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Old 01-02-2012, 10:51 PM
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Romy Romy is offline
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: Olympia, WA
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Buahaha! That sounds like Charlie. His nickname was Destructotron-5000. He ate so many garden hoses, randomly took bites out of the corners in our house, ran in his poo and jumped on us, ate our cell phones, and split my stupid lip so many times by headbutting me in the face with his leaps of joy...yeah. I loved that dog. lol. He did start to settle down by 2 years old though. I had to teach him how to have an off switch so that's not new.

Strider hasn't tried living with other males since he's been neutered so he may be more mellow about it now. I'll have to figure that out. It sounds like a male may be best for family protection, but if a gyp will do the job then that's an option too.

Thanks for the breeder links pops! I may have to take a field trip to Texas when we're able to buy a place because all the sheep and cattle breeders I like happen to be Texas as well.
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Old 01-03-2012, 03:15 AM
Pops2 Pops2 is offline
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Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: UT
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i have a soft spot for corriente, brindles & black baldies, but WA screams for highlands or the irish breeds like dexters & kerrys.
i LOVE lamb, but i'm not a sheep guy. only way i could have them would be the wild hair sheeps like TX barbado, mouflon, & barbary sheep (aoudad in TX).
down the road i could see myself w/ a 1/2 dozen brindle corriente cows & a share in a beef bull. it'd sure keep the freezer full.
yep, when i'm too old to go looking for trouble, i'd like to torture myself w/ a bit of stock & some old pot lickers.
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Old 01-03-2012, 03:50 AM
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Romy Romy is offline
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: Olympia, WA
Posts: 10,234

I really like the size and disposition of the old pineywoods cattle. There just aren't a lot of breeders of them around here, though I could see tossing a highland or two into the mix for fun. I don't foresee issues working cattle. We never had dogs to help and never had problems getting them to do what we wanted. Just had to be careful of the dairy bulls.

The sheep I really want are a hair sheep called painted desert sheep. They're a corsican type outcrossed to mouflon and some other stuff. Supposedly the older sheep taste like venison instead of mutton, which would be awesome if it is true. I bet their winter pelts would make nice throws too.
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Old 01-04-2012, 09:09 PM
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houlahoops houlahoops is offline
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Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: North Dakota
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I've lurked on here for ages, but I grew up with Catahoulas, so I thought maybe it was time to throw my hat into the ring. =P

All of my dogs growing up were very protective of me and mine. As a kid, my dogs killed many snakes, and one unfortunately met his maker going after a bear that had wandered onto our property where my father was working. I never met one that wouldn't raise Cain when somebody wandered into a place he shouldn't have been in.

My current dog (picked up on the side of the road as a pup) is a fabulous hunting partner. He's open on trail, though, so depending on how you like to hunt, that could be a drawback. Something to be aware of if you intend to seriously hunt your dog: a coon is heavy opposition when cornered, and the natural fearlessness of the Catahoula can put him in danger in a hunting situation. I know with Mac I have to hunt right on top of him (for contrast, I had a Blue Tick that I could just wander on over to whenever I felt like it!).

If you go for boar with a Cat, expect to invest in serious hunting equipment and--more than likely--lose a dog or two. Mac bays, but that's about it. I wouldn't ever put him on a hog because I am way too attached to him! Just too many things that can go wrong with a medium-sized, gritty, open dog alone on the trail.

As for dog-dog issues, we've had some that were DA and some that weren't. My childhood Catahoula got along with just about everybody. Mac does not, but with extensive training he has come to tolerate most other dogs (though I can't hunt him with hounds).

Stock-wise, Catahoulas are exceptional cow dogs (and sturdier than a lot of herding breeds). They are not as responsive as, say a Border Collie, but for sheer muscle, they just can't be beat.

Unfortunately, I have found them to be almost unilaterally rough on cattle. Very mouthy. And every single Catahoula that I have ever worked with has created (inadvertently) a dangerous situation for a handler on foot by riling everybody. Because I don't work from horseback, I no longer use dogs to move cattle unless absolutely necessary (for example, I will pull Mac in if I have a downed animal and need to make myself a bubble, or if I'm in trouble with a bull).

I would hesitate to put a Cat on sheep unless he were older and had a serious off switch. Especially early on in training, I've had dogs that would lose their fool minds completely around stock until they got thumped a time or two, and I would be concerned about the well-being of my animals (especially if you are raising them for fiber or meat).

To be honest, if you want to move your animals, I would recommend a feed bucket and/or a four-wheeler =)

In terms of energy level, Catahoulas need a solid combination of mental and physical exercise. They are stubborn and hard-headed, but not unintelligent. You often have to train differently. I don't do specific behaviors until they are a little older, but from day one I give them puzzles to work out on their own (ie: lay a coon trail to dinner, hide food in strange places).

Don't get me wrong, they are an extremely active breed! But not impossible to live with, especially if they have other dogs that they enjoy playing with.

Your dog will be an individual. Especially in the case of breeds like the Catahoula, there is a lot of variation in each animal. I know if I went up to PA to pick up a dog, or out to CA (where Cats are becoming more popular), I would find a totally different set of characteristics that I've had with the dogs I grew up with.

Take a little while to get to know the breed, for sure. But I will tell you, having had them for ages, I would never keep another dog!
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