article is devoted to this wonderful breed.

Australian Shepherd History

Little is known precisely about the historical past of this dog. People bred the Australian Shepherd dogs to protect their stock. And this inherited herding instinct is prevailing in their lives to present days. However, thinking the name refers to their origin you’re far to the truth.

In fact, this dog never wasn’t original Australian. Their developing happened between France and Spain in the Mountains of Pyrene – in all probabilities. The story is dating back to their Spanish principal ancestors. Those were working together with Basque shepherd dogs.

Those dogs herd Merino sheep people exported to Australia at the beginning of the colonization. This export activity expanded to the United States, too. These dogs arrived to the States from Australia where their task was herding sheep. They continued the same work in the States as well.

Australian-Shepherd-dog

And this breed evolved the kind of form we know today there. The American farmers were ecstatic by this hard-working, middle-sized dog. They began to use them because of the ability of work than visual appearance.

The Australian Shepherd showed its excellence via coarse terrains in each Australia and America’s western parts. They had been crossed with several other dog breeds. And were principally stored under the radar when it comes to fashionability.

Throughout the 1950s, the breed won great  publicity. Namely, they had been seen in numerous film and canine trick shows. Just a few among the names this dog earned during the past: California Shepherd, Blue Heeler, Bob-Tail, New Mexico Shepherd and Spanish Shepherd. These denominations also confirm its versatility in agility, herding, guarding, narcotics perception, search and rescue, etc.

People shaped the Australian Shepherd Club of America in 1957. The AKC formally acknowledged this breed in 1993. As we speak these dogs are still working as herding assistants of shepherds. Besides you might see them as winners in herding trials.

Temperament

Australian Shepherds are straightforward-going. And they remain pup-like – even in their grownup era. The nature of this breed can vary.  They can be too playful with its owners sometimes. However, they are a dignified and brave watchdog towards break ins. They’re usually pleasant in direction of other canines and pets. However, Aussies are reserved against strange people.

Aussies are wonderful with kids, even with a lively little one. They’re devoted, loyal buddies and protective by their nature. Tender-hearted, very energetic, attentive – they’re desperate for your please. Aussies have a sixth sense to figuring out what their owner wants. Although he is aggressive in working with livestock, it is mild with his human mates.

Keeping the Australian Shepherd

This breed should have an active train every day, each mentally and physically. And it has light training capability and excessive intellectual ranges. Therefore, the Australian Shepherd is the proper applicant for advanced training of obedience.

These doggies thrive on human contact. And usually they aren’t meant for lying around your home all day. Consequently, I wouldn’t recommend this breed for living in an apartment. They appreciate a large yard for running possibility. And, this dog also fond of practicing their herding talent.

The Aussies are able to endure both cool and hot climates. However, you shouldn’t keep them on open air entirely. The best dwelling arrangement is to provide him entry to a secure outdoor space through the day. However, they prefer to spend the night inside. They are pleased sleeping together with the family.

Grooming

The Aussie’s coat has a medium texture, from straight lined to barely wavy. It contains an undercoat and is climate resistant. The length of its pelage is reasonable. The climate where he is living sets the amount of his undercoat. The coat color can be black, blue merle, and liver. Additionally, occur strong red with white markings or without, and copper pointed.

His coat is thick, so you need to brush that frequently. You can apply a dedicated firm bristle brush. Repeat this process 2 – 3 times every week. This way you can satisfy his grooming needs. Anyway, they are shedding orderly turn.

Well Being Considerations

The Australian Shepherd can be your companion generally between 12 – 15 years long, in good health condition. Sadly, these dogs may have several minor or main health issues. Therefore, I’d suggest you to undergo your Aussie regular medical checks.

Conclusion

Australian Shepherds will not be the type of canine to lie around your lounge all day. And, he also doesn’t stay pleasantly within the backyard with a 15-minute walk solely. They want the way more train than that. Additionally, you need to occupy their thoughts each day. Otherwise, they are going to get boring. And that leads to critical conduct issues.

They want sufficient bodily and mental exercise and a firm hand of a real pack leader. Without those, they’ll change into nervous and destructive if left alone. You should socialize them properly to forestall turning into fishy of strangers. Some prefer to nip folks heels trying to herd them, and this habit must be corrected. By educating your canine that people aren’t should be herded, you’ll get a wonderful companion.

The Scottish Rough Collie Dog Breed

When it comes the Scottish Rough Collie, I’ve to confess they are lovely for me. I like them because of their intelligence, for which they are equipped very well. They are asking with their look, and sometimes they say something. Something that’s just an unfathomable mystery to me. But its contents are still clear, for some reason: an unconditional, selfless love. That’s the reason I devoted this article to them.

The History Of the Rough Collie

No person is aware of for certain the precise origins of the Scottish Rough Collie as a dog breed, and even where its title got here from. But, it’s a fact that Romans invaded the Scottish islands around 50 BC. And allegedly people even then found dogs similar to today’s Collies at occasions of excavations at that time.

One particular concept is that the root of the Rough Collie is searchable in the identical bloodline the Border Collie belongs to. One other idea in regard to the title “Collie” is that it originates from a Gaelic “useful” phrase. That word undoubtedly describes how helpful these canines were for people dealing with stocks.

They had been regarded to be of excessive worth to the Celts once they first settled in the Isles of Britain. The first Collie dogs didn’t belong to the aristocracy. They were the dog and most important helper of the poorer people. These people dealt with sheep breeding, which would have been impossible to carry on without dogs.

I think I hear your WHY question. The answer is based on two simple facts.

Firstly, people weren’t as quick to keep the sheep together. Secondly,  if more people would have watched over the flock – the profit would have been much less. Thus, the shepherd quickly realized the irreplaceability of these animals. Namely, these dogs carried out the work of even 15 -20 people.

That’s also known that the work of the herding and guarding of flocks already existed from the historical times. For this reason, people used canines, which possessed the capabilities to fulfill the requirements. The smooth-haired Collie did the herding, and the guarding job was the rough-haired Collie’s task.

Turning Point In the Story

The story became more interesting in the 19th century. And we know a lot more about the breeding of modern varieties. The first canine exhibition was held in England in 1859, although sheepdogs weren’t partakers on this event yet.

In 1860, the attention of Queen Victoria turned fairly to the Rough Collie. The Queen was so impressed by them that Her Majesty added a Collie canine to her dog collection. Seeing the Queen’s devotion towards these dogs lots of higher-class households followed her lead. Consequently, they also possessed several species from the Collie breed.

In 1860, already was a special department of the sheep dogs at the next exhibition, with five starters. A female dog took the first place which has been exhibited as a “pure breeds Scottish female”. About 10 years later, the short-or long-haired shepherd dogs were shown in a separate class.

All these events resulted in the official standard’s setting-up by the end of 1800s. And that description, is in effect to the present days, too.

The shepherding turned increasingly more important in United States, throughout this identical time interval. So fresh settlers got to the New World with their very own Collie dogs. America’s rich families additionally acquired Collies from their European journeys.

In 1938 started something that still affects the perception of the Scottish Rough Collie. Eric Knight wrote the story of Lassie and that started a regular fever for Collies. The first movie was completed in 1945, which was then followed by many others.

Elizabeth Taylor was yet a kid at that time, but the Lassie film brought her a success worldwide. More and more people were looking for the Collies, and even today, many dogs called Lassie or a similar name (Nessy, Bessy, etc.).

As we speak, nearly everyone is acquainted with the well-known TV show titled “Lassie”. Lassie turned probably the most famous Collie canine of always. Evidently, this TV sequence gave this breed an enormous supercharge in reputation. Thus, the Rough Collie became probably the most favorite dog breeds in United States.

The Character

The Rough Collie has a real tough-working legacy. This breed needs to be stimulated mentally and physically daily. Without an energetic way of life, these canines can develop into unsatisfied. The Collie canines are mild and gentle-mannered with almost every living creature they meet.

Today, however, he has fewer opportunities to herding sheep as his everyday activity. But, this kind of herding talent can be benefited at herding competitions. Wherever he lives, besides the regular session and care, its vast movement need is which you should fully address.

Learning obedience exercises doesn’t cause trouble for the Rough Collie. However, he requires a mild treatment and a quick correction if he understood, but mixed up what they have learned. Anyway, he can find out brilliantly, how he can avoid a task.

Taking Care Of Your Rough Collie

As I mentioned above, the Collie requires daily exercising and even more the chance to herd if it is possible. In fact, this exercise is ideally suited if you’re residing on a country farm and having animals to herd. These dogs can dwell on open air where the climate isn’t hot.

A lot of people – looking at a Rough Collie – are thinking that they need to brush in a row. And they think that’s a lot of work, but this isn’t the case. A thorough combing once or twice a week and your dog brings his best shape. So it will not be messy, and the tangled hair can be avoided as well. This dog doesn’t require the frequent bathing; it’s sufficient to do that 2-3 occasions yearly.

Collies typically live for ten years, but there is a chance to reach even 15 years at times, in healthy circumstances.

My Addition

There was a Scottish Rough Collie in the circle of my acquaintances nine years ago. They have a son and a girl, both are teenagers now. When they were kids, they are constantly nagging, pulled-lined the dog’s fur. But he was just lying, didn’t nip their hands and neither of them barked.

I remember when I was a guest at them, the two children went out to play in the sand box in their yard. The dog lay down beside them and kept an eye on them. And if the twin did wrong, the Collie immediately began herding them.

The house owner told me that he once cut off an embroiled sticky weed behind his ears. And somehow, accidentally cut the dog with the scissors. His dog didn’t bite him, just simply took his hand and squeezed that. That was the dog’s message about that something is gone wrong, it hurts for he.

Based on all the above, I only can recommend the Rough Collie to get as a household pet. Maybe he requires a lot of care, love and combing, but well worth it. He gives back a million times more in their lifetime.