August 2015 - LUV My dogs

LUV My dogs

Everything about your dog!

Friday, August 7, 2015

Everything about your Bernese Mountain Dog

Everything about your Bernese Mountain Dog
  The Bernese Mountain Dog is a striking. tri-colored, large dog. He is sturdy and balanced. He is intelligent, strong and agile enough to do the draft and droving work for which he was used in the mountainous regions of his origin. Male dogs appear masculine, while bitches are distinctly feminine.
  The Bernese Mountain Dog, called in German the Berner Sennenhund, is a large-sized breed of dog, one of the four breeds of Sennenhund-type dogs from the Swiss Alps. The name Sennenhund is derived from the German Senne and Hund, as they accompanied the alpine herders and dairymen called Senn. Berner  refers to the area of the breed’s origin, in the canton of Bern in Switzerland. This mountain dog was originally kept as a general farm dog. Large Sennenhunde in the past were also used as draft animals, pulling carts. The breed was officially established in 1907. In 1937, the American Kennel Club recognized it as a member of the Working Group.

Overview
  This good-looking Swiss farm dog takes his name from the canton of Bern, where he likely originated. Berners helped farmers by pulling carts, driving livestock to fields or market, and serving as watchdogs. These days, the Berner is primarily a family companion or show dog, beloved for his calm and patient temperament. If you want a Bernese Mountain Dog, be prepared to do your due diligence to find him and put in plenty of effort training and socializing him once you bring him home.
  This is a large breed. A Bernese puppy certainly looks snuggly and manageable, but he will quickly reach his adult weight of 70 to 120 pounds, more or less .
The Berner, as he’s nicknamed, has moderate exercise needs. In general, plan to give him a walk of at least a half hour daily, plus several shorter trips outdoors throughout the day.   Bernese are individuals, so the amount of exercise they desire can vary.
 To keep your Bernese Mountain Dog’s mind and body active and healthy, involve him in dog sports. Depending on the individual dog’s build and temperament, Bernese can excel in activities such as agility, drafting , herding, obedience, rally, or tracking. Organized sports not your thing? Take your Bernese hiking. He can carry his own water and treats in a canine backpack. Bernese also make excellent therapy dogs, having a gentle, mellow temperament as well as being the perfect height for standing at a bedside and being petted.

  Though you might think of him as an outdoor dog, nothing could be further from the truth. Bernese Mountain Dogs love their people, especially children, and will pine without human companionship. They should certainly have access to a securely fenced yard, but when the family is home, the Bernese should be with them.

Highlights 
  • Berners have numerous health problems due to their small genetic foundation, and perhaps due to other reasons yet undiscovered. Currently, the life span of a Bernese Mountain Dog is comparatively short, about six to eight years.
  • Because of the Berner's popularity, some people have bred dogs of lesser quality in order to sell the puppies to unsuspecting buyers. Be especially careful about importing dogs from foreign countries that have few laws governing kennel conditions. Often these dogs are bought at auction and little is known about their health history.
  • Veterinary care can be costly because of the health problems in the breed.
  • Berners shed profusely, especially in the spring and fall. If shedding drives you crazy, this may not be the right breed for you.
  • The Berner likes to be with his family. He's likely to develop annoying behavior problems, such as barking, digging, or chewing, if he's isolated from people and their activities.
  • When Berners are mature, they are large dogs who like to have a job to do. For those reasons, it's wise — and fun — to begin obedience training early.
  • Although they're very gentle with children, Berners sometimes accidentally knock over a small child or toddler.
  • To get a healthy dog, never buy a puppy from an irresponsible breeder, puppy mill, or pet store. Look for a reputable breeder who tests her breeding dogs to make sure they're free of genetic diseases that they might pass onto the puppies, and that they have sound temperaments.
Other Quick Facts
  • Most Bernese are considered to have a dry mouth, meaning they don’t drool, but that’s not true of all of them. A Bernese with tight, or close-fitting, lips is less likely to drool than one with loose or hanging lips.
  • The Bernese Mountain Dog’s tricolor coat is thick and moderately long with straight or slightly wavy hair. The coat sheds heavily.
  • Berners are sensitive to heat and humidity. If outdoors, they need access to plenty of shade and fresh water.
  • Comparable Breeds: Saint Bernard, Appenzeller Sennenhunde

History
  The Bernese Mountain Dog comes from Switzerland and is one of four tri-colored varieties of Swiss mountain dogs, which also include the Appenzeller Sennenhund, the Entlebucher Sennenhund and the Greater Swiss Mountain Dog. The long coat of the Bernese Mountain Dog distinguishes it from its close relatives. It was bred to be a draft dog, a watchdog and an all-around farm dog. It is thought to have descended centuries ago from crosses between mastiff-type dogs and native flock-guarding dogs in the valleys of the Swiss Alps, before becoming popular with modern breed fanciers. One of its main historical tasks was to transport fresh milk, cheese and other produce for small farmers who were too poor or otherwise unable to own draft horses to pull carts containing their wares.
  Until the late nineteenth century, due to a lack of concerted breeding efforts, this breed was all but forgotten except by rural inhabitants of the Berne area of Switzerland. Starting in 1892, a Swiss innkeeper, and shortly thereafter a college professor from Zurich, scoured the countryside in an attempt to find good specimens of the breed. After much searching, they finally were able to find quality dogs, thus starting the rehabilitation of the breed. A breed specialty club was founded in Switzerland in 1907, and the Bernese Mountain Dog thereafter became sought as show dogs and companions, in addition to continuing their working roles as “beasts of burden” on market days.
  The breed was first brought to the United States in 1926 and achieved recognition by the American Kennel Club in 1937. The parent club was formed in 1968  and became an AKC member club in 1981.



Temperament
  The breed standard for the Bernese mountain dog states that dogs should not be “aggressive, anxious or distinctly shy”, but rather should be “good-natured”, “self-assured”, “placid towards strangers”, and “docile”. The temperament of individual dogs may vary, and not all examples of the breed have been bred carefully to follow the standard. All large breed dogs should be well socialized when they are puppies, and given regular training and activities throughout their lives.
  Bernese are outdoor dogs at heart, though well-behaved in the house; they need activity and exercise, but do not have a great deal of endurance. They can move with amazing bursts of speed for their size when motivated. If they are sound (no problems with their hips, elbows, or other joints), they enjoy hiking and generally stick close to their people. Not being given the adequate amount of exercise may lead to barking and harassing in the Bernese.
  Bernese mountain dogs are a breed that generally does well with children, as they are very affectionate. They are patient dogs that take well to children climbing over them. Though they have great energy, a Bernese will also be happy with a calm evening.
Bernese work well with other pets and around strangers.

Health
  The Bernese Mountain Dog is occasionally prone to health problems like von Willebrand's Disease (vWD), hypomyelination, allergies, hypothyroidism, hepatocerebellar degeneration and progressive retinal atrophy (PRA). The minor diseases that the dog is likely to suffer from are cataract, sub-aortic stenosis (SAS), entropion, and ectropion. The more serious ailments affecting this breed include canine hip dysplasia (CHD), elbow dysplsia, gastric torsion, and mast cell tumor. A lot of care should be taken to prevent heat stroke.
  DNA, cardiac, hip, eye, and elbow tests are advised for the Bernese Mountain Dog, which has an average lifespan of 6 to 9 years.

Activities
  The Bernese's calm temperament makes them a natural for pulling small carts or wagons, a task they originally performed in Switzerland. With proper training they enjoy giving children rides in a cart or participating in a parade, such as the Conway, New Hampshire holiday parade. The Bernese Mountain Dog Club of America offers drafting trials open to all breeds; dogs can earn eight different titles — four as individual dogs and four brace titles, in which two dogs work one cart together. Regional Bernese clubs often offer carting workshops
  On July 1, 2010, the Bernese Mountain Dog became eligible to compete in AKC Herding Events. Herding instincts and trainability can be measured at noncompetitive herding tests. Berners exhibiting basic herding instincts can be trained to compete in herding trials.

Living Conditions
  Bernese Mountain Dogs are not recommended for apartment life. They are relatively inactive indoors and will do best with at least a large, fenced-in yard. Because of their thick coats they are sensitive to the heat and would much rather be in cold temperatures.

Care 
  Berners are not suited to apartment or condo life. A home with a large, securely fenced yard is the best choice. Because the Berner is a working dog, he has plenty of energy. In addition to yard play, he needs a minimum of 30 minutes of vigorous exercise every day; three times that amount keeps this sturdy dog in top condition.
  With his thick, handsome coat, the Berner is a natural fit for cold climates. He loves to play in the snow. Conversely, with his black coat and large size, he's prone to heat stroke. Don't allow him to exercise strenuously when it's extremely hot; limit exercise to early mornings or evenings, when it's cooler. Keep him cool during the heat of the day, either inside with fans or air-conditioning or outside in the shade.
  You'll need to take special care if you're raising a Berner puppy. Like many large-breed dogs, Berners grow rapidly between the ages of four and seven months, making them susceptible to bone disorders and injury. They do well on a high-quality, low-calorie diet that keeps them from growing too fast.
  Additionally, don't let the Berner puppy run and play on hard surfaces , jump excessively, or pull heavy loads until he's at least two years old and his joints are fully formed. Normal play on grass is fine, and so are puppy agility classes, with their one-inch jumps.

Grooming Needs
  Berners shed year round, with the heaviest shedding coming during the changes in season. Brushing at least once a week – more in spring and fall – will help keep the coat neat and will reduce the amount of hair that hits the floor or furniture. Depending on the dog's activity level and desire to romp in the dirt, they only require a bath once every couple of months.
   Their ears can can trap bacteria, dirt, and liquid so weekly cleanings with a veterinarian-recommended cleanser can help prevent painful ear infections. Weekly brushing of the teeth is also recommended to reduce tartar and bad breath. Active Berners will naturally wear their toenails down to a good length, but some do not. The general rule is if the dog's nails click on a hard floor, they are too long. Monthly trimming may be required.

Is this breed right for you?
  Calling all farmers, acreage owners and great outdoor enthusiasts: This breed thrives on open land, room to roam and work to pick up. Implied in this breed's name, the Bernese Mountain Dog was bred with a thick coat to sustain him in cold weather and a strong, muscular frame for hours of work and climbing. This people-oriented breed absolutely loves being around its human counterparts and protecting the little ones while they play. Although the Bernese Mountain Dog is low-maintenance in terms of grooming, you may opt to brush that thick coat regularly to control its constant shedding.

Children And Other Pets 
  The Berner is an excellent family pet, and he's usually gentle and affectionate with children who are kind and careful with animals. Being so large, he can inadvertently bump or knock over very young or small children.
  As with every breed, you should always teach children how to approach and touch dogs, and always supervise any interactions between dogs and young children to prevent any biting or ear or tail pulling on the part of either party. Teach your child never to approach any dog while he's eating or sleeping or to try to take the dog's food away. No dog, no matter how friendly, should ever be left unsupervised with a child.
The Berner gets along with other pets well, though the greater the size difference, the more supervision and training required to keep everyone safe.

Did You Know?
  He’s not a Bernice Mountain Dog or a Burmese Mountain Dog. He takes his name from the Swiss canton of Bern, where he was a valued farm dog who excelled at pulling carts, driving livestock to fields or market, and serving as watchdogs.

Notable Bernese Mountain Dogs
  • Hercules is Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger's dog that he brought home from the Emmental region of Switzerland during a 2006 weeklong trip to discover his family's roots in the country.
  • Sasha was a Bernese Mountain Dog that followed a goat off of a cliff and managed to survive the fall as well as three days on an ice shelf waiting for rescue.
  • A Bernese Mountain Dog character named Shep was voiced by Carl Reiner in the 2003 movie Good Boy!
  • The characters Bryan (Andrew Rannells) and David (Justin Bartha) in the 2012 TV series The New Normal own a Bernese Mountain Dog named "Smelly".
  • Hola, the titular dog in Martin Kihn's memoir Bad Dog: A Love Story, is a Bernese Mountain Dog.
  • Ohly was a Bernese Mountain Dog who achieved notoriety in Canada after disappearing and then being found on Mount Seymour in a dangerous area known as "Suicide Gulley." Members of North Shore Rescue, a local mountain rescue team, tracked, located and rescued Ohly.
  • Benson was a Bernese Mountain Dog who features in the memoir, The Boy Who Got A Bernese Mountain Dog by Brook Ardon. Benson had a great temperament the breed is famous for, he lived near the beach in New Zealand.
  • Quincey von Wiesmadern, has appeared in various videos with Hansi Hinterseer, an Austrian singer, entertainer and former member of the Austrian Ski Team.
  • Hannah is the real-life inspiration for the protagonist of children's books such as A Beach Day for Hannah and A Snow Day for Hannah by Linda Petrie Bunch.
  • Argus and Fiona were two Bernese mountain dogs that were shot and killed when they entered a neighbor's yard. The neighbor who shot the dogs admits that he was overreacting.A Pennsylvania state law states that humans are free to kill animals attacking domestic animals. The man feared a possible attack on his sheep, who were in their fenced off grazing area. Attacks on a neighbor's farm had taken place and resulted in the death of several animals sometime the previous year, although the type of dog who ruthlessly attacked those animals was not a Bernese. However, since no attack was in progress at the time of the shooting, the shooter was charged with two counts of cruelty to animals and one count of recklessly endangering another person, the latter a result of there being a house within the possible line of fire. There were no residents at home at the time of the shooting. On September 11, 2013, the shooter was convicted on two counts of animal cruelty. He faces up to five years in jail for each count.
  • Nico (2015) a recently adopted Bernese mountain dog became a hero when he saved two people who were being swept out into the ocean by a California rip current.
A dream day in the life of a Bernese Mountain Dog
  Rising early and taking in the cool brisk mountain air before heading to work on the farm starts the day off just right for the Bernese Mountain Dog. Pulling anything from kids to livestock, you'll often see this breed smiling with a cart in tow. Just be aware not to push his limits; due to his size the Bernese Mountain Dog is prone to hip and joint issues. A great companion and watchdog, a Berner's perfect day wouldn't be complete without love and hugs from his human family.

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Big Dog Breeds

Big Dog Breeds
  Bigger is not always better, but it is always impressive. There are many large dog breeds, each with different care and training needs. Most large dog breeds were bred for a purpose or function. Some breeds were meant to be hunters, others guard dogs. 
People have been intrigued by giant-size dogs for millennia, keeping them to guard family, flocks and property and to hunt big game. They have also relied on four-legged giants to perform tasks that required size and strength, such as pulling carts with heavy loads. Giant dog breeds can look very intimidating, but most are surprised to find out these dogs are just gentle giants wanting to snuggle.  
  Giant breeds often possess tender, loving temperaments, but before you get one, remember to factor in the costs associated with keeping a large dog breed. In terms of food, veterinary bills and space, the costs can be gigantic. 

Great Dane
  Oh, baby! A Great Dane is truly a great dog breed . The Great Dane combines, in its regal appearance, dignity, strength and elegance with great size and a powerful, well-formed, smoothly muscled body. It is one of the giant working breeds, but is unique in that its general conformation must be so well balanced that it never appears clumsy, and shall move with a long reach and powerful drive. It is always a unit -- the Apollo of dogs.  Apollo is the Greek god of the sun, the brightest fixture in the sky. The Great Dane certainly holds stature in the dog world; but though he looks terribly imposing, in reality he's one of the best-natured dogs around. For all of his size, a Great Dane is a sweet, affectionate pet. He loves to play and is gentle with children. A Great Dane must be spirited, courageous, never timid; always friendly and dependable.   This physical and mental combination is the characteristic which gives the Great Dane the majesty possessed by no other breed. 


Mastiff
  If you've ever seen a mastiff, you'll agree that there is one word that can properly size up its appearance: powerful. No kidding, this dog is huge — not as tall as a Great Dane but probably twice as thick at between 2 and 3 feet tall with a weight of between 130 and 220 pounds. The Mastiff is a large, massive, symmetrical dog with a well-knit frame. The impression is one of grandeur and dignity. Dogs are more massive throughout. Bitches should not be faulted for being somewhat smaller in all dimensions while maintaining a proportionally powerful structure. A good evaluation considers positive qualities of type and soundness with equal weight.
  Fittingly, these dogs make excellent guard dogs. Though the mastiff seems beast-like, it is surprisingly affectionate, gentle and extremely loyal. Their devotion to their owners and patience with children have secured their popularity for years, though they must be properly socialized to get along well with children and other pets, and it's best if you don't have them around very small children or adults who are frail as they can easily knock them over, causing serious injuries. Their life span is generally between 6 and 10 years, but some have lived as long as 18 years.

Neapolitan Mastiff
  The Neapolitan Mastiff is a heavy-boned, massive, awe inspiring dog bred for use as a guard and defender of owner and property. He is characterized by loose skin, over his entire body, abundant, hanging wrinkles and folds on the head and a voluminous dewlap. The essence of the Neapolitan is his bestial appearance, astounding head and imposing size and attitude. Due to his massive structure, his characteristic movement is rolling and lumbering, not elegant or showy.
  The massive, solid Neapolitan Mastiff is an imposing hulk of a dog, and it's meant to be. A writer during the days of the Roman Empire described the ideal guard dog for the house as visible during daylight hours and able to fade into the shadows at night to attack without being seen. He called for a head so massive that it seems to be the most important part of the body. The description fits the Neapolitan, whose ancestors may have first been brought to Italy from Greece, where they were much esteemed. The Romans found all sorts of jobs for these mighty dogs. Not only were they employed as guardians of the home, they were also used for hunting, as war dogs and as contestants in Roman Circus events. The breed continued to exist in the Naples area, though it was largely ignored for several centuries. A few fanciers undertook the reconstruction of the breed after World War II and it has steadily attracted a following. Neapolitan Mastiffs may tip the scales at more than 150 pounds, and stand as high as 31 inches. This is a powerful, dominant breed that requires early and ongoing socialization and training. Not the dog for a first-time owner. Choose an experienced, knowledgeable breeder with care.

Bullmastiff
  The Bullmastiff dog breed is a firm and fearless family guardian. While standoffish toward strangers he's got a soft spot for his loved ones. He has a short, easy-care coat, but he is a drooler.
  Developed in England as the gamekeeper's night dog, the Bullmastiff represents a cross between the Mastiff and the Bulldog. The breed's job was to warn the gamekeeper of poachers and, if necessary, throw and hold the intruder but not harm it. The breed is powerful and compact; males stand up to 27 inches at the shoulder and may weigh up to 130 pounds. The coat is short and dense in red, fawn or brindle, all with a black face mask. The coat sheds little, and a good weekly rubdown keeps it gleaming and free of dead hair. The Bullmastiff makes a loyal family pet and a superb guard dog. These dogs have been known to do well as apartment dwellers but are really house and garden types.

Newfoundland

  The Newfoundland is a large, strong dog breed from — wait for it — Newfoundland. He was originally used as a working dog to pull nets for fishermen and haul wood from the forest. He is a capable and hardworking dog, well suited to work on land or water. He is a strong swimmer and equally strong "pack horse." Sweet-natured and responsive, he makes a wonderful family companion as well.
  The Newfie is a robust, family-loving dog, equally at home in the water and on land. This large, strong, active dog is capable of heavy work, yet the breed's gentleness, even temper and devotion make the Newf an ideal companion for child or adult. In Newfoundland, this dog was originally used as a working dog to pull nets for the fishermen and to haul logs from the forest for the lumbermen. Elsewhere, the Newf did heavy labor of many kinds, powering the blacksmith's bellow and the turner's lathe. The oily nature of its double coat, which effectively keeps the Newf from getting wet to the skin, its webbed feet, its deep, broad chest and well-sprung ribs make it a natural swimmer. The Newfoundland has true instinct for life-saving and is renowned in this role. Average height for males is 28 inches at the shoulder, weight about 150 pounds; females 2 inches and 30 pounds less. The long coat is flat, dense and water resistant, and sheds twice each year'in spring and fall. Acceptable coat colors include black, brown, gray, and white and black. Regular grooming is necessary to remove dead hair and keep the coat shiny and tangle-free. The Newfie is friendly, easygoing, and loves the outdoors. It's most comfortable in a large home where it will receive daily exercise and lots of time with the family.

  Like the English Mastiff further up this list, the Dogue de Bordeaux is one of the oldest breeds in Europe.  Although it has a forbidding look, the Dogue's desire for affection is intense. It's somewhat leery of strangers and may be aggressive toward strange dogs, but it gets along well with children and makes a loving family pet with a calm, tranquil disposition.
  The Dogue de Bordeaux's origin is not known, but it's likely that the Mastiff and Bulldog each played a part in its development. The breed was once used as a fighting dog, challenging bulls, bears and other dogs. The Dogue is powerful and massive, but surprisingly athletic and quick. A large, expressive head characterizes this breed. As with most dogs that were once bred for fighting, the Dogue de Bordeaux has a powerful jaw. This breed is built low to the ground, but is well balanced. The standard calls for males to weigh at least 100 pounds and stand 24 to 27 inches at the shoulder; bitches are slightly smaller. Dogues come in several colors, but dark auburn is preferred. The short coat requires only a weekly brushing. By far the most distinctive feature about the French Mastiff is their gigantic heads, sporting the largest heads of any canine species. They are extremely energetic dogs, requiring many walks throughout the day and a lot of food to replenish their energies.

  The Bernese Mountain Dog is a striking. tri-colored, large dog. He is sturdy and balanced. He is intelligent, strong and agile enough to do the draft and droving work for which he was used in the mountainous regions of his origin. Male dogs appear masculine, while bitches are distinctly feminine. 
  The Bernese Mountain Dog is an extremely versatile working dog from the farmlands of Switzerland. He was developed to herd cattle, pull carts, and be a watchdog and loyal companion. He is one of four types of Swiss Mountain Dogs, and the only one with long hair. The Bernese Mountain Dog comes from the canton of Bern, hence his name.  Regarded by many as the most beautiful of the four breeds of Swiss Mountain Dogs, the Bernese is the only one with a long coat. Its ancestry traces to mastiff-type dogs of Roman times, which crossbred with local herding dogs to produce offspring smaller in stature but just as trustworthy and devoted. The mountain dogs herded livestock and were used as cart dogs to transport goods and produce to market. A large dog measuring up to 27.5 inches at the shoulder, the Bernese has a medium-long, glossy black coat with distinctive markings in reddish brown and white. Vigorous weekly brushing keeps the coat looking trim. This breed likes lots of exercise and is often seen pulling carts in parades. The Bernese is most comfortable in a large home with a yard and thrives in cold weather. This faithful family companion is an excellent watchdog.


  Ancient Italian breed medium-large size Molossus Dog. Sturdy, with a strong skeleton. Muscular and athletic, it moves with considerable ease and elegance. It has always been a property watchdog and hunter of difficult game such as the wild boar.

  The noble Cane Corso's predecessors were big game hunters that showed power, courage and agility, and later proved their skills as drovers and guardians of livestock, property and family on Italian farms. The modern Cane Corso is a stable, protective dog with a strong sense of territory that is loyal and submissive to its family, but suspicious and aloof with strangers. The breed can be highly dominant toward people and other dogs, but plenty of early socialization and obedience training softens these aggressive tendencies. When properly socialized, the Cane Corso is gentle and protective with children. The Cane Corso craves regular affection, attention and interaction with its family. This athletic breed thrives in a house or apartment, provided its high daily exercise needs are met. Jogging, bike riding and long walks are ideal. A Cane Corso male should measure a minimum of 25 to 27.5 inches at the withers; females, 23.5 to 26 inches. The ears may be cropped or uncropped. The tail may be docked; for natural tails, the tip should reach the hock but not below. The short, harsh coat requires minimal weekly grooming. Acceptable colors are black, lighter and darker shades of gray, lighter and darker shades of fawn, and red. Brindling is allowed on all of these colors. Solid fawn and red, including lighter and darker shades, have a black or gray mask. The mask does not go beyond the eyes. There may be a white patch on the chest, throat, chin, backs of the pasterns, and on the toes.

  This still primitive dog breed was developed centuries ago in Tibet. Originally used as guard dogs for livestock and property, Tibetan Mastiffs can still be found performing that role, but they also enjoy life as a family companion and show dog.
  Noble and impressive: a large, but not a giant breed. An athletic and substantial dog, of solemn but kindly appearance. The Tibetan Mastiff stands well up on the pasterns, with strong, tight, cat feet, giving an alert appearance. The body is slightly longer than tall. The hallmarks of the breed are the head and the tail. The head is broad and impressive, with substantial back skull, the eyes deep-set and almond shaped, slightly slanted, the muzzle broad and well-padded, giving a square appearance. The typical expression of the breed is one of watchfulness. The tail and britches are well feathered and the tail is carried over the back in a single curl falling over the loin, balancing the head. The coat and heavy mane is thick, with coarse guard hair and a wooly undercoat.

 Despite the negative attention received due to its portrayal as a mean dog in television and film, the rottweiler remains a highly popular breed.
  Here's why: Historically a herding dog, the rottweiler's natural obedience makes it adaptable to several roles — just as capable of being a guard dog as assisting as a service dog. Extremely intelligent and good-natured, the rottweiler is naturally attentive and very loyal to its family.
  That said, rotties are best in homes with older kids who know how to interact with dogs. Since they are herding dogs, small children can easily get knocked over when the pup tries to herd them with leans and nudges.
  These dogs are stout, generally around 2-feet tall but weighing as much as 130 pounds, and live between 8 and 11 years.
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Monday, August 3, 2015

World's Rarest Dog Breeds

 World's Rarest Dog Breeds
   Over the centuries, people have bred dogs to be companions, workers, snugglers, and pets. Because of this, dogs are the most diverse land animals in terms of physical appearance.  While you might know that Labs are squarely-built short-haired retrievers and Dachshunds are short, squat, little badger fighters– there are many rare dogs whose form and function you haven’t yet imagined.
   Sometimes it feels as if everyone walking down the street has a dog, but you won't find these breeds on every sidewalk. Some hail from far-off locales, others have unique features like extra digits or talents like truffle-hunting. All of them are found in such small numbers that they sometimes aren't even acknowledged by the American Kennel Club. 

 Finnish Spitz
  With its fox-like appearance and fluffy coat, this breed is a strikingly handsome one.
Originally bred in Finland, the Finnish Spitz was initially bred as a hunting dog.
  Owners employed the dog to hunt small game like grouse; however, it has also been deemed as effective for hunting large game like moose.
   In many ways, it’s strange that this breed is so rare outside of its homeland as it also makes an excellent family pet and is revered for its child-friendly temperament.
  While Finnish Spitz puppies are often born with dark coats, adults sport coats that range from honey-gold to golden-red. Some adults may sport a chestnut coat. As a medium-sized dog, males may weigh no more than thirty pounds.
  Females rarely weigh beyond twenty-two pounds. Lively and alert, the Finnish Spitz loves to be active. This breed does not like to be kenneled, however, and values its run of the home. Indoor exercise complements its fitness needs, but it also requires long walks and outdoor play.
  In its homeland, the Finnish Spitz is famous for its barking ability and has been hailed as the “King of the Barkers.” Because they are exceptional barkers, many people prefer to employ them as watchdogs.

Catalburun
  This breed is a Turkish Pointer, and is readily identified by its “split-nose”. This may be the result of severe inbreeding, or because the local hunters prized the fabled hunting prowess of split-nosed dogs over pointers with normal appearing noses. Either way, they are virtually unknown outside of Turkey, although they are prized in their homeland for their hunting abilities.

Catahoula Leopard Dog
  This dog got its unique name because of its unusual colorful coat that looks like a leopard’s skin. Interestingly enough, this dog originated in the state of Louisiana. It is believed to be the first species of dog bred in the United States and it becomes one of the rare dog breeds now. The name comes from Lake Catahoula, where they were bred to hunt wild boar. Later on, they were put to work as herders because of their ability to put fences around livestock.


Swedish Vallhund
 Swedish Vallhunds are athletic dogs, excelling in obedience, agility, tracking, herding, and flyball, in addition to traditionally being a farm dog used for herding. The “small, powerful, fearless” breed comes in a variety of colors and with a variety of tail lengths, from bobtail (no tail) to a full curl tail.



Mudi
  This rare dog is a Hungarian herding dog that is still bred for work as well as for show and companionship.
  A relative of the Puli and Pumi, the Mudi is found in a variety of colors such as fawn, black,  white, yellow, gray, and others. The dog is well-liked for its great versatility.
It is a great hunter as well as herder. It is also beloved for its great temperament. Known for its health and long life, the Mudi does like to exercise. Its active nature is what makes it so ideal for herding.
  Aside from enjoying plenty of walks and exercise, this dog is also a game lover. It will excel in games like Frisbee or other types of fetch games.
  An agile and intelligent breed, the Mudi also makes a fine guard dog.  With all its many charms, it is a wonder that this breed is so rare!
  Mudi will behave well around children, but its seems to do best when exposed to them as a puppy or else it is apt to view them as equal members of the pack and not as humans to which it must obey. This dynamic dog can be found outside of Hungary but it remains quite rare at present.

Carolina Dog
  This breed is also known as the “American Dingo”, and has been genetically linked with such primitive dog breeds such as the Australian Dingo and New Guinea Singing Dog. They are an amazingly versatile breed. Unlike other domestic dogs, who have an estrus cycle twice a year, Carolina dogs have a single estrus cycle during the year like other wild dogs. . It is a pariah dog of the American Southeast, and I can remember seeing these “yellar dawgs” running through the woods of Lexington County during my teenage years in South Carolina.



  Historically bred to fight alongside the Romans wearing body armor and blades so that they could run under and disembowel enemy horses, the Neopolitan Mastiff was almost extinct at the end of WWII. After an Italian painter set up a kennel to protect the enormous pups and bred them with English Mastiffs to diversify the bloodline, the Neopolitan Mastiff has evolved as a breed and one even appeared as Hagrid’s pet dog, Fang, in the Harry Potter movies.





  The Fila Brasileiro, or Brazilian Mastiff, originates as a hunting and guard dog. Coming from Brazil, as it’s name suggests, it is known for it’s aggressive nature and excellent tracking ability. They are very wary of strangers, incredibly loyal to their owners, and naturally protective, making them excellent guardians. In fact, Brazil even has a common saying, “As faithful as a Fila,” to honor the dogs’ loyalty and temperament.


 Pronounced Sho-lo-eets-quint-lee, the Xoloitzcuintli is usually referred to as the “Mexican Hairless Dog” or just “Xolo.” This breed is so old that it was actually worshiped by the Aztecs. Because many Americans are not familiar with Xolo pups, it has been mistaken for the mythological Chupacabra along the US border states. The Xoloitzcuintli has not been inbred over the years like many other purebreed dogs and it is a very healthy and hardy dog that only requires a bit of moisturizer, sunscreen, and regular bathing.

Otterhound
  This scent-hound, not surprisingly, was bred to hunt otters. An old British breed, its precise origins are not known.
  This large hound typically weighs between 80 and 120 pounds. It has a grizzly-colored coat and distinctive webbed feet that support its ability in the water.
   Naturally, the Otterhound is an adept swimmer. Otters were popularly hunted in the Otterhound’s homeland since the Middle Ages. Even so, today’s Otterhound can only be traced to roughly the early nineteenth century.
  The Otterhound has been regarded as a great family pet and doesn’t seem to mind lounging about with its human family. However, the breed does require exercise to keep fit and to maintain its physical prowess.
  Though this breed is highly regarded, it is a rare one with only about 1,000 known to exist. This low count means it is an endangered breed. In the UK, considerable effort is going into the cause to save this British breed.

  As a large breed, it’s not surprising that hip dysplasia is among its health complaints. Yet even as a rare breed of dog, the Otterhound is not associated with many health problems in general. Epilepsy, however, is one condition known to affect this particular breed.

Kishu
  This Japanese dog breed is incredibly rare and many people won’t get the chance to see one unless they visit Japan.
  On the other hand, readers of Manga (Japanese-style comics) may spot one in print as these dogs are well-liked by Manga artists.
  The Kishu is a medium-sized dog with a white coat. Other color Kishu dogs may be seen on occasion, but a white coat is most common for this breed.
  Throughout its history, the Kishu was used to hunt animals like deer and even boar. Interestingly, this breed is a great hunter because it’s known for its ability to quietly stalk its prey. It knows not to bark and is well known for its quiet manner.
  While the breed is known for its tough demeanor, it is also regarded as an immensely friendly one which makes it a great pet. This dog is also regarded as highly loyal—especially to its family.
  The dog is especially associated with its homeland and its export is restricted. There are breeders outside of Japan, but the breed is quite rare around the world.

Intelligent yet strong-willed, this breed can become somewhat aggressive around other dogs if not socialized as a puppy. It enjoys its dominance!

Chinook

  This rare dog is the direct descendent of one famous sled dog, named Chinook. After the breed founder’s death in 1963, this breed went into rapid decline and looked as if it would be lost forever. A dedicated group of dog lovers found the remaining 11 breedable dogs in 1981 and worked diligently to restore this breed. Today’s Chinook is primarily a housedog, although a few enjoy being used as sled dogs.



New Guinea Singing Dog

  This unusual breed is both a wild dog and a pet. It is a true wild dog that was once found throughout the island of New Guinea. It gets its name from the strange singing sound it makes. Little was known about these dogs until 2 were sent to Australia in 1956. The singing dog is an unusual dog because it is not genetically related to any other species of dog. Some experts have even classified it as a separate species. It is related to the dingo, the first dog in Australia, which was brought to that nation by the ancestors of today’s Aborigines. Although still found in captivity, singing dogs are one of the rare dog breeds in the wild.



Peruvian Inca Orchid
  The Peruvian Inca Orchid has been around since before AD 750, and today it remains an uncommon but treasured pet. The “agile, smart and swift” breed is good at hunting and lure coursing as well. But its most notable quality is that it is sometimes hairless, with skin that appears in a variety of colors.



Pumi
  This terrier-type of sheep dog is not well-known outside of Hungary, but it is highly regarded in its homeland.
  It is also a versatile herding dog and will happily herd cattle or pigs too. In fact, around many farms, these dogs are even used to hunt rodents.
  While most Pumis are gray in color, they can also be seen in shades like white, black, and brown. With their thick and curly coats, these dogs are well-liked for their handsome appearance.
  For this reason as well as their lively intelligence, they are popular among families. Pumis are quite easy to train.
  Though they can be playful amidst their human family members, they can be quite weary of strangers. Experts suggest socializing their dogs as puppies to tamp down their weariness. These dogs tend to weigh about thirty pounds and grow to about nineteen inches in height.
  Because they love to run and prefer to remain active, they do best in households that have large backyards. This type of dog is not content with apartment living.
  To enhance their need for fitness, owners should provide them with at least one long walk or a jogging session each day. When its fitness needs are met, this dog can make a fine family pet.


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Sunday, August 2, 2015

Why Is My Dog Deaf?

Why Is My Dog Deaf?
  Depending on the breed, a dog’s sense of smell is 1,000 to 10,000 times more sensitive than a human’s. A human has 5 million scent glands, as compared to a dog that has 125 million to 300 million. When a dog smells something, it can tell a lot about it; it's almost like reading a book—where the object has been, what it has eaten, what it has touched, etc. Deaf dogs rely on their nose and eyes, and those senses become even more sensitive. It is important when grooming a deaf dog not to cut off its whiskers, as dogs use these to sense the distance of things around them.
  When a dog gets old, it may begin to lose its eyesight and ability to hear. While this may be traumatic for you to witness, it is much more stressful on the dog. Imagine suddenly not being able to hear familiar noises, find things around the house, or see who is approaching you.
  Deafness refers to the lack/ loss of an animal's ability to hear, this can either be complete or partial loss. If the dog is deaf at birth, it will be very apparent to you at a young age. 
  More than 30 breeds of dogs have a known susceptibility for deafness, including the Australian shepherd, Boston terrier, cocker spaniel, Dalmatian, German shepherd, Jack Russell terrier, Maltese, toy and miniature poodle, and West Highland white terrier. Typically, it is more common in senior dogs.

Symptoms
  Dogs that are undergoing hearing loss may appear disobedient and ignorant of commands. A dog with extreme hearing loss will not typically respond if you snap your fingers next to its ears or make an unfamiliar noise that typically warrants a reaction. A dog’s ears tend to move around and twitch as they take in sounds around them. If a dog has ears that remain still, this could be a sign that they are going deaf.
  Dogs typically show more obvious symptoms of hearing loss than do cats. Of course, it is easier to identify deafness in a dog born without hearing than in one who develops deafness gradually. In either case, signs of deafness include:

  • Overly aggressive behavior with littermates (young puppy with congenital deafness)
  • Sleeping more than typical for a dog of its age and breed
  • Lack of response to squeaky toys
  • Tendency to startle and/or snap when physically roused from sleep or rest
  • Lack of response to auditory stimuli, especially when the dog is not looking (voice commands, shouting, clapping hands, whistling, barking, doorbells, etc.)
  • Exaggerated response to physical stimuli (touch, floor or ground vibration, wind)
  • Tendency to startle and/or snap when touched from behind or outside of its field of vision
  • Disorientation, confusion, agitation in otherwise familiar circumstances
  • Decreased activity level
  • Difficulty arousing from sleep
  • Unusual vocal sound
  • Not awakening from sleep in response to auditory stimuli (voice commands, clapping, whistling, other sounds)
  • Gradual decline in response to own name and known voice commands
  • Excessive barking for a dog of its age and breed.

Diagnosis
  Early age onset usually suggests birth defects  in predisposed breeds. On the other hand, brain disease is a slow progressive disease of the cerebral cortex, usually caused by senility or cancer,  making the brain not able to register what the ear can hear. Bacterial cultures and hearing tests, as well as sensitivity testing of the ear canal, may also used to diagnose the underlying condition.


Treatment
  There really is no way to “treat” deafness in dogs. The therapeutic goals are basically to prevent deafness from developing in the first place and to improve an affected dog’s hearing ability if at all possible. The best way to deal with canine deafness is with kind, careful and consistent training, management and care of affected animals.
  There is no realistic treatment for congenital deafness in dogs, whether it is hereditary or otherwise. Puppies born with a limited or absent sense of hearing almost always will be unable to hear sounds for the rest of their lives. There also is no practical way to treat dogs with acquired nerve-related deafness or hearing loss. Some veterinary teaching hospitals and other highly specialized veterinary facilities offer customized hearing aids for dogs with limited hearing disabilities, but these are extremely expensive and largely useless for most causes of canine deafness. Certainly, dogs with temporary hearing loss caused by ear infections, tumors or build-up of wax and other debris can be treated by removing the causative agent either medically or surgically. Otherwise, deafness is usually irreversible and permanent.

  Dogs with partial or complete deafness can live normal, happy, productive lives. They can do therapy work, scent and sight tracking, obedience, agility and pretty much anything else that hearing dogs can do. Deafness is a disability that requires special attention by owners but does not prevent most affected dogs from living every bit as full a life as any dog with normal hearing capabilities. If your dog is deaf or seems to be losing its hearing, schedule an appointment with your veterinarian. Hearing loss is not a life-threatening condition. However, it is worthwhile to determine whether there are any correctible conditions that are contributing to a dog’s loss of hearing.


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