Category Archives: Companion Weimaraner
What Is the Most Frequent Inquiry?
You know the answer to that question. It is about the current availability for our puppies. I pasted in the information I shared not that long ago about how things work. It is not as people imagine. Regardless, I wanted to drop a universal message that we have a couple of males that are not yet promised.
I am not frantic–this type of thing always shakes out as it is meant to be and I have not said much for several reasons. One—we have been insanely busy with the pups, the garden, the farm, and life in general. You understand I am confident your life is similar. Secondly, we only want the right type of inquiry. On the car lot, you have tire kickers–those who spend a lot of time but never are going to buy a car from you. Here, we have puppy-crazed folks who are either looking for the perfect pup and maybe their ideas are off the chart or those who are in love with the idea but they know they are not getting a pup. They can fill out the application and write me somewhere between 50-100 times. They are not willing to invest a small amount to get on our Wait List–that is a clue.
We have a Wait List that leans toward the female. That will color the future availability. Of course, as you read on you will discover we don’t have a clue how things will shake out. What if we get an entire litter of females? It has happened. Then too, what if we get mostly males–we won’t have a pup for these folks. We do have quite a few families who might favor the female, but they are willing to accept a male if that is what they can get. That kind of situations is more natural (and tends to work best of all) because we have so little control over the situation.
Please skip to the bottom to read about our Spring 2018 Status if you read this explanation before. If not, please consider investing the time to understand our situation. Thank you!
The inexplicable craziness associated with raising the Weimaraner cannot be precisely defined. Nonetheless, we would like to shed some light on things from our side of the fence. We understand that many folks who come to us in search of the Weimaraner have waited until the eleventh hour and now they are in the hope of finding a pup sooner rather than later. On a rare occasion, we might see ourselves with an available pup upon your inquiry. This scenario could happen if the folks on the wait list are not ready (have a different timeline). There are the other factors too–the sex, the coat color, and the coat length to mention the three biggies. Also, for example, some folks want to hunt upland game, truffles, or sheds. We are looking for the Weims with the most hunt-potential for those engaged in hunting. During our Discovery and Placement Test process, we ascertain whether the pup is more inclined towards scent, and other cues. That doesn’t mean the less hunt-potential pup could not be a suitable hunting companion; however, we hope to place those pups with the Companion Weim folks. Other than the Weim-seeker’s preferences, availability and litters are affected by factors we often have little to no control over.
The female’s heat cycle might not be entirely consistent. Certain age-appropriate females will come into season every six months–others not so much. We figure on average any female might cycle about every seven months; however, there are times when our best guess is off. Last winter, for example, all the girls came into heat way behind schedule despite the chagrin of many. The lateness caused the arrival we got to be later and for some people, this time change was not going to work.
The complexity of mating cannot be understated. There is a reason we have more than one sire–we don’t keep breeding back to the same lineage. The right sire choice is essential. In some situations, we have had the luxury to use multiple sires; however, many times we have but one option. Or, where we have mixed in the Longhairs, we might have one option if we don’t want any Longhair pups in a litter. For example, Boone doesn’t carry the Longhair DNA marker–whereas, Stackhouse is a Longhair. Any female that carries the Longhair marker and is mated to Stackhouse would produce some Longhair pups. All this planning doesn’t always end up producing a litter.
When You Get Nothing
There are times when a mating happens, and it doesn’t produce pups. We suspect this happens a lot more than anyone talks about because we get inquiries from folks who have waited elsewhere and after two matings they never got a puppy. We also know, as we talked about with the four (from the Callie X Zee litter), not every female is a good producer. Vidalia never produced a single pup despite many efforts. Ginger and Cindee inconsistently produced small litters. Only Mousse produced the average-sized litter consistently. Who would have guessed? The lack of litters from a mating thing is not the end of the challenges.
To list a few other things–some females do not carry the litter to term. You watch their tummy grow, and they miscarry. Yes, it happens to the Weimaraner just as it does to some women. Or the litter might only produce one or two pups. All that time spent hoping, and you have not much to show for it. Those folks waiting for a puppy can become disillusioned. We can experience these feelings too! We have to shake off anything negative quickly. After waiting, and the pups arrive new information is available. Sometimes it is not as we hoped.
We have the pups–but possibly not what some wanted. You know, the silver-gray female is the most popular choice at this point in time. Many times in the past, we have had a lot of silver-gray females born and everyone seemed to want a blue or a male. We cannot just mate endlessly. We have to have homes for pups–so there is a limit to what we can do. This applies to the workload as well as the placement process. We (Cliff and I) wanted to make you aware that if you are thinking of getting a male, we might have one available very shortly. If you are serious, we would love to hear from you.
~Propel them through the Water
The Weimaraner is a powerful swimmer once they get going. The trick is getting to take the first step. Their toes are webbed making them better equipped to paddle.
There is no one way to get them to swim; however, we find having a love of the retrieve ingrained goes a long way towards accomplishing this discipline. (Sorry to some of you!) For the non-hunter, many times the retrieve is not viewed as essential. All too many of you allow the Weimaraner to abscond and run around the yard with the toy or the bumper–instead of bringing back to hand. Yes, this is a hoot–although it is just one more Weim antic, this is one we suggest you not allow to take root. The idea of achieving the swim is only one reason in a myriad of why you need to get the rock-solid retrieve. We won’t list those as we are speaking about achieving the Water Retrieve.
You want the Weimaraner coming when called. The Recall is a safety issue and the underpinning of compliance. Two areas where compromise cannot be allowed (in our opinion). Depending on your approach to training there are various ways to get this done–we will forgo the discussion on methodology. Let’s just say get this done! It is going to help you with achieving more than a Water Retrieve.
Cliff suggests you find a place to do this exercise. One location that works well is a hallway. Close all the adjoining doors (so they cannot take off with the bumper of the toy). Make this a special event and stop before they tire–while they are still begging for more. He also suggests you use a dedicated toy or bumper you save for this activity only. Depending on your pup’s attention and skill level keep the number of reps down–at first maybe as few as three. Bear in mind; the idea is to make this celebratory and fun. You want them having the desire. This activity will serve you well on so many levels and enhance your training outcome positively.
Weather Permitting the OwyheeStar puppy will see the water before they depart. You saw the video we shared, if not we included it here. Nevertheless, this is not going to ensure that your pup will swim. It will still require time, effort, and patience to get your Weimaraner to swim–plus a bit of knack. A few suddenly jump in but don’t wait for that to happen. Oh–and if you doubt, the Weimaraner is more than likely going to read your thoughts and agree with you.
You might wonder how to begin. Cliff does it this way–your situation may require you to adapt. Using the reliable retrieve, you work along the edges of a pond. Just play in the water’s edge–a tiny bit on their feet initially. Slowly ease them into the water beyond their comfort zone. It might take a few tries, a few days, or a few weeks. It takes as long as it takes, but if you follow this protocol, you will achieve the goal. Like anything with the concrete thinking Weimaraner, you want to make this part of the early life training. Then it becomes the norm. Oh, and you notice he mentions using the pond. Waves could spook them. You want to avoid that scenario.
Imagine the possibilities!
A Few Final Thoughts
- Weims who balk at the sight of rain or a sprinkler often achieve the swim.
- Don’t go in with the *pre-conceived idea that it cannot be achieved.
- Select the venue to work on this carefully.
- Go in with the idea it takes as long as it takes.
- Make this part of your young pup’s agenda.
- If you *failed to achieve the swim early on, don’t believe it is impossible.
- Some people use a life vest**. The vests are not necessary.
- Often Cliff is teaching a Weimaraner who has not swum since they were a puppy. They might be 2 years old or older. They always learn. Cliff knows it can be achieved. Sometimes it is challenging but, with patience, it always happens.
- Deem this as invaluable to your process. It is a healthy activity that can burn off the excess energy and not take such a toll on the hips and joints. It is good for their cardiovascular as well.
~ We hope this helps someone achieve the swim! ~ Cliff and Shela
*You would be shocked to learn how many folks achieved the swim after they told us it was impossible.
**Life Vests–just a note here that Cliff never uses one. The only vest he might use is a Neoprene one if he were to swim them in inclement weather–like for Duck Hunting. Some of you need this for peace of mind. It might help the Weimaraner take their first few steps, but again–it is not necessary. A lot of clients who live in cold water regions cannot keep their Weims out of the water. This scenario is true even in the winter.
~ Like Virginia
Here is a picture of the pond I had built for my babies Dusty and Stormy (Weims).
Maybe you follow OwyheeStar Weimaraners both here and on Facebook. If so, you know about the late Stormy and our aging Dusty.
These are not the same Weims–they are Virginia’s Stormy and Dusty. Ours and Virginia’s Weims are all the Blue Weimaraner. Virginia’s Stormy is a Blue Longhair Weimaraner.
OwyheeStar’s Dusty is the father of both of Virginia’s pups. He is a smooth-coated Weimaraner (pictured to the left), but he carries the DNA marker for the Longhair. This Story originally ran some time ago.–click here to read the full story.
If Your Weim
~ Doesn’t Swim
Yesterday, we shared what happens during our puppy swim–something we do weather permitting with each litter. Doesn’t this guarantee the Weimaraner will take naturally to the water? No. Nonetheless, it expands their experience, imprints the idea of the water, and gives their family inspiration to keep them swimming.
Not every Weim that swims at OwyheeStar takes to the water. This concrete-thinking breed can get a notion that they don’t want to do that. They can get spooked–that is never a good thing. If that happens, don’t make the mistake of ingraining the fear by babying them. Stay matter of fact and move forward as if everything is just fine–because it is.
The extremes our OwyheeStar folks to achieve the Swim is impressive. The benefits are too many to list here. You know–it is a great way to get a lot of exercise without damaging the young Weim’s joints. It is a fabulous way to expend a lot of energy–speaking of the water retrieve. (Once the Weimaraner embraces that activity), then you have a lifetime of tossing the ball for the retrieve. We used to use a rocket launcher to toss the bumper way out in the reservoir. Cliff’s arm could only make so many throws–this solved that solution. Even then, we stopped sending before the Weims were ready. They would swim for the bumper until they could no longer go if allowed.
If you are looking for Inspiration, look no further.
- Skeeter Valentine
- Earlier Skeeter Water work
- Emma’s Swim
- Tomorrow — I want to post the pool/pond built for our Client’s Two Weims. Watch for that!
- Trigger — a Versatile Hunter who Water Retrieves
- Charlie Mae and Murphy
~ And More!
We wanted to give you an update on our sweet Darcy. She is 2 years old now. We are so grateful for our beautiful girl. She is such a wonderful part of our family, and it’s hard to remember what life was like before she came to us.
She loves to hunt, hike, swim, play with the kids, give the baby lots of kisses, go running with mom, and torment the chickens. Everywhere we go we get compliments on what a beautiful dog she is. People familiar with weims also comment on how small she is. She’s 45 lbs and a lot smaller than other weims we come across. We remember you mentioning that her mother and grandmother were on the smaller side as well, so we’ve never worried about it. She is just the perfect size for us. 😊
We’ve attached a few pictures. One is on her birthday. She wasn’t very thrilled about the silly crown we put on her, but she tolerated it because she knew a tasty breakfast was coming.
Thanks again for all you do! We love our sweet Darcy.
We have fewer and fewer under-sized pups. That will make many sad. Nevertheless, you cannot keep breeding back to the same lineage. New blood (such as Boone) brings depth and diversity to our gene pool. That is a good thing.
We are thrilled to hear she is versatile on every level–the perfect fit for your hunting and the family life. What more could we hope? Thank you, ever so much for remembering us with this update. It means the world!
It is Lizards
Did you know the Weimaraner is a Watch Dog? Of course, you did. All that nose art on your window didn’t come from the goldfish. (Haha)
In the Northwest, it is the squirrels who taunt the Weim window watchers. Or maybe it is a feral cat that walks the fence gingerly out of reach. Bunnies and other scurriers are also fair game–sometimes the watching crew gets after the watched. The chase is on if caught it might not end well.
In the southwest, the lizards taunt the Weimaraner. It doesn’t take much to get their attention–sparrows, blackbirds, robins, butterflies, and sometimes bugs. Some Weims are more attuned to their duty of watching the premises than others. Nothing gets by these two.
The Heavens Weep with You!
We have almost twelve years worth of special memories with our Dewey dog, but we had to say goodbye to him earlier this week. 😢 He was an awesome, gentle (but protective), and special dog. We took him nearly everywhere we went. He was part of our family each time our family grew, and the kids loved him so much. Noellie called him “Big Brother Dog.” 💕We miss him so much.
We remember so well when you took him home. Thanks for letting us know. We weep with you. He can never be replaced–as you well know. We appreciate the life you gave him. It was the best!
Celebrating Two Candles!
~The All-Around Versatile Weimaraner
Greetings from San Jose, California! Maverick celebrates his 2nd Birthday today and I wanted to give you an update. He is very energetic and non-stop, like the Energizer Bunny! A little 5-10 minute rest and he is ready for another round. Funny thing… about 8pm at night, he is ready for his snuggles with me on my bed. Once he has about 30 minutes of that, I tell him “it’s time to go to bed” and he jumps down and heads right to his crate.
He has been crate trained since he was a puppy and sleeps in it every night and spends a few hours a day on it as well. Our 13-year-old Weim, Sawyer, has learned when it’s cold it is better to tolerate Maverick and let him cuddle for body heat.
He LOVES going nuts from inside as he sees squirrels and birds out in our yard and does his “cry” to let him out for the chase. Bill, my husband, takes him pheasant hunting and reports that he had the natural instinct the first time he went out in the field last year and this year did an even better job of pointing, flushing and retrieving the birds. He is a fantastic family and hunting companion. Maverick is exactly what we wanted in a Weim and you delivered!
We are thrilled Maverick is as advertised (so to speak). I think you folks know we take this process seriously. It is not our first placement with you. Of course, along the way to here and now, you have had a couple of Rescue Weims, too.
We realize that it is a significant risk to trust us to do what is best. Thank you, for your loyalty and this update on Maverick.