Blog Archives

4th of July

~With Lu–ears flapping

I’m not always on the waterI love every season


In the video below our grand-daughter is tubing on July 4 and Lu is playing “spotter” – wondering why in the world she’s not in there too!

Lu loves to ride and alternates between going to the front of the boat and sitting on the cushioned bench (gets major scents up there) and sitting or standing right by dad, the pilot. 

Lu with her Ears –spotting that Granddaughter


First couple of times she was uncertain about the noise and vibration, but quickly became accustomed to riding on water and loves watching the scenery, birds, and just getting to “be with” (you know how that is!). 

Fireworks — No Problem


BTW, she has never reacted at all one way or another to the loud firecrackers on the 4th, or thunder, or anything else that we as humans might consider as disturbing. Not sure if you pre-conditioned them to loud noises, but we also have a gun range that we walk by regularly on our way to running on the dunes. same thing, no reaction. But let someone walk or ride a bike past the front gate she’s on full protection mode!


Sharyl

Breeder Comment

This video not only entertained us–it was so much fun to watch Lu with her ears flapping. Thank you, Sharyl, for thinking of us. I am sure all our readers will enjoy this, too.

We do condition the pups to sound–all bets are off when they leave here. (Haha) They have to adjust to a new family, the new environment, and their humans may unwittingly do things that ingrain a fear. It happens. Kudos to you for keeping Lu well-balanced.

New Year Celebrations

Fireworks-Remix-2015052712Fireworks!

     ~Fireworks can screw up a dog faster than anything.

 

From Steve Snell @

        Gun Dog Supply

IMG_4089Everybody needs to be careful with fireworks around their young dogs and older dogs that have not been properly conditioned to gunfire (see video).

Fireworks are unnatural. You don’t have a lot of control over when or where the noise happens. Fireworks can screw up a dog faster than anything. It’s a lot harder to fix a gun shy or noise sensitive dog than it is to prevent gun shyness in the first place.

This year, only one of my dogs is showing a little gun sensitivity, so Loretta is going to stay in the house over the holiday while the neighbors are shooting off fireworks.

Here are some tips to prevent fireworks sensitivity in your dogs:

  • Keep your dogs as far away from fireworks as possible.
  • If possible, bring your dogs inside in a closed-off, interior room.
  • Block out the noise with a TV, radio, or white-noise maker.
  • Check with your neighbors about their fireworks plans.
  • Ask for a phone call before they start.

Sometimes the fireworks start before New Year’s Eve or the 4th of July and run a few days after the holiday.

There is NO REASON for a dog to be around fireworks, and I do everything I can to keep my dogs away from them. Usually dogs conditioned to gunfire can handle the noise of fireworks, but there really isn’t anything good about them as far as dogs are concerned. We sell a couple of products that are designed to help dogs get over the fear of fireworks, but I really prefer NOT to have to sell them.

CONCERNS

My biggest concern is that a dog will hurt themselves trying to get away from the noise. My second concern is that exposure will create a gun shy or noise-sensitive problem where there doesn’t have to be one.

NOISE-SHY DOES NOT EQUAL GUN SHY

Just because a dog is noise-sensitive to fireworks, does NOT necessarily mean that will translate into gunshyness, but why take a chance?

My best gun dog ever, Em, never had a problem with gunfire, but she was so afraid of thunderstorms that we had to build a special top for her kennel run so she couldn’t climb out or hurt herself trying.

HOW NOT TO EXPOSE A NEW PUP TO FIREWORKS

I was at a party a few years back and watched a new dog get exposed to fireworks completely the wrong way. The dog was in her kennel but still in full view of everything that was going on. Once the fireworks started she became more and more upset and wanted out of the kennel. To calm her down they let her out of her crate and she made a break for it. They didn’t find her for two days.

The volume and brightness of fireworks is just too much for most dogs and nothing good is going to come from it. Please take the time to protect your pets while the possibility of unexpected explosions are around.

I do my best to keep all my dogs away from any kind of fireworks. Even dogs that have been properly conditioned to gunfire can become upset or nervous when exposed to fireworks. It just isn’t worth it.

Fireworks happens twice a year with New Year’s and Fourth of July. You might want to condition your dogs to fireworks, especially if you live where your dogs will be exposed a couple of weeks out of the year. It never hurts to check with your neighbors about their fireworks plans. Give them a heads up that you have a young dog and ask them to give you a call before they start.

People don’t think about fireworks until it’s too late, so think about it a little now. The majority of dogs don’t have a problem with it, but some do. Why take a chance? No point in stressing your dogs out.

Remember, if you want to shoot fireworks, be safe and have fun. Just keep in mind that unexpected noise and stress could create a problem where one doesn’t exist. — Steve

Fireworks Sensitivity

From Steve Snell

      ~ Gundog Supply

Be Careful with Your Dogs and Fireworks!

Fireworks can screw up a dog faster than anything.

Everybody needs to be careful with fireworks around their young dogs and older dogs that have not been properly conditioned to gunfire (see video).

Fireworks are unnatural. You don’t have a lot of control over when or where the noise happens. Fireworks can screw up a dog faster than anything. It’s a lot harder to fix a gun shy or noise sensitive dog than it is to prevent gun shyness in the first place.

This year, only one of my dogs is showing a little gun sensitivity, so Loretta is going to stay in the house over the holiday while the neighbors are shooting off fireworks.

Here are some tips to prevent fireworks sensitivity in your dogs:

  • Keep your dogs as far away from fireworks as possible.
  • If possible, bring your dogs inside in a closed-off, interior room.
  • Block out the noise with a TV, radio, or white-noise maker.
  • Check with your neighbors about their fireworks plans.
  • Ask for a phone call before they start.

Sometimes the fireworks start before New Year’s Eve or the 4th of July and run a few days after the holiday.

There is NO REASON for a dog to be around fireworks, and I do everything I can to keep my dogs away from them. Usually dogs conditioned to gunfire can handle the noise of fireworks, but there really isn’t anything good about them as far as dogs are concerned. We sell a couple of products that are designed to help dogs get over the fear of fireworks, but I really prefer NOT to have to sell them.

CONCERNS

My biggest concern is that a dog will hurt themselves trying to get away from the noise. My second concern is that exposure will create a gun shy or noise-sensitive problem where there doesn’t have to be one.

NOISE-SHY DOES NOT EQUAL GUN SHY

Just because a dog is noise-sensitive to fireworks, does NOT necessarily mean that will translate into gunshyness, but why take a chance?

My best gun dog ever, Em, never had a problem with gunfire, but she was so afraid of thunderstorms that we had to build a special top for her kennel run so she couldn’t climb out or hurt herself trying.

HOW NOT TO EXPOSE A NEW PUP TO FIREWORKS

19204997_10213100850778481_1451570928_o

I was at a party a few years back and watched a new dog get exposed to fireworks completely the wrong way. The dog was in her kennel but still in full view of everything that was going on. Once the fireworks started she became more and more upset and wanted out of the kennel. To calm her down they let her out of her crate and she made a break for it. They didn’t find her for two days.

The volume and brightness of fireworks is just too much for most dogs and nothing good is going to come from it. Please take the time to protect your pets while the possibility of unexpected explosions are around.

I do my best to keep all my dogs away from any kind of fireworks. Even dogs that have been properly conditioned to gunfire can become upset or nervous when exposed to fireworks. It just isn’t worth it.

Fireworks happens twice a year with New Year’s and Fourth of July. You might want to condition your dogs to fireworks, especially if you live where your dogs will be exposed a couple of weeks out of the year. It never hurts to check with your neighbors about their fireworks plans. Give them a heads up that you have a young dog and ask them to give you a call before they start.

People don’t think about fireworks until it’s too late, so think about it a little now. The majority of dogs don’t have a problem with it, but some do. Why take a chance? No point in stressing your dogs out.

Remember, if you want to shoot fireworks, be safe and have fun. Just keep in mind that unexpected noise and stress could create a problem where one doesn’t exist.

                             —  Steve

Breeder Comment

We talked about fireworks yesterday; however, we thought it was good to hear from someone who is intimately involved with the sporting dog industry. Steve makes a living advising and selling supplies that help canine enthusiasts. In all his great tutorials and bits of information, he provides there is a segment on introducing a dog to gunfire. His advice might prove helpful to some of our OwyheeStar Weimaraner News readers. We hope you find a nugget of truth that helps you get through the next two weeks without incident. Most of all, prepare, plan and make provision for what is about to come.

Be Safe and have fun!

Click Here to go directly to Steve’s article.

Fireworks in the air, explosions from everywhere

The Weimaraner Safety First

firecrackers_walkThe fireworks, the fanfare, and the hoopla associated with early July meets with mixed reviews. Some folks cannot wait for it, while others dread another upsetting week-plus of the unwanted noise. The Weimaraner may be bullet-proof to the noise and explosions. Other Weims are opposed, and frighted by the attack from every side. This is a time when shelters see a huge influx of lost pets, who have gotten spooked and took off. The number on goal for a Weimaraner family is to keep their Weim safe during this period of time.

  1. Don’t leave them alone in the yard. No one can say what will happen while you are away–even a few minutes could bring the unexpected.
  2. Be careful where you take them. Having them get spooked, and bolting in unknown territory is a scary situation.
  3. Keep them away from castoff firework boxes–they are toxic
  4. Some Weims will try to retrieve or chase a burning explosive firework. They can become burned.
  5. Know your Weimaraner–prepare accordingly
  6. Be sure your pet has a registered microchip. In the event of a mishap, it will make getting them back to you more probable–not to mention proof of ownership easier.
  7. If this is your first time at this noisy holiday with your Weimaraner, make sure you do not ingrain fear. The most natural approach is usually the wrong way to handle things. There are a lot of articles that can help you avoid adding to the problem, but in a nutshell–don’t make a big deal out of it, and don’t baby them……… “you poor baby.  <== Wrong Approach! We are fine, straight ahead avoiding the worst of things……..staying calm. <== Better Approach!

The Weimaraner response varies..

american_bombThe Weimaraner may be intrigued, be frightened, or have some kind of neutral middle-ground response. We suggest doing a pretest on your young Weimar–one that is new to the holiday. Have someone make some noise (initially low-grade noise) a distance away from you while you are doing something really fun. If they love to retrieve, try having someone ding a kettle or make some noise that can be heard, but is not distracting to whatever you are doing. Gradually increase the loudness, by moving closer. The person with the Weim should totally ignore the noise, and keep the fun going. If they react to the noise the goal would be to go about business as normal, and to get them to continue to play. Regardless, if you find them cowering, you don’t want to ingrain the fear. You are also on alert that the 4th of July Holiday is coming soon.

For the Terrified Weimaraner

There are some things you can do to ease the fear, and to get your Weim through this with less anxiety.

  1. Download the Fireworks Noise (Click Here)–this is a type of desensitization.
  2. Purchase a Thunderwrap
  3. There are over the counter pheromones that are calming
  4. Talk to your vet about prescription medication if the lesser/more natural approaches do not work.
  5. If your Weim is crate-friendly this can be the ideal time to use it. An well padded, and insulated crate may comfort them.
  6. Add a fan, white-noise, and/or music to drown out the loud noise.

Be Safe

How about some ball?

How about some ball?

The shelters want to see fewer pets; the already frightened pet showing up at a scary-unknown location is not what you want either. The frantic situation is best avoided. Keep your Weimaraner inside during the height of firework activity. Accompany them to the backyard, even if you don’t normally do that. A spooked Weimaraner can charge through an otherwise secure boundary. When we talk about safety, it should include pet safety. Most of us count them as family.

There are only a few days until we celebrate our nation’s Independence. It is a great time filled with the BBQ, and fireworks. Chances are the neighbors kids (young and old) have begun to set off a few choice noise-makers already. Nevertheless, we know the crescendo will rise, and either the Weimaraner will come through with ease, or it will be upsetting to all concerned. We hope something here will help you be well prepared.fireworks-01-june fireworks-02-junefireworks-02-june fireworks-01-june

fireworks-02-june

This Week’s OwyheeStar News

Hello from far Eastern Oregon

A OwyheeStar Sign with Yuccas_1238The Heat, Holiday, and Helpers

We had record-setting temperatures in the Treasure Valley. It is not uncommon to see triple digit temperatures in August, and even in July. However, to see them happening at the end of June is unbelievable.

OwyheeStar has had a busy week trying to keep everyone safe, cool, and well-hydrated. Cliff had to install an air conditioner in the shop. Until this week, it was cool enough using a fan. Of course, we celebrated Independence Day. The fireworks were great.

Here are the links for this week’s posts….

How Did Your Weim Cope?

fireworks-01-juneWe had varied reports. Goose was unfazed by the fireworks. Others were scrambling to accommodate their Weim, and used Thunder Shirts to try to avoid stress. Once your Weim has developed a fear of loud sounds, it is hard to turn back the clock. Owners often (unknowing)ingrain the fear of loud sounds. There are development cycles within a dog’s life actually called fear-periods. During these times, a dog will suddenly become afraid of something. The normal response is to baby them and tell them it is alright. Nothing could be worse for the Weimaraner. By consoling them, you ingrain the fear, and tell them their fearful behavior is justified (and normal). If you are upset, or unnerved too, this adds to the depth of ingraining. Turning around this type of thing takes time, patience, and a knack. There is a company that makes a DVD you play that is classical music. The background had either gun fire, or fireworks. The volume of the loud noise increases over times. This can help desensitize them.

4july001If you are raising a puppy, the best approach is to desensitize them, and keep them that way. Yes, you can buy the DVD and use it. You can also ding a pan very lightly and give a snack. Even better enlist a helper to do that. Using this method you introduce sound gradually, much like you would introduce a Weim to gun fire. The proper method is important. Initially, the sound should be in the background, and some distance away. The Weim should be doing something very fun (retrieving, getting a snack, or running around the yard with you). The noise should not distract them. Have your assistant move closer, and over a period of days (or weeks) repeat the exercise. Don’t force the issue. You, the handler, should ignore your assistant.

fireworks-02-juneVacuuming at the Weim is sure to cause issue. Put them in their safe place (a crate), and vacuum. Chasing most dogs will create a problem with the vacuum cleaner, and associate noise with a fear of vacuums. Some people will move a crate near the washer and dryer, and put them in that area when they are gone. These appliances emit varied sound, and it can become soothing–especially the dryer. Leave the television or music going. Random noise can help them learn to deal with the unexpected sounds they will have in life. No time is worse than the 4th of July, but try not to be uptight. Yes, it can get tiresome listening to the illegal fireworks going off all week, and seeing it upset your Weimaraner. However, your frustration doesn’t help the Weimaraner cope.

Looking AheadNick with a puppy

We are lining up the ducks. The next two-three weeks will take us through another round of puppy exits. Our clients are well aware of all that entails. I have been working on blog-drafts, so I can be sure each day has one ready to go. We have several updates to share, and we will see how it comes together. Right now, I have two posts in a publish-ready format. I hope I can get more done today, but we are off to take some cute puppy photos. Many of you saw the random photos we took of Brad and Nick with the pups this week. I posted the most popular one here.

Thank you again for liking OwyheeStar, and for keeping us updated. We have a couple of exciting updates to share for the coming week.

Many blessings and warm wishes from Shela and Cliff–

(and the OwyheeStar Weimaraners too!)

~Thank you for being a part of our lives!

Independence Day Weimar Wishes

17C_Duchess in the Hay Field Sept 2011 (64) (Custom)4july003“Woof” “Oh, I meant hello there fellow Weimlovers!” Here we are at Independence Day, and I wanted to point out a few things that we Weimars are hoping to celebrate this 4th of July.

fireworks-02-juneWeimar Freedom Wishes include the right to clean up dropped bacon, even if it is on the platter (and the kitchen counter). Today we are free from automatic suspicion if the toilet paper mysteriously unravels down the hallway, or the trash can topples over. fireworks-01-juneMaybe Uncle Billy imbibed a little too much, and the TP followed him out the door. Remember, fireworks can shake the ground; quite possibly it was that which caused the trash to vault across the deck. On this blessed occasion, we are not owning your farts, or other disgusting sounds you like to place off on us.

american_bombamerican_bombRemember, people admire you more when you have us for a friend. (Woof) Think of the calories you saved because we licked your ice cream cone. We do all kind of thankless services for you, and your friends, who also think we are convenient to blame for their farts. You see the just of this note is one day a year we declare our freedom from the unwarranted accusations. We do admit that many a Weimar antic has caused you a measure of inconvenience, but in the long haul who else accepts you with corn in your teeth–and is happy for the opportunity to remove it for you? Thank you for taking a moment to think about these things.

4july001Be safe and sane with the fireworks. Remember some of us will want to cower, and others will try to retrieve the smoking embers. We are kids that never grow up, and you are the adult. So, this holiday is on you. If I drink too much, it is because you were sloppy. If you leave your plate on the ground, it is fair game. Remember, I don’t sort out the chicken bones, and this could mean an emergency trip in the midst of your holiday fun. Please don’t blame me, because you let things get out of hand.

Finally, don’t let me get frightened and have to run away. If I get lost it would be scary. I have read about Weims turning up at the shelters after a holiday. Thank you in advance for the watermelon, ice cream, and hot dogs. Please make sure I don’t over eat and get sick, but do share. “Woof” fireworks-02-june

firecrackers_walk~ Happy 4th of July14thjuly

The Duches of OwyheeStar