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Showing posts with label energetic. Show all posts
Showing posts with label energetic. Show all posts

Saturday, November 25, 2017

Everything about your Gordon Setter

Everything about your Gordon Setter
  Originally deployed in Scotland to retrieve hunted birds that had fallen to the ground, the Gordon Setter’s strong hunter’s instinct, skill with scents, and general companion qualities have made it a very popular breed indeed, as well as an enduring one. Having been officially recognized by the American Kennel Club in 1884, it is far ahead of many modern breeds that could be considered more popular. Today, a Gordon Setter is known as an excellent, loyal, and obedient breed that looks great with a properly-groomed coat but is also an ideal exercise partner and friend in the outdoors.

Overview
  This Scottish breed has been established since the 17th century and takes his name from Gordon Castle, where he was developed by the fourth Duke of Gordon. Dressed in sophisticated black and tan, the Gordon Setter is the heaviest and most muscular of the three Setter breeds. In the field, his job is to find and point gamebirds, working at a slow, methodical pace. Hunters appreciate his intelligence and scenting ability, but his good qualities aren’t limited to the field. enjoys participating in dog sports such as agility, obedience, rally, and tracking.
  The gentle and protective Gordon can be a good choice for families with children. He’s tolerant toward toddlers and energetic enough to play catch for hours on end. He also gets along well with other pets such as cats if he’s raised with them. Gordon Setters are alert and will bark to let you know that someone is approaching. They are reserved toward strangers, preferring to save their affection for their families.
  The Gordon is smart and easy to train with positive reinforcement techniques. Be patient and gentle, and he’ll respond eagerly. He’s not necessarily a barker, but he is vocal, expressing himself with mumbling and grumbling to tell you about his day, what he thinks of his meals, and when it’s a good time to take him for a walk.
  Last but not least, it should go without saying that a people-loving dog like the Gordon Setter needs to live in the house. He'll grow despondent relegated to the backyard with little or no human interaction.

Highlights
  • Adult Gordon Setters require one to two hours of daily exercise. This can be a game of fetch in a field or backyard, a run, or a couple of long walks.
  • Being an intelligent, hardworking breed, the Gordon Setter can become destructive if his needs for exercise and mental stimulation are not met. Boredom and extra energy are not a great mix to have, and the best way to avoid any destructiveness is through proper exercise and training.
  • Gordon Setters are not backyard dogs. They are much happier when they are with their families and should not live away from them. They enjoy personal attention and family activities.
  • Strong temperaments are well known in the breed and many owners have the feeling that they are "owned" and not owner. Gordons are independent and determined, qualities that can translate to stubbornness to some.
  • Gordon Setters can suffer from separation anxiety and may become destructive when they do.
  • Although Gordon Setters are known for their stubbornness, they can be sensitive and easily cowed with abuse and neglect. Never treat your dog harshly but instead give him firm, fair, consistent training without the use of anger or physical force. If Gordon Setters aren't trained they may become destructive, wilful, and dominant.
Other Quick Facts
  • The Gordon is the largest of the three setter breeds.
  • The Gordon dresses to the nines in a silky black coat with rich mahogany markings and feathering on the legs and tail.
  • The Gordon is an uncommon breed. You may have a wait of a year or more before a puppy is available.

Breed standards

AKC group: Sporting
UKC group: Gun Dog
Average lifespan: 10-12 years
Average size: 45-80 pounds
Coat appearance: Long, Silky, and Thick
Coloration: black and tan coat, with the tan markings being a rich chestnut or mahogany 
Hypoallergenic: No
Best Suited For: Families with children, active singles and seniors, houses with yards
Temperament: Devoted, gentle, affectionate, enthusiastic
Comparable Breeds: Golden Retriever, Irish Setter

History
From a painting - Gordons Working
  Black and tan setting dogs were known in Scotland as early as 1620, but it was their presence in the kennels of the fourth Duke of Gordon 200 years later that brought them to prominence. The Castle Gordon Setters had first-class hunting skills and were beautiful as well.
  The early Gordons also came in black and white, tricolor, and red, but the Duke was said to favor the dogs with black and tan coloring, and that's what has prevailed over the years. When the Duke died in 1827, his heir, the Duke of Richmond, carried on his kennels.
  Between 1859 and 1874, England's Kennel Club listed 126 Black and Tan setters in its studbook. In June of 1859, at the first official dog show, a Black and Tan Setter by the name of Dandie, took first prize for setters, who could trace his pedigree back to the kennels of the Duke of Gordon. The breed officially took the name Gordon Setter in 1924.
  The first Gordon Setters imported into the United States came from the kennel at Gordon Castle. The dogs, Rake and Rachel, were purchased by Daniel Webster and George Blunt in 1842. They were the foundation of the breed in the United States.
  The American Kennel Club recognized the Gordon Setter in 1892, and the Gordon Setter Club of America, Inc., was formed in 1924. The club is still in existence today and boasts a membership of more than 1,000. Today the Gordon Setter ranks 88th among the 155 breeds and varieties registered by the AKC.

Personality
  The loyal Gordon Setter is intensely devoted to his family but wary of strangers, characteristics that make him an excellent watchdog. He's mannerly and eager to please, but like any dog he'll take advantage of lax leadership and can become dominant, wilfull, and stubborn if not provided with firm, fair, consistent training.
  A Gordon Setter expert once wrote of the breed that if he acts sorry for a misdeed, he's probably more sorry that he got caught than that he misbehaved. In the field or in any competitive situation, he's alert, fearless, intelligent, and capable. He's a personal hunting dog, in the sense that he works nearby rather than ranging far afield. Gordons aren't fast, but they have a lot of stamina.
  Temperament is affected by a number of factors, including heredity, training, and socialization. Puppies with nice temperaments are curious and playful, willing to approach people and be held by them. Choose the middle-of-the-road puppy, not the one who's beating up his littermates or the one who's hiding in the corner. Always meet at least one of the parents — usually the mother is the one who's available — to ensure that they have nice temperaments that you're comfortable with. Meeting siblings or other relatives of the parents is also helpful for evaluating what a puppy will be like when he grows up.
  Like every dog, Gordon Setters need early socialization — exposure to many different people, sights, sounds, and experiences — when they're young. Socialization helps ensure that your Gordon Setter puppy grows up to be a well-rounded dog. Enrolling him in a puppy kindergarten class is a great start. Inviting visitors over regularly, and taking him to busy parks, stores that allow dogs, and on leisurely strolls to meet neighbors will also help him polish his social skills.

Health

  The Gordon Setter, which has an average lifespan of 10 to 12 years, is prone to major health issues such as gastric torsion and canine hip dysplasia, and minor problems like cerebellar abiotrophy, progressive retinal atrophy (PRA), hypothyroidism, and elbow dysplasia. To identify some of these issues, a veterinarian may recommend regular eye, hip, thyroid, and elbow exams for this breed of dog.

Care
  Regular combing, which should be done every two to three days, is a must for the Gordon Setter, though an occasional trimming may also be required. A thorough daily exercise regimen is also essential for the breed. And although it is adaptable to temperate climates outdoors, it should be given plenty of human companionship.

Living conditions
  The Gordon Setter is not recommended for apartment life. It is relatively inactive indoors (if a Gordon Setter gets enough outdoor activity it will be calm when it is indoors) and does best with at least a large, safely fenced yard where it can run free. Their hunting instincts lure them to roam, so a good fence around your property is essential.

Trainability

  Gordons have a mind of their own and do not like to be bossed around. Training can be difficult and takes a strong, steady leader. Sessions should be conducted with an abundance of positive reinforcement and very little harsh discipline. Though establishing leadership can be a challenge, Gordons actually pick up on tasks quickly and have excellent memories. Once basic obedience is mastered and the Gordon Setter knows his place in the family hierarchy, he should be graduated on to advanced obedience or agility training to keep his mind active.
  Housebreaking takes anywhere from four to six months with a Gordon Setter. They do not like to be told what to do or when to do it, so this process can be quite drawn out. Crate training is the best method for housebreaking a Gordon.

Exercise Requirements
  These are voracious exercisers and will require plenty of it to keep from bouncing around the walls indoors. For this reason, it’s not recommended that you keep a Gordon Setter as a city pet. They’re more suited for plenty of space to have their “outdoor” itch scratched on a daily basis, and they generally require plenty of activity to feel calm at the end of a day.

Grooming

  The Gordon has a long, thick coat with feathering on the ears, legs, belly, and tail. Depending on the type of terrain your Gordon is out in every day, you will probably need to brush and comb him one to three days a week to prevent or remove tangles and mats, remove dead hair, and distribute skin oils. In addition to brushing, you’ll need to trim the hair on the bottom of his feet and between his toes.
  The Gordon Setter sheds moderately. The more often you brush him, the less hair you will find on your floor, furniture, and clothing.
  Gordons love swimming and playing in water. Be sure to keep the ears clean and dry to prevent bacterial or yeast infections from taking hold.
  The rest is basic care. Trim the nails as needed, usually every few weeks. Brush the teeth frequently for good overall health and fresh breath.

Children And Other Pets
  Gordons are fond of and protective toward children. They'll put up with a lot, and when they've had enough teasing or roughhousing, they'll walk away. They may be a bit much for toddlers, though, being large enough to accidentally knock them down.
  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.
  Gordons get along with other dogs and cats if they're raised with them, but they might not be so friendly toward strange dogs.

Is the Gordon Setter the Right Breed for you?
Moderate Maintenance: Regular grooming is required to keep its fur in good shape. Professional trimming or stripping needed.
Moderate Shedding: Routine brushing will help. Be prepared to vacuum often!
Moderately Easy Training: The Gordon Setter is average when it comes to training. Results will come gradually.
Very Active: It will need daily exercise to maintain its shape. Committed and active owners will enjoy performing fitness activities with this breed.
Good for New Owners: This breed is well suited for those who have little experience with dog ownership.
Good with Kids: This is a suitable breed for kids and is known to be playful, energetic, and affectionate around them.

Did You Know?
  Developed by the Dukes of Gordon, the black and tan dogs were originally known as Gordon Castle Setters.


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Friday, June 30, 2017

Everything about your Curly-Coated Retriever

Everything about your Curly-Coated Retriever
   Created to retrieve game from land or water, the Curly-Coated Retriever dog breed was popular with English gamekeepers, hunters, and poachers alike. Today he competes in such dog sports as field trials, agility, obedience, and flyball and has been successful as a therapy dog, drug detection dog, and search and rescue dog. When he’s not out working or competing, he’s happy to lie beside his favorite person, enjoying a nice back scratch.

Overview
  The Curly-Coated Retriever has been around since the late 18th century, probably created by crossing now-extinct Old English Water Dogs, Irish Water Spaniels and small Newfoundlands, with, yes, some Poodle added later. The result was a black or liver-colored retriever with tight curls on his body and a zest for water retrieving. The Curly-Coat is a fun and interesting dog, no doubt about it.
   The Curly may be uncommon, but he has a dedicated band of followers who prize him for his intelligence, trainability, multiple abilities, sense of humor and, of course, that unusual appearance. He’s not the breed for everyone, but if you can appreciate his constantly thinking brain, you will find him to be a loving, talented and entertaining companion.
  A typical retriever, he enjoys activity, although he requires somewhat less exercise than, say, a Lab or a Flat Coat. Channel his energy into dog sports such as agility, flyball and flying disc games, or teach him to pull you or your kid on skates or a skateboard. He’ll also do well in competitive obedience. The Curly is slow to mature, however, so it can take time for training to stick. Be patient, and use positive reinforcement techniques such as play, praise and food rewards. When the motivation is there, the Curly learns quickly and easily.
  Like most dogs, Curly-Coats become bored when left to their own devices. They can easily become noisy or destructive if they don’t have other dogs to keep them company and don’t receive much attention from their people. But when the Curly lives with a family who is willing to spend plenty of time training and exercising him, he thrives.

Highlights
  • The Curly-Coated Retriever has the most unusual coat of all of the retriever breeds. The coat requires only moderate grooming, and the breed sheds only twice a year.
  • Curly-Coated Retrievers generally have an oily coat, which is more likely to cause reactions in people with allergies.
  • Curly-Coated Retrievers are more reserved around strangers than other retriever breeds and needs to be properly socialized to avoid any timidity.
  • Curly-Coated Retrievers are sporting dogs and have the energy that other sporting and working dogs have. If they are not given adequate exercise, at least 30 to 60 minutes per day, they can become quite destructive in their boredom.
  • Curly-Coated Retrievers tend to be mouthy and will nip and chew everything in reach, including toys, clothes, and hands.
  • The Curly-Coated Retriever is intelligent and enjoys working, but he needs a strong, confident owner who will keep him from taking charge. He also needs variety in training and activities because he tends to get bored doing the same old thing again and again.
  • Curly-Coated Retrievers are more difficult to find than other breeds, but it is still important to look for the best possible breeder, even if long waiting lists await you.
  • Curly-Coated Retrievers take longer to mature than other breeds, so be prepared for your dog to act puppylike for at least three years.
  • In general, Curly-Coated Retrievers do well with children but small children should never be left unsupervised with any dog regardless of breed.
  • Curly-Coated Retrievers are not meant for apartments and do better in homes with a large yard where they can expend their energy. They are quieter in homes when their energy levels are met.
  • Although they enjoy the great outdoors, Curly-Coated Retrievers are not dogs who can be kenneled outside. They enjoy being with their family and can become very destructive when left away from them.
  • 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
  • The Curly dates to the 18th century and is acknowledged as the oldest of the retrieving breeds.
  • The Curly’s coat is unusual but easy to care for and sheds little. It can be black or liver-colored.
  • Like most retrievers, the Curly loves playing in water.
  • A home with a yard is the best environment for a Curly, but a person who is committed to walking him or taking him to a dog park daily can keep one happy in a home without a yard.
  • Curlies excel at many activities, including hunt tests, agility, herding instinct tests, lure coursing, dock diving, flyball, scent hurdle racing, tracking and rally. At least one has run as part of a sled-dog team.
  • A daily walk of up to a mile will satisfy a Curly, but he’ll take all the exercise you can give him.
Breed standards
AKC Group: Sporting
UKC Group: Gun Dogs
Lifespan:  8 to 12 years
Average size:  between 60 to 70 pounds
Color: Black and Brown
Coat: Dense, Short, and Water-Repellent
Hypoallergenic Breed: No
Shedding: Moderate
Grooming Needs: Low Maintenance
Comparable Breeds: English Springer Spaniel, Labrador Retriever



History
  The exact history of the Curly-Coated Retriever is not known. Popular conjecture suggests that the Curly-Coated Retriever descends from the now-extinct Old English Water Spaniel and from the Retrieving Setter. Other contributors to the breed are thought to include the small St. John’s Newfoundland, the Poodle, the Labrador Retriever, the Pointer and/or the Irish Water Spaniel. 
  This popular gun dog was first exhibited in 1860 at Birmingham. In 1889, some Curly’s were exported to New Zealand, where they have since been used for retrieving duck and quail. In Australia, Curly-Coated Retrievers are also highly prized for use on water fowl in the swamps and lagoons of the Murray River. They are excellent all-around hunting dogs, with an especially tender mouth and unparalleled water skills.
  The first breed club was established in England in 1896. The breed was introduced to America as early as 1907, with the first American Kennel Club registration of a Curly-Coated Retriever being made in 1924. They are members of the AKC’s Sporting Group. The Curly-Coated Retriever Club of America was formed in 1979 and is the breed parent club in this country. In the early part of the twentieth century, the Curly’s popularity waned while the Flat-Coated Retriever’s popularity rose. Today, the Curly-Coated Retriever retains its world-wide presence as a determined, durable hunter and a gentle family companion, although the breed is still uncommon.


Personality
  The Curly-Coat is full of retriever drive and determination. He'll work 'til the job is done. In the field or at home, he's alert and self-confident. He has an even temper but is more reserved with strangers than other retrievers. Early socialization — exposure to many different people, sights, sounds and experiences — helps prevent timidity. That said, don't confuse his independence and poise with shyness or a lack of willingness to please. Curly-Coated Retrievers take longer to mature than other breeds, so be prepared to live with a full-grown puppy for several years.
  Curlies have a mind of their own and need a confident owner who won't allow them to run the show. The Curly-Coated Retriever responds well to training, although not always as quickly as other dogs. That doesn't mean he's dumb. He simply gets bored easily. Keep him interested with a variety of training exercises. It's not unusual for a Curly to ignore his trainer when an exercise or activity becomes repetitive.


Health
  The average life expectancy of the Curly-Coated Retriever is between 10 and 12 years. Breed health concerns may include gastric dilatation and volvulus (bloat), canine follicular dysplasia, entropion, ectropion, distichiasis, cataracts, epilepsy, generalized progressive retinal atrophy, glycogen storage disease and hip dysplasia.

Care
  The Curly-Coated Retriever does not require too much maintenance. However, certain things have to be taken care of. The curls require a bit of trimming, and occasional brushing. However, this is not required at the time of shedding. A daily exercise regimen, including retrieving and swimming, is important for Curly-Coated Retrievers. And if you are in search of an outside pet, the Curly-Coated Retriever is adaptable to living outdoors in temperate climates.

Living Conditions
  The Curly-Coated Retriever is not recommended for apartment life. It does best with at least a large yard. An eager and tireless land and (especially) water retriever outdoors, but a calm companion indoors. Curlies need to be part of the family and not left alone outside in the yard all day.

Training
  Curly-Coated Retrievers grow to become large dogs so it is essential that you start training when they are puppies. It is also important that you keep in mind that because they are such great Retrievers, they tend to mouthy and chew things up as pups. This unwanted behavior must be nipped in the bud at an early age.  The Curly is highly trainable and responds well to repetitive training sessions along with positive reinforcement. His willingness to please makes the Curly-Coated Retriever the perfect candidate for AKC Sanctioned Obedience Trials.
  Owners who plan to use their Curly-Coated Retrievers for hunting purposes should acclimate the pup to water as soon as possible. This doesn’t mean that a ten week old puppy should go into icy water in the freezing cold. It’s best to buy a plastic wading pool and fill it with water on a mild day. More than likely, the pup will find his way in and have a grand, old time. A retrieving dummy will make his first experience in the water a good one.

Activity Requirements
  Like other retriever breeds, the Curly Coated version needs lots of vigorous exercise every single day. They are an active person's dog – couch potatoes should steer clear of this breed. They love running, swimming, hiking, playing ball and catching frisbees. They can be competitive in agility courses, but they are not as obedient as their Golden Retriever counterparts, so they often do not excel in this arena, but they enjoy the activity and eat up the attention.
  Curlies need as much mental stimulation as they do physical stimulation and should always be provided with plenty of interesting activities throughout the day, especially when left alone. Inactivity and boredom leads to destructiveness and hyperactivity that is hard to curb.

Grooming
  The Curly coat of small, tight, crisp curls has little odor and is easy to care for. Comb or brush it out before bathing with an undercoat rake or a slicker brush and comb. Don’t worry that brushing will take the curl out of the coat.
  Depending on how dirty a Curly gets, a bath is necessary only every month or two. Most Curly coats dry quickly, sometimes in as little as ten minutes. Don’t blow dry a Curly unless you want him to look like a chia pet. 
  The only other grooming is a little trimming to neaten any straggly hairs, a bushy tail, or excessive feathering on the backs of the legs and behind the ears. Some Curlies have tufts of fur between their toes, giving the feet the appearance of fluffy houseslippers. These tufts are usually trimmed for the show ring, but can be left alone if you like the look.
  Curlies don’t shed much, but they do shed. If your Curly spends time in the house, you will find hair on the furniture or floor. The coat usually sheds a small amount year-round, with a heavier shed twice a year.
  The rest is basic care. Trim the nails as needed, usually every few weeks. Keep the ears clean and dry to prevent ear infections. Brush the teeth frequently for good overall health and fresh breath.

Children And Other Pets
  The Curly-Coated Retriever is a great companion for older children who can stand up to his size and energy level, but he may be overwhelming for younger children who are easily knocked down in play. Any time your Curly interacts with children, lay down some ground rules for dog and child. No ear pulling, tail pulling or biting allowed! For the safety of both, never leave small children unsupervised with any dog.
  Curly-Coated Retrievers generally do very well with other dogs and animals but socialization is still important in regard to animal interactions.

Is the Curly-Coated Retriever the Right Breed for you?
Low Maintenance: Infrequent grooming is required to maintain upkeep. No trimming or stripping needed.
Moderate Shedding: Routine brushing will help. Be prepared to vacuum often!
Moderately Easy Training: The Curly-Coated Retriever is average when it comes to training. Results will come gradually.
Fairly Active: It will need regular exercise to maintain its fitness. Trips to the dog park are a great idea.
Good for New Owners: This breed is well suited for those who have little experience with dog ownership.
Good with Kids: This is a suitable breed for kids and is known to be playful, energetic, and affectionate around them.

Did You Know?
  You might mistake the Curly-Coated Retriever for a Labradoodle, but he’s a distinct breed, created in the 18th century by crossing now-extinct Old English Water Dogs, Irish Water Spaniels and small Newfoundlands. And yes, there’s some Poodle in the mix, too.





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Tuesday, June 27, 2017

Everything about your Kerry Blue Terrier

Everything about your Kerry Blue Terrier
  The Kerry Blue Terrier is the quintessential working dog. He hails from County Kerry, Ireland, where he was bred to hunt small game and birds, kill rodents, and herd sheep and cattle. Intelligent and brave, he became a cherished pet as well, displaying fierce devotion to his family or pack. While not a particularly well-known dog breed, the Kerry Blue enjoys a dedicated following of fanciers, thanks to his working abilities and loyal companionship.

Overview
  The Kerry Blue Terrier, also known as the Irish Blue Terrier, is a breed of dog.Originally bred to control "vermin" including rats, rabbits, badgers, foxes, otters and hares, over time the Kerry became a general working dog used for a variety of jobs including herding cattle and sheep, and as a guard dog. Today the Kerry has spread around the world as a companion and working dog. Despite a Kerry Blue winning Crufts,the most important UK dog show, in 2000, it remains an "unfashionable" breed, and is distinctly uncommon; however, it not as threatened as some of the other terrier breeds such as Skye Terrier, Sealyham Terrier, and Dandie Dinmont Terrier.

Highlights
  • The Kerry Blue Terry is a quick study, though he can be strong willed at times. You'll need a lot of patience and firmness, plus a good sense of humor, when training this breed.
  • The Kerry Blue is friendly to people, but his distaste for other dogs is well known. He can be aggressive and quarrelsome. Owners must be vigilant when taking the Kerry Blue in public. If he's socialized and well trained, he probably won't pick a fight, but he might try to end it if he's taunted.
  • Keeping your Kerry Blue groomed is expensive and, if you do it yourself, it's hard work.
  • Like all terriers, the Kerry Blue can be feisty. He loves to dig, chase, chew, and sometimes bark.
  • This is an active breed. He needs plenty of exercise, every day. A yard to play in is best, combined with daily walks.
  • 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.
More Quick Facts:
  • The Kerry Blue has a long head, dark eyes with a keen expression, small V-shaped ears that fold forward, a squarish body, and a medium-length tail carried up.
  • Coat and color are the Kerry’s defining characteristics. A proper Kerry coat is soft, dense, and wavy in any shade of blue gray, or gray blue. Those shades can range from deep slate to light blue gray, with darker to black areas on the muzzle, head, ears, tail, and feet.
  • Comparable Breeds: Airedale Terrier, Border Terrier
History
  The Kerry Blue Terrier was first observed in the mountains of Kerry in Ireland, hence the name of the breed.There is a romantic story of a blue dog swimming ashore from a shipwreck: the coat of this dog was so lovely that it was mated with all the female Wheaten Terriers in Kerry, producing the Kerry Blue. Perhaps this story is not entirely myth, as the Portuguese Water Dog is often suggested as part of the Kerry's makeup. Others suggest the Kerry was produced by the Soft Coated Wheaten Terrier crossed with the Bedlington
Philip Doyle with his dog "Terri" at the Killarney Show,1916.
Terrier with or without some Irish Wolfhound or Irish Terrier blood. The extinct Gadhar herding dog is also mentioned as another possible branch of the Kerry's family tree. One certain fact is the breed became very popular as an all-around farm dog in rural Ireland.

National Dog of Ireland
  With the development of dog shows in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, the breed became standardised and "tidied up" for the show ring. The Irish nationalist leader Michael Collins owned a famous Kerry Blue named Convict 224. Collins even made an attempt to have the Kerry blue adopted as the national dog of Ireland. Love of dogs did, however, cross political divides. The first show of the Dublin Irish Blue Terrier club took place outside official curfew hours and was entered both by those fighting for and against an Ireland republic. The Dublin Irish Blue Terrier Club was so successful it led directly to the foundation of the Irish Kennel Club, and a Kerry blue was the first dog that club registered.




Personality
  The Kerry Blue Terrier is an energetic and often rambunctious dog who loves to play hard. They are true family dogs who love to be surrounded by the ones they love and insist upon being included in all family activities. They have enough stamina to accompany people on long walks and hikes, but prefer yard games like catch, fetch, or plain old games of tag. Kerry Blues can be trusted around children of all ages, though their yen for rough housing makes them a poor choice for homes with toddlers. They are reliable watchdogs, quick to sound the alarm that someone is approaching, and they are fearless protectors of their property and family. They are not aggressive, however, unless absolutely provoked and are a great choice for families with experience raising dogs.


Health
  The Kerry Blue Terrier, which has a lifespan of 12 to 15 years, may suffer from clotting factor XI deficiency and retinal folds. It is also prone to minor health problems like cataract, entropion, Keratoconjunctivitis Sicca (KCS), canine hip dysplasia (CHD), spiculosis, otitis externa, and hair follicle tumors, and a major issues such as cerebellar abiotrophy. To identify some of these issues, a veterinarian may run hip and eye exams on the dog.

Care
  The Kerry Blue should be able to spend time lots of time with its family, both outdoors and indoors. Exercise is required for the breed, but this can be accomplished with a vigorous game, a leash-led walk, or a nice romp in the backyard.
  Coat care consists of combing twice a week and shaping and clipping at least once a month. The Kerry Blue's ears will also need to be trained during its early stages of development so that its ears will be properly shaped as an adult.

Living Conditions
  Kerry Blues are good for apartment life. They are fairly active indoors and a small yard will do.

Training
  The Kerry Blue Terrier is intelligent, but being a typical terrier, he’s also quite stubborn. Being such an observant dog, the Blue will watch to see who is in charge and how they can turn any situation to their advantage. If he senses that you’re not in charge at all times, your Kerry Blue Terrier will gladly take charge. Be consistent and confident when training your Blue and never let him get the upper hand. You’ll find that you’ll make much more progress by using positive training techniques. Come to training prepared with plenty of treats and keep these sessions interesting – your Kerry will lose focus if he gets bored.
  After he masters basic obedience training, your Kerry Blue Terrier is ready to move onto advanced obedience, agility and earthdog training. Because this is an intelligent breed, you need to keep his mind stimulated, otherwise he’ll engage in destructive behaviors.

Activity Requirements
  This mid-sized terrier needs a lot of physical and mental activity in order to maintain happiness and health. They have energy to spare, and just when you think you've tired our your Kerry Blue, he'll come back for more. This breed is not for couch potatoes, and don't do well in apartments. Houses with open space and a yard to play in are the ideal living situation for a Kerry Blue Terrier. They need about one hour of vigorous exercise every day which can include brisk walks, jogs, or romping in the yard.
  In addition to physical activity, it is important to keep the Kerry Blue's mind active. A bored Kerry is a destructive Kerry. Agility training is a good option to work both his mind and his body.

Grooming 
  Even though the Kerry Blue sheds very little, or not at all, the coat requires daily brushing to prevent tangles, mats, remove dirt and distribute oils. Trimming and bathing need to occur every four to six weeks. It is recommended that a professional groomer handle the bathing and trimming of a Kerry Blue, but because the breed is not common, it can be difficult to find a groomer who is familiar with the proper Kerry Blue style. Breeders can provide references for groomers.
  Check the ears on a regular basis for signs of wax buildup, irritation or infection. Clean the ears with a cotton ball and a veterinarian-approved cleanser; never use a cotton swab in a dog's ear canal. Teeth should be brushed on a weekly basis to prevent tartar buildup, promote gum health and keep bad breath at bay. Trim nails monthly if the dog does not wear the toenails down naturally outdoors.

Children And Other Pets
  The Kerry Blue loves kids, and because he is a sturdy dog, he can take a few knocks if the play gets rough. He is good-natured, and isn't normally grouchy with 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.
  He is grouchy, even aggressive, with other dogs, though with socialization and training — and altering — this tendency can be minimized. Never let your guard down, though, when the Kerry Blue is around other dogs, especially those unfamiliar to him.
  The Kerry Blue isn't especially fond of small animals either, given his strong prey drive. His instinct tells him to chase, so keep him leashed in public. The best way to ensure he'll get along with cats or small mammals in his home is to raise him with them and introduce them properly. Following that, close supervision is advised.

Did You Know?
  Kerry Blue Terrier puppies are born black. The coat should reach its mature color by the time the dog is 18 months old.

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Friday, May 2, 2014

Everything about your Harrier

Everything about your Harrier
  Harriers originally were bred to hunt hares and foxes. Today, the dog breed isn't especially popular, but his excellent sense of smell and tireless work ethic makes him a great fit for hunters.




History
  Sources have widely conflicting stories about the origins of this breed. According to one, the earliest Harrier types were crossed with Bloodhounds, the Talbot Hound, and even the Basset Hound. According to another, the breed was probably developed from crosses of the English Foxhound with Fox Terrier and Greyhound. And yet another, the Harrier is said to be simply a bred-down version of the English Foxhound. The first Harrier pack in England was established by Sir Elias de Midhope in 1260 and spread out as a hunting dog throughout the west of England and into Wales. Although there are many working Harriers in England, the breed is still not recognised in that country.
  In any case, today's Harrier is between the Beagle and English Foxhound in size and was developed primarily to hunt hares, though the breed has also been used in fox hunting. The name, Harrier, reveals the breed's specialty. The Harrier has a long history of popularity as a working pack dog in England. 
  The Harrier is the most commonly used hound by hunts in Ireland, with 166 harrier packs, 37 of them mounted packs and 129 of them foot packs, spread throughout the country. More commonly in Ireland it is used to hunt both foxes and hares, with some packs hunting mainly foxes.
  This breed of dog is recognized in 1885 by the American Kennel Club and is classified in the Hound Group.

Overview
  The harrier is a smaller version of the English foxhound, more suited for hunting hares. It has large bone for its size, and is slightly longer than tall. It is a scenting pack hound and should be capable of running with other dogs, scenting its quarry and hunting tirelessly over any terrain for long periods. It has a gentle expression when relaxed and alert when aroused. The coat is short and hard. 
  The harrier is somewhat more playful and outgoing than the foxhound, but not as much as the beagle. It is amiable, tolerant and good with children. Its first love is for the hunt, and it loves to sniff and trail. It needs daily exercise in a safe area. Most are reserved with strangers. It tends to bay.

Highlights
  • Some Harriers can be stubborn and difficult to housetrain. Crate training is recommended.
  • Harriers tend to be vocal and some love to howl.
  • Some Harriers like to dig and have been known to dig under fences to escape and chase after something.
  • Harriers are hunting dogs and will take any opportunity to pursue game or follow a scent. A secure fence is a necessity if you have a Harrier. Underground electronic fences are not effective with Harriers because they have a high pain threshold and the brief shock they get from crossing the invisible line does not deter them from chasing or investigating things beyond its boundaries.
  • Harriers are high-energy dogs and have a great deal of stamina. They are perfect for active families or athletic people who like to jog or bicycle with their dogs alongside (on leash so they don't take off on a chase), but they may become obese or destructive if living in a more sedentary home.
  • If not properly trained and socialized, your Harrier may see cats and other small furry animals as prey and act accordingly.
  • Harriers are good watchdogs who will bark if they feel that someone or something is threatening their territory, but they are not good guard dogs. After raising the alarm, they are likely to greet strangers as long-lost friends.
  • Harriers can stay outdoors if given adequate shelter from the heat and cold, but being pack animals, they are at their best when they are around other dogs or their family.
  • The Harrier's long ears prevent adequate air circulation to their ears and they may be prone to ear infections.
  • To get a healthy dog, never buy a puppy from a backyard 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.
Breed standards
AKC RANKING: 149
FAMILY: scenthound

AREA OF ORIGIN: Great Britain

DATE OF ORIGIN: Middle Ages

ORIGINAL FUNCTION: trailing hares

TODAY'S FUNCTION: trailing hare and fox
AVERAGE SIZE OF MALE: Height: 19-21 Weight: 45-60
AVERAGE SIZE OF FEMALE: Height: 19-21 Weight: 35-45
OTHER NAME: none
COMPARABLE BREEDS: American Foxhound, Beagle

Personality
  As a typical pack hound,  a dog that's used to working as part of a group,  the gentle Harrier is outgoing and friendly, never aggressive toward other dogs.
  He's also a typical hound in that he's an independent thinker and can be stubborn. It's important to train him using methods that will persuade him that being obedient is his idea. Positive reinforcement ,  rewards for correct behavior , is the way to go with this breed. He's a good watchdog and will alert you to strange sounds or the approach of people. If you're not home, he'll watch the burglar come in and cart off your silver.
  Like every dog, Harriers need early socialization ,  exposure to many different people, sights, sounds, and experiences,  when they're young. Socialization helps ensure that your Harrier puppy grows up to be a well-rounded dog.

Health
  The Harrier, which has an average lifespan of 12 to 14 years, is prone to problems like epilepsy and perianal fistula. The major health issue affecting this breed is canine hip dysplasia (CHD). To identify some of these issues, a veterinarian may recommend hip and eye exams for this breed of dog.

Is this breed right for you?
  Energetic and great with children, this dog is an excellent addition to the active family. Active both indoors and out, this breed is not recommended for apartment life. Instead, a large home with a large yard will fit this pet perfectly. In need of a lot of activity, he'll pair well with a runner or a distance walker.

Care
  Harriers have a lot of energy and stamina. They are great companions if they get enough exercise, but if not, they may become destructive. Harriers are not recommended for apartment dwellers. They do best in homes that have large yards or acreage for them to run. Yards need fences that your Harrier can't dig under or jump over.
  Harriers can live outside with proper shelter from the heat and cold, but prefer to be indoors, close to their family, whom they consider their pack. Harriers bay — a prolonged bark — when they're bored or lonely, so it's not a good idea to leave them alone in the backyard for hours at a time, especially if you have neighbors nearby.
  These are dogs who love to be with you, but do not demand attention. They are capable of entertaining themselves. Your job is to make sure that their idea of entertainment doesn't mean getting into mischief! Give your adult Harrier a long walk with lots of time for sniffing or take him jogging every day.
  Puppies have different exercise needs. From 9 weeks to 4 months of age, puppy kindergarten once or twice a week is a great way for them to get exercise, training, and socialization, plus 15 to 20 minutes of playtime in the yard, morning and evening.
  From 4 to 6 months of age, weekly obedience classes and daily half-mile walks will meet their needs, plus playtime in the yard. From 6 months to a year of age, play for up to 40 minutes during cool mornings or evenings, not in the heat of the day. Continue to limit walks to a half mile.
  After he's a year old, your Harrier pup can begin to jog with you, but keep the distance to less than a mile and give him frequent breaks along the way. Avoid hard surfaces such as concrete. As he continues to mature, you can increase the distance and time you run. These graduated levels of exercise will protect his developing bones and joints.

Grooming
  The short-haired coat of the Harrier is easy to groom. Brush on a regular basis with a firm bristle brush, and bathe once every two weeks in the warmer months and bathe once a month in the colder months.

Living conditions
  Harriers are not recommended for apartment life unless the owners are very active people who plan on taking them out daily for jogs, hikes or hunts. They are moderately active indoors and will thrive with acreage. They have a tendency to roam do to their hunting and tracking instincts. Do not let them off leash in an unsafe area.

Children and other pets
  The Harrier is described as being excellent with children. As with all breeds, that comes with some qualifications. 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 to try to take the dog's food away. No dog should ever be left unsupervised with a child.
Being pack dogs, Harriers enjoy the company of other dogs, whether or not they're Harriers. They may view smaller animals, including cats, as prey, however. If they weren't brought up with them from puppyhood, closely supervise their interactions with cats and other pets.

Exercise
  Harriers will make excellent jogging companions and if not taken on a daily jog, they need to be taken on a long, daily, brisk walk. While out on the walk make sure the dog heels beside or behind the person holding the lead, never in front, as instinct tells a dog the leader leads the way, and that leader needs to be the human.

A dream day in the life of a Harrier
  Waking up ready to play, this pup will make you smile early in the morning. After a game of tug of war, he's ready for his first walk of the day. Smelling a possible trail, he'll be easy to distract unless you lead him the right way. Back home, he'll wrestle and follow the kids around for the rest of the day. Once let back outside for a few laps around the yard, he'll be ready for dinner. After another long walk, he'll settle down for a relaxing evening with his family.


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