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lulu&lexi's mum
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 25, 2013 2:33 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

It's several months now since we lost Ross and, although I still miss him every day, I'm feeling that the time is coming to invite another briard into our lives. ( Hubby isn't feeling quite the same, but I'm working on it!) The question is, should it be a boy or a girl and should it be a puppy or an older dog?

We got Lulu as a puppy. She is a real charmer but has always been full of mischief and she was extremely difficult to house train, she gets on well with other dogs though and is a complete wimp, backing right off if she sees any conflict in the offing.

Ross came to us when he was 6 and we couldn't have wished for a nicer natured dog. He was never the instigator of aggression with another dog but (and I'm sure this is true of any briard male) if another dog was aggressive towards him he let them know exactly who was boss. Unfortunately hubby's sight has recently deteriorated and combined with that we have a neighbour who has a particularly aggressive Labrador and he is worried that if we were to have another male he wouldn't be able to see said neighbour and Lab coming if he was out with the dogs. Again unfortunately, she is not the understanding kind of neighbour - she had a go at us a while back because our dogs barked at the gate when she went by with said aggressive Lab. It was somehow our fault that she was unable to control the Lab!

Anyway, all in all Hubby would prefer to avoid possible conflict so, from our experience so far, we think we would probably be better to have another girl.

This raises a number of questions that I'm hoping all you experienced briardists will be able to answer. Firstly, I have heard that two bitches can fight for dominance. Is this true of any two bitches or does it just happen if there is a personality conflict? And does it just happen with mature girls. I certainly know of people with a bitch who have got another girl puppy. Or then again is it just two briards? Do different breeds not fight each other?

We would really like to rehome another briard, as we did with Ross, but wonder whether it's viable to rehome a girl when we have one already. Also, if we went for a puppy, are girls generally harder to housetrain than boys? This is obviously something that would be quite difficult for Hubby, being partially sighted, and he is the one who is around all day as I'm out at work.

Sorry this is such a long post. I hope some of you have managed to plough through it and can give some much needed advice. Very Happy

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Deborah Mansi (DEBUET)
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 25, 2013 3:34 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

Personally, with a bitch already in the home, I would always go for a dog. You can always know that they will always get on together. I know there is the disadvantage of the bitch being in season but that, I think, is the only drawback, in my opinion.

I know people do have two or more bitches together and some people have boys together and it works perfectly but there are the occasions when the bitches or dogs start to disagree with each other to get the top dog position. This is where problems can occur.

I am sure everyone will have their own opinions on the subject and there isn't a right or wrong answer but my personal opinion is to always have two opposite sexes together. I find that works best. There are less problems.

As your girl gets on with other dogs, you could always go for a rescue but it would have to be a rescue that gets on with another dog. Also, rescues are very hard to come by as we are not a breed that has lots of them. A puppy comes with no baggage at all and can be brought up with only your rules.

Hope this helps.

Debbie

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Zizou
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 25, 2013 5:00 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

I've heard similar things: that it is best to mix the sexes. I also think Debbie's point about getting a puppy makes sense. I am very keen to see others' opinions too. Above all, I'd love to see you with another Briard and being able to enjoy it to the full. (PS We used to have an aggressive lab near us, so I appreciate how you feel. Sad He's not there any more. He attacked Zizou once, and Zizou never forgot it.)
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maxnick
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 26, 2013 9:19 am Reply with quoteBack to top

I can give you a bit of my experience.
We have a Tibetan Terrier, (Sally) who was 7 years old when we introduced Ina, who was then about 18 months old. There was the odd spat, which we intervened in. Mostly they got on, with the flashpoints of food etc. However it escalated into all out war at times. Triggered by excitement/food /other dogs. We had a male dog who died & I don't know if he was a calming influence, but after he went that was it, gloves were off.
Behaviourist gave advice, but this didn't work.
I have since read a very good book by John Fisher called 'Think Dog', a must I think for any prospective/dog owner. In this he gave the advice that really we should have re-homed one of the dogs (which would have been Ina), as if they don't back down with each other, that is it. Sadly, I fell in love with Ina & couldn't do it, as she was already a re-home. The consequences now are that the dogs are kept separate at all times (Baby gates/manoevering/muzzled on walks, etc etc). Not an ideal situation, but we almost have it managed Rolling Eyes
Sorry to go on, but this is what can happen if things go wrong. You have to be prepared. It doesn't always happen, but I think we had let Sally have to much free rein, & she thought she was the boss.
Apart from all this, the dogs get equal cuddles/kisses/everything & are happy, it is us the humans that tear our hair out Confused
Hope this helps.

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lulu&lexi's mum
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 26, 2013 5:04 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

Thanks for the replies. It doesn't seem to be looking too good for getting another girl. Lulu is such a wimp that I think she would probably accept being bottom dog - she adapted to that quite well when Ross joined us - but I don't want to risk making her unhappy. She was only 18 months old when We got Ross. She's 6 now and probably more set in her ways.

Is it likely to make a difference if a girl joins us as a puppy so that she would grow up accepting Lulu as boss?

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Last edited by lulu&lexi's mum on Mon Aug 26, 2013 5:06 pm; edited 1 time in total
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jdrrco
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 26, 2013 5:05 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

Pauline

If you do decide to go for a boy, there is a gorgeous-looking (well, he's the spit of Ed, so he would be gorgeous!) 7-year old called Galba on Jersey who is looking for a new home. You can see his details on the JSPCA website: http://www.jspca.org.je/cats_dogs_rehoming.html

To quote from the Facebook post: "Galba is a male Briard and is 7 years old.
He originally lived in France but is coping well with learning a second language.
Galba is a big dog with a personality to match and is full of character and fun. He is a cuddly boy who always greets you with a smile and the waggiest tail, which never stops.
Galba walks nicely on the lead and loves to play with footballs.
Although hes a big boy he is not always brave and is a little scared of getting into the car, but with patience, words of encouragement and some tasty treats he is gaining confidence and with time will be a happy traveller.

Please contact the JSPCA on 724331
Visiting Monday to Saturday 2-4pm"

James

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lulu&lexi's mum
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 26, 2013 5:15 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

Oh my goodness, James, he looks gorgeous. I MUST try not to fall in love with him - we haven't made the decision yet and Jersey is an awful long way from Yorkshire.

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Zizou
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 26, 2013 5:47 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

I also know of Galba and have called a couple of times to see how he is getting on. The lady I spoke to said that all the girls who look after him just love him. He does sound great. Very Happy
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GillCoates
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 26, 2013 9:40 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

Thought I would have a little nosey at Galba. He looks so like my old boy Bronze.
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Zizou
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PostPosted: Tue Aug 27, 2013 9:46 am Reply with quoteBack to top

It might be worth calling Sheila or Nikki, whose numbers are in the Rescue option on this site, too. I'm sure they would be able to advise you as well. Very Happy x
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jenny
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PostPosted: Tue Aug 27, 2013 10:25 am Reply with quoteBack to top

There is no hard and fast rule regarding keeping dogs and/or bitches together. if you look at all the wild animals whether feline or canine, there are normally more females to males and more often than not there is also a dominant female that leads the rest.
I have had dogs since the age of 4 and during the past 49 years have always had bitches, which is my preference as I find them more loyal and easier to live with.
During my teenage years I re-homed a 5mth old Lab pup. We already owned a 5year old Lab bitch (entire). After a few days they had developed a good bond between them and never did we have any trouble between them and we lost the eldest at 16 and then had a very depressed Lab.
My mother then purchased a puppy German Shepherd and had no problems introducing her to the elder dog.
I purchased a Golden Retriever when I considered the time was right and after 7 years brought home a Briard pup. The 2 took to each other with no problems, after 5 years the Goldie died very suddenly and I bought another Goldie, again no problems.
4 1/2 years ago we lost the Briard and I then introduced a Briard pup to an 8 year old Goldie, no problems.
At various times over the years my mother has had 2 German Shepherds (bitches) and with my 2 have had them live here altogether for a week at a time and all fed together in the same room with no problems at all.
Some people have said that I have always been lucky, personally I would say it is because the dogs have always known their place in the pecking order and this has been achieved by no nonsense but fair handling, never have I resorted to hitting them and neither do I pander to what is going to grow into a large powerful dog.
A friend had 4 dogs all different breeds and sexes. 3 were KC registered for obedience and did very well, just missing Crufts qualification but when ever they went out they had to be shut in different rooms. After about the 3rd visit to the vets, she suggested it might be cheaper to fit poppers to the dog's side.
Puppy's are a blank canvas, re-homes always come with some type of baggage. At the end of the day whatever your decision if it is blatently obvious that they will never live happily together will you have the courage to hand the pup back to the breeder or the re-home back to the rescue society and do what is in the dogs best interest. This is something that ONLY you can decide. It is not any easy thing to do.

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Zizou
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PostPosted: Tue Aug 27, 2013 11:20 am Reply with quoteBack to top

Brilliant post Jenny. Smile Can I show my ignorance and ask what poppers are please? And I certainly don't think your success is down to luck in any way as you have repeated it often. Wink
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PostPosted: Tue Aug 27, 2013 11:31 am Reply with quoteBack to top

The vet was being sarcastic, (she was a friend) and was suggested press studs or poppers to re-attach the dog's side after one of the others had attacked it for the Rolling Eyes Rolling Eyes Rolling Eyes time.
Thanks for the compliment Smile , at this moment my 12 1/2 year Goldie is snoring on their bed and the 4 1/2 year old Briard is flaked out in the lounge getting a cool breeze.
When I leave for work in a moment they will want a biscuit and no doubt not move much until I come home.

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Zizou
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PostPosted: Tue Aug 27, 2013 12:05 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

Very Happy Thanks. See? I learn stuff every day.

Come the glorious day when I go for another dog, expect a PM lol x
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maxnick
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PostPosted: Tue Aug 27, 2013 6:28 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

Jenny, I am glad you posted, because there are always different perspectives. I agree when you say dogs have to know there place in the pecking order. As I said, Sally thought she was top dog (which obviously included over us too), but I had never ever had problems with any of my previous dogs before Rolling Eyes
Hope all goes well with your choice of companion for Lulu.

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PostPosted: Wed Aug 28, 2013 7:30 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

Like Jenny I have had both dogs and bitches living together in harmony, I think the key is in the introduction on neutral ground and then keeping the pecking order. However what I would say is if all is not harmony a male and bitch rarely fight with any severity, if two males fight you usually get warning growling gesturing etc. and have a chance to distract, but 2 bitches can just go and bitches fighting are very difficult to separate the cases I have seen the bitches mean it and usually ends with one or both at the vets to be stitched. The amount of training, obedience didn't come into it. This is the main reason people would advise opposite sexes. Obviously hormones and seasons have to be taken into account to spay or not etc.
Good Luck with your choice of companion for Lulu.
Brenda

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Zizou
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 29, 2013 6:53 am Reply with quoteBack to top

Brenda, you have reminded me of a breeder friend I have, who has said the same about her female JRTs. She has mentioned hormones causing 2 of her girls to be little nightmares. Shocked
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 29, 2013 9:06 am Reply with quoteBack to top

A male and a female works here. They are very happy to achieve a balance, with Dinah basically top dog but Brion being protected by us over the few things that he does mind about very much.
Brion feels very stronglyi indeed about not being disturbed if upside down on the floor near to one of us and bones are something that he just will not 'share nicely' over. Generally he is otherwise quite happy to let young miss take charge otherwise and so, annoyingly because that might have prevented Dinah when a pup from chewing chairs to bits, we just don't give them bones, or separate them very thoroughly since Dinah will sometimes stand up for what she considers to be her rights. They have had fights but they have never been serious, just lots of noise. However both dogs are happier and calmer with us protecting Brion over the things that he really minds about, and Di is quite happy for us to keep order.
Brion has been castrated but was a stud dog at Gilcoru for his first 4 years, which is probably why he was quite so delighted when Dinah came on heat! Dinah proved no shrinking violet either, and we came back late one night from a party to find that they had been partying too - and were tied together! This was clearly hugely enjoyed by both but I must admit that we did distract and separate them as much as poss for the sake of our neighbours' view from their back windows as much as anything, or maybe just our own prudishness!!
Amanda
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 29, 2013 11:17 am Reply with quoteBack to top

Oh Amanda, how funny! It's great that the castration hasn't cramped his style and he can still live life to the full! I bet that information helps a few people when deciding whether to neuter or not!Laughing
Galba looks like Oscar, our first briard. Paul and I would love him, but wouldn't risk taking on another dog with Hugo in case it didn't work out (given Hugo's issues) and we had to hand him back.
Hugo's trainer has 5 different breeds of dog, all male, by the way.
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 29, 2013 1:12 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

I have in the past had 3 briards and one cross breed, all entire male and never a cross word between them. They did have plenty of space to keep out of each others way if needed, but only once was there a tiny spat and that was when one had cut his paw and was wearing a sock - much to the amusement of the rest. He was obviously embarrassed at this indignity and went for the others, but as he got no reaction he shut up. Maybe I was lucky as they were all laid back and happy go lucky.

Kathy and Zeta
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Zizou
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 29, 2013 2:03 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

Zizou says "Go Brion" Very Happy x
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maxnick
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PostPosted: Fri Aug 30, 2013 4:36 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

Amanda, you need to draw the curtains Surprised Laughing

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PostPosted: Fri Aug 30, 2013 5:18 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

Love it Maxnick. Hahaha Wink
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lulu&lexi's mum
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PostPosted: Fri Aug 30, 2013 5:59 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

Thanks all for your replies. All very interesting and useful -I've certainly learned a lot that I didn't know before!

We haven't come to a decision yet, but you can be sure that I'll be posting as soon as we have.

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PostPosted: Fri Aug 30, 2013 7:02 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

Good luck. In answer to Maxnick, drawing the curtains wouldn't have spared many of our neighbours' blushes because the dogs' favourite spot for love ins was the back garden! Maybe I should just have asked them all to draw their curtains. . . Amanda
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 05, 2013 7:27 am Reply with quoteBack to top

We have three girlies and one boy, they all get on like a house on fire, if you are not breeding from them, then get the girl spayed, Ikkon goes like a puppy when the girls are in season, he can even open doors and gates at this time. good luck.

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jdrrco
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PostPosted: Thu Oct 03, 2013 9:31 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

Looking at the JSPCA site today, Galba has been "put on hold - wish me luck". Here's hoping the lovely boy has found his forever home.

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PostPosted: Sat Oct 05, 2013 8:40 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

I have been monitoring that too, really hope he gets a good home.

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PostPosted: Mon Oct 07, 2013 10:52 am Reply with quoteBack to top

I'm another Galba follower too. Wink
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lulu&lexi's mum
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PostPosted: Mon Oct 07, 2013 11:17 am Reply with quoteBack to top

Me too. I did contact them to enquire about him a few weeks ago, but he is apparently to afraid of travelling to make Yorkshire a possibility. I do hope he finds the right forever home.

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Zizou
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PostPosted: Mon Oct 07, 2013 12:34 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

Sad I've just made my "monthly" call, but no home yet. She says he's happy and doing okay etc. but that was it. ho hum
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