Please go to FAQs to see what kind of information I want from you and to answer some of the most common questions.
I am putting some information on here about Border Collies and why they are so special. I am also giving you some thoughts on dogs and children as this is something I care about particularly. I have put information about being an Assured Breeder and what that means for me.
I was recently asked by a prospective puppy owner if I could recommend a good book to read in preparation for puppy ownership. ‘Toddler Taming’ by Dr Christopher Green sprang to mind! Also ‘Raising Boys’ by Steve Biddulph. Puppies are like children in so many ways and having raised a couple of sons and six Border Collies, I believe the same rules apply.
Here are my TOP TIPS for having well behaved, enjoyable dogs (and children):
- Be present. If you’re going to be always out, or away, or busy, your dogs won’t engage with you and you won’t be in control of them. I’m not saying you can’t work, or go on holiday, or watch TV in the evenings, just that the more time you spend with your dogs, the more they will respond to you. I work from home, so my dogs sleep calmly and quietly while I work. But because we ‘hang out’ all the time, I know as soon as they are fed up, or anxious, or needing to be stimulated. They come and tell me what they want and because I am present and listening, I understand.
- Be consistent. Everyone loves a routine. If you get up at the same time every day (including weekends, but you can go back to bed again!), feed your dog at the same time and then walk her at the same time, your dog will be relaxed and content. If you like to ‘mix it up a bit’ they will be constantly on edge, wondering if NOW is the time for a walk. Or NOW?
- Be realistic. It’s no good telling off your puppy if it doesn’t understand what you want. Much better to reward what you DO want. It sounds obvious and easy, but it is neither of those things. We don’t usually know ourselves what we want, so it easy to for us to confuse our dogs. Make allowances for that.