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  #11  
Old 03-29-2012, 06:33 PM
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I would disagree with the sighthound comment. There is a breeder I know who breeds the most fabulous greys. Easy going, love everyone, large enough to intimidate, dog friendly etc etc. Sounds like a perfect match by the list.

I have only met a couple of collies but they seem to fit, except for being smaller than listed.
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Old 03-29-2012, 07:27 PM
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A greyhound sounds perfect, except the off lead part.

What about a Dalmatian? Still needs some exercise, but they don't have a crazy drive.
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Old 03-29-2012, 08:13 PM
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I would disagree with the sighthound comment. There is a breeder I know who breeds the most fabulous greys. Easy going, love everyone, large enough to intimidate, dog friendly etc etc. Sounds like a perfect match by the list.
Except the that most people don't find them to be eager to learn/easy to train. And the off leash reliability greatly depends on the situation. Of course, the can be true of any dog but a dog with a low prey drive is generally easier.

I'm pretty familiar with non-track bred Greys, even raised one

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I have only met a couple of collies but they seem to fit, except for being smaller than listed.
I don't know how many Collies are under 50lbs? I've known quite a few in the 60-80lb range.
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Old 03-29-2012, 08:26 PM
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Thanks you guys! I'll pass along the suggestions.

And yeah, I just don't know if a sighthound would be a good fit or not. I know some can be taught to be pretty reliable off lead, but I wouldn't trust one. Especially with the hares and coyotes around here, even in areas that are meant for dogs. And I think, having experienced breeds that are thinkers and enjoy working, a Greyhound might be a little boring. I dunno though. I will still mention them and see. Same with Whippets.

Do any of our Collie owners here have any hands on experience they'd be willing to share? As far as what they're like to live with and train, anyway. I'd really appreciate it. :-)

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Originally Posted by crazedACD View Post
A greyhound sounds perfect, except the off lead part.

What about a Dalmatian? Still needs some exercise, but they don't have a crazy drive.
Most Dals I've ever heard of sound pretty comparable to the Dobermans I know. I looked into them for myself for a while, and still really like them, but I don't think they're overly easy. The one I had growing up was pretty full on and a lot of dog. She was super easy to train though. Hands down probably the most intelligent, trainable and eager dog I've ever known. I just remember her needing a ton of exercise and she was pretty intense.
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Old 03-29-2012, 08:30 PM
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Except the that most people don't find them to be eager to learn/easy to train. And the off leash reliability greatly depends on the situation. Of course, the can be true of any dog but a dog with a low prey drive is generally easier.

I'm pretty familiar with non-track bred Greys, even raised one



I don't know how many Collies are under 50lbs? I've known quite a few in the 60-80lb range.
Most whippets I meet are at least as drivey as the average bench lab to work. I would call them an eager to please breed. I take mine to the farm where my horses are and don't worry as they aren't going to bother the farm cats, dogs or horses and they have VERY reliable recalls! Now they are small.. Whippets are the most eager to please of the sighthhounds even much more so than the silkens. BUT the non racebred greys I know are very easy to work with, both food and play driven.

ETA sighthounds have a reputation that I dont' think is deserved. Most retrievers we have lure coursed are much more into it 'faster' than most sighthounds. Its like it takes them a while to decide this is a game they are into, where as most other breeds (BCs, tollers, goldens, and even a crestie!) are more likely to tear after a moving lure. I remember doing our first LC event that was for sighthounds. I was shocked, even the dogs with coursing championships would stop and pee on course No terrier would stop to pee when after something! My point being for actual off leash training in the presence of a running bunny I don't think they are more or less likely to bolt off after it vs any other dog. (a dog used for hunting of course will be more likely to)
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Old 03-29-2012, 08:58 PM
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Most whippets I meet are at least as drivey as the average bench lab to work. I would call them an eager to please breed. I take mine to the farm where my horses are and don't worry as they aren't going to bother the farm cats, dogs or horses and they have VERY reliable recalls! Now they are small.. Whippets are the most eager to please of the sighthhounds even much more so than the silkens. BUT the non racebred greys I know are very easy to work with, both food and play driven.

I don't think sighthounds in general are hard to train per say. With positive methods, they can learn behaviors pretty readily. Especially when you start when they are puppies. But they don't tend to be hard wired to work with you on tasks the way herding or sporting breeds are. I think that may be part of the reason training them to a high degree of reliability is something many people seem to struggle with though. They also very often are not dogs who will tolerate much pressure in training and tend to be fairly easy to shut down with any use of traditional training.


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ETA sighthounds have a reputation that I dont' think is deserved. Most retrievers we have lure coursed are much more into it 'faster' than most sighthounds. Its like it takes them a while to decide this is a game they are into, where as most other breeds (BCs, tollers, goldens, and even a crestie!) are more likely to tear after a moving lure. I remember doing our first LC event that was for sighthounds. I was shocked, even the dogs with coursing championships would stop and pee on course No terrier would stop to pee when after something! My point being for actual off leash training in the presence of a running bunny I don't think they are more or less likely to bolt off after it vs any other dog. (a dog used for hunting of course will be more likely to)
I can't say my experience with sighthounds and coursing has been like that at all. I would be really, really disappointed to see every sighthound at a coursing trial so disinterested in the lure that they'd stop and mark on the course. Or who were out done by Labs. When I helped with Greys at coursing, I had to be instructed on how not to get my fingers broken or a concussion when I took them near the field. These normally mild mannered dogs would become...well, crazy with excitement as soon as they saw what was going on. They loved coursing and were quite fast and dedicated. Of course, they were not small animal safe while running loose on their property. But they aren't really supposed to be either.
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Old 03-29-2012, 09:24 PM
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Oh I am not sayign they don't get good at it. BUt its not as automatic as I expected. As the owners of one of the few sets of LC equip in the province, as well as going out to races I have to say IME sighthounds don't have anymore drive than most dogs. I have seen loads of tollers and BC and MANY a JRT go batshit crazy as soon as they hear the lure motor. I know many a whippet does too, but all those whippets also are fine with cats and small dogs.

I think in most cases if they are raised with small animals they are typically fine. That said I wouldn't go to a die hard racing breeder to buy a dog you want to be great off leash and good with your cats. On my trip sampling whippets I met many a whippet with racing titles who shared their home with a cat.
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Old 03-29-2012, 09:52 PM
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I think in most cases if they are raised with small animals they are typically fine. That said I wouldn't go to a die hard racing breeder to buy a dog you want to be great off leash and good with your cats. On my trip sampling whippets I met many a whippet with racing titles who shared their home with a cat.
I don't think sharing a home with cats is generally the issue though. It's seeing cats or other small animals running loose, outdoors in the great wide open where there could be an issue. At least that has been the case with many sighthounds I have known.
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Old 03-29-2012, 10:08 PM
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Possibly, but I think its much more likely if they never see the cat as a 'friend'. That said even if they run my guys won't do anything to them if they catch up. Bounce will chance rabbits but is afraid of cats LOL. She won't chase them, evar.

But high prey drive doesn't mean cat killer. I am sure Ado has talked about Petie and he has hunted but is good with cats and kittens. Kaiden is a maniac about racing and will chase a cat if it runs, but stops when it does. I also have owned cat killers, but when it comes to racing or coursing there doesnt' seem to be any correlation.

All that said just as many collies, bc, labs etc are likely to take after a cat streaking across the great outdoors. I have had clients when I was teaching at the local obed club that had issues and they all had non sighthounds. My point being is that ANY dog can decide chasing a cat could be fun. And IME a non hunting sighthound isn't really any more likely than any other working/herding dog to chase. (I am sure Sport would not only chase but kill a cat if he ever found one)
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Old 03-30-2012, 02:21 PM
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All that said just as many collies, bc, labs etc are likely to take after a cat streaking across the great outdoors. I have had clients when I was teaching at the local obed club that had issues and they all had non sighthounds. My point being is that ANY dog can decide chasing a cat could be fun. And IME a non hunting sighthound isn't really any more likely than any other working/herding dog to chase. (I am sure Sport would not only chase but kill a cat if he ever found one)
Maybe the longhaired Whippets have been bred just as pets long enough that they don't have much interest in prey or hunting? The Whippets I see here in lure coursing are probably the most consistently driven and dedicated out of any of the breeds.

The Greys I knew had high prey drive and were cat killers, outdoors. Talking to other sighthounds people, it seemed that was often the case. When a sighthound with a sighthound type temperament sees a cat running in the distance, they are not going to think "oh that's my friend, let me go say hi". Instead they see a small prey animal moving. These dogs killed at least one cat they lived with peacefully in the house when the cat accidentally got outside and they killed stray cats that were in the wrong place at the wrong time. Obviously the cat killing was not encouraged or enjoyed but it happened. It's unfortunate that the family cats couldn't be kept safe from the dogs and that there are roaming stray/feral cats in the area but it was what is was. These dogs were definitely more likely to be oriented towards chasing, catching and killing prey than the average dog. They aren't really supposed to be average dogs though

My Belgians have pretty high prey drive too. They are very willing to chase rabbits and squirrels. And a couple have killed them if they happen to catch them. However, I can ask them to wait or call them off the chase- training to that degree of reliablity is IME much harder with a sighthound who has proper prey drive.
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