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Canine Sense - Did You Know

Check out these articles by Dr. Stanley Coren (BC, Canada) Canine Corner

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Flicka Was Captured!!

YEAH!! got a call last nite (Tues evening) that Flicka had been captured by a gentleman. She was all wiggles when her owner picked her up. She's none the worse for wear, some small burrs to remove from her coat, and a bath will do just fine.

Thanks to everyone; those I notified by email, and those on Facebook for jumping on the bandwagon and getting the Alert out on this girl.

For anyone reading this, just put it in the back of your mind ... shelties can be strange creatures when they are in unfamiliar areas, and environments that are not their usual stomping grounds. Those especially that are placed when older or acquired through a rescue group, I always say you need to take every precaution for at least 6 wks. Do not let your guard down, as you just never know.

Of all the years (10+ yrs) I was active in sheltie rescue, with my name was out there, there were one too many times I'd be contacted by owners who had their dog go missing and wanted advice on what to do. In every case, they had left their dog with a family member or friend. Most cases the dog had been to the area before with the family; they figured the dog was well acquainted with the environment & people, however, something as simple as the caretaker coming in with groceries with an open door, the dog would get out ... then FREEZE ... as if to say, what just happened?? where am I?? and of course the caretaker would go after the dog, only to send it further off.

Most we were able to capture, one I remember took just over 3 months. This girl went missing while out on a walk along a beach, in an unfamiliar area with its owner.

Shelties are a very sensitive breed, loyal to their family. Our standard says ' The Shetland Sheepdog is intensely loyal, affectionate, and responsive to his owner. However, he may be reserved towards strangers but not to the point of showing fear or cringing in the ring.' We can consider them also aloof and wary of strangers.

They are not Golden Retrievers, that I call 'in your face dogs', ones that will go with any person that has a smile, a ball or a treat! Are we breeding for more stable temperaments, yes, more and more so. Life with dogs in cities are dictating a lot of that, plus owners are wanting to do agility, obedience, rally and flyball, and for that we need shelties that can handle a lot more that is thrown at them.

So, just take heed, the next time you leave your dog in someone else's care, acquire an older sheltie, you move or are out with your beloved, brown eyed sweetie in a new environment keep a watchful eye out and don't take unnecessary chances.

This is no different that a Beagle that finds a scent and forgets what a recall is: a sight hound, like a rescued Greyhound that eyes something on the horizon and wants to go chase after it. Just play it safe, no matter what kind of dog you have.

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