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Choosing an LGD puppy

Discussion in 'Livestock Guardians' started by dejavoodoo114, Jan 9, 2017.

  1. Jan 9, 2017
    dejavoodoo114

    dejavoodoo114 Loving the herd life

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    So with everything that happened to Wesson, with the Neosporosis and now the coyote attack and loses to the chicken's, we are purchasing another LGD puppy. We have Smith, who is a pyr that is more a home guardian and does not care about protecting the animals. Wesson, who does care but is not able to anymore. Kimber, 7 months old, always stays with the livestock (even when they got out of the pasture she wouldn't leave them) is shockingly calm for a puppy, and trades off sleeping and watching them with Wesson when they are both in the pasture. Kimber is amazing actually, I honestly don't know when she sleeps though I know she sleeps with (all cuddled up together) the goats and pig. She is always watching or circling. Smith and Wesson are both around 5 years old.

    So I have my deposit down on a male pup. There were 3 males in the litter but one was immediately dismissed as being more interested in being with people. I am not interested in trying to get a pup who inclined in that way to switch his affections to my livestock (tried that with Smith). How much else can you tell about what the puppy will be like as an adult when they are 5-6 weeks old now? We want one to compliment Kimber, even though we wish we could find another just like her.

    One pup always sits back and watches the others. He is bossy and gets annoyed even with the bitch if he doesn't get his way. He is always thinking about things before he does them, even when he has seen that situation before. We are worried he may miss something going on out of sight (we are all hills here).

    The other option is "feisty". He is always exploring, when his siblings gang up on him he stands his ground. No fear, no hesitation. We are worried he will challenge our fencing and will be more inclined to chase chickens as a pup so would require more training (not a bad thing, just what we think).

    These are short descriptions I have from many long conversations with the breeder. Both parents are excellent working LGDs with good health and hips.
     
  2. Jan 9, 2017
    Bruce

    Bruce Loving the herd life

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  3. Jan 9, 2017
    Southern by choice

    Southern by choice Herd Master

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    How knowledgeable is your breeder?

    You want to compliment the existing dog. If you have one that stays with the herd then the other needs to "go out" IOW one watcher and one patroller.
    The feisty one as you call him... those things you describe does not mean he will be more inclined to chase poultry or challenge fencing.
     
    BrendaMNgri likes this.
  4. Jan 9, 2017
    dejavoodoo114

    dejavoodoo114 Loving the herd life

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    She tries. But she has bought these working LGD's from a breeder I trust for the sake of breeding. If it were not for the bloodlines and my desire for a pup now I would go elsewhere.

    I know that I want to compliment Kimber. That is part of the problem. I have seen her and Wesson trading off. I am sure that she will take whichever position is needed. Believing that, either pup could work....

    How much of their puppy attitude carries over? With our coyote problems we were inclined towards the feisty one. He struck us as a likely patroller. But this is the first time I have been in this situation of trying to pick the right puppy.

    What have you seen from pups with these characteristics as they mature? @Southern by choice, you think the feisty one may not chase chickens or challenge the fence? Have you seen pups like this that haven't? I know offering advice in this type of situation isn't easy but I will take whatever you feel comfortable giving me.
     
  5. Jan 9, 2017
    Southern by choice

    Southern by choice Herd Master

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    There is just not enough info to go on.
    Honestly most look at pups and describe what they think they see but may not have an idea of what they are actually seeing.
    I don't know your environment either.

    For me I like highly arrogant, dominant, independent dogs. :D That can take different forms as a young pup. ;)
    "fiesty" can mean a whole lot of things...

    Some may think a dog is a watcher and the dog may not be a herd dog but fearful or timid... some mistake needy for social....
    Is the breeder close to you?
     
  6. Jan 9, 2017
    BrendaMNgri

    BrendaMNgri Ridin' The Range

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    I'm with SBC - and the pups are too young to make the kind of evaluations/judgements you are of them. My pups don't leave here now till 12 weeks of age. I used to let them go at 8 weeks but no more - the window between 8-12 is so important for them to model after mom and the pack. I hope you are letting them stay with the breeder longer and I hope the breeder is not pushing you to take them at 6 weeks - far too young to go. You are thinking too much about this. Don't be offended. Please. What I am saying is you are trying to micromanage and control, what the pup will/won't be/will or won't do, too much. That is impossible to achieve. Its not easy for some people, but learn to trust your dogs. Trust them - assuming they are of good stock - to take the pup under their wings and bring it up and learn. "…..you think the feisty one may not chase chickens or challenge the fence? Have you seen pups like this that haven't?…" - SBC has probably seen all ends of the spectrum and the middle too, like I have. Again, don't over think this and that is what you are trying to do. YOU will be the one giving the pup guidance and direction. So much of this will hang on you, not just the pup, assuming they are as you say, from good stock and raised right.
     
    Green Acres Farm likes this.
  7. Jan 9, 2017
    BrendaMNgri

    BrendaMNgri Ridin' The Range

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    I have had pups here literally choose their owners. It has happened time and again. I mean literally leaving the pack walking up to the buyer and sitting down in front of them and staring at them and claiming them. Once when a gal came to pick up her Pyrenean Mastiff pup the pup knew she was at the front gate before she even saw her and dashed all the way out to greet her. The gal thought I had "trained" the pup to do that - heck NO….. These dogs can operate on such a higher level than we know.

    A 'goosebumps' story for you - gal came to pick out Spanish Mastiff pup. She chose well. But the pup Chili Verde had a pal in the litter, a brother he stuck with and they ran together all the time. When it came time to go, "Cinco" literally followed the customer out to my front gate - quite a jaunt - and sat down at the gate as she loaded up his brother to leave. I said to her then, "You need to take this one too" but she demurred because she was afraid her husband would get angry. So they get home and opposite happens he gloms on to the pup and says sure go back get another one.

    So here they come. And she comes with the first pup Chili so he can be involved in this. And she sets her sights on a handsome black pup, all the time however, Cinco is never far from her or her first pick pup Chili. And finally Cinco comes into my kennel house and sits down on her feet and looks up at her like HELLLLLLOOOOO????? I'm the one! She burst into tears. And he and the first pup Chili Verde were glued to one another. To this day they are an inseparable team.

    So what I am saying, open yourself up to listening to the pups in the litter, because one of them may have already chosen you. :love And trust me it will be the one you should take, hands down, because they know more than we do!
     
  8. Jan 9, 2017
    TAH

    TAH True BYH Addict

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    A little off topic but @BrendaMNgri do you mind if I PM you with some questions about the SM's?
     
  9. Jan 9, 2017
    BrendaMNgri

    BrendaMNgri Ridin' The Range

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  10. Jan 9, 2017
    dejavoodoo114

    dejavoodoo114 Loving the herd life

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    That is one of the reasons I asked. I wasn't even sure how much you could tell about the future of a pup from this age. I won't purchase a pyr again because I have one that is great and one that is not. I don't need another one like Smith (I know you breed great pyrs @Southern by choice and I mean no offense at all). With this breeding I am certain that either one I pick will turn out, especially since Kimber seems so flexible.

    The pup has to be shipped and is too far away for me to visit. Also, while I didn't get Kimber until 14 weeks and was happy about that, it was because her breeder had her with livestock. This breeder does not and I want the puppy exposed sooner. I will be getting him at 8 weeks because of this unless there is a more compelling reason for me to leave him there longer.....