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Archive for the 'Dog Breeds' Category

So many breeds, so little time

Monday, March 2nd, 2009

Just when I think I have decided on a breed I see a dog or read something and all of the sudden Im not so sure anymore. The good news is that I dont think there is one perfect dog or breed for everyone. There are many breeds out there that would fit my family perfectly. Some will be better than others but with the right training there is a very large selection of breeds that would be great.
Many of the qualities that I have on my list for our next puppy can be found in multiple breeds. So many dog breeds are closely related and share many of the same qualities with slight differences (like the lab and golden retrievers). Other breeds are of course extremely different with very little in common (i.e. the english mastiff and chinese crested).
I guess my point is that I shouldnt stress out too much about it. Take my time and narrow the search down to the breeds that meet my criteria and visit as many puppies as I can. Thats the funnest and the hardest part. Almost every puppy seems perfect. They are soooo cute and you just want to take them all home with you. Dont fall into that trap. If at all possible make sure you see the parents. Thats a very good indicator of how the puppy will look and act. If you love the parents as much as you do the puppy than maybe this is the one. Did you ask about health testing? Do you know what tests should be done for that breed? Have the parents passed the health tests with atleast “good” results? This is the information you should be educated on when visiting breeds. The more you know the better chance of getting a great, healthy puppy.
My search continues.

Miniature Breeds

Saturday, July 26th, 2008

Except in the matter of size, the general appearance and qualifications of the Miniature Black and Tan Terrier should be as nearly like the larger breed as possible, for the standard of points applies to both varieties, excepting that erect, or what are commonly known as tulip ears, of semi-erect carriage, are permissible in the miniatures. The officially recognised weight for the toy variety is given as “under seven pounds,” but none of the most prominent present-day winners reach anything like that weight; some in fact are little more than half of it, and the great majority are between 4 lb. and 5 lb.

Probably the most popular specimens of the miniature Black and Tan at the present time are Mr. Whaley’s Glenartney Sport and Mr. Richmond’s Merry Atom. Merry Atom is only 4-1/2 lb. in weight, and he is beautifully proportioned, with a fine, long head, a small, dark eye, small ears, and the true type of body. His markings of deep black and rich tan are good, and his coat is entirely free from the bare patches which so often mar the appearance of these toys, giving the suggestion of delicacy.

The Miniature Black and Tan is certainly not a robust dog, and he has lost much of the terrier boisterousness of character by reason of being pampered and coddled; but it is a fallacy to suppose that he is necessarily delicate. He requires to be kept warm, but exercise is better for him than eiderdown quilts and silken cushions, and judicious feeding will protect him from the skin diseases to which he is believed to be liable. Under proper treatment he is no more delicate than any other toy dog, and his engaging manners and cleanliness of habit ought to place him among the most favoured of lady’s pets and lapdogs. It is to be hoped that the efforts now being made by the Black and Tan Terrier Club will be beneficial to the increased popularity of this diminutive breed.

For the technical description and scale of points the reader is referred to the chapter on the larger variety of Black and Tan Terrier.

Of late years Toy Bull-terriers have fallen in popularity. This is a pity, as their lilliputian self-assertion is most amusing. As pets they are most affectionate, excellent as watch-dogs, clever at acquiring tricks, and always cheerful and companionable. They have good noses and will hunt diligently; but wet weather or thick undergrowth will deter them, and they are too small to do serious harm to the best stocked game preserve.

The most valuable Toy Bull-terriers are small and very light in weight, and these small dogs usually have “apple-heads.” Pony Queen, the former property of Sir Raymond Tyrwhitt Wilson, weighed under 3 lb., but the breed remains “toy” up to 15 lb. When you get a dog with a long wedge-shaped head, the latter in competition with small “apple-headed” dogs always takes the prize, and a slightly contradictory state of affairs arises from the fact that the small dog with an imperfectly shaped head will sell for more money than a dog with a perfectly shaped head which is larger.

In drawing up a show schedule of classes for this breed it is perhaps better to limit the weight of competitors to 12 lb. The Bull-terrier Club put 15 lb. as the lowest weight allowed for the large breed, and it seems a pity to have an interregnum between the large and miniature variety; still, in the interests of the small valuable specimens, this seems inevitable, and opportunist principles must be applied to doggy matters as to other business in this world.

At present there is a diversity of opinion as to their points, but roughly they are a long flat head, wide between the eyes and tapering to the nose, which should be black. Ears erect and bat-like, straight legs and rather distinctive feet; some people say these are cat-like.

Toy Bull-terriers ought to have an alert, gay appearance, coupled with refinement, which requires a nice whip tail. The best colour is pure white. A brindle spot is not amiss, and even a brindle dog is admissible, but black marks are wrong. The coat ought to be close and stiff to the touch. Toy Bull-terriers are not delicate as a rule. They require warmth and plenty of exercise in all weathers.

The most elegant, graceful, and refined of all dogs are the tiny Italian Greyhounds. Their exquisitely delicate lines, their supple movements and beautiful attitudes, their soft large eyes, their charming colouring, their gentle and loving nature, and their scrupulous cleanliness of habit—all these qualities justify the admiration bestowed upon them as drawing-room pets. They are fragile, it is true—fragile as eggshell china—not to be handled roughly. But their constitution is not necessarily delicate, and many have been known to live to extreme old age.

Miss Mackenzie’s Jack, one of the most beautiful of the breed ever known, lived to see his seventeenth birthday, and even then was strong and healthy. Their fragility is more apparent than real, and if they are not exposed to cold or damp, they require less pampering than they usually receive. This cause has been a frequent source of constitutional weakness, and it was deplorably a fault in the Italian Greyhounds of half a century ago.

One cannot be quite certain as to the derivation of the Italian Greyhound. Its physical appearance naturally suggests a descent from the Gazehound of the ancients, with the added conjecture that it was purposely dwarfed for the convenience of being nursed in the lap. 

Greek art presents many examples of a very small dog of Greyhound type, and there is a probability that the diminutive breed was a familiar ornament in the atrium of most Roman villas. In Pompeii a dwarfed Greyhound was certainly kept as a domestic pet, and there is therefore some justification for the belief that the Italian prefix is not misplaced.

In very early times the Italian Greyhound was appreciated. Vandyck, Kneller, and Watteau frequently introduced the graceful figures of these dogs as accessories in their portraits of the Court beauties of their times, and many such portraits may be noticed in the galleries of Windsor Castle and Hampton Court. Mary, Queen of Scots is supposed to have been fond of the breed, as more surely were Charles I. and Queen Anne. Some of the best of their kind were in the possession of Queen Victoria at Windsor and Balmoral, where Sir Edwin Landseer transferred their graceful forms to canvas.

Affenpinscher - Obedience Training

Thursday, December 27th, 2007

affenpinscherThe Affenpinscher is a delightful little breed with an almost attractive monkey-like look. In fact, the prefix ‘Affen’ is a German word for monkey. In his country of origin he is often called Zwergaffenpinscher (‘Zwerg’ meaning dwarf.) The French have dubbed it the “mustached devil.” In any case, he is an appealing comical little dog, the smallest of the Schnauzers and Pinschers breed. He is alert, gentle, intelligent, and affectionate. He is wary of strangers and is always prepared to defend his home which makes him a good watchdog.

Miniature Pinschers and Affenpinschers were, until 1896, classified as a single breed. However, in that year at the Berlin show, it was decided that the long-coated variety should be known as the Affenpinscher. The Affenpinscher is a very old German breed that was depicted by Jan van Eyck (1395-1441) and Albrecht Durer (1471-1528). However, there are some controversies as to where his origin began, although his nationality was never been in doubt. Some people believe it to be related to the Brussels Griffon while others attribute the Brussels Griffon to the Affenpinscher. Another theory is that the Affenpinscher is a toy version of the German coarse-haired terrier, the Zwergschnauzer. In any case, this wonderful dog was recognized by the American Kennel Club in 1936. He was introduced into the United Kingdom in 1975 and was first shown at Crufts Dog Show in 1980.

The average height for this breed is about 91/2-11in. His average weight should be about 61/2-9lb and recommended feeding for this breed would be 1/3-1/2 can of quality meat product (13.3oz size), with biscuit added in equal part by volume; or 1-11/2 cupfuls of high quality dry food. When feeding this dog dry food, make sure that he has an ample supply of water.

Just like most toy dogs, he will be satisfied with a short walk around the park, but will gladly walk you off your feet if that is to your pleasure. Regular brushing will keep his coat in great condition, as well as all normal grooming habits of most dogs.

For more information on training your Affenpinscher dog.