Dog suggestions

Dogs, dogs and even some cats
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Dog suggestions

Postby FOGSUM » Thu Mar 27, 2008 4:05 pm

I am looking to get a hiking companion and I'm considering two breeds - Australian Shepard or Border Collie. I have done some research on these breeds and have some questions.

1. How much daily activity do they need? My wife and I both work full time jobs and are concerned we would be able to provide it with enough activity.

2. How do they get along with other dogs? We currently have a female miniature dachshund who goes by the name of Stella.

3. Is there any other breeds I should consider? We are looking for a dog on the smaller side but can hike all day and climb a class 1 or 2 14er.

Thank you in advance for your feedback.

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Re: Dog suggestions

Postby rastro » Thu Mar 27, 2008 4:19 pm

FOGSUM wrote:I am looking to get a hiking companion and I'm considering two breeds - Australian Shepard or Border Collie. I have done some research on these breeds and have some questions.

1. How much daily activity do they need? My wife and I both work full time jobs and are concerned we would be able to provide it with enough activity.

2. How do they get along with other dogs? We currently have a female miniature dachshund who goes by the name of Stella.

3. Is there any other breeds I should consider? We are looking for a dog on the smaller side but can hike all day and climb a class 1 or 2 14er.

Thank you in advance for your feedback.

A quick response...I'm pretty sure any dog in the "herding" category requires a lot of exercise to be a happy dog. My friend had a Corgi and she worked downtown; she was going home at lunch just let Barney outside.
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Re: Dog suggestions

Postby Two Headed Boy » Thu Mar 27, 2008 4:50 pm


Mine is a mutant weighing in at 38 lbs. They usually range from 25 - 30. I work as an electritian and am gone for 8 - 10 hours a day during the week, he has a buddy that stays with him and keeps him company which is crucial. He is not insane on the exercise needs, we take him to Chatfield dog park once a week and to the dog park by our house 2 - 3 times per week. The minis were not bred with any other breed to get them smaller, a group kept breeding the smaller ones until they got smaller so the temperment is the same, just lighter (if you need to carry them), they eat less, it's easier to rent if you do that, and smaller dogs generally live longer and have less health issues. That was my reasoning for going for the smaller variety of Aussie. Here he is on our way up Huron, completely off trail and going the wrong direction, we first had to summit whatever the mountain to the north of Huron is and then traverse all the way south around a cirque to Huron. He was nice and took a break with me.


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Re: Dog suggestions

Postby Cruiser » Thu Mar 27, 2008 5:01 pm

So both of those breeds are typically pretty intelligent. That a good thing because they are usually quite easy to train and are capeable of learning a wide range of commands. The other side of that coin is that they get bored easily. With all that free time at home alone during the week they are going to find something to keep themselves busy. Whether it's chewing your furniture, digging holes in the back yard, or barking non-stop, it's going to be a problem. I'd suggest making some adjustment to your schedule to include lots of doggie time if you decide to go with an intelligent, high energy breed like the ones you mentioned.
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Re: Dog suggestions

Postby Bobo » Thu Mar 27, 2008 5:14 pm

Two Words: Labrador Retriever! I'm a little biased, because I love the breed, but here are the high points: Great with kids, smart, loyal, easily trained, love any kind of weather. The downsides...they are juvenile delinquents until they're about 2 years old, and if you're trying to keep them dry...forget it, they love the water.

I have also owned a herding dog that I inherited from a friend's family (I think he was an australian shepherd...longish hair). He was great, but wasn't very good with children, and tended to nip at people's heels (trying to herd them).
"At this point the runner might philosophize a and consider just where he or she is in the Imogene Pass Run. You've climbed 1945 ft of elevation in 5.45 mi, at an average of 356 ft./mi., 6.8% gradient. To reach Imogene Pass you must climb 3365 ft in the next 4.60 mi, at an average of 731 ft./mi., or 13.85% gradient. Your effort so far has simply been a warmup. The steep gradients of the named hills below are now less than the average gradient ahead." - IPR course description

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Re: Dog suggestions

Postby jamesandchelsea » Thu Mar 27, 2008 5:50 pm

I imagine you'll have a million replies to your post, so I'll get my 2 cents worth in now...

I've heard from most people that have larger dogs (labs on up) that most have hip problems, etc. I just adopted an Irish Wolfhound mix (mixed with something really small) who weighs about 70 lbs, and so far, she's not done very well on hikes of any length (she craps out at about 2.5 hours), and her hips seem to bother her for a day or two afterward. Having said that, I'd definitely suggest a smaller breed. I wouldn't suggest a herding dog, though, cause most do have TONS of energy and will destroy your home until they get older.

My #1 suggestion would be a Manchester Terrier. I've got one (I think) that I adopted about 5 years ago, and she's the BEST climbing dog I've EVER seen! Her energy level is perfect, whether at home or out on the trail. She loves attention, but is content to sleep in her bed all day while we're at work without causing trouble. She weighs in at 20 lbs, and she looks like a miniature rottweiler (sp?). She sheds a bit, but it's short hair, so it's not that noticeable. She absolutely LOVES HIKING!

If I could figure out how to put a picture of her on here, I would... #-o
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Re: Dog suggestions

Postby ktimm » Thu Mar 27, 2008 6:15 pm

Well, I have all 3 of the breeds you are asking about although the mini weiney my wife adopted from a friend and she may take her back someday (after we trained her and everything).

The other two I have are mixes. One is an aussie mix the other some sort of border hound. They all get along fine. I don't really know how much activity they need but everyone of them likes activity (even the weiney that was afraid to go outside when we got her, but now she jumps in the car for walks).

The border mix is athletic, to an extreme degree, but when we aren't running crazy he's kind of a couch potato. He likes to herd, and has been known to roll in cow s**t when given the chance. He is an awesome dog though, loyal, friendly, funny, ready to go.

The aussie mix is more aloof, but loves to go for hikes. He gets, I would say kinda grumpy if we don't go out for a couple days. He is a not a fetcher, not a clown, just a well behaved dog.

All with the exception of the wieney have done a fair amount of peaks, and even the weiney has done youngs peak by crawford (not much of a peak).

So now my $.02, all of them are dogs, they all need activity even the weiney, they all have instinct that were bred into them (herding, burrowing, etc). The other day, the border found a rabbit carcass and the weiney was after it and when she finally got it, I had never seen a dog act so ferocious. The border and aussie can go for 20 -30 miles a day if you want, however they will be relatively happy with a couple mile or two walks a day. I live kinda rural, so when we walk, they can run. The border stays close while the aussie is out exploring on his own usually.

I really think they are so similar in personality that it's a toss up. The border may be more of a herder. The weiney, well she is a work in progress that had a lot more issues than the other dogs. The people complained for years, she wasn't house broken etc. She is house broken now, not afriad to go outside etc however she needs to become more secure. So alot has to be said for how you raise them but there are some instinctual differences you can't change. Really a weiney can do a class 1 peak.

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Re: Dog suggestions

Postby covfrrider » Thu Mar 27, 2008 6:33 pm

Any reason to post this pic... Boston Terriers have been in my family since I was a kid. These guys are great apartment dogs, gentle and even tempered and are in the 20 - 30 pound range. They are in training for some backpacking/hiking trips with me this summer. Downside is they aren't real keen on below freezing temperatures, so if you want a winter hiker, some of the water/mountain breeds would be better.


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Re: Dog suggestions

Postby Tory Wells » Thu Mar 27, 2008 7:02 pm

Couple of things.........

Both dogs are great breeds, very intelligent. The herding group has some of the most intelligent dogs.

However I am very concerned about your statement about not having enough time and energy to devote to this dog. Aussies and Border Collies are very energetic dogs and require a ton of exercise and attention. If you can not provide that on a daily basis, these are not the dogs for you.

Research these dogs thoroughly before getting one. Go to dog shows and talk to breeders of these dogs. They can help you decide if either of these are right for you.
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Re: Dog suggestions

Postby ketel1 » Thu Mar 27, 2008 8:00 pm

I agree, those 2 types would need more exercise than what you describe.
Check these sites out. THere are dogs JUST waiting for you to pay them a visit.

I have a lab/golden mix who can be a couch potato OR hit the summits with me. I also have a german wirehair pointer mix who is the highest energy dog I have had. She needs at least one walk per day, play dates at the park with her boyfriend AND weekend outings. She keeps US active :)

It is so critical that you really assess what you are willing to spend-time, energy and cost-on your pet and make the right decision for all of you. Many of these dogs end up back at shelters because they were the wrong fit. Good luck!
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Re: Dog suggestions

Postby heather14 » Thu Mar 27, 2008 8:25 pm

I had a miniature border collie for 18yrs and she was hands down the best dog I ever had!! She was smart, obedient, great with other people and kids and got along with other dogs. And she was definitely a herder!! :D

Like many have mentioned, they have lots of energy. We worked long hours, but we had the advantage of living in the middle of nowhere, so she could pretty much run free. We would let her out in the morning while getting ready for school/work. She would come in before we left and sit at the picture window during the day. (The only time she was ever destructive in the house was when we put the xmas tree in front of the picture window!! Came home and it was down and the decorations were everywhere in pieces :shock: ) Then when we got home we could let her out all afternoon/evening. If time is going to be an issue you should definitely consider a different breed.
What is above knows what is below, but what is below does not know what is above. One climbs, one sees. - Rene Daumal

Re: Dog suggestions

Postby Bean » Thu Mar 27, 2008 8:40 pm

Your best bet might be just going by the local humane society and seeing what kind of dogs they've got there. I did that, ended up with a different dog than I was thinking about but I love her to death.
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