January 2007


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Farm Collie Breed Conservancy and Restoration <[log in to unmask]>
Sat, 20 Jan 2007 13:25:38 -0500
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>     Here's the problem: I've applied on 4 separate occasions for 4
> different collie mix puppies from different area rescues, given vet phone
> numbers as references and puppy proofed my home for any volunteer
> inspections. Each of these dogs has been adopted to other families and no
> one from any rescues has called my vet for references or inspected my
> home.

Hi, Jess,

   Have you considered getting a dog from a reputable breeder?  In the long
run it will cost the same (neutering, shots for a life time, dewormers and
food for a life time) and you will have an idea of what the pup will turn
into because you can see the parents.  Breeders of English Shepherds, the
ultimate farm dog, as far as I know (and I know a lot of them) will be able
to tell you what the dog's temperment and abilities are likely to be and
what if any health problems you might expect or not have to worry about.
The breeder is concerned with getting a good dog into a well-matched home,
not just get rid of it any way they can to anyone who has some money.
  I might mention that it's expensive to raise healthy pups: they start with
healthy parents, tested for any inheritable breed problems, good food, good
vet care, good facilities, shots and dewormers for pups, good puppy food,
and lots of time socializing and puppy training each pup while getting to
know them individually.  Even then, working English Shepherds cost far less
than "show dogs" and are often healthier.
  In a shelter, the dogs have unknown parentage (and behavior is about 60%
inherited) and unknown health backgrounds and social training.  Collies bond
tightly, and an older pup or adult may have been abused, or even worse, come
from a puppy mill (some puppy mill dogs are from inferior and diseased
parents who are stuck in such a small cage that the pups never learn that
one spot only is for a bathroom and it takes a professional a long time to
housebreak such a dog, if ever it can be).
   This is worth considering.
   I decided what kind of dog I wanted, and then found a breeder who had
those kind of dogs. My three year old Robbie is now outside keeping watch
over the chickens and chasing off crows, and later will be snoozing at my
feet.  He's just what the doctor ordered!  :)

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