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Old 11-03-2013, 09:49 PM
Moth's Avatar
Moth Moth is offline
Mild and Slightly Nutty
Join Date: May 2011
Location: Madison, WI
Posts: 5,028

You should not feel bad... You have an exceptional dog because you put in the time to research before you got him and you put in the work to allow him to develop his potential.

So you should freely sing his praises

It is not your fault that there are people that after meeting one wonderful dog do not think to do more complete homework and educate themselves about the breed they are looking at or at what it might take to help a dog grow up to be amazing...
Bow before my Basenji Overlord and Master! Pay homage to the Peiby Goddess!

A gold brick wrapped with a twist of lemon...

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Old 11-03-2013, 09:51 PM
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sassafras sassafras is offline
Join Date: Feb 2011
Location: Minnesota
Posts: 6,394

Well, first of all it's possible that these people did more research than just asking you about Merlin.

OR, if they didn't... well then it's hardly your fault that two adults chose a breed of dog based on their experiences with a single individual of the breed.

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Old 11-03-2013, 10:34 PM
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ihartgonzo ihartgonzo is offline
and Fozzie B!
Join Date: May 2006
Location: Northern California
Posts: 5,903

Ummm... YES! Having a Border Collie, kinda on the same level as an Aussie, I totally feel your pain.

Two of my close friends knew and loved Gonzo. Soooo they went out and got BC puppies. One got her puppy at *4 weeks old* so you can guess how godawful the breeder was. Her puppy grew up to be highly fear aggressive toward all other dogs and some people, neurotic, destructive, submissive urinates constantly... and her boredom resulted in her eating pounds of bark in the backyard, which led to her getting pancreatitis for life! She's now morbidly obese and needs medication daily. D: My friend is a nice person but just didn't have the personality for a BC. She never trained, exercised or socialized her, and was ignorant enough to bring her to a busy dog park filled with huge dogs when she was 8 weeks old.

The other I insisted on picking the breeder for! Her puppy was from a great working breeder, but she picked the most hyper puppy in the litter (against my suggestions). Her dog is human and dog friendly and has been well socialized. As for training... they went through puppy classes because I urged them to, but never practiced anything at home or went to any other classes. Shockingly, their dog grew up to be a hyper, wild adolescent with the WORST recall on the planet! Like, imagine spending HOURS trying to catch your dog at the dog park to bring her home. I worked with her, and she was super smart and eager to please. But instead of following through with the training, her Mom (who took over her care) paid a shock collar trainer $100's to simply shock the poor dog, for doing ANYTHING. Now I know there is a time and a place for shock collars, but IMO it is not necessary to shock a perfectly smart, friendly, soft dog who just needs basic obedience training! This resulted in her becoming very fearful and flighty, made her recall even worse, and now she runs away if you try to touch her. She's much better exercised and cared for but this family is definitely not ideal for a Border Collie.

Now, when people ask about Gonzo, I honestly point out all of the negatives. I tell them he's crazy, demanding, weird, and very difficult... but worth all of the work if you're willing to put it in. I tell them he needs hours of exercise EVERY day and he's 14! He doesn't but I'd rather exaggerate than not get that point across. So many people think that if a dog is "smart", they'll just train themselves. If a dog is "high energy", they'll just run around by themselves. Hahaha they're in for a rude awakening... I do boast that Fozzie is the best dog ever. But, it's pretty unlikely that anyone will find a Husky x Corgi mix.

It sounds like any dog breed of any energy level would be social and calm if they lived Merlin's life. 99.99999% of people don't give their dog anywhere near that much attention, though! It's not your fault that people don't use common sense, but if you hate seeing Aussies in the wrong home like I hate seeing BCs in the wrong home, just downplay how awesome he is and emphasize how much WORK you put into him.

<3 Erica, Gonzo & Fozzie
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Old 11-03-2013, 11:13 PM
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AdrianneIsabel AdrianneIsabel is offline
Glutton for Crazy
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: Portland, Oregon
Posts: 8,893

We constantly find ourselves frustrated with "She's so calm!" or "He's so smart!" about the mals. Most people misunderstand that what these dogs are has taken a ton of work.

I know what you feel and this is why we start with all of the bad, if people are still interested we'll share the good, but in meeting the dogs sometimes it's hard to convince them these dogs usually are assholes but we don't allow it in public.
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Old 11-03-2013, 11:53 PM
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maxfox426 maxfox426 is offline
My dog tickles my soul
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Indianapolis, IN
Posts: 3,804

As others have said, you have nothing to feel bad about. Your experience is your experience, you can't change that. It's up to them to put in the serious research before bringing home a dog, regardless of breed. It's just a shame that most people don't. I understand WHY you feel guilty, but ultimately, it's not something you really have any control over.

Believe it or not, I had this happen with a friend of mine regarding Morgan.

THEM: "He's such a good dog! What is he? Where did you get him?"
ME: He's a lab x ??? mix that we adopted from the shelter. We've put a lot of training into him so that he would have good manners, and it's really paid off.
THEM: "Shelter dogs are the smartest! They are so grateful to have homes that they are always good dogs!"
ME: ...

A week later, they had a something x something mix puppy. It's insane, large, uncontrollable, and LOUD. That was four years ago, and they are still waiting for it to "calm down" so they can "begin training it." *headdesk*
~ Cynthia ~
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