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The not-hound pupper

Updated Dec. 2009

Gleann at 4 weeks--at "breeders"We had been talking for a couple of years of eventually adopting a semi-working dog to protect the chickens and just hang out around the property. Last year ,when some of our chickens gotPlease Spay or Neuter!  There aren't enough homes! taken by a fox and a weasel, this became a bigger priority. We had thought it would be nice if we got something we MIGHT be able to turn into a herding dog, provided we could learn to train it. So we focused on the idea of something along the lines of a Border Collie or some cross thereof.

Well, family friends offered my father a BC and an Australian Shepherd from their first litter of working dogs. When Dad said he didn't want another dog, they offered one to us if there were enough, as they had a list potentially longer than the likely litter. Inat 5 weeks old--we didn't want his tail docked! but we still love him May of 2004, when some had backed out, we got called over to check out the tiny pups and pick one out from three that hadn't been fully claimed yet (there were five all together, not everyone had picked theirs yet). Sadly for us they had docked the tails to make them more like Australian Shepherds already, we would NEVER have chosen this to be done. The other two were female and red merle, the one male was pure black like the BC mother. We choose him for several reasons...we like black dogs here, we figured that Irony would be more accepting of another male coming into the pack than yet another female (although she accepted Scolaighe well enough), this was a chance to get another male while we have Bran as the pup will be too small to at 5 weekskill him and will be used to him by the time he's big enough, and males are, after all, cheaper to get fixed. After all, at that age it's a little hard to judge on personality.

We feel a bit weird about getting a puppy, being hard-core dog adopters and spay/neuter advocates. But he was a gift and we were told a buyer, not of the original list, was interested in him if we didn't take him...but the breeders didn't really want to sell to that person...who was being insistent, apparently. We figured we'd still be giving him a sure good forever home, even if he wasn't in a bad spot, he might end up in one if we didn't take him.

So we have now Gleann ("valley," see, we were going to name him Beinn or "mountain" because we live on one but decided Our usual view of of Gleanntwo dogs with names starting with "b" and ending with "n" might be confusing for we went with where he came from...we wanted something really simple for the folks, although most people seem to want to read it as Glee-an. *sigh*).

At first we though Scolaighe showed prey interest but it turned out she has "aunty" tendencies, wanting to play and fuss over him. Irony was ill, so we were afraid this might stress her, but she dealt with him here very well. Bran wanted to play, but again, that also had to wait until Gleann was closer to his size.

We had a fun teething stage, which lasted a very long time it seemed. He's shown some herding interest. He's showing himself more willful than the "puppy testing" showed before. But I think he's going to make a nice addition to the pack.

Due to his willfulness, we did take him to a Basic Obedience class and as the youngest there he still did quite well.

Finally updating Dec. 2009

Gleann continued to be a handful for awhile, however. As he matured, he has become an excellent dog, very snuggling inside, very adventurous outside. Scolaighe had a great deal to do with that, undoubtedly, becoming his pack "aunty" and happily playing with him. Often very it's just play, really rough, but no dogs were hurt in the making of this photo. When she became ill, she stopped playing with him like this. It seemed to make him sad, but he adjusted and was very lovey and caring to her. Her recent loss has been devestating to him.

We never have had the chance to train him like we had hoped, either for herding or other tasks. At first with the horses and chickens he was far too interested in chasing, but he calmed down eventually with the chickens especially (he still tries with the horses, the Minis, as well as Saoradh back in the day, mostly ignore him, Saorsa chases back, however) and has become very concerned and protective of his flock. Now that he has goats, well, he's over excited still, but starting to calm down. Of course, they strike back too and they have horns.

Snowy Gleann


Contents and design, except where noted otherwise below, copyright 2004 -2011 Kym Lambert and Aaron Miller

Spay/neuter button from Dog Hause's Don't Litter site
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