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Doghouse: Is this a mad idea?

(6 Posts)
MissBeehivingUnderTheMistletoe Fri 03-May-13 22:23:44

Bit of a story...

I was driving through our local market town today to pick up DS2 from nursery when I spotted a loose dog (lhasa apso) wandering down a town centre road - no owner in sight. I pulled over and watched for a moment to see if I could see an owner and then parked the car and approached her. She was friendly - wearing a collar (pink puppy collar) but no tag. There aren't many residential properties so I picked her up and knocked on some doors. Nobody recognised her, so I called Environmental Health and dropped her off at the kennels as directed by them. She wasn't chipped and the boarding kennels thought that she was about a year old. DS1 was with me at the time and asked what would happen to her if nobody claimed her - they said that after 7 days, she could be given to someone else (normally) a rescue.

Anyway, I have been wondering about having another dog for a while. I already have the best dog in the world a 3 year old Border Terrier who is very sociable with other dogs. We live in the countryside with a big enclosed garden and our BT has two good country walks/runs a day.

I did fall in love with this little girl (as did DS2) - is it a crazy idea to think about offering her a home if no owner comes forward?

astheworldfallsdown Fri 03-May-13 22:39:34

Not entirely crazy, but bear in mind that Lhasas are a working breed: their original use was as a herding and guarding type dog. They need rather careful handling and can be unpredictable with regards to temperament. Plus their hair (double coat) is very high maintenence, especially if you get one that dislikes being groomed!

Basically, the nice ones are very nice indeed, but the not nice so ones are horrid! Good on you for stopping and helping, btw smile

MissBeehivingUnderTheMistletoe Fri 03-May-13 22:52:28

What on earth do Lhasas herd? Guinea Pigs? grin

This one was clipped, presumably because of the high maintenance? Is that usual?

If she was aggressive - when would that be likely to manifest itself?

astheworldfallsdown Sat 04-May-13 01:00:34

They were - probably still are - used for goat herding in Tibet. No stranger than Corgis being used for cattle, etc. A lot of people do seem to clip them, they look very different with a full coat, better imo, but it is a lot of work!

I wouldn't call the breed aggressive, but they are definitely smarter and tougher than they are credited for. And their faces are hard to read sometimes with all the hair and the shape of the jaw. They are quite pushy little dogs, very strong natured. Of course their fluffy appearance lets them get away with a lot that say, a JRT or a big dog wouldn't, iyswim? That is where the problems start, imo. They are not lap dogs - they need the same sort of treatment as other pastoral breeds. EG firm but fair, consistent, lots of exercise mentally and physically, etc. Sadly, they tend to be mollycoddled by a lot of people.

Best plan would be to ask a decent behaviourist to assess her for you prior to adoption, the rescue centre may offer this. (Assuming her owner doesn't turn up of course.)

astheworldfallsdown Sat 04-May-13 01:07:01

No idea how to do links but this is a decent site. The small dog syndrome mentioned in the article is what I was cackhandedly trying to describe, btw. But you have a terrier, so probably used to this stuff and avoiding it, lol!

MissBeehivingUnderTheMistletoe Sat 04-May-13 06:38:09

Thanks smile

I know a good behaviourist, so if she's still there after 7 days, I'll ask for an assessment.

My BT doesn't have small dog syndrome but he does have terrier stubborness. We used to do agility, which he was quite promising at, but one day he just lay down and refused to to any obstacles at all. shock He does love ratting so the agility commands come in handy for that and he follows commands brilliantly when he's keen on doing something. If he doesn't want to do something, he just lies on his back with his paws in the air grin

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