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7 Dog Breeds Who Love Country Living

Thursday, April 17, 2014

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    A lot of people in the horse world have either Australian Shepherds or Border Collies.
    1408 days ago
    A cousin of mine had a border collie. Smartest dog!
    1408 days ago
    Having been 'in dogs' for over 30 years, it's fair to say that pretty much all dogs enjoy country living provided that they are kept well, healthy and are trained to be under, at the very least, basic control. Border Collies are terrific country dogs but, especially if from a farm line and not reared socially in their early weeks and months can be extremely snappy. We had a terrible explosion of BC's going through rescue here in England a number of years ago, owing to the programme 'One Man and his Dog' making many inexperienced dog owners thinking that they could just buy one and it would be brilliantly intelligent and easy to train. farmers started raising litter upon litter in barns where the pups fought to eat from a carcass or big bowl of food placed in their barn stall, with no socialising skills. The result was pretty pups going to well meaning households which then found it was a nightmare at feeding time. Food possession, boredom in a 'regular' domestic household creating serious issues... The list went on and BC Rscues were overwhelmed. BC's are wonderful dogs but, unless they come from a line which has had the sharpness diluted over a few generations, they can be a real trial. They are fantastically intelligent but need a huge amount of both mental and physical stimulus. Generally speaking, I wouldn't recommend this breed for apartment or town/city living, but, even in the country, most need a huge amount of stimulus.

    People think that greyhounds would do well in the country - but this breed is one of the ones which is known to be a couch potato! Two bursts of 20 minutes racing around a day is what they love, but all day in the country, hacking and tracking? No! A soft settee and a nice warm fire in winter to doze next to? Yes! I'm sure that there will be owners who refute this,who have. Extremely active greyhounds, but this is a generalisation.

    Now that I've retired from showing my Old Englsih Sheepdogs, and judginag them and other breeds too, we have gone over to having rescues. We keep them close clipped and they are brilliant here in the deeply rural countryside where we live. We lost our spaniel-type old girl last year, facially very much like the Field Spaniel which is, even though a numerically small breed, possibly better known here in England. She was wonderful, a bomb-proof temperament, but typical of most spaniels in other respects. On the loose and not thoroughly well trained, spaniels can be very selectively deaf and zoom off after rabbits or pheasants etc, and you can shout until you ae blue in the face, they will only return when THEY want to. We didn't let Shirley off her lead when walking the tracks and fields for that very reason!

    In the end, the suitability of most dogs for country living is not so much about the breed but about the training their owners give them from Day 1. Being a good dog owner is not about having a perfect pet, it's about being honest about the dogs nature and tendencies and catering responsibly for them. We've had dogs which we could walk anywhere off leads, knowing they would never ever run off, and we've had dogs which we knew were naughty and, no matter how much training we'd put in, we couldn't, hand on heart, guarantee wouldn't zoom off if something caught their eye! The two OES we have now, both rescues, are not reliable off leads so we don't release them when in the field and tracks. We go to training classes but it's a slow process. Mercifully, we have a huge garden and they get copious stimulus and attention. The amputee GSDxRotti obviously can't go for long walks now, but when she had 4 legs web kept her to long lead walks, mainly because other people seem to be wary of that type and we always sought to protect her from their assumptions.

    Every breed or, indeed, crossbreed, will have dogs which are brilliant in the country and others which are not. It can be a combination of breeding rather than breed, a bit of luck sometimes, and what work owners are prepared to put into them. Whatever it is, they are all worth it. Life without dogs, for me, would be no life at all!

    A short list of dogs in the links, but isn't that Leopard dog pretty and unusual? Never heard of that one. Thank you for sharing.


    1408 days ago
  • JANET552
    They all look like great choices! I had never heard of the Field Spaniel.
    1408 days ago
    Thanks...that may come in handy when we consider our next dog.
    1408 days ago
  • BOB5148
    1408 days ago
    Nice to know. I like the border collie the best but I also like terriers.
    1408 days ago
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