Thursday, 3 July 2014

Action shots - puppies

Actions shots with a border collie means something
 entirely different to a 5 week old Sarplaninac pup.
Action, as in. maybe walking around,
 climbing a  grassy bank,
mouthing each other,
hanging out with the sheep,
or bonding with the cat.

The pups are getting more "out and about" now,
and Lucy appreciates the free time.

The pups have a small bunch of nice sheep to watch and meet.
Sometimes face to face, other times just at observable distance.
They also have some chickens that hang out in the barn with them.
A pigeon and a couple of cats.
They have seen and met the horses,
and met some of the other dogs.
Their world is expanding.

I believe that pups should be exposed to most of the things they will experience in their future lives,
however the speed of these introductions is vital.
Sometimes too many stimuli can overwhelm the pups,
creating fear rather than encouraging exploration.
I have seen a number of young LGD breed pups,
so overstimulated that the pups experience anxiety.
Anxiety is not a response you want to see in LGD pups.
Caution is fine, not anxiety.

Border collie pups on the other hand can barely be stimulated enough at this age,
they have a higher activity level, their brain seems to better cope with stimulus,
but even with border collies one needs to be careful,
as over stimulation or too many impressions can create some neurotic behavior.

I prefer slow and steady.
I like the pups to have time to explore at their own pace.
We do not shield the pups from loud noises,
such as the tractor, chain saw, mower.
We do not molly coddle them,
just expect them to deal with the noises in an appropriate way.
For some pups they back off, others are curious and others like to retreat to their whelping area.
All these responses are fine.
Luckily, none of our adult dogs are T storm shy,
nor any sound shyness, 
so the pups also do not see any worried behavior from the adults.

At this stage their characters are becoming more pronounced,
each pup is an individual.
It is fascinating to see them grow and learn.
At this age I always wonder how I am going to select the appropriate pup for each future owner,
in fact, at this age, I just do not want them to leave at all.
As the pups develop, I start thinking about what the future puppy owners are wanting,
I start paying more and more attention to the details.
As time goes on, certain pups emerge that seem to fit the bill,
some pups are so similar in character that the choice could be either or.

I try to match the pups to the future owners,
I try to select pups that I think will be suitable to their job 
and , of course the wants and needs of the owners.

However, they remain Sarplaninac pups,
a breed that comes with its own set of predetermined characteristics.
If someone is looking for a golden retriever character,
I probably do not have one of those in the litter.
The needs and wants of the owner, has to fit into the genetic based characteristics of this breed.
That is why, I do sometimes recommend other breeds for certain owners.

In some cases, the Sarplaninac is just not the right breed for that family.
Not only that, but it also needs to "feel" right for me.
Finding, loving, caring homes,
who understand the breed is perhaps the biggest challenge of breeding a litter of pups.

Now, onto some pictures:
This is F2 ( female 2) She is very recognizable because of her two white socks.
perhaps for the breed standard a bit too much white on her legs,
however as guardian dog, she is probably just perfect!

A bigger, lighter colored female.

Cute as a button and the sweetest character..

Kitty, F2 and M2

She is really the super friendly pup at this stage.
Very pretty with a lovely expression.

Kitty and ?? This could be  M2 or F3, not sure..
I need my colored collars!!

M1, the big ligher coloured boy.

M2, darker male


This is F4, she has a slightly different coat than the others.
it is a little more wavy and the grey is very evenly spread out over her whole body.
She is lovely.

F5, she has it all, looks character and personality.

F6, a little quieter pup, one that watches and learns.
Not the first to greet you, but certainly not shy.

another one of F6

and of course, one more

Now, this is F7,
She is the female version of Vuk.
Her head, her body, her color, her expression is all "little Vuk".
She melts my heart.

Nothing like going on an adventure with the barn cat.

Well, I hope you enjoyed this little insight into the puppies and their development.
It will be more than a week before I get to take pictures of them again,
as I am heading off with the kids to the Provincial Sheep Show next week.

I will have my cell phone, facebook and email.
So, I am "reachable".

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