GREETINGS FROM FAR EASTERN OREGON
~April 20, 2019
Easter Sunday is something most everyone celebrates in one way or the other. Some of you might not be a part of an organized church, and not care about the message of the Cross. Maybe your focus is bunnies, and the egg hunt, etc. I cannot guess. We embrace the message of Resurrection Sunday, but the fun of egg hunting and whatnot also is included. Family is important.
We don’t know much about the specific Easter plans–our Granddaughter (Ashley) has it under control. We are meeting at her house on the hill between Ontario and Nyssa. We look forward to being with the family.
This week’s weather brought us summer-like temperatures (yesterday)–80-degrees. Everything is growing with the rain and warm temperatures–including our alfalfa. Cliff says the field that was just planted it already about an inch high. (Hurrah!)
The puppy yards required mowing–the first this year. The sanctuary is a bit overgrown, too. I suppose Cliff will be pulling through there with the mower also.
We are still busy with puppies, people, and whatnot. One of the Longhairs (who was a bit older than usual) left to join her new family. They live in Boise–several people who to meet the new are Longhair. I am not sure what they will call this girl–we called her Brooke. That wasn’t set in stone–it is whatever Julie and Quinn decide.
This Week On the Blog…
I ran a little short on material this week, so as you noticed there were some informational posts. I, and just about everyone, loves seeing the updates. I believe I already have a couple of posts for the coming week.
Thank you–for the Emailed stories as well as the updates. We all appreciate you doing that.
Sunday— April 14 — Update on Astra
Monday–-April 15 — Nosework
Tuesday — April 16 — Columbia’s Family Reports
Wednesday — April 17 — Did You Ever Wonder?
Thursday –- April 18 — Get Compliance
Friday — April 19 — Natural Ability
On a very personal note
~Gardening Makes You Hungary
The gardening girls were here–all three one day, and just Ashley another day. We got a lot of things taken care of–our weeds were getting out of hand. Isn’t is amazing how quickly they grow? Thankfully the plants are also growing–here is a photo of our peas and the rhubarb we relocated.
I made it over the Art Department–got all the pots I had made glazed. We will see how they turn out. I experimented with the glaze. There was no one else there, except for the photography teacher and a couple of students. It was uncannily quiet.
Cliff has been trapping gophers, doing tractor work, and making repairs. I think he is ready to dive into the water line project. Honestly, with the promise of warmer temperatures, we (the granddaughters and I) cannot wait to have the convenience this year.
~What I Imagined
I remember when I first heard about the North American Versatile Hunting Dog Association (NAVHDA) Natural Ability Test, I imagined you didn’t prepare. You took your young Weimaraner (or whatever Versatile Hunting Dog you had) to this event–and the experts discovered if you had a natural hunter or not.
This approach would be like flushing time and money down the toilet. These guys who participate work hard to prepare their hunting companions. There are several elements (or disciplines) involved in the process–you have to have them ready for each (and all). There are seven critical inherited abilities: nose, search, tracking, pointing, water, desire, and cooperation.
It might seem wrong to work at developing these abilities, but it is the opposite. It is a bit like exercising a muscle–it gets stronger when worked. This preparation works.
Our Discovery and Placement Test
We test pups at six-weeks realizing that we are pushing the envelope at that age–at seven or eight weeks would be apt to test more easily. Nevertheless, we have had success at six-weeks when the pups are prepared and mature enough to engage in the activities. Below are some photos from a recent litter of Longhairs who were visiting the Three Cliff’s Sanctuary in preparation of the Discovery and Placement Test.
As with the NAVHDA Natural Ability Test process, preparation is essential. I am sure people wonder we are doing. We are exposing the pups to different locations, and expanding their world. We are showing them toys, and interacting with them in small groups and sometimes on a one-on-one basis. This preparation is an essential part–and all the while we are not gathering information or sizing up the pups. That might be hard to believe but one thing we have learned–don’t come (to the test) with preconceived ideas. Don’t allow yourself to be influenced by anything–not clients, not what we seen before, etc. We are taking a fresh look–trying to get pure information or findings. At six-weeks these pups don’t do all that much– we hope to have them ready to engage with us as well as the exercises as they are presented.
~Why we don’t use a harness
One of our greatest frustrations is reading or seeing that a Weimaraner is out of control. A lot happens on to the way to developing a problem–typically, those who get into the biggest mess, are the same ones trying to do everything perfectly–in the correct manner. (Deep breath.)
Yes, the best intentions can lead you down the path to problems–serious issues. The little things that people want to dismiss might grow into something disruptive or even worse. When we talk about not liking harnesses, head halters, prong collars, etc.–we have a reason. In our experience, the use of the devices typically means the Weimaraner is not compliant. Somehow, you have to go from forcing control, to evoke their desire to want to please. This process is easier said than done.
Raising the well-balanced (obedient) Weimaraner can be tricky. Even with a lot of socialization, things can go sideways. This type of issue can lead to frustration–frustration is like throwing wood on a burning fire. Folks they (the Weimaraner) read us–they know how to play us, and they are out to get their way. Sometimes this is cute, and other times not so much.
If you are an off-leash advocate, be careful. Some of you tell us your Weim only behaves when they are off leash. What does that say? Honestly, it means they don’t want to be under your control. Once the Weimar gets the upper paw, things can become scary–lunging, pulling, and going after other dogs, or sometimes certain people. These behaviors are ones you want to avoid. Can we suggest that you get the Weimaraner compliant on the leash?
We have helped a lot of people who found their self in this type of dilemma–Cliff taking the Weim getting compliance in short order. However, when the leash is passed back to the owner–things quickly go sideways. Letting your Weimaraner win this battle is not a win for anyone.
There is one exception to this thought. That would be one designed for a Service Dog or when it is used in a particular discipline–like this one Loki uses. There are times when a harness is a must.
~ About the Longhair Geneotype
There are 3 possible genotypes:
· Clear FGF5:c284G>T -/-; (those having 2 copies of the normal allele)
· Carrier FGF5:c284G>T +/-; (those having 1 copy of the normal allele and 1 copy of the long-hair mutation)
· Affected “Fluffy” FGF5:c284G>T +/+; (those having 2 copies of the long-hair mutation)
My understanding is there is typically two copies of the allele, and if both are normal, then the Weimaraner would have the traditional smooth coat. If there is one copy of the normal and one copy of the longhair mutation (as they call it), then that Weimaraner is a carrier. They look like a traditional smooth coat. Some of these carriers will have a bit of wave to their coat, and some will have a plusher coat. If both copies are the longhair mutation, then you have a longhair.
Okay – when we first learned about this we felt that if you mated a Longhair with a Carrier you would get 50% Carriers and 50% Longhairs. Whew—we soon learned that this must be an average,–because we mated a Carrier to a Longhair and we got 8 pups – 2 were Longhairs. The next year we repeated the same mating expecting only a couple of Longhairs to be born, and this time we got 8 pups—6 were Longhairs. So, we became acutely aware that it didn’t work exactly like we interpreted this chart.
Whenever we have a mixed litter, we take the DNA sample ASAP and send off the samples as quickly as possible. The other choice would be to be the home of the undocked tail. Haha Then, there would be no concern as to whether they were Longhairs or not. I do believe the world is moving toward a stand against docking, but the American Weimaraner Breed Standard is for the docked tail on the traditional Weimaraner. There is no American Standard for the Longhair per se—but worldwide the Longhair sports the full tail.
Some breeders feel that they can accurately guess which pups are Longhairs—we don’t feel all that confident. We have guessed nearly every time we had them born and then sent off for the DNA test. We are never 100% accurate. I cannot say why that is for sure. We have tried taking close up photos and looking at the hair on their ears and between their toes if the hair is smoother on the face and forehead that is an indication that you have a Longhair, too!
People are discovering the Longhair—I cannot say for sure why, but a lot of folks are equally addicted to them. Several of our clients have both, and some have converted to the Longhair. Click here to learn more about Coat Length (or the fluffy coat) test.
Columbia loves her new home on her very own 160 acre pear orchard! She’s already eaten, pooped and taken a nap. She definitely feels at home here and we all love her so much.
Not so long ago Columbia was here (at OwyheeStar). We used terms like ‘Happy-Camper’ and ‘Tail-wagger’ –we were glad to find her such an excellent forever family. Thank you–for letting us know she is adapting well.
~JuneAnn & Porsche
This probably won’t help with the Blog, but it’s the Blog that clued me into the existence of “nose work”.
A BIG thank you to you and whoever shared their experiences. Porsche and I have attended only one class. She seems to have taken to it like a duck to water. It is so great to have this activity that we both can do. Agility and stuff like that are out for me. Porsche sends her love.
Indeed, we are happy that some of the successful OwyheeStar folks shared their experience. Off the top of my head–I can think of three Weims who earned ribbons (awards or titles) in Nosework–Shiny in Colorado (and click here), Henry who lives in Canada, and more recently Asher from Western Washington.
JuneAnn–we are happy you found something fun to do together. Please keep us posted. We also know Asher has earned more ribbons, but we don’t have the exact information to share. We would love an update from Asher’s Mama or anyone else that has been dabbling in the Nosework. If possible–we would love an Emailed report including at least one photo.
Astra is doing great she knows sit come stay. She goes for walks with us. She loves playing squeaky ball. S he is so sweet, and she loves snuggling with mommy.
Thank you for our baby ~ Tanya
We are thrilled to hear that Astra has settled into a good routine–doing all the essential things. Of course, snuggling might be at the top of the list.
Not so long ago–she was loaded in the crate on her way to join her forever family. It is funny how in a very short time it seems like they have been with us forever.
GREETINGS FROM FAR EASTERN OREGON
~April 13, 2019
Palm Sunday looms large with the promise of Easter on the horizon, too. Eggs, bunnies, and baby chicks are everywhere. A sign along 4th Avenue announces, “Baby Chicks are Here!”
Meanwhile, on every side, there is news of flooding. Rain has been relentless and plentiful. The groans can be heard throughout the Pacific Northwest as well as nearby Idaho. In some cases, road closures essentially make access impossible.
The wetness is excellent for the alfalfa –new and old. Both are coming along nicely. Although we are a stone’s throw from the Snake River, we are not in danger of flooding. We are looking forward to some weed cutting and cleanup. We have gotten a little ragged.
We had had some interest in a couple of the older Weimaraner pups. Typically, we do not have these (slightly older pups) available, but in this case, it seems it was meant to be–who doesn’t need their own bed-warming bed-hogging Weimaraner? Duchess (as she is now known), and her regal background, joined this family. Some might say it was too quick for Sheila to bring home a new companion. I suppose we should not judge another person–who is to say how long you should wait? What does grief look like? Duchess has huge paw prints to fill–left by Duke. Somehow, I believe he is looking down with his approval on the situation.
This Week On the Blog…
The departure of Dusty and Duke saddened us. They were much loved –Dusty was a legend in his own right. (Haha) Balancing the loss with a couple of new beginnings was good. I think you will agree.
Sunday— April 7 — Run, Dusty, Run
Monday–-April 8 — Remembering Dusty
Tuesday — April 9 — Before Dusty
Wednesday — April 10 — Spring (Mud and This)
Thursday –- April 11 — Oregon News (Astra)
Friday — April 12 — New Lap Dog (for Mom)
On a very personal note
Our week was busy but for the most part typical. The gardening girls didn’t make it by–there was so much rain I am sure they were hoping for sunshine. I worked on the greenhouse planting and checked on the garden. It is time to repot some of our starts–maybe today.
I made it to the college on Thursday and Friday. I cannot say I had a lot of production–maybe five or six smaller items. It was an excellent little diversion. Christina and I went to the grocery and picked up some chicken and seasoning for her to try her hand at air-frying. I think she will do a fantastic job–we discussed the fact that she has never eaten a twice-baked potato. Maybe she will make some to tuck away in the freezer so that she has them handy. It is a thought.
Good morning! Duchess slept through the night and was a bit of a bed hog! Imagine that!
Duchess was such a cuddly bug last night! When I sat down this morning with my coffee she curled up on my lap next the to cat. It was a pretty awesome morning! Now I am excited for Saturday morning when I don’t have to get up and get ready for work.
Foster has Diesel
~Duchess is for me, right?
Well, I will share her of course (with Foster)–but not all the time. Still, these guys have my heart. Here are some photos from picking her up to getting settled in at home. Diesel is still working on the idea –he and Duke were friends, but she is something new and different.
My beautiful boy, Foster, is infected with the Weimaraner virus. I think we are both hopelessly in love with these wonderful creatures.
Dear Sheila–I am sad you lost the beloved Duke, at the same time I am happy you had Diesel there to bridge the gap. He and Foster made the loss a bit less if anything could. We are also delighted that we happened to have a gorgeous Silver Gray Female that could slip into your life. (BTW) It was precious to see Foster and how he reacted to the whole process. He is such a sweet boy, with a big heart. You are a good Mama.
Astra is doing great she knows sit come stay.she goes for walks with us. She loves playing squeaky ball she is so sweet and loves snuggling with mommy. Thank you for our baby
We appreciate you thinking to drop us a note about your Astra. Not all that long ago she was loaded up and traveling to join her forever family.
Her sweetness most certainly was a thing. The Great Granddaughters adored her–I suppose they hated to see her go. Well, it is a good lesson. We do this for other people. We cannot keep everyone–not even close. (haha)