Category Archives: Raising Versatile Hunting Weims
Some exciting news – the weekend before last Casey took Kenai up to Kennewick, WA for a hunt test. He passed his remaining 2 legs to earn his Junior Hunter title! Both judges also commented that they hadn’t seen a Weimaraner run that hard in a long time. Next week, he goes off for some finishing training for a few months. At least he’ll only be at Sauvie Island, so we’ll be able to see him on the weekends, and work on further handling with the trainer. I’m going to miss my snuggly running buddy while he’s gone, but I know it’s the best for his continued development.
Congratulations! We know Kenai earned AKC puppy awards–click here, but we are happy he continues to advance.
The Man Behind OwyheeStar
~ 70 Candles Who Needs the Oven?
I hope you get the joke–70 candles would bake a cake. Well, probably not, but it is a funny idea.
For as long as I can remember, Cliff and I have been raising pups–all our married life. My parents raised a few when I was growing up in the 50s–the world was very different back then. Patti Page was singing her hit tune, “How Much For That Doggy in the Window.”.
The man, the legend, and his expertise are essential to OwyheeStar. Since I field the inquiries, keep up with the social media, the blogging, the website posts, etc., people forget that this would be impossible without him.
And the reasons are many–he is a Weim Whisperer. How many times have Christina and I tried to get a Weimaraner to do something, and along comes Cliff, and boom–they just do what seemed impossible moments ago. He is the team’s technical expert–more than once, a pup has been born that didn’t seem viable. He would calmly take measures to breathe life into them, and they would live and thrive. I am constantly in awe of him–from the moment we first met until 50-plus years later.
Beyond breathing life into pups, he keeps all our equipment running, keeps up the farm, trains Weimaraners, and competes in the North American Versatile Hunting Dog Association (NAVHDA) events. Recently he took two OwyheeStar Weims to an event (Martee and Hope)–both prized.
He consoles me when I am totally overrun or overwhelmed with my side of things. When he can, he helps clients who need assistance–but as you might guess, he is not sitting around waiting for a request. He has to fit these things in around his schedule.
Above, he is preparing for a puppy swim in the Nielsen Farm Pond. When the weather permits, pups swim before joining their families. This swim is a top-rated event. The pond is not the usual farm pond –we have to fill it for each puppy swim.
This blog doesn’t begin to cover all the things Cliff does to keep us going. Those things that allow us to raise the Weimaraner. It does give you some insight as to what goes on behind the scene. Thank you for helping me celebrate Cliff’s 70th Birthday. ~ Shela
~All is Well
She loves her stuffed birds
We are all doing great since our little girl came home to us! We are calling her “Gemma”. We just love her; and she and Susse get along great. No accidents in the house at all.
She loves to play inside the house and outside. She is a fast learner – knows her name and the command “Here” already. Oh, and she loves to chew!
Thank you for your concerted effort to get Gemma off to an excellent start. Of course, you are an experienced Weimar family. She is in good hands. We hope to receive news of her and Susse’s antics as they become co-conspirators of the best kind.
~ From Kris (Luna’s close call)
As I watch you prepare to deliver another litter of pups to their forever homes, I can’t stress the importance to everyone about the vaccine protocols you provide to everyone and how they must be followed.
As you know when Luna received her first vaccination after coming home to us in January, she had a near fatal reaction. She was diagnosed with HOD. She was not eating and lethargic. At 10 weeks old, I knew this wasn’t right.
I immediately took her to the vet and she was diagnosed 2x incorrectly with a GI and UTI infection. The medicines prescribed did not work and I was getting more anxious and feared for her life. They simply did not know or were familiar with vaccine reaction or HOD in weims. HOD is an inflammation of the growth plates and very dangerous causing a high fever (Luna’s was 106 at one point) in addition to what I mentioned above.
It was an emergency vet that performed a simple test and squeezed her legs (Luna did not like it and whined) and finally got the right diagnosis. He took immediate action putting her on the right track.
If I could send any message to your clients and those getting new puppies, it would be to follow the protocols you’ve outlined. Be vigilant in observing for adverse reaction. It took 5 days for Luna to start presenting symptoms. More importantly, if your puppy starts showing symptoms, get medical help IMMEDIATELY! Your puppy’s life depends on it! Lastly, make sure your vet understands HOD and make sure they’re examining your dog if they appear sick after a vaccine. Time is of the essence with HOD.
With the right medications which are typically steroids over a period of time, your puppy will recover as Luna did. Now she’s living her best quirky weim life and we love her so much!
Here’s a pic of her after coming out of the hospital on the road to recovery and below is one of her now almost 1 year old. ❤
Click Here to read yesterday’s post if you missed it–it has a few informational links as well as our heartfelt message to those who are beginning a journey with a new fur family member–the Weimaraner in particular.
We asked Kris to write about Luna’s vaccine reaction from her perspective–hearing from someone who has experienced such an event means more than hearing it from us. It is not the first life-threatening vaccine experience we know about, but we hope it is the last.
About fifteen years ago, a fellow Weimlover (an Engineer in the Portland area) who picked up a pup from us succumbed to his Vet’s pressure. She gave his Weimaraner pup a puppy vaccination that included Lepto. She assured him there was little to no risk. Within hours he was back with her, and she was fighting to survive–she did, but he regretted the decision. The truth is many Weimaraners had the same puppy shot, and they didn’t have a severe reaction. Nevertheless, a percentage do, and a few will lose their life. Others who have vaccine reactions develop ongoing health problems — we suggest everyone errors on the side of caution.
Here is where we will make a full disclosure that we are not Licensed Veterinarians nor Vet Techs. We are speaking from the breed club recommendations and experience. Ultimately, you choose what is right for your pup. The Weimaraner Club of America (WCA) vaccine recommendations are similar to those we practice. Click here to learn more.
As Your Pup Begins Their Life with You…
There is never a time when pups depart OwyheeStar that we don’t have concerns of one sort or other. We screen our applications and make every effort to ensure each pup’s future. But we are dealing with living creatures, and so many things can happen despite making every effort to set a pup up for success. Once they leave here, we have no control over what happens, and each person has to navigate a plethora of situations that sometimes are perplexing. Most people more than survive.
Quite possibly, the worst situation is a Veterinary who doesn’t take Weimaraner Vaccine Reactions seriously. We understand the science behind their reasoning and that all Veterinary Practices must base their protocol on the average dog (those most familiar to their practice). Typically these are mixed breeds, and the popular purebred is the Labrador Retriever. Click Here to see that 2020 list. The Weimaraner (according to AKC) is 39th in popularity. How many Weims do you think your Vet office sees? Now, consider that about 8% will have a severe (or life-threatening) vaccine reaction. Many Vets will never encounter this situation. If they do, we are sorry to say they might misdiagnose or inadvertently mismanage the situation. Don’t get us wrong; we believe their intentions are noble.
There is no doubt some of you will face opposition if you insist on getting a Titer test to prove immunity rather than another puppy shot at sixteen weeks. Watch for additional posts about vaccine, vaccine protocols, titer testing, and vaccine reactions.
Note: The photo at the top is Luna. Her Mama has written up their journey and the experience they had with HOD. That Post is coming tomorrow!
~The Journey Begins (part one)
I can’t stop! I can’t stop chasing this sweet puppy boy Rogan around with a camera! He’s so photogenic, he’s so portable, and he’s the new best friend & cuddling buddy to his 5 month old Dane Weim cross bro Utah!
He is very popular and received by all including (our Weimaraner) Blind Steve who is 12 who snuggled in with Rogan (8 weeks) -getting a quick nap in.
Thank you for trusting us with this sweet guy we are all already crazy about him. Let the adventures begin !
Thanks for all the photos and news about Rogan’s new beginning in Western Oregon–he will rock his world. He is most certainly living the dream–thank you for that, too.
~ OwyheeStar Hunting Pup Excels
Hi! It’s been a bit since I’ve updated on Kenai, so I thought I’d send a little note. Kenai continues to be such a great addition to our family, we just love him to pieces. He’s whip-smart and eager to learn, as well as snuggly as ever.
Recently, we’ve been really working on his field abilities, and have been competing in AKC field trials. He’s been doing fantastic, and has such a stylish point. The first weekend of August, he competed at the event put on by the Willamette Weimaraner Club. He took 1st in amateur walking puppy and 2nd in open puppy! He also passed his water test that weekend. We can’t wait to see where this adventure takes us!
Kaylen & Casey Gibbens
We are thrilled to hear you love your OwyheeStar pup–Kenai. And we are delighted about your success in these recent events. We understand that it is not easy to net these ribbons–any number of things could go awry, but you are off to an excellent start. Thanks for the share.
~ The Adult-Looking Nine-Month Old Weimaraner
36 weeks (from AKC)
At 9 months, you’re probably starting to wonder when your puppy will be fully grown. Expect your adolescent puppy to continue to grow and develop emotionally for a little while longer, and keep up on your puppy’s training. Take a moment during training to reflect on what you might be doing to encourage some of your puppy’s bad habits and make a commitment to change your behavior.
These comments are meant for puppies in general; however, they apply even more so for the Weimaraner puppy. Letting your 12-week old pup jump up is not a good idea. If you do, by the time they are 9-months-old, you have a bigger problem. Letting them bite your fingers–as a young pup, may well lead to mouthing issues as the Weimaraner matures. Some do this mouthing-thing for their entire life–and for their owner, it might not seem like a problem until they put their mouth on someone else–those teeth can easily tear a hole in a thin-skinned older adult, or alarm someone.
~For All She Does
Every OwyheeStar puppy is hand-raised, and this process requires a good eye as well as focus. Then there is follow-through–steps we take at every transition point from birth for the exit. We are fortunate to have our granddaughter (who we trained) as a puppy-whisperer. You cannot teach someone to do this–it takes instinct and the ability–and the eye to see the little things before they spiral into something bigger. Pups get scratched, develop little issues, need nails trimmed, ears cleaned, etc. –it is a lot because a young pup is susceptible to all kind of bacterial, viral, and yeast infections.
You might remember Dink–he was a miracle pup. Christina decided she would keep him with her 24 X 7 because he needed around the clock care. She did this knowing she might not be able to save him–but if she could, it would be so rewarding. Over the years, we have saved many ultra-small pups that needed extra care. They could not survive because the bigger, stronger littermates would push them off the best teats. There might not be enough teats for everyone to drink at once–and the bigger keep growing while the small ones get shoved away. This scenario doesn’t mean that a smaller pup has anything wrong, but without intervention, their chance of survival is slim.
You Probably Know the Story
Dr. Calhoun at the Idaho Veterinary Hospital gave his as through of a check that is possible at the six-week visit.
It takes all of us to produce a well-balanced ready to adapt puppy. People ask, “do you have them house-trained.” I always say, “no, but we have them ready.” I think that is the better approach–they have to learn your routine, the household layout, and adjust. If you stay after it, the housebreaking can happen very quickly.
~Habits Good and Bad Take Hold Quickly
Habits form quickly–once a behavior (good or bad) starts it can soon become habitual. For example, the Weim can become an incessant barking machine. I swear they can bark at a cloud. Maybe it looks like a bird. Incessant by definition means unceasing or Continuing without interruption. Maybe that is an overstatement, but if you have that behavior ingrained, it will not seem an exaggeration.
Barking, digging, territorial behaviors, chewing on everything, and the list goes on–if you allow it in a small dose, it can become a thing. Us humans, often get duped and our efforts undermined.
To prevent that and other unwanted behaviors a person must be vigilant early on. It is not one and done thing either. The childlike tendencies often last past their third birthday with the occasional teenage behavior surfacing from time to time. I laugh at people who want this breed and expect them to be easy to manage. A lot can and should be accomplished in the first three months; however, you are not home free so to speak. At the same time—getting the basics done right up front will save you a lot of trouble.
Also consider that the Weimaraner who wants to rule their world can employ growling and snarling. They can withdraw and sulk. They have all kind of ways to get what they want–some are acceptable, others are not. One thing for sure–do not reward or excuse bad behavior.