Collie in the mix.

Discussion of the training, use, and management of guard dogs, guard llamas, guard donkeys, guard goldfish, etc.

Re: Collie in the mix.

Postby Lana Rowley » Tue Nov 29, 2011 11:23 am

As a person who buys LGD and does not breed them, my best advice is buy from a breeder who has being doing it a long time, and runs a commercial sheep operation. I add the commercial sheep aspect because i don't think a breeder can know what their lines are doing, unless they have enough work to test the dogs. I feel the same way about stockdog breeders.

A good breeder will walk you through the rough spots, and with many young dogs there will be rough spots.

I always tell people who ask me about LGD that if they have no tolerance for behavioral issues, and are not willing to work though them, don't get a LGD.

Right now several of my neghbors are loosing sheep, and chickens and cats to a fall blight of coyotes. They don't have LGD, but they do have llamas. We are not loosing animals and do have LGD. Evey year when we move our LGD and sheep from next to the neighbors sheep, down closer to our house to lamb, they loose lambs the next day.

I have had issues with most all my LGD. They did not come perfect, but i did what the breeder said, and we worked through it.

Dorchester, i wish you luck, it sounds like you have had a rough time, and don't blame you for your caution.
Lana Mockler Rowley
10-7 Ranch
Oregon
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Re: Collie in the mix.

Postby Bill Fosher » Tue Nov 29, 2011 2:31 pm

The main reason there weren't guardian dogs in the UK is that wolves were extirpated as the sheep were established. The main predator dangers to sheep in the UK are domestic dogs, foxes, and birds (which can pluck the eyes out of newborn lambs).

As Lana points out, there are always problems with guard dogs. The terrible teens are a major one, and probably the most common. My point was that lambing next June would make the dog just about 9 months old, which is the time when the problems usually start. With a Border collie cross, you're looking a the age when working instinct really starts to perk up. Lots of things lining up that could make your 20 or 22 losses seem like the golden age.
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Westmoreland, NH
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Re: Collie in the mix.

Postby Darroll Grant » Tue Nov 29, 2011 8:57 pm

I saw some dogs used for flock protection in deep South Texas 35 years back. The flock was a mix of sheep and goats that came in each night to the corral as there was a jump board on the gate to keep the very young from getting lost on the 400+ acres allotted to the flock. Pups were raised in the corral until they could follow the flock. One either had to be in a vehicle or horseback to venture into the paddock during the day except for the shepherd. The dogs were less than 50# in weight and black in color. Predators were a rare mt. lion ( dogs stretched one but a couple dogs were lost) and coyotes. Sufficient coyotes that a couple hundred could be caught with 10 traps in a month outside of the sheep trap. Dogs probably came from old Mexico with the flock a number of decades previously and so would be similar to the dogs used by the Navajos.
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western Oregon
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Re: Collie in the mix.

Postby Shayan » Thu Dec 01, 2011 11:47 am

According to Robin Rigg's 2001 article (mentioned earlier in this thread) Turkish shepherds attempted to mix native LGDs with European herding dogs. The results were as others predicted above: "There are no native herding dog breeds in Turkey; crossbreeding 'shepherd’s dogs' (LGDs) with German, Dutch and Belgian Shepherds has resulted in dogs which chase rather than guard livestock (Taylor 1998a,b, 2000; Nelson 1996 reviewed in Taylor 1998b)." The evidence seems to point to this idea perhaps being counterproductive.

Best regards,
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Re: Collie in the mix.

Postby Dorchester » Thu Jan 19, 2012 10:16 am

Well, you might be interested to hear I got out of the deal. I was always brought up to stick to a deal, farmer's word, if I have said I will do something, I do it: I must admit this attitude has cost me dearly in the past with the benefit of hindsight!

You guys pointed out the many problems which I was not aware of at first, so I thank you for all your advice.
The day I was supposed to meet the lady to pick up the pup she phoned to say that when they picked it up to bring to me they 'noticed' that it was a male, not a female.
This was my get out of deal free card! The Dealbreaker. Sorry, has to be a female, no can do, yada yada; phew!

As Bill said early on they must have been pretty clueless to bring this creature into existence in the 1st place, then not to know the sex until the day of loading?

So now am in the market for a LGD. Again. Am looking at a Sar pup and or a Big White mix of 3 breeds from the neighbour.
I will wait until lambing though I think. Around 30C below as a high just now!
Old Fashioned Dorsets.
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Re: Collie in the mix.

Postby Peg Haese » Thu Jan 19, 2012 12:27 pm

Dorchester wrote:As Bill said early on they must have been pretty clueless to bring this creature into existence in the 1st place, then not to know the sex until the day of loading?

It's not like puppies are as hard to sex as tiny kittens. They may not have handled the pups at all, which was their third strike. Good deal on bowing out gracefully. If they do come up with a female for you, just say you've already made a commitment with someone else.
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