Friday, August 21, 2009

Shots, Heat and Storms

Well, hopefully everyone has been to the vet's this week for their puppy booster shots. Depending on your vet's recommendation, that should be the last Parvo/Distempter shot they need for a year. Next year at this time we will do 1 booster, then they should be good with that course for many years.

Rabies vaccinations will be given in a month or so. Because our dogs are out in the fields a lot and I do see bats flying around the dog yard in the evening I don't want to delay that for too long, but I also don't want to compromise any immune systems by too many shots too close together. Rabies is absolutely required in all states, and frequency preferrably being an initial, a booster at a year, and then on a 3 year cycle. Corey and Violet had their 3 year booster yesterday to match that schedule.

And when I was a Walmart getting my tracking photos they made an announcement about a dog in a car. All I could think was "What idiots. They don't even deserve to own a dog". Temps in the 90's and leaving the dog in the car while they shop in the air conditioning! And we KNOW the line never moves quick in that store. It only take minutes for heat stroke to hit. Try sitting in your car with the windows only slightly open and see how hot you get. Not a pleasant experience.

And, storms are predicted for this weekend as Hurricane Bob passes off the coast. Think I'll really make my husband Don wonder if I've really gone dog crazy. Let's take the puppy out and play in the rain and thunder. Learn that SPECIAL treats happen during storms. Just might help prevent the fear of thunder storms as Spring grows up.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

All Gone

Well, with the puppies all in their new homes Linda's life is back to normal. Now, updates can cover how the puppies progress and other notes of interest.

For catch-up, here are a couple of pictures of the puppies grandmother Carina dong her AKC Champion Tracker test at Colby College in Waterville Maine.

Saturday, August 15, 2009

The Last To GO

The last to go and everyone's favorite was Swatch (Ditto) whose company we got to enjoy for one last week. She had lots of adventures and went to work with Richard on Friday which was a real treat for her and for his office staff as well.
It didn't take Ditto long to warm up to her wonderful new family. They arrived with toys, including a big green turtle almost as big as Ditto, but she claimed it right off and was prancing around with it in tow.
Ditto's family had gotten a Dalmatian from us before and we were more than pleased to see her go to such a wonderful family.

Sunday, August 9, 2009

Today was departure day for Amber (Longines) who will be traveling to Canada with Grandma Sara and to her new home and a career as a show girl. As you can see from the photo of her stacked that her tail never stops.

We heard from Zoey's (Cartier) family that it went very well and their older Dal Tommy liked the new addition and was last seen snuggling on the dog bed with him. She met several other dogs and lots of children yesterday and handled it very well.
Good girl Zoey!

Saturday, August 8, 2009


Richard is back home now after returning from a wonderful visit with Marlowe's new family. When last seen Marlowe was snoozing on the sofa with his new little girl and his Jack Russel sibling, Emma.

Cartier (Zoey) left today to join her new family in Vermont and their 12 year old Dal Tommy who came from a litter Sara bred long ago and two young children.

Longines (Amber) leaves tommorow for her new family in Canada and a career as a show girl. I'm going to co-own her and she will return to the US to finish her Championship once she is done in Canada.

We took the two remaining pups Ditto and Longines for a walk with their grandmother "Gracie" Ch Paisley Patch MT's Amazing Grace RD, Am/Can CD, RN, NA, ROMX in our woods. They loved running and exploring and Grandma Gracie at age 13 enjoyed the grandpups.

Friday, August 7, 2009

Puppy Imprint Period

While some will call the next few weeks a "Fear Imprint" period, I hate that description. What happens is that the puppies are ready to absorb all kinds of information, good AND bad. These experiences will last the life time of the puppy.

That is the reason why socialization is oh so very important. Anything you might expect your puppy to experience in the future, you should expose them to now, and make it a very positive experience. A puppy left to stress during a thunderstorm during this period, for example, could result in an imprinted fear of storms and thunder. Why not go and play a fun game in the rain instead? Use food and toys to form a GOOD association with thunderstorms!

A puppy might also associate cloth with danger after pulling a table cloth along with some noisy dishes down onto him self. Car rides, boat rides, children, toddlers, noise, activity, all should be managed in a happy and safe environment. Puppies are like children. They are fragile and don’t realize their fragility nor do they understand the danger present in many interesting common items. It is up to you to form positive experiences and make the world seem safe and fun.

I would very much expect my puppy to question "Big Scary" things. From their perspective this could be new dogs, people with hats, screaming children, machinery and even my horses. Puppies without a strong survival instinct would be in big trouble. Don't panic if you puppy cries as the big dogs run by. Laugh and play with the puppy so he feel safe and secure. Walk by busy streets and use food and happy words to calm and relax the puppy. If you feel apprehensive because of his behavior, you will only be reinforcing the fact that loud noises are indeed soemthing to be worried about.

Encourage your puppy to be brave - very, very brave. Say it in a happy, upbeat tone. Cuddlying and hiding your puppy will reinforce shyness and that, too, will come back to haunt you over their lifetime.

YOUR attitude, upbeat, happy, friendly and excited will be transmitted to your puppy. Now, take that puppy out there in the big, wide world and play, play, play!

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Today my husband Richard is flying Marlowe (Rolex) to his new family in the Midwest. Marlowe will be travelling in a soft sided bag designed especially for taking pets in the cabin. He will be flying first class! It takes a great deal of planning getting a puppy to their new homes in the summer by air. Airlines have an embargo on flying animals as cargo during the warm summer months and we won't fly young puppies as cargo anyway.
Marlowe was up early for breakfast and then played for two hours with his litter mates to get him good and tired. He will be riding to Boston in a red crate next to Richard for the 2 1/2 hour trip. He has lots of toys to play with on the way. That trip should go well as none of the pups have been car sick. He will have lunch and some play time before boarding the plane and will hopefully sleep during the flight.
Goodbye sweet Marlowe, he is such a wonderful puppy. We will miss you.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Puppy School

Well, the puppies are 9 weeks old and ready to start class. So, last night off to Marie's Beginner class. Because they are so young you must realize their attention span is limited - to say the least.
And, ALL training must be fun. Food is used to lure the puppies into position. If the puppy lifts it's head, it's butt automatically drops - There, a sit!

Food between the paws will help them lay down to be close to the treat - What a good down Ditto!


Food in front of their nose will cause a stand- what a good show dog Spring is learning to be.

While we have tried to produce great temperamented puppies - the most work is now up to the new owner. It is never too early to start classes, but wait and it could well be too late to undo bad habits.

Socialize and exposure to new surroundings are key to a happy, well adjusted adult.

Monday, August 3, 2009

Carina's New Title

The AKC description reads: The Variable Surface Tracking Test is a test of credibility, verifying the dog’s ability to recognize and follow human scent while adapting to changing scenting conditions. The test is to be as practical as possible while demonstrating the dog’s willingness and ability to follow a specific scent given to the dog at the start of the test. The training and conditioning of the dog must be designed to develop the inner drive, motivation, and determination necessary for the dog to work with intensity and perseverance.
The Variable Surface track is from 600 to 800 years in length and must include a minimum of 3 different surfaces such as packed dirt, asphalt, and mowed lawn. Stairs, drive ways, roads, underpasses, gravel, concrete, wood chips and brick patios are also possible surfaces one might find on a test track. The tracking team must find 3 articles, 1 each of plastic, metal and leather on the track.

Due to the urban sites, there are generally many unknown cross tracks to be negotiated and frequently people, dogs, cats and moving vehicles are encountered along the way. Concentration on the job and the ability to recover quickly from distractions are among the skills the variable surface tracking dog must learn.

At Colby College in Waterville Maine on Sunday August 2nd Carina joined a very elite group of dogs by PASSING her VST test. She is only the 4th Dalmatian in breed history to accomplish this, and the first one who also possess her Road Dog title.

Good Dog Carina!

Saturday, August 1, 2009

Quick Update

Linda and I are off this week at an AKC Variable Surface Tracking Test.

So ... just a quick picture. Bleve is fitting into his new home, making friends with the kitty and going to a pancake breakfast.

Spring spent last night in her new home too. After a busy day interacting with the 3 adult Dals, she was so tired she slept all through the night. And because Don was VERY observant, she did not have any accidents.

We should be back to regular blogging next week.