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Wheaten Terrier make life beautiful!

Always in good mood, Irish Soft Coated Wheaten Terrier is as sweet as honey. They are loyal companions with whom you would love to share your life… today and all tomorrows.

Journey down the lane…breed profile

The history of the Irish Soft Coated Wheaten Terrier, also called as Wheaten, has been somewhat obscured by its closeness to the other Irish Terrier breeds. The Wheaten is probably the oldest of the four breeds. Their existence for at least 200 years can be inferred from textual references to soft-coated dogs. The relation of the modern Irish Terrier to the Wheaten, though less well documented, appears to have been the result of deliberate breeding experiments. So the humble Wheaten probably has a fairly mixed ancestry. Despite the long history of the Wheaten, it wasn’t until 1937 that the soft coated Wheaten was officially recognised by the Irish Kennel Club. The breed has grown steadily in popularity since and is now well-known worldwide. Wheaten Terriers were used by small farmers to kill vermin or help with the work about the farm. They were used for a long time in the difficult job of hunting badgers and otters.

The looks…

A Wheaten is a hardy and active who is well-built and gives the idea of strength. He is neither too leggy nor too low to the ground. His head is powerful, without being coarse and is in proportion to the body. His eyes are dark hazel coloured, not too large, not prominent and well placed. His ears range from small to medium, carried in front and are at a level with skull. His tail is well set, not too thick and carried gaily but never over the back. His coat can range from shades of light wheaten to a golden reddish hue. Single-coated, the texture is soft and silky to feel and not harsh. The coat at its longest is almost five inches (12.7 cm). It is soft, wavy or loosely curled with the sheen of silk. The puppies are seldom born with the correct colour or texture of the coat. They go through several changes of colour and texture before developing the mature adult coat, which usually occurs between 18 months and two and a half years.

The height of males is 18-19 inch (46 – 48 cm) while that of females is somewhat less and they weigh around 18 – 20.5 kg.

Excellent temperament…

Spirited and gameful, Wheatens are good tempered. They are most affectionate and loyal to their pet parents. They are intelligent and can be a trustworthy, faithful friend. They are defensive but without aggression. They have a special talent to make you consider them just as family members.

Living with them…

There are not enough words to describe how much joy and affection a Wheaten Terrier can bring to your home. They are always in good mood and happy and don’t hesitate to display their affection. They take interest in whatever you do and they are extremely close to their pet parents.

They love children. They are the best companions ever. Their playful and affectionate temperament matches very well with what children are looking for in a dog company. Although they are not watch dogs, they will instinctively keep an eye on the children of the family and protect the family from strangers if a danger was to occur.

Daily exercise – a must…

They need to be exercised daily. Irish Soft Coated Wheaten Terriers can live in a flat, apartment only if they daily have the opportunity to be walked in a park for a minimum of one and a half hour where they can run freely unleashed. They are very quiet inside the house, rarely bark but they need outdoor activities.

No shedding…

They do not have undercoat so they do not shed at all. They are considered as hypoallergenic dogs and highly recommended for people having allergies to pet hair.

Training at an early age…

Wheaten Terriers typically welcome family and friends in a very demonstrative way. They usually start this behaviour when they are still little puppies. So you will need to train them not to do it but never yell at them or hit them! Wheatens are very sensitive dogs. Love is the main thing of the Wheatens’ training.

Games they love…

They love to play ball and to retrieve sticks, even in the water if they were trained since a young age. Some people practice agility with them and they are doing very well. They are Terriers so they were at a time hunting dogs. Long walks in the countryside, where they can smell on tracks, is one of their favourite activities. They do not run away like other hunting dogs so you can unleash them in the fields or on trails. They will follow you and won’t go too far away from you, you will always have them in close sight.

The healthy breed…

Pure Irish Soft Coated Wheaten lines don’t have a disease specific to their breed. Some breeders mixed Irish Soft Coated Wheaten Terriers with Poodles and Kerry Blues, to get a fluffy frizzy coat easy to sculpt and more spectacular in shows. These unconsidered matings have brought some diseases like kidney dysplasia. All the hereditary problems that you could read about Soft-Coated Wheaten Terriers belong to dogs from mixed lines.

Once you have shared life with a Wheaten, you might have another one and for sure, you would never live without one!

(Katia Gobbi is a breeder of Irish Soft Coated Wheaten Terrier and is representative of the Irish Soft Coated Wheaten Terrier breed by the French Terrier Breeds Club (CFAT-DT)).

Small is beautiful

If you are looking for a pal, Japanese Chin is the right choice for you as this is the breed whose sole purpose is to serve as a companion to man.

Japanese Chin is an amazing breed. When they get excited, many will do something called ‘Chin Spins’. This isbreed profile when they whirl around in excitement when they see their pet parents or are getting ready for a game or car ride. Many Chins also inherit the ability to vocalise in almost a human fashion when happy or excited. This is called woo woo’ing, and no written description can do justice to how endearing this is. It sounds like the dog is actually talking to you. Here’s more on this lovely breed.

Stylish and small…

Japanese Chin is a small, well balanced, lively, aristocratic toy dog with a distinctive Oriental expression. Light and stylish in action! The plumed tail is carried over the back, curving to either side. The coat is profuse, silky, soft and straight. The dog’s outline presents a square appearance. They are found in various colours like black and white, red and white, or black and white with tan points (tricolour).

Japanese Chins have a small amount of white showing in the corner of their eyes and this gives them the desired look of astonishment. To look into their eyes is almost like looking at the face of a human.

Cat-like demeanour…

A properly bred Chin is a delightful companion. You will hear many fanciers refer to them as cat-like because of their dignified demeanour, ability to climb to high places, and lack of a ‘doggy smell’. Some Chins may be reserved with strangers, but with those they love and trust, they are an exceedingly loving and amusing companion.

Living with them…

Chins are an easy breed to live with. They can be trained to use a litter box to relieve themselves, and love being around other animals, especially other Chins. They are for the most part a very quiet breed and not yappy or annoying in any way.

While they can do well with mature, well-behaved children, Japanese Chin can be a sensitive breed, so most likely would do better in a home with no small children. If they do live with children, they should be taught to treat the dogs with care and respect to avoid either physical or emotional trauma.

Wash and wear breed…

Japanese Chins are often referred to as a ‘wash and wear’ breed. This is because a Chin with the correct, silky textured coat is very easy to groom whether for the show ring or home. Their coat should be combed or brushed in sections to ensure every strand is attended to so mats are prevented. Special care should be given to the area behind the ears as this is a prime spot for mats or knots to form. Toenails should be clipped regularly, because Chin is a heavily-coated, drop ear breed and their ears must be kept as clean and dry as possible to prevent infection.

Japanese Chins do shed and especially the intact she-dogs can lose a lot of coat after heat cycles and puppies. This is not a breed for someone who does not want fur in the house!

Puppy care…

Puppy care for Japanese Chin is similar to that of any puppy. A quality food, regular vet care, a warm place to sleep, lots of socialising and introduction to new things. It’s almost important to note that as with any toy breed, it is vital that a Japanese Chin puppy is given regular meals to prevent from hypoglycaemic or low blood sugar problem.

Games they play…

Japanese Chins enjoy outdoor time and short walks, but because of their flat nose, it is important they are not over-exerted or taken on strenuous walks, especially in hot or humid weather. They love playing indoors, chasing toys or enjoying tug of war game with their mates. Some Chins have gone on to enjoy wonderful careers in agility and obedience.

Health care…

For the most part, Japanese Chin is a healthy breed without an abundance of hereditary issues. As with many toy breeds, they should be regularly checked for heart health, and special care should be given to protect their large, prominent eyes from injury.

(Scott Toney owns Midwood Japanese Chin kennel in North Carolina. He breeds and shows Japanese Chins).

breed profile

Bearded Collies: fun-loving beautiful chaps!

A Beardie is a winsome, funny, loving, sometimes silly, sometimes pouty, adorable, curious, persistent creature, in short, close to humans. Just be prepared to brush long hair, wet beards in your lap, and muddy pawprints in the wrong places at the wrong time…. Otherwise, they’re like peanuts. You can’t stop with just one.

Tailwaggers literally!

breed profile

Reba & Flash | (Pic courtesy: Karron Jodan)

The Bearded Collie is a medium-sized dog with long, shaggy hair. His body is longer than tall, starting with a kissy tongue and ending with a constantly wagging tail. A bright, enquiring expression is a distinctive feature of the breed. As an adult, Beardies may be black (from black to slate), blue (from steel blue to silver), brown (from dark or milk chocolate to gingery red), or fawn (cinnamon to champagne), usually with white markings to a greater or lesser degree.

The life expectancy ranges from 12-14 years on an average. It is not unusual, however, for a Beardie to extend that lifespan. The height of the males is 53-56 cm while that of females is 51-53 cm.

The History

The Bearded Collie, affectionately called the Beardie, was developed in Scotland as a herding dog. He was developed as an independent worker, able to make decisions concerning the welfare and safety of their charges without depending on the shepherd who might be miles away. Flocks in Scotland intermingled freely, yet one Beardie never brought home a wrong sheep during his many years of work. The Beardie is still used as a shepherd’s helpmate in Scotland, and now in the US.

People dogs!

Beardies are usually active, outgoing, bouncy, affectionate creatures. Within the normal range of temperament, they range from low-key, sweet and laid back to rowdy and bold. The breed interacts well with other animals, particularly if raised with them.

They are people-oriented dogs and need to be with their family. If left alone for long period, they are liable to become frustrated and provide their own entertainment — not always one that makes the owner happy. Beardies are vigorous, bouncy dogs, and like to jump up to look you in the eyes or kiss your nose. This fits in well with many families. Because they love people, Beardies make good therapy dogs, comforting, entertaining and snuggling up to patients and residents.

Who’s smarter: you vs. Beardie

Beardies were bred to be independent thinkers. Sometimes they’ll decide what THEY want is better than what you want. For instance, staying in the back yard is more interesting than coming inside. Or playing in a mud puddle is more fun than staying on dry ground. The trick in training them is to convince them it’s something THEY want to do. And that takes an owner that’s smarter than they are — not always easy!

Fun quotient: always high!

“Beardies are fun loving happy dogs who are very affectionate to their pet parents. Their best characteristic perhaps is their beautiful coat and good nature with all people and dogs adds a lot of charm to this beautiful breed. Though they love to swim and run, but they can also be a great lounge lizard.”

– Ann Moy,
Ulara Border Collies & Bearded Collies,
Australia (www.ularabcollies.piczo.com)

A living alarm!

Although they are neither yappy nor continuous barkers, certain things will set off their “alarm” system. They’re great doorbells, announcing all visitors with joy. They bark when excited: when you first rise in the morning, when family returns home or while playing. Like any dog, they may bark when bored.

Puppy care

As puppies, they’re much like two-year-old children. They try out their independence, test their “parents,” and are so cute they’re difficult to correct. This is the time good parents must force down the chuckle, give firm, but gentle discipline and then go in the other room to laugh ‘til they cry.

Caring for the pooch

All dogs need grooming, training, exercise, nutritious food, access to water and shelter, veterinary care and LOVE. If you plan to skip on any of these, please don’t get a Beardie. In fact, please don’t get a dog!

Grooming needs: Some dogs need to have their nails trimmed weekly; others do fine with just once a month clips. Beardies are long-coated dogs, and to keep their charming, winsome appearance, need regular grooming. Groomed properly, they shed minimally. Most of the dead hair will be removed by the comb and brush. The worst shed is when they lose their puppy coat, usually between nine and eighteen months. This lasts for approximately two to three months. During this period, they often lose their cuddly appearance and look scraggly and ragged, losing hair from the top to the bottom, or from the front to the rear.

Start early to introduce your Beardie to his lifetime hair care. Baby Beardies can be groomed in one minute. The idea is to acclimate the pup to be still for longer periods of time until they can spend an hour quietly accepting brushing and combing.

Most owners do a thorough grooming at least once a week. Lay the Beardie on his side and mist with water or anti-tangle spray. Brush the hair up with a bristle or pin brush. Then brush the hair back down a few inches at a time. Any mats that develop can be worked out with anti-tangle spray and your fingers or a mat rake. A comb should go easily through the hair when finished. Ask the breeder for a demonstration on an adult. When mature, Beardies usually require about one-half to one hour for grooming.

Exercise needs: Beardies, like their pet parents, stay physically fit with exercise. This can be accomplished by playing ball, taking brisk walks, free run in a fenced area (with interaction, not alone) or a training session. They also love to jog, swim, wrestle, do tricks, join in football games, play catch or Frisbee.

Health needs: Once the puppy vaccinations are completed, schedule an annual examination with the veterinarian. Be attuned to your Beardie’s body and behavior to note anything unusual that calls for medical treatment. Some Beardies have reactions to monthly heartworm preventative. Because of this, many breeders advise giving a daily pill. Discuss this with your veterinarian. Overall, Beardies are a sturdy breed who enjoys good health but problems like allergies, hip dysplasia, hypothyroidism, auto-immune disease and some eye problems, do occur.

A beautiful and joyful breed!There’s nothing better than watching a Beardie at work, whether it be at a dog show, in agility, at a herding trial or just a romp in the park. It is a truly beautiful sight to see a Beardie running in full flight or standing in the wind. Those big eyes can really mesmerize people and always manage to get them a treat or cuddle on the couch.Their ability to make you laugh is one of my favourite things about the breed. They have a good sense of humour and love to play the clown. It’s very difficult to discipline a Beardie when he is proudly showing you his latest hole in the lawn or chewed slipper. I love their beautiful flowing hair and big soft eyes.

If you have a home straight out of a lifestyle magazine and would prefer not to have the occasional splash of mud on a wall or footprint on the couch, then do not get a Bearded Collie. If however you don’t mind going to work with footprints on your pants and a few stray hairs on your jacket, then by all means consider the Bearded Collie as possible breed for you. You won’t be disappointed.

– Jessica Buckley, Stylwise Bearded Collies, Canberra, Australia (www.stylwise.com)

(Inputs–Chris Walkowicz has been showing dogs since 1965 and she is author of various books on dog breeding. She has been chosen to be inducted into the Dog Writers Association of America Hall of Fame. AKC judging was added to Chris’ agenda in 1995–(http://home.mchsi.com/~walkoway.dogbooks/); Jessica Buckley is the vice president of the Bearded Collie Club of New South Wales for several years–(www.stylwise.com); Ann Moy owns and trains Border Collies since 1987–(www.ularabcollies.piczo.com))

Dog traininig

Shiba Inu: small ‘n’ beautiful

Naturally beautiful, Shiba Inus are the embodiment of dignity and independence. Lively and bold, these small dogs are big dogs in small packages.

Dog trainingWho am I? The Shiba Inu was originally bred for hunting as she is small but agile dog who copes very well with mountainous terrain. Inu is the Japanese word for dog while Shiba refers to a type of red shrub, which either owe its origin to the fact that Shiba Inus hunted in wild shrubs or due to the fact that red is the most common colour in these dogs. It is also believed that in old Japanese, Shiba’s referred to ‘small.’This breed was primarily used for hunting by sight and scen in Japan. Today, Shiba Inus are primarily kept as pets both in Japan and abroad.

How do I look?

Shiba Inus are small dogs with double coats, comprising of a straight, stiff outer coat and a soft dense undercoat. Their all-weather coat protects them from both, heat and cold.

Their frame is compact and muscles are well developed. Shiba Inus give an expression of good natured and a strong dog. Her deep-set eyes are brown in colour, while the eye rims are black. Ears are small but firmly pricked, while the nose is black. They carry their tails over their back in a sickle or curled position.

They may be red, black and tan, or seasame (red with black-tipped hair), with a cream, buff or grey undercoat. They have urajiro markings, which refers to a pattern of white on her underside in contrast to her primary coat colour. Males are 14-17 inches tall, while the females are 13-16 inches high and weigh around 10 kg and 8 kg respectively.

How is my temperament?

Independent, intelligent, strong-willed, bold, alert, good natured… is how a Shiba Inu is. Since they are very independent, they need to be socialised at a very young age. They form excellent watchdogs and companions.

Here’s a dog who is reserved towards strangers but loyal and affectionate to people she loves, says Pam adoringly. They are fast and playful and hence make good companions for children. If they are socialised with other pets like dogs and cats in the house, they do well with them.

How is it to live with me?

“The Shiba Inu is one of the smallest of the Japanese breeds, but is possibly the biggest in attitude. Shibas like to be in charge with their favourite word being “mine.”

In a Shiba’s eyes they see everything belonged to them. They are very independent and don’t always do what they are asked to do. Shibas can be good watchdogs and will often be seen perched on high

objects in order to keep and eye on things,” told Pam Petersen of Royal Kennels.

“They are generally quite and do not bark a lot, although they can scream or yodel when they are asked to do something they do not like, such as nail trimming, bathing and leash breaking,” added Pam.


We like to play!

“The Shiba is both an active and adaptable animal. They enjoy hearty romps in the backyard, but do well in apartment life, as long as the owner takes them for their walk in the park. Shibas are extremely peopleoriented and require a fair amount of love and attention from their owners. It should be noted that most Shibas are not to be trusted off lead unless in a fenced yard. The Shiba is a natural hunter and given a chance will take off in search of game,” cautioned Pam.

How to take care of me as a puppy? Shiba puppies are very intelligent and have great memories. Introduce your puppy to new things and people early and make it a positive experience.

For example, introduce your new Shiba puppy to a calm child, have the child give him a small treat, the Shiba will walk away thinking kids are good. If you allow a young child to chase or frighten your puppy, she will think children are to be feared. Most Shiba pups will not forget any experience, whether good or bad.

How to groom me beautiful?

Like cats, Shiba Inus love to keep themselves clean by licking their paws and legs. They like to keep their coats clean by avoiding mud and dirt. Shiba Inus shed heavily twice a year, which normally occurs at the beginning or end of each season. They need regular brushing to keep their coats healthy.

How much exercise do I need?

They are very adjusting dogs and would adjust to any living style as long as they get their share of daily walk. It keeps them healthier and happier.

Am I healthy?

Shibas are a basically healthy breed but can suffer from eye defects, luxating patellas, seizures and allergies. On a concluding note, Pam added, “The Shiba Inu is a wonderful breed but not the breed for everyone. This “big dog in a small package” combined with some of his unique characteristics could make this breed a challenge to the average dog owner.”

(With inputs from Pam Peterson of Royal Kennels, home of Champion Shiba Inu, Kai Ken, Shih Tzu, Larry The Basenji, Goldberg, Skunkie D’s, The Sly Fox and Tally Ho. Pam has been breeding dogs for 26 years and along with her husband, runs a boarding and grooming business.)

Beautiful dogs on stamps:a collector’s pride

Everyone has a hobby or two and if you are a dog lover and a philatelist, then what would you collect? Dog stamps! This is exactly what Vinayak Moorthy does. He has a huge collection of stamps featuring dogs of all breeds, sizes and ages from all over the world. Here’s a peek into his vast collection.

 

An avid animal lover, Vinayak Moorthy has a beautiful collection of over 300 stamps featuring dogs from various countries like India, US, Vietnam, Scandinavia, UK, Germany, China, Tibet, etc. Each stamp has a description of its origin and is filed neatly. It is a real pleasure to see some of the beautiful dogs on these postal stamps. This is indeed a superb way to celebrate our canines.

As Moorthy puts it, “Stamps of butterflies and different models of cars made my childhood colourful. Later, dogs became my favourite and in 1974, I started breeding dogs. My love for dogs prompted me to collect dog stamps six years back and now it has become my passion. The oldest among my collection is a Lhasa Apso breed stamp, issued by Oman in 1971. Besides this, two more stamps I treasure are – a 30-year-old Foxhound and Irish Setter stamp, issued by Cuba in 1976, and the other is issued by Mongolia in 1978, featuring GSD and Labrador. In spite of having stamps from different countries, my favourites are stamps featuring Indian breeds.”

So how do Moorthy collects stamps? “I have lots of friends in different countries and they play a major role in widening my hobby. I also buy stamps through Stamp Associations,” he added.

Moorthy has exhibited his collection in various stamp exhibitions and also at schools. How do dog lovers react to his collection? “Oh! It’s overwhelming. I received huge appreciation when I displayed my prized possession at International Dog Show, conducted by Kennel Club, in Chennai. I still cherish their warm response,” replied Moorthy.

Giving tips to people who collect dog stamps, Moorthy said, “Just like bringing up a pet, a philatelist also has thirst for collecting pet stamps. You should be aware of the breed and origin of the dog and then you can actually treasure your collection.” Just as Moorthy, who finds pride in his own collection!

Beautiful big Red Setters

Feathered silky flowing red hair, dark hazel expressive eyes, muscular legs, proportionate bodyline, athletic with sweet temperament… the Red Setters have it all! His beautiful looks and high energy will bring joy to your family. Here’s some more info about this lovely breed. Red is the colour of energy, courage, strength, vitality, and passion and Irish Setters, better known as Red Setters, live upto the colour of their coat. Perhaps the most beautiful of all breeds, Irish Setters simply take your breath away with their beauty and grace.

Journey down the lane

Originally called the Irish Red Setter in US, they are the ancestors of Spanish Pointer. He was bred as all-around hunting dog, with strong sense of smell. Fast and racy, he was particularly good for hunting game birds. His beautiful looks and sweet disposition has made him a show and a family dog.

Bold ‘n’ beautiful

The aristocratic Irish Setters have feathered, long, silky red-coloured coat, except for the head, where it is short and fine. Even his feet are well covered with hair. His long ears are triangular and soft while his legs are long and muscular. He is slightly longer than tall, giving an overall look of elegance and strength. Other features include black or brown nose and chestnut or dark hazel eyes, giving an expression of softness, yet alertness. Do not be betrayed with their melting brown eyes as they will make you to give in to their demands. His tail is fringed. Their colours range from rich chestnut with no trace of black. They can have a little white on chest, throat, chin or toes, or small star on forehead or narrow streak or blaze on nose or face. As per Nagendiran Reguraj, a reputed breeder of Irish Setters, their best physical appearance is their chestnut colour and shiny coat.

The height of the male dogs is 26-28 inches and weight 29-34 kg while that of female dogs is 24-26 inches and 25-29 kg, respectively. They have a life expectancy of 11-15 years.

Sweet-natured

Irish Setters are very affectionate, friendly and intelligent. Besides, they are quite active, full of energy and high spirits. They are swift, with an excellent sense of smell. It is a treat for eyes to see them walk as their gait is lively and graceful. As per Reguraj, “Irish Setters are racy, balanced and full of quality.” They are responsive and impulsive, yet sensitive and are a real joy to be around. They love to be around people and are excellent with children. They also like to play with other dogs. By nature, Setters have a mind of their own and need lot of love and attention. They are very clever dogs, which makes it more difficult and challenging to train them. But once trained, they remain trained for the rest of their life.

Living with them

They make good companions, are lovable and need lots of exercise. They are not recommended for apartment living and need a yard to run around.

Keeping them fit

They need plenty of exercise in open spaces. They love to play games like retrieving, swimming and other fun games.

Taking care of the pup

Shower lots of love and care. Be patient and never be aggressive while training and upbringing your puppy, advises Reguraj. “The more love you give, the more you get,” he added.

Styling them up

Grooming an Irish Setter is easy. Daily brushing and combing keeps soft coat and make him look his gleaming best. They are an average shedder.

Watch out for health problems

They tend to bloat, hence it is advisable to feed them 2-3 small meals instead of one big one. They are also prone to eye problems, elbow and hip dysplasia. Ears should also be carefully groomed to avoid ear inflammation.

“Irish Setters are not for everyone. Don’t bring home a Setter unless you’re willing to match your wits and energy with these lovable, hyper-active dogs. And you’d better have loads of patience – teaching a Setter sit –stay–heel will test your patience to the limits. The Setter tries to wear you down; to make you do his bidding! With a Setter you’ve to show who’s the boss – not with anger but with firmness. And believe me, there are times when you just want to give in, to let him do as he wishes. But at the end, patience pays. Firmness is what the Setter demands and finally respects. And once you’ve mastered that, you’ll have the best companion that you could ever want. Sure, you can never expect the Setter to be predictable…but then what’s life without a few surprises?” told Adite Chaterjee a proud pet parent of Irish Setters.
(Nagendiran Reguraj is a well-known breeder of Irish Setter, GSD, Fox Terrier (Wire), Saluki, Toy Poodle, Caravan Hound, Beagle Golden Retriever and Labrador. His kennel and stud farm is called Fleetwoods Kennels And Fleetwoods Stud Farms. Adite Chaterjee is a proud pet parent of three beautiful Irish Setters.)