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  #41  
Old 12-31-2012, 01:37 PM
avaloncoolies avaloncoolies is offline
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Our Coolies are NOT LOUD!!! They can turn the drive on when appropriete but no annoying constent, unjustified barking, and no innapropriete "working"...herding breeds if left without a outlet for their herding instincts can unfortunatly turn into "dog workers"...where one dog becomes the sheep and another one will stand behind barking frantically at the first to move!!...I think it comes to breeding choices and lines NOT BREED!! You can find loud shelties but you can also find not so loud shelties....same with Coolies....IMO that would simply come from different breeding choices and line crossings...I think some people think a barky dog is a drivy dog, I disagree...one does not imply the other...our coolies are very drivy, but not loud!! As for Health testing, I have my breeding dogs xray'd and health approved by my vet but I do not send in to certify with any of the American assoc. Some people mind and some people dont...our lines can go back in time with no problems of displasia, or sight and hearing issues...all lived well into their teens all while working aus.ranches...for me and all of those that have chosen a avalon coolie that is enough and for others it is not...there is more to breeding then health testing ... anyone can pick 2 dogs, keep them intact, health cert them and put them together for pups....but can they pick the right combination of dogs, keep them intact and balanced, stimulate their minds and bodies to be the best they can be for the breed, put them together at the right age and for the right reasons (not because "there is a market for the breed"), raise the pups from 0 to 9 weeks with the best techniques to promote bidability, brains & braun and drive of course....?? I think health testing is important, hence why my vet is involved with every desicion i make when choosing a breeding pair, but I do not beleive I would "get more" out of sending those xrays down to the states somewhere for certification...like i said earlier this is my opinion only...I will see if i can post some pics of my dogs where you can see more structure....
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  #42  
Old 12-31-2012, 03:55 PM
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Originally Posted by avaloncoolies View Post
Our Coolies are NOT LOUD!!! They can turn the drive on when appropriete but no annoying constent, unjustified barking, and no innapropriete "working"...herding breeds if left without a outlet for their herding instincts can unfortunatly turn into "dog workers"...where one dog becomes the sheep and another one will stand behind barking frantically at the first to move!!...I think it comes to breeding choices and lines NOT BREED!! You can find loud shelties but you can also find not so loud shelties....same with Coolies....IMO that would simply come from different breeding choices and line crossings...I think some people think a barky dog is a drivy dog, I disagree...one does not imply the other...our coolies are very drivy, but not loud!! As for Health testing, I have my breeding dogs xray'd and health approved by my vet but I do not send in to certify with any of the American assoc. Some people mind and some people dont...our lines can go back in time with no problems of displasia, or sight and hearing issues...all lived well into their teens all while working aus.ranches...for me and all of those that have chosen a avalon coolie that is enough and for others it is not...there is more to breeding then health testing ... anyone can pick 2 dogs, keep them intact, health cert them and put them together for pups....but can they pick the right combination of dogs, keep them intact and balanced, stimulate their minds and bodies to be the best they can be for the breed, put them together at the right age and for the right reasons (not because "there is a market for the breed"), raise the pups from 0 to 9 weeks with the best techniques to promote bidability, brains & braun and drive of course....?? I think health testing is important, hence why my vet is involved with every desicion i make when choosing a breeding pair, but I do not beleive I would "get more" out of sending those xrays down to the states somewhere for certification...like i said earlier this is my opinion only...I will see if i can post some pics of my dogs where you can see more structure....
Haven't any idea on the noise thing, or what even counts as loud or not loud, but out of curiosity, why you don't send in the X-rays for the panel eval and recording when you've already done the expensive part of getting the X-rays themselves? I'm mostly just involved in Flatcoats but one of the nice things about FCRs is that you can go back generations and see hip scores (and often CERF and elbows and patellas) of parents, siblings, offspring from other litters, etc. If something unexpected happens to a breeder (heaven forbid!) the information is all recorded and in the open for anyone to see so it's not lost.

Of course that sort of thing is not the only reason to breed two dogs/lines. Far from it! But it's one piece that is easy to make public. When I chose my pup, working ability, structure, conformation, temperament, etc. all came in to play and I don't think anyone here who's gotten a puppy from a breeder is any different, though their specific desired traits certainly vary.

I'm just curious as to why? Or rather, why not?
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  #43  
Old 12-31-2012, 04:07 PM
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Didn't Sara say she's the only one with prelims on a koolie?

I wonder if its anything like in game pit bulls? People swear that because their dogs can work there is no reason to health test? Also OFA can be faulty and subjective so some prefer reading X-rays themselves.

Either way it'll be nice to see the breed as a whole mature.

I'm curious why the Koolies already on the forum look so different and why? Is it climate associated or use associated? Is there an intention to standardize a look and will there always be a split between the c/Koolies?
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  #44  
Old 12-31-2012, 04:21 PM
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Just a couple things I want to point out about your comments Shawn.

I have never heard of someone viewing barking as a meter for drive. Barking implies that the dog is barky, not drivey. I know very drivey dogs that are silent and I know very drivey dogs that are barking. In my opinion, those people need to really learn about working with and around drivey dogs before simplifying it so extremely.

Also, any herding dog can zero in on motion. It is not a trait of bad breeding or bad training, it's just a problem that comes along with owning herding breeds. I have worked hard from the beginning to ensure that Zinga is able to focus while other dogs are in motion and it has not been an easy task. I know some very well bred, agility champion BC's with the same problem. Actually, if you go to any agility trial you are pretty much guaranteed to see dogs staring into the rings as other dogs are running. Doesn't mean they are poorly bred or trained.

As far as koolies being barky in general, this question has been brought up recently on a couple of the c/koolie groups, both local and international. The general consensus was that yes, c/koolies are loud. Not certain lines, not badly bred koolies, but the breed as a whole. I'm happy that your dogs aren't what you deem as "loud", however I know several people with personal experience of your dogs that have said otherwise. Loud is a relative term, however to imply that your dogs don't bark is misleading. We know you have had trouble selling the last two puppies of your litter, I find it very odd that this has corresponded with you joining multiple groups recently and I hope you are not giving false information to try to place your dogs. I would hate for someone who really doesn't like barking to end up with a dog that has a tendency to bark.

I know I tend to make a big deal out of the negative aspects of koolies. They bark, they are high energy, they are crazy. I do that for a reason. How many people have said they want a koolie after viewing photographs online? How many people have changed that opinion once they view videos or meet one in person? Not just of mine or Linds' dog, but of koolies of different lines and owned by different people. It isn't fair to portray only the good things of a breed especially with a breed that is so difficult to come across.

As far as the health testing goes, I think your answers speak for themselves. I find it very sad that you do not see the value in a certification program for hips/elbows especially when there have been an alarming number of recent cases of hip dysplasia in dogs sharing your own lines. It isn't right to say that hip dysplasia hasn't ever appeared if you haven't looked for it. I know plenty of dogs that have worked for years with dysplastic hips and never showed symptoms, luckily their owners didn't go on to produce more puppies with poor hips.

You are right, there is so much more to breeding than doing health testing and sticking two parents together. I hope one day I am a fantastic breeder, one that nobody would have to question on my motives or intentions.
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  #45  
Old 12-31-2012, 04:22 PM
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Originally Posted by AdrianneIsabel View Post
Didn't Sara say she's the only one with prelims on a koolie?

I wonder if its anything like in game pit bulls? People swear that because their dogs can work there is no reason to health test? Also OFA can be faulty and subjective so some prefer reading X-rays themselves.

Either way it'll be nice to see the breed as a whole mature.

I'm curious why the Koolies already on the forum look so different and why? Is it climate associated or use associated? Is there an intention to standardize a look and will there always be a split between the c/Koolies?
I agree Adrianne. It's the "because they can work they are fine" mentality.

C/koolies in general have a huge variety in looks, there is no current standard. It's also not a divide between spellings, there are people with short haired, prick eared coolies that spell it with a 'c' as well.
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  #46  
Old 12-31-2012, 04:30 PM
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If no one, literally, health tests and yet you're seeing hip issues it must be a scary breed to find a breeder in...

Are the films public or private?
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  #47  
Old 12-31-2012, 04:35 PM
SaraB SaraB is offline
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Originally Posted by AdrianneIsabel View Post
If no one, literally, health tests and yet you're seeing hip issues it must be a scary breed to find a breeder in...

Are the films public or private?
It is pretty scary. Hence why I went with a breeder who works 300+ sheep a day and who's dogs I know have succeeded to the level I want to in sports like disc and agility and have talked to those owners. I wish I could've gotten a dog from health tested parents, but that's just not the case.

ETA: arg, zinga's results aren't up on the OFA website yet....
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  #48  
Old 12-31-2012, 04:37 PM
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You know, it is the same story over and over again as to why breeders don't test. And don't kid yourself, your vet CAN'T advise you. If a regular vet could, then the rest of us would be fools for spending as much and travelling so much to get the proper health clearances.
I remember many many years ao being at a dinner with the judge brought over for our Nationals, he was a hardcore working dog breeder, judge and highly respected. He commented that he was so surprised at the health and eye issues we had over here, because they (the U.K) didn't. Of course they also didn't test back in those days over the pond and it was just becoming common to do health clearances here. So we were discovering the problems through testing and they foolishly thought it was just a N.A thing lol and their dogs were 'fine'. Also interesting was the number of imported dogs, of course coming from non tested dogs and very interesting how a lot of the known problems were traced back to certain non tested over the pond working dogs. Also interesting was how breeders stopped importing those non tested dogs, stopped breeding to outside lines that didn't test, wouldn't accept your bitch unless she was tested and clear. Or purchasing that lovely well bred working prospect from the non testing breeder..........not worth the risk when there are just as many well bred, excellent working bred pups available from those breeders that do test.
So your breed, is where mine was about 15 yrs ago, and you can either be in the fore front of producing well bred working and tested dogs.........or not and be left scrambling to catch up like those die hard breeders that refused to test or didn't believe in it in my breed. Interestingly, those breeders either got out of the breed or ended up being forced too, to keep up with their peers.

Oh and ever hear of OVC?? you don't have to send to OFA.

Last edited by adojrts; 12-31-2012 at 04:49 PM.
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  #49  
Old 12-31-2012, 05:59 PM
NinaB NinaB is offline
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Originally Posted by avaloncoolies View Post
Our Coolies are NOT LOUD!!! They can turn the drive on when appropriete but no annoying constent, unjustified barking, and no innapropriete "working"...herding breeds if left without a outlet for their herding instincts can unfortunatly turn into "dog workers"...where one dog becomes the sheep and another one will stand behind barking frantically at the first to move!!...I think it comes to breeding choices and lines NOT BREED!! You can find loud shelties but you can also find not so loud shelties....same with Coolies....IMO that would simply come from different breeding choices and line crossings...I think some people think a barky dog is a drivy dog, I disagree...one does not imply the other...our coolies are very drivy, but not loud!! As for Health testing, I have my breeding dogs xray'd and health approved by my vet but I do not send in to certify with any of the American assoc. Some people mind and some people dont...our lines can go back in time with no problems of displasia, or sight and hearing issues...all lived well into their teens all while working aus.ranches...for me and all of those that have chosen a avalon coolie that is enough and for others it is not...there is more to breeding then health testing ... anyone can pick 2 dogs, keep them intact, health cert them and put them together for pups....but can they pick the right combination of dogs, keep them intact and balanced, stimulate their minds and bodies to be the best they can be for the breed, put them together at the right age and for the right reasons (not because "there is a market for the breed"), raise the pups from 0 to 9 weeks with the best techniques to promote bidability, brains & braun and drive of course....?? I think health testing is important, hence why my vet is involved with every desicion i make when choosing a breeding pair, but I do not beleive I would "get more" out of sending those xrays down to the states somewhere for certification...like i said earlier this is my opinion only...I will see if i can post some pics of my dogs where you can see more structure....


I don't know Shawn. If no one tests and documents results who is to know what you are breeding? Are you aware that one of your lines is having a rash of severe dysplasia right now?? According to the breeder, both parents of one litter x-rayed okay according to her vet, yet they produced 3 known severly dysplastic pups. I have no informatioin on the remaining pups from that litter. Another litter from different parents produced at least one afflicted pup around the same time. Now wouldn't a responsible breeder want to know the history of health issues for not only the parents of a dog they were breeding, but also the grand parents, siblings, and so on? I mean, isn't that why OFA guidelines were put into place? To rid breeds of HD?


As far as the barking...I know several coolies/koolies and their people and all have very active lives, mentally and physically. The kind of activities most prospective c/koolie owners would do ie agility, disc dog, SAR, flyball, obedience...most times a combination of these activities and more... which is true of the c/koolies I know. Now, none of these dogs I know do herding...so are you implying that if we have these dogs and want to keep them happy, we should be working them in herding?? Are you implying that we don't know what we are doing with their training? or that only your lines are quiet??
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Old 12-31-2012, 07:58 PM
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I think that when one gets a herding breed that they should definitely expect barking. And Koolies (or Coolies, however you want to spell it) are no exception. Like someone else said as well, according to recent questions asked on FB groups, most people seem to have noisy C/Koolies. I think I even asked on one of the groups months ago now and the answer I got was that most peoples' dogs were noisy.

Since Shelties were brought up... I've met Shelties that bark a lot and Shelties that bark a little. But the point being: they ALL bark. Some just more than others. And it has nothing to do with training. It's instinct. You can manage it, yes, but you can't eliminate it. Herding breeds like their voice, and using it comes naturally to them. You can't train it out of them and you can't exercise their voice away. You can teach them a quiet command, but that doesn't mean they're going to be silent forever. Chances are if you've taught a quiet command, it's because you intend to use it.

Of course dogs who are lacking exercise and are frustrated will bark more, but I think that is definitely not the case with any of the C/Koolie people I've ever talked to. Most dogs of this breed (whose owners are active in the online world) get a lot of physical and mental stimulation and are likely not bored very often.

I currently have three quiet dogs. They've always been quiet. Dance is an alert barker, but not to an extreme, and other than that and her talking (which is adorable and something I encourage), she's not noisy. Not even as a puppy, nor were the Dobermans. Now I have an Aussie puppy and what does she do when she gets frustrated? Excited? Happy? Bossy? She barks. It's what comes naturally to her. That doesn't mean I'm going to allow her to bark at everything all the time, but at the same time I know that this is part of who she is and something that will likely never leave. As long as I can control her barking to some extent, I'll be happy. My other dogs were never really trained not to bark because it wasn't necessary. With her it will be and already we're working on teaching her to quiet down when told. My Border Collie mix prior to these four dogs was much like Journey as far as barking. She was never a nuisance barker, but she definitely barked and liked to bark. My friend's late Shelties were the same and their owner hates barking and is an excellent trainer. Using their voice really does come naturally to a herding dog, no matter their breed or their lines.

Having met and enjoyed meeting Shawn and two Avalon dogs, I can say from experience that one was pretty dead silent and the other was a lot more noisy. The noisy one was young (not quite a year old - not sure if that matters), and would be quiet when asked, but he definitely barked a lot. Not any more than any other herding breed dog I've been around, but he definitely was not silent. There were a couple of times there where I don't think Shawn or I heard what we were saying haha. They both were lovely dogs and I can't say a bad thing about either of them, but there's no denying that the one dog liked using his voice. Maybe not to an extreme, but barking was being done.

I also see a lot of herding breed dogs who fixate on the movement of other dogs. I don't think that's a lack of training either, although I do think if one expects it as a possibility as soon as they get the dog, one can manage it hopefully so that the behaviour is not reinforced or encouraged. But even so, some dogs will still want to chase and bark and stare at other dogs. I see it all the time with dogs with experienced owners/trainers and without. It was one of the biggest reasons I was a little afraid to get a herding breed (be it a C/Koolie, a Border Collie, and Aussie, whatever... and poor Sara had to hear all about it. Thanks Sara for putting up with my worries and for being so helpful!) because the other breeds I have aren't generally prone to such a behaviour. I was terrified I'd end up with a dog who obsessed over the movement of other dogs.

Training can only do so much. A lot of it is instinct. And a lot of it has to do with what an owner tolerates as well, particularly when it comes to barking. I have a medium tolerance for barking, but some people have zero and some have a super high tolerance. So if barking isn't something that bothers a person, of course their dogs might bark more than a dog who lives with an owner who hates barking. But even the latter dog will probably still bark. And as far as the motion obsession, I don't think all the training in the world could totally eliminate this behaviour in some dogs no matter how hard their owner might try. They might improve over time and can definitely be managed, but some dogs will always want to 'herd' other dogs/people/bicycles/etc. if given half a chance.

As for the health testing, I think it's good that the dogs are x-rayed, but if a breeder has gone that far, I genuinely don't understand not sending them into OFA or OVC. If for nothing else than to have documented health clearances for the breed later on down the road. It just seems so important to the future of the breed and for the benefit of breeders now and down the road. You do everything else so thoroughly as far as breeding nice tempered dogs who can do whatever is asked of them and matching puppies to their people well... why not take the health testing a step further? It's going to happen eventually in the breed anyway at some point (I hope anyway), so why not be one of the first? Owning a breed with one severe health problem that cannot be tested for, I really don't understand why people wouldn't at least test for everything they actually can test for. I understand the cost, but I think it's one of the luxuries of breeding dogs nowadays. There are tools and advancements out there now that were not around a long time ago and they've definitely helped improve the health of a lot of breeds in many ways. Also, quick question to anyone with the breed: with Coolies being a herding breed, why don't breeders CERF their dogs? A lot of other herding breeds have known eye issues. It's not just hip and elbow dysplasia people should be worried about I wouldn't think.

Anyway, I didn't mean to ramble! But having come thisclose to getting a C/Koolie, and as someone who still wants one someday and has spoken to owners of dogs from a few different lines/breeders and met a couple of Coolies, I felt I should say something. :-)
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