a Taj MuttHall Dog Diary: Near-Puppy Experience

Saturday, February 12, 2005

Near-Puppy Experience

Backfill: Feb 22
I've been saying for a long time that my next dog needs to be at least 4 years younger than Tika. Her fourth birthday is Monday (hard to believe sometimes). So that means that my next dog could be born any time after today.

But sometimes something comes along that's hard to pass up--

Email Feb 4:
For those of you who saw Tracey's pup this past weekend in Santa
Rosa and fell in love with her, she has 2 siblings that still are looking
for homes! They are both very smart, quick and look to be nice agility
prospects. Mom is a smooth coat BC....VERY nice and dad (by accident) is a
Kelpie. If you are interested let me know and I'll put you in touch with my
friend who has them. They are on a ranch currently and have been around
stock. Have had first shots.
VERY cool pups!!!!

OK, I've always liked Border Collies (BC) and Kelpies are pretty cool (see some photos I took of local agility Kelpies) and both parents are known (unlike so many mixed breeds) and they're still puppies...

Here's a photo of Tracy's puppy; apparently the two remaining are black-and-white, however, no tricolors.

I asked for more info and so got info from the original poster (a friend of the BC's owner), from Tracey, and from the BC's owner.

1. There is a girl and a boy, both black
with some white, short coated (like VERY short coated). They are located in
Plymouth (not far from Ranch Murrita). Ellen, I know this mama dog well. She is VERY sweet and would have made a great agility dog if Bobbie would have let her get off the ranch (she works
their cows), and onto the agility field. They train performance horses so
agility is not their priority :-).Thanks for your interest, Bobbie need to find them homes as she does notwant to raise any pups.

2. I'm having a blast with mine. Maiya is 16 weeks old now. The others [are all] black with a little white on feet and chest. She's about 27lbs. now. She's smart as a whip and loves to learn new things. Hopefully she'll be the best of both breeds. The mother is a really nice border. Very tall and lean. Unfortunately I didn't get to see the kelpie dad. He's a neighbor's dog that bred her by accident. Bobbie said he's a little stockier :(( I'm hoping she'll balance out between them.

3. The puppies were born on October 24th.....and are mostly black......alittle white on the chest...but that is about it. I have a male and a female left........I personally think the female is cute...but the male has a great personality also. Everybody who has taken one of the pups really is enjoying them.....says they are incredibly smart.

Then on Monday I found out that my housemate will be leaving, so I have no idea who I'll have in the house; I'll have to spend time finding someone; I have no idea whether I'll have the income that will allow me to do agility and/or lessons with any of my dogs; I have promised to do a project for Power Paws Camp for this year; and I'm finishing up one big contract and (I hope) starting another one in a couple of weeks.

The more I thought about it, the more I stressed about having another dog. BUT--they seemed to have fallen in my lap, so to speak. They seemed to be calling me. We know that the parents are (presumably) excellent working dogs, which is usually an excellent thing for agility dogs. And good looking pups. And a nice mix.

I called the breeder & she said this was a bad time for her to have puppies and she hadn't had time to spend with them; no training of any kind, have never been in the house, just mostly in the kennel and sometimes out loose around the ranch, where they've been pretty well behaved--stopped chasing the stock as soon as she scolded them for it. Hasn't spent enough time with them to really have a good idea about their personalities or temperament.

So that's no different from a rescue, really, except that we know who the parents are and what their early environment has been.

I made an appointment for today to drive 2.5 hours out to the Central Valley to check them out. But every time I started thinking about having another dog in the house, I could feel my blood pressure rise and my tension level escalate. By Thursday night, I was just about beside myself with "I'll never be able to handle this; it'll drive me nuts." The next morning, well-rested, I was able to think "maybe if I really stretch myself I can handle this," and I kept talking about the up sides to these puppies...

But by Friday night I realized that this is just not a good time for a new dog in my life. So I called and cancelled my appointment to view the pups. It's too bad, because they could be great agility dogs. But my relief when I made the phone call was tremendous.

So I'm back to where I was the week before, which is: Maybe in 6-9 months I'll be ready to consider another dog. Maybe next fall, as the agility season winds down. Maybe maybe maybe.

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