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QUESTIONS: Step by Step Training w Nell

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Re: QUESTIONS: Step by Step Training w Nell

Postby Tatonka » September 5th, 2013, 8:04 pm

Joan... I think the answer would be who do I think will be focused enough to look after a young puppy. People have babies without any help at all, I don't think you need to be really experienced to have a puppy, you just have to want to. Tanya Hubner came here when I had a litter of pups that were a few days old. Tanya worked at the ICU unit at University of Florida Veterinary College, teaching Veterinary Students about ICU care. She wanted to hand raise a puppy, so she took him home with her. He grew up to be Tatonka's Ch. Uncle Fester. Would I do that with most people, no. Did I do it in a minute with Tanya, certainly.

I think that people write articles and do research papers on a lot of things, without any depth of knowledge. You can't study 100 Border Collies, APBT, or German Shepherd Dogs and know what is good for the entire breed. Too many variables and too small a study.

Since our dogs are highly vaccinated, and 6 week old puppies rarely get Parvo, it is unlikely that a young pup would be any more susceptible to Parvo than an older puppy. Actually, the age you most want to worry about is the age people usually bring their puppies out, 11 - 14 weeks. Also, Nell was always a go getter. She was at home anywhere you set her down. Her sister is the same way. That's one of the reasons why Nell was such a good choice for Diane, and Ayego Mad (her sister) as a potential brood bitch for us. A related cross is hard to find, especially when you are as distrustful as I am when it comes to pedigrees. A related cross will give you what you already have, but with different individuals adding a little Clorox to the gene pool, as well as a couple of dogs that are unrelated, high quality dogs that share the same traits. A match made in heaven... if it all works out.

I also agree with the never getting into a fight plan. Let them grab a dog or two and it becomes more fun than they can pass up. The same is true in opposite. Have one beaten up badly as a youngster and they will be ruined. I don't allow older dogs to thump my pups. What another breed might do is OK, but what an APBT could and will do in a minute, isn't. I like to have them play with the Staffords, if I think they need "dog time". The Staffords are kind, will play and rough house, but never ever cross the line.
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Re: QUESTIONS: Step by Step Training w Nell

Postby PibChick » September 5th, 2013, 8:07 pm

After thinking more on this and the effect of early socialization on dogs, I would say that as far as breeding prospects go, there are some compelling arguments for why one would not want to socialize heavily. Why one would want to see a dog in its natural state so-to-say.

I'm thinking of this after returning for a dog show where lots of dogs were being dismissed for extreme fearfulness. These were mostly GSPs and Vizslas, breeds that should be outgoing goobers. A lot of these breeders were keeping their dogs until 16 weeks before letting them go to their homes. If I were a puppy buyer I wouldn't want a dog that was holed up in a house during such a critical period of development, but as breeders go, it might do them some good to ease up on the socializing so that they could better identify and cull those dogs from their breeding program. Of course these breeders were both breeding (and attempting to put conformation titles on) dogs that were unacceptably fearful and then to add insult to injury, keeping the offspring of these fearful dogs cooped up in a house with no socialization until they went to their new homes. Ugh.
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Re: QUESTIONS: Step by Step Training w Nell

Postby Tatonka » September 5th, 2013, 8:29 pm

I tell people that want an older puppy to be a house pet to rethink. If we have a young dog here, that we have decided to let go, I expect it to be a kennel dog. I am sure you could teach them manners and make a nice pet out of a kennel dog, but they are just better dogs when they get to their people young.
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Re: QUESTIONS: Step by Step Training w Nell

Postby KyG » September 8th, 2013, 7:11 pm

Just so we're clear, I wasn't screaming bloody murder about Nell's age... I've never had a young puppy of my own before, but I'm hoping that my next dog will be a puppy from a breeder, so really I was curious about the whole "8 weeks" thing. Of my 2 current dogs, I got one as an older pup and the other as an adult, so other than brief fostering experiences, I've never actually raised a puppy from __weeks old to adulthood. Knowing me, if I were to get a puppy and had him all picked out, I would want to take him home as soon as possible because I wouldn't possibly be able to contain myself and wait patiently.

I watched Puppy Puzzle by Pat Hastings and she said the best age to evaluate a pup's conformation is at 8 weeks. Apparently after that everything gets out of whack until they mature physically. So I guess that's a reason to wait til they're 8 weeks old if you want a show prospect.

What about puppy temperament testing? Is there much you can predict at 6 or 7 or even 8 weeks of age?

On a slightly different note, the best cat I ever had, and the only one I actually got attached to, was a 2 wk old kitten my friend found in a bush. Bottle fed him, took him to class with me in a bag, and as he grew up to be very "dog-like". Nothing phased him, confident in new environments, followed me everywhere, and would actively seek out the company of new people. Yes, I know cats are totally different from dogs, but if I ever voluntarily got a cat again, I would pick up a very young kitten and bottle raise him.
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Re: QUESTIONS: Step by Step Training w Nell

Postby Tatonka » September 8th, 2013, 10:42 pm

I watched Puppy Puzzle by Pat Hastings and she said the best age to evaluate a pup's conformation is at 8 weeks. Apparently after that everything gets out of whack until they mature physically. So I guess that's a reason to wait til they're 8 weeks old if you want a show prospect.


I hope that I didn't say you were screaming bloody murder, if I did, blame it on my late night glass of wine! :lol: :lol: :lol:

I respectfully do not believe in the 8 week magic window. It is really easy to say that, but then go ahead and raise them. It's honestly a case of "your guess is as good as mine" sort of a deal. I have been in dogs for a long time and I don't ever tell people that a puppy will grow up to win in a show ring. I might say it has a chance, or it looks good right now. Too many things can go wrong.
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Re: QUESTIONS: Step by Step Training w Nell

Postby BoldogKennel » September 9th, 2013, 1:11 am

a chance for some loss in bite inhibition seems like a worthy trade for the socialization that would keep your dog being uncontrollably dog aggressive.


Amy you brought up a lot of really interesting points! I used to just let my pit bull pups play with other pups and let the chips fall where they may... I quickly figured out this was not such a great idea. Not with "authentic" pups anyway! I figured that out when my 8 week old litter of pit bulls (all 12 of them) got into it when I wasn't home and the neighbors ended up calling 911 from the outbreak of hysteria (not from the pups, they were silent) but from the wolf hybrid and other dogs carrying on because they couldn't get in on it. Was lucky not to lose one of them. As Tatonka says, it is my firm belief that you have about 2 maybe 3 "little fights" before the dog figures out that this is awesome! After that, its a paininnaass.

With Nell, I am keeping her away from any pup that even LOOKS like it may look sideways at her. The am staff in our club (15 weeks) puts its hair up and wants to jump on Nell. However, he was jumped by a big GSD a couple weeks ago, and may be suffering a little PTSD from that event :lol: I won't let this pup mess with Nell, as Nell clearly shows that she would just rather go about her business. I've noticed that her calm, confident behavior is helping the am staff to calm down a bit. I'm not worried about Nell getting corrected by my adults - that needs to happen. And that is not "fighting", it is appropriate "language" that tells her when to settle down.

One last thing: I REALLY FEEL STRONGLY that if a dog is to be considered breeding stock, it should be able to come through puppyhood without a lot of health issues. Yes, ANY pup can come down with parvo, but I give much extra credit to those dogs that can come through without a lot of vaccinations. And, if they do get Parvo, I want them to come through with just a little fluid therapy and not extraordinary measures. Gup came down with parvo at 9 months, and came through with fluid treatments. Damien got it and missed one meal - that was it. I like that.
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Re: QUESTIONS: Step by Step Training w Nell

Postby Tatonka » September 9th, 2013, 1:59 am

Gotta say that I have great respect for you Diane and I love ya, but... I ain't going for the Parvo thing. The problem with Traditional APBT is that they don't act sick until they are ready to die. This could cause a serious problem with Parvo.
Vaccinate, Vaccinate, Vaccinate. If a dog ends up with Parvo, it is 99% the owners fault.
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Re: QUESTIONS: Step by Step Training w Nell

Postby BoldogKennel » September 9th, 2013, 3:00 am

You know, back in the 40s I think it was, when Dr Whitney was doing all his crossbreeding, I will always remember his admiration for the fact that when entire kennels were being wiped out by distemper (common back then) the pit bulls did fine, and even crossbreeding to a pit bull raised the dog's immunity.

Why? Because let's face it, the breed has never been "pampered". It made them a healthy, hardy breed. I watched what happened to the Rottweiler - it was a hardy rustic breed until it became a "big money" breed in the 80s... no one could afford to let their pups be culled naturally, and every one was rushing to vaccinate the crap out of them. Now you have a breed that is SOOOO susceptible to everything. All this in just a couple decades.

I may be full of crap on this - but I can't help but feel that if SOME tough selection is made with breeding stock, with an eye toward the more robust dogs, and those who can make it without vaccination, it can't hurt the breed.

Having said that, you can't go wrong, as an individual pet owner, in doing just what Joanie says.
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Re: QUESTIONS: Step by Step Training w Nell

Postby Tatonka » September 9th, 2013, 3:30 am

Parvo is actually worse for some breeds than others, APBT being one of them.
I was there when Parvo was first rearing it's ugly head. No one knew what to do, and pups were dying like flies.
The veterinarians were using cat vaccine, thinking it might help.
Now, thanks to research, we have vaccine that works. I use it and use it often.
Distemper is nearly a thing of the past due to vaccine.

The breed is becoming a pampered breed. Look at them, they live in a house, not in a yard, but in your bed! They eat better food than most of their owners do. Five or six of them sit on the couch together, cuddled up under blankets. They get expensive toys, and dentistry! They ride in the car, not in the back of a pickup in a crate. Many are exercised more regularly than your kids are educated. Some of you cook for them, or go to great lengths to serve them raw meat. You heat and cool their environment. All that and we shouldn't vaccinate them?

I have seen way too many pups die despite excellent veterinary care (after the fact) because they were not vaccinated. Not to mention how many dogs were infected because of that one infected dog... owners unwittingly tracking it throughout the community.

No one could talk me out of a very strict vaccine schedule.
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Re: QUESTIONS: Step by Step Training w Nell

Postby Buru » September 9th, 2013, 12:32 pm

Learning a lot from this thread. I did suspect that the 8 weeks old mantra might not be entirely true, or at least not a "one-size-fits-all" solution. It seems like most breeders will NOT give you the pup before they're 8 weeks old, but how about breeders of APBTs and Amstaffs? What about Staffords? This may be a question for Joanie specifically, since you breed both APBT and Staffords. At what age do you typically give them to their owners, if they are supposed to be house dogs? I know Nell was a special case, but what's the "average case"? Other breeders are welcome to answer too! I'm just interested in how people deal with these things.
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