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    •  
      CommentAuthorchief chicken
    • CommentTimeOct 17th, 2013 5:37pm (Oct 17th 2013)
     
    A sprollie should come with a free supply of tranquilisers for life - either for the owner or the dog! :)
    •  
      CommentAuthorKateb
    • CommentTimeOct 17th, 2013 8:10pm (Oct 17th 2013) edited
     
    A neighbour has a 'pugador' - a pug crossed with a lab. It was cute but at the end of the day it's just a mongrel, like all the other accidental couplings!

    If dogs were being bred for the right reasons - temperament, health etc, I could see the point, but all they're doing is ruining the breeds.

    By the way, Mabel is fantastic!
    •  
      CommentAuthorRed
    • CommentTimeOct 17th, 2013 10:40pm (Oct 17th 2013)
     

    Keeper of the hens

    Pug x Lab doesn't even sound possible, although I've just found out that Huskies x Pomeranians are a thing *sigh*
    • CommentAuthorLynnW
    • CommentTimeOct 18th, 2013 3:23am (Oct 18th 2013)
     
    The whole designer dog thing is just stupid.:face-sad:
    •  
      CommentAuthorRed
    • CommentTimeApr 16th, 2015 11:44pm (Apr 16th 2015) edited
     

    Keeper of the hens

    Reviving an old thread, but I'm curious...

    On another forum there was a thread about pepper spraying / kicking a dog that runs up to you off lead. The poster was really offended that people would do this.

    What are your thoughts?

    Here are mine...when we lived in Stoke (Kasper around a year old) I was walking him off-lead, on my own. Someone's huge yellow Lab tore across the field and started chasing him, growling. Kasper ran behind me and the dog was on him. The dog's owner was on the other side of the field, stood watching, not even attempting to call the dog.

    I got the dog off and it turned to me, leaping up and growling. I kicked it, hard as I could, numerous times until it ran off. I was scratched badly all over my arms, but neither of us were overly injured, just shaken up. Would I have pepper sprayed that dog? Hell yeah!

    I don't mind dogs being walked off-lead at all, as long as they are under control.

    Zoey is another case in point. After being attacked by other dogs, now when they say hi to her she rolls and shows her belly because she's scared. So we keep our distance, counter condition her and play Look At That game.

    We also walk her in places where dogs shouldn't be off-lead. These include places where there are livestock and places by roads. It is illegal for people to walk their dogs off-lead there. But morons still do, and their dogs run up to Zoey...what am I supposed to do, stand back and watch it happen? Let Zoey become even more insecure around dogs?

    No, I'll yell to the owner to get their dog, and if they don't (or are unable) to get their dog and I can't body block it, I'm perfectly willing to kick it. If I had pepper spray (which I think is illegal in the UK?) I'd use that.

    I'm not saying I go round kicking dogs willy nilly, if I can I'll scare or distract the dog...but I'll kick 'em if needed. I purposefully walk Zoey places where other dogs shouldn't be running free, what more can I do? Plus, if Zoey ever got into a fight (note, she has NEVER been aggressive towards dogs, even when they have bitten her) I'll bet she would be blamed as she's a Staffy in the UK.

    Sure there are other things to try if a dog runs at you, but some of them are impractical. Using an air horn...well, you'd have to thoroughly desensitise your own dog to the noise first. Opening up a big black umbrella...I don't have the hands for that! Shake a can of coins - that's not gonna stop an overly excited or aggressive dog charging. Throw treats at the dog to stall or distract it...I doubt that would work with an aggressive dog either, although I have used this a few times with friendly dogs.

    I should also say I've reported three dogs that have attacked Kasper over the years, and been told every time nothing can be done.
    •  
      CommentAuthorchief chicken
    • CommentTimeApr 17th, 2015 2:56pm (Apr 17th 2015)
     
    You have to protect yourself and your dog by whatever means you have. If authorities won't act then we have to, in the face of ignorant dog-owners.
    •  
      CommentAuthorKateb
    • CommentTimeApr 17th, 2015 9:08pm (Apr 17th 2015)
     
    I agree with CC. My first thought was "what?! Kick an animal?" but then I realised you didn't mean randomly kick at a dog that ambles past, but defend yourself/your dogs from attacks. If you genuinely believe that is your only option then you have to go with it. I thought they sold air sprays or something like that in this country instead of pepper spray? What did the outraged poster think you should do instead?
    • CommentAuthorLynnW
    • CommentTimeApr 18th, 2015 6:09am (Apr 18th 2015)
     
    You have a right to protect your self or your furbabies by any means available when you are attacked.
    •  
      CommentAuthorRed
    • CommentTimeApr 18th, 2015 8:01pm (Apr 18th 2015)
     

    Keeper of the hens

    Seems we're all in agreement then :) Oh air sprays are a good idea Kate, they do sell them at pet shops as 'dog correctors'; it's probably a lot easier to desensitise your dog to an air spray than a fog horn!!

    Posted By: Kateb What did the outraged poster think you should do instead?


    Their main argument was that "it could have been an accident"...so it wasn't fair if someone dropped their dog's lead by mistake and their dog ended up being pepper sprayed. I don't see how it being an accident really changes anything; sure it's unfortunate, but still deserved. They also said people should wait to pepper spray a dog until the two dogs actually got into a fight which is just...ridiculous.
    •  
      CommentAuthorKateb
    • CommentTimeApr 18th, 2015 8:19pm (Apr 18th 2015)
     
    Someone has posted on the Solihull Facebook page asking for witnesses as their cocker spaniel was attacked by an off-lead staffy today. The cocker's owner is apparently a 6'4" fit and active man, and he tried to get the dog's jaws off his spaniel but didn't manage to prise it free until they'd both been bitten and the spaniel needed surgery. I wonder if he tried a well-placed kick or decided to wait until the 2 dogs got into a fight. I bet the owner would have some choice words for your outraged poster. (By the way, this isn't a reflection on staffies, it's about aggressive dogs!)
    •  
      CommentAuthorRed
    • CommentTimeApr 19th, 2015 10:18pm (Apr 19th 2015) edited
     

    Keeper of the hens

    Yeah, I don't trust other dog owners...to be honest I try keep both my dogs away from off lead dogs, because I really don't trust the owners. If I recognise them or check with the owner, Kasper can say hi, but otherwise...Which is a shame, as it means neither of my dogs really get to socialise...but when my pups have been bitten as many times as they have, I'm not willing to risk it.

    Zoey was bitten by a Staffy once - the owner was a **** and actually laughed. She's been attacked by a Border Terrier (my least favourite breed), three Golden Retreivers, two Labradors and lunged at by a Husky x Collie and a pure Husky (owner couldn't control the Husky, it was too strong and almost reached Zoey). So now she's wary of dogs, more so larger dogs, which makes sense. She has said hi to a JRT and Pug puppy since her last attack, which is great :smile:

    Kasper has been attacked by a Rottie, two Golden Retrievers, two Labradors (one of them was when I got all scratched up), Husky (bad one, left Kasper really shaken) and a Giant Schnauzer...that actually had hold of Kasper and I couldn't get it off because the bl**dy dog didn't have a collar on!

    I'm not a huge fan of Golden Retreivers anymore, there were also four obnoxious ones in the village we last lived in that terrorised Zoey. Even when I picked her up they jumped up growling. Owner laughed it off...prat :glare:

    They're just the incidents I remember too...
    •  
      CommentAuthorKateb
    • CommentTimeApr 20th, 2015 7:17pm (Apr 20th 2015)
     
    Wow, that's a lot. I sometimes wonder if some animals give off different vibes that other animals can't understand. None of my cats seem to like Tabby (Meow Meow hates her). MM also dislikes Jenson and Ting Tong, but will tolerate Kitten and Emmett. The latter 4 all get on OK and just play occasionally. Tabby is the only one with black paw pads - wonder if the others are showing feline racism?! (She also has the softest fur and a great purr - maybe they're jealous!)
    •  
      CommentAuthorRed
    • CommentTimeApr 20th, 2015 11:35pm (Apr 20th 2015) edited
     

    Keeper of the hens

    Today walking a client's dog we saw a Patterdale Terrier walking our way. Put 'our' pup on the longline, as we always do when approaching other dogs (long enough for them not to feel stressed, but so we're still in control!). Well, the other owner was listening to her Ipod, and let her Patterdale come right up to ours.

    It was very rude, and within seconds lunged and began snarling and snapping. Thankfully our pup was on the longline, so we guided him away. He's a real chill little guy, dead friendly with other dogs, but if another dog goes for him he fights back. Stupid owner didn't even apologise, yelled at her dog and carried on...bleh!

    I've heard of some dogs not liking other types. For example, dogs with docked tails as they find it hard to communicate. Black dogs supposedly have harder facial expressions to read than other dogs. And brachy breeds or breeds with excess wrinkles...
    •  
      CommentAuthorchief chicken
    • CommentTimeApr 21st, 2015 5:09pm (Apr 21st 2015)
     
    Patterdales are really not pet material...a customer had one years ago and was warned by the Yorkshire farmer he got her from never to let her near pets or other dogs. But such a valiant brave little dog - well trained!
    •  
      CommentAuthorRed
    • CommentTimeApr 21st, 2015 8:43pm (Apr 21st 2015) edited
     

    Keeper of the hens

    Genetics play a large part in dog aggression as well as early, positive socialisation. I do know a few Patterdales who are fine with any dogs and one is a senior citizen now.

    I think there's a few dog breeds I wouldn't advise for the *standard* pet home.

    Border Collies; untrained and under-exercised they're a nightmare, and it's common for them to be reactive to dogs. They also generally NEED a job to do, be it training, agility, rally etc. A lot of owners use fetch as their sole exercise, and BCs become horribly obsessed with the game.

    people get Labs and expect them to be great with kids and other dogs, but don't train, socialise or exercise them...they forget that a *well bred* Lab will be a whirlpool of energy until they're a senior!

    Most Terrier breeds were bred to be independent, energetic and killers! Even growing up with other pets doesn't mean they'll always consider them 'friends'. And dog reactivity is very common in Terrier breeds.

    Then there are breeds that were bred solely to guard, and people are surprised when they are wary with people they don't know...

    Having said that I hate people who base ALL of a dogs' behaviour and personality on its breed, but the breed should give us a general idea of what to expect.

    Someone on another forum does it all the time. People post asking for advice on what breed of dog to get, and it's all 'BCs are easy to train and live to please their owner; they make great family
    pets'...and all the BC people go noooooo! :tooth:

    And anyone who wants a Staffy gets advised against them...I dont understand it at all. I can only think of one other member who has a Staffy and they don't post anymore.
    •  
      CommentAuthorKateb
    • CommentTimeApr 22nd, 2015 7:44pm (Apr 22nd 2015)
     
    I can't recall ever meeting a nasty staffy, and there are a lot to choose from around here! Most of them just ignore people, or are friendly, though I know some are very agressive towards other dogs and their owners just think it's funny. I know they were bred as nanny dogs, to protect the children of the "well to do".
    •  
      CommentAuthorRed
    • CommentTimeApr 23rd, 2015 6:48pm (Apr 23rd 2015)
     

    Keeper of the hens

    It's weird how Staffy friendly different areas are...well, maybe friendly is the wrong word...but in Stoke for example most people liked the breed, it being the Staffordshire Bull Terrier (there were still dozens in rescue though). Bradford wasn't too bad. But where we live now, there are a lot of Staffy snobs...the tiny village we live in currently, there are two / three other Staffy owners, and people seem to love Zoey...but where Lyle's parents live, Staffy's are a no-no!

    Staffy's spend the longest time in rescue here than any other place I've lived.
    •  
      CommentAuthorKateb
    • CommentTimeApr 23rd, 2015 7:45pm (Apr 23rd 2015)
     
    I think the Birmingham Dogs Home have a lot of staffys in too. They're had as a status symbol around here - a tough looking dog to make the idiots look tough. I've seen a couple of really beautiful blue staffys.
    •  
      CommentAuthorRed
    • CommentTimeApr 23rd, 2015 11:35pm (Apr 23rd 2015)
     

    Keeper of the hens

    I never used to be a fan of blue Staffies, then I met a few 'in real life' *drool*

    I've always loved mainly white Staffys best though...can't believe I ended up with one! :tooth:
    •  
      CommentAuthorRed
    • CommentTimeApr 25th, 2015 3:45am (Apr 25th 2015) edited
     

    Keeper of the hens

    On a different forum, someone likes to try and start arguments about how terrible dog crates are. Their most recent thread was about how puppies that spend a lot of time in a crate will be developmentally delayed, like kids left in a wardrobe (why a wardrobe?!).

    I replied saying that crates were like cots / playpens for young children, and that if you left a toddler in one 24/7 that would have issues, too. I then went on to say I knew a young dog who is left in a large room all day away from family members, with limited social interaction and no toys. I said that lack of stimulation will damage a dog, crate or no crate.

    The person said they worked from home and spent every hour of every day with their dogs (what if you aren't able to do that?!) and that crating resulted in stupid dogs - but that they guess that's okay as long as the dog knew to toilet outside (sarcasm). They genuinely believe that if you crate train a dog, and leave it in a crate for over 20 hours a week, it lowers the dog's IQ!

    (Zoey must be incredibly thick, on the rare days we are very busy, Zoey spends twelve hours a day total - including bedtime - in her crate!!)

    I replied saying that they made crating sound abusive...they talked about sticking a dog in a box so they wouldn't have to deal with it, that a dog can easily be boxed away when not needed...that is NOT what crating is for!! :sarcastic:

    I said that my dogs got massive amounts of love, were highly intelligent and were only crated after a walk & with toys. I referred them again to the dog I know that is left alone, and that has many issues as a result.

    They either have their head right up their ****, or really like starting arguments for the sake of it :bigsmile:

    I don't have a problem with people not liking the idea of crating a dog - I used to be one of them!! :001_tongue: - but to insinuate that it's abusive is madness. Lots of other people joined the argument, pro-crates, too :smile:

    Not a discussion really, just interesting!
    •  
      CommentAuthorchief chicken
    • CommentTimeApr 25th, 2015 5:01pm (Apr 25th 2015)
     
    A lot of houses I go to where there are nervy dogs, the dogs rush barking...to the safety of their crate! It makes them feel secure, that's all.
    •  
      CommentAuthorKateb
    • CommentTimeApr 25th, 2015 5:20pm (Apr 25th 2015)
     
    I used to think crates were cruel before I knew the purpose of them, and you are right, as long as they are used along similar lines to a playpen / cot then I don't see the problem. I saw a picture recently of a dog that had only ever lived in a crate - they called her gargoyle because she was so disfigured by it - and had been used for breeding. Thankfully she's been rescued now.
    •  
      CommentAuthorRed
    • CommentTimeApr 26th, 2015 12:11am (Apr 26th 2015)
     

    Keeper of the hens

    A lot of puppy mills keep their dogs like that. They spend all their lives in filthy crates or tie outs in the yard...terribly sad :C

    Crates are invaluable to us; Kasper's SA would come back if we left him free reign, and Zoey would destroy anything she could :smile: As long as the dogs are exercised beforehand, get plenty of love when out and are left with stimulating toys I don't have a problem with it. I think it's a great training tool, and is really useful if your dog has to stay over at the vets or be on strict restricted exercise...I know someone who had an elderly dog that has since passed away, but she'd never crate trained him and he had to spend 4 days at the vets. The dog went crazy, absolutely panicked at being restrained in a small space, and they had to strongly sedate him.
    • CommentAuthorLynnW
    • CommentTimeApr 27th, 2015 7:28pm (Apr 27th 2015)
     
    Crates are good for a lot of things, my dogs sleep in their crates at night, if anything happens, it's easy to get to them and get them out of here. My dogs love their crates and go to bed on their own when they are tired at night. If you take them with you in the car, a crate can save their lives in case of an accident.
    •  
      CommentAuthorRed
    • CommentTimeApr 27th, 2015 11:06pm (Apr 27th 2015)
     

    Keeper of the hens

    Yes, we love our crates here too!

    How are your gorgeous pups Lynn??
    • CommentAuthorLynnW
    • CommentTimeMay 5th, 2015 9:26pm (May 5th 2015)
     
    They are doing pretty good. Frodo is being a good boy and Chloe is just a clown.
    •  
      CommentAuthorRed
    • CommentTimeMay 6th, 2015 12:15am (May 6th 2015)
     

    Keeper of the hens

    Is Chloe still teeny tiny? Is she picky with her food at all? My dad knows a Papillon that is really picky with what he eats because he has a small stomach, he gets full quickly so he refuses to eat boring food! I was just wondering if it was a 'small dog' thing...
    • CommentAuthorLynnW
    • CommentTimeMay 7th, 2015 5:15pm (May 7th 2015)
     
    Chloe will eat anything that doesn't eat her first, Red. Chloe has grown a bit, but not as big as I would have hoped she would get. It's hard to find things to fit her she's an XXSmall. I'll have to get more pictures of her. The only time she holds still is when she is asleep, so they might be pics of her sleeping.
    •  
      CommentAuthorRed
    • CommentTimeMay 7th, 2015 8:38pm (May 7th 2015) edited
     

    Keeper of the hens

    Haha! I want a small (tiny) dog someday (not too fussy about breed / mix), but my main worry is me standing on them or them accidentally getting hurt somehow...we're so clumsy, I've fallen over Zoey before, stood on Kasper's tail and Lyle even give him a fat lip once when Kasper lunged for a leaf as Lyle was walking...I don't know if a tiny dog could ope with us! :smile:

    Would definitely love to see more photos of your cuties too! :heart:
    •  
      CommentAuthorRed
    • CommentTimeDec 11th, 2015 5:32pm (Dec 11th 2015) edited
     

    Keeper of the hens

    I have a few discussion topics, I'll post the first here:

    1) Has anyone heard of the Birdsbesafe collar?
    http://www.birdsbesafe.com/

    I discovered it after reading this article: http://www.theatlantic.com/science/archive/2015/12/accessories-for-your-murderous-pet/419601/?utm_source=SFFB

    So...firstly I was shocked with quite how many birds cats kill every year - and that's just birds, it doesn't take into account rodents etc. Cats are killers, and I'm not a fan that they are allowed to just go out and do this...many dogs would chase and kill small animals if they had the chance, but they don't spend most their lives wandering about unsupervised. Even supervised Kasper has caught and killed a pigeon!

    Then I read about the collar...what do you think, is it a solution? I think if I saw a cat in one I'd be worried it had got its head stuck in something :bigsmile:

    Surely there's also issues about the collar getting stuck on things? I don't even let my dogs wear collars when I'm supervising them now, after Kasper and Zoey got locked together with a collar and Kasper was choking, I would NEVER let a cat / dog wear something like that outside the house and unsupervised! I know they sell them with breakaway collars, but what are they? Do they open at the first sign of pressure, in which case they just fall off all the time and it's a waste of money?! (I've never used a breakaway collar so I have no idea)

    What if the cat was scared of wearing it? Does it affect the cat's vision or balance? I know when Kasper used to cut his paws all the time we tried walking him in his cone (so significantly bigger than the Birdsbesafe) and it completely messed with him. At one point he tried to jump over a fallen tree trunk and ended up doing a flip because he misjudged it :tooth:

    Do cats get into fights frequently, would a cat wearing the collar be at a disadvantage in a scuffle?

    What do you think? Would you use it with your cats? What would be your concerns, any I missed?

    I know some cats are far better hunters than others. Nelly (Lyle's old cat) was an amazing hunter despite being the smallest cat I had ever seen - she was constantly bringing mice, rats, sparrows, pigeons and even seagulls (TWICE THE SIZE OF HER!) back to the house. The female cat they had before Nelly was also an adept hunter. The male cat they have now hasn't caught anything, and only lazily tries...

    I do like the idea behind the collar because it still allows cats to follow the natural behaviour of hunting, just without the death! It's not like you're just keeping a cat indoors so it can't kill the birds, but giving it no way to satisfy those urges...I know with our pups we do lots to get out their instinct to chase and kill things, eg. tug of war, toys to shred, fetch, find it games, puzzle feeders etc.
    •  
      CommentAuthorRed
    • CommentTimeDec 11th, 2015 5:58pm (Dec 11th 2015) edited
     

    Keeper of the hens

    2) Secondly I read an article about modern parenting (written by a British nanny :sarcastic: ) that said this:

    It used to be that bus drivers, teachers, shopkeepers and other parents had carte blanche to correct an unruly child. They would act as the mum and dad's eyes and ears when their children were out of sight, and everyone worked towards the same shared interest: raising proper boys and girls. This village was one of support. Now, when someone who is not the child's parent dares to correct him, the mum and dad get upset. They want their child to appear perfect, and so they often don't accept teachers' and others' reports that he is not

    I'm interested in other's thoughts because I completely disagree with this. To me the idea of everyone working together to raise a 'proper' child is ridiculous, because everyone's going to have different ideals about what a child should and shouldn't do.

    My parents, I think, had the perfect balance when I was growing up. I definitely knew right from wrong (I never got into trouble) but they were lax about me going out, drinking etc. I think this worked especially well as, because I was allowed to do it, there was no need to take it to extremes...I never stayed out late or drank to excess. Some of my friends' parents wouldn't let them go into town alone until they were sixteen, and they weren't supposed to drink until they left home!!

    There's also the issue that most adults don't treat kids with respect when asking them to do / stop doing something, especially when they're over the age of about 13. My group of friends as a teen were polite and well mannered, yet in the case where we were accidentally doing something 'wrong' adults jumped immediately to aggression, rather than politely asking us to do something different.

    Finally I'm seeing this quote from an adult's perspective, though not a parent to a human child :bigsmile: I've had idiots come and think they have the right to yell at my dogs, and it's infuriating for a few reasons:

    1. I don't believe in correcting or punishing my dogs. I get upset when people correct my dogs but it's not because I want them to "appear perfect" - it's because I don't believe in that training method, and also people have *no right* to do that to MY dogs!

    2. Kasper has a bad past and we have put so much training into showing him that people aren't scary. When someone acts inappropriately towards him (be it shouting or accidentally acting threatening) it can set us back a long way. When we had an alcoholic living above us and he pushed his way into our flat, drunk, and followed Kasper around, it affected the way Kasper behaved with men for months afterwards.

    This is the same with kids. You don't know what method the parents are using to bring up their children, and really if you are just a passerby you have no right to comment. If it's your job to control the child (eg. teacher, police etc) then by all means say something. Secondly you have no idea what that child has been through; there could be a dozen reasons why they are throwing a tantrum, running around excitedly etc. It is not your place to yell at them.

    The focus always seems to be on the adults banding together to control and punish the kids; in the article there was much talk of "respecting elders". To be honest when I was a kid I had very little reason to treat my elders with respect; unknown adults usually treated my like dirt, despite the fact I was an incredibly polite kid.

    This continues to this day; because we're are still considered 'young adults' ( :sarcastic: ) there's still a lot of prejudice, particularly from older people. This was very apparent some months back when we - very politely! - asked a woman to put her shopping trolley back as she had left it completely blocking the pavement. The trolley bay was a ten seconds walk away, and the woman had already been parked in a 'drop off only' zone for over 20 minutes - probably longer as she came out with a trolley full of shopping!

    Even when the woman drove her car into Lyle, after yelling at him that "he shouldn't care" because he didn't work for the supermarket, an elderly woman called to the trolley woman "are you okay? Is he bothering you? Shall I go get help?" We were automatically in the wrong because she was older and we are in our twenties, so are obviously up to no good.

    Why should we respect our elders?!
    •  
      CommentAuthorKateb
    • CommentTimeDec 11th, 2015 10:40pm (Dec 11th 2015)
     
    Both great topics! Here's my views.
    1) the cat collar thingy! I read your post before looking at the collar and was dreading what I'd see, but it didn't look as bad as first thought. Breakaway collars should come apart with firm pressure, that is not at the slightest touch, but it shouldn't take significant force to pull apart. Many cats have been hung because they got stuck on branches. I always take the figures they quote with a pinch of salt - they look at an average cat, how many kills, and then multiply it up by the guestimate population and average age. I have 6 cats. None of them have ever brought a bird back. Two of them have occasionally brought small mice home (probably about 10 between them in a year), but 90% of those have been rescued from them and released. Talking to people that come into rehoming, the vast majority don't have 'hunter' cats, and rarely does someone say their cat brings home a lot of kills. Of course it may be that they catch and kill and never bring home, but if these scientists can generalise then so can I!!! Most cats seem to hunt when they're between 2 and 5 years old - before that I don't think they've got the technique, and after that they lose interest.

    I can see your point but cats are a different entity to dogs. Apply the reasoning to humans - we are the biggest killers on the planet. We have made thousands of species extinct (both animal and plant), and continue to do so - that isn't instinct, we're supposed to be intelligent and should have evolved a darn sight further than a cat. But the Japanese will still hunt whales for 'science', Africans will slaughter elephants for their tusks to improve their bedroom performance, and europeans will force feed geese and eat baby animals and call it a delicacy. Without us I'm sure the rest of the world would get along quite happily. I consider humans to be a plague. But again we have good ones that are veggies, ones that care and campaign, and ones that just try to live a good life. I digress though. Personally I wouldn't use them because I don't think my cats really need them, but if one was a bird hunter then I would be tempted to give it a go.
    •  
      CommentAuthorKateb
    • CommentTimeDec 11th, 2015 10:54pm (Dec 11th 2015)
     
    2) I agree partially, but just as you generalise that oldies see youngsters as rude and in the wrong, you are tarring them all with the same brush. In the time they've been alive I suspect the majority have been abused in some way by the youth - either terrorised by a gang, swore at, or just had bad/rude attitudes to them. When I was young I wouldn't misbehave because I knew if I did word would get back to my mom. If I'd sworn at the old lady up the road she'd have told my mom and I'd have been grounded/punished/had a smack. If a child swore at me and I tackled their parent chances are I'd be told to f off, what business was it of mine and I deserved it. We were terrorised by a gang of 9/10 year olds who decided our wall was their football goal, and when we told them to stop they swore, came back daily to kick balls, egged the windows, knock door run, stones at the windows - we had to move house to get away from it as we had no power because of their age. Parents seem to think their child is perfect nowadays and the child grows up thinking they can do whatever they like.

    In your example the woman was extremely rude and I must agree that many older people can be - they do think they can do what they like because they're old. The second woman though would have assessed it quickly and her instinct would make her concerns lie with her peer. She may have been just as rude as the first woman - did you explain the situation? She may well have apologised and sided with you! Sadly we all make assumptions and generalise. I try not to see all kids as those that tormented us, but it's very hard and I begin cautious until proved otherwise. You and Lyle are not typical of your age - I hope I'm not typical of mine!!!
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      CommentAuthorRed
    • CommentTimeDec 12th, 2015 4:59pm (Dec 12th 2015) edited
     

    Keeper of the hens

    Yay Kate, thanks! And thank you for answering :bigsmile:

    See I haven't known many people with cats (or cats really) at all. I've known Lyle's parents, two of which have been hunters, and then I catsat for a few neighbours and their cats when I was younger, and had to clear out dead rodents a few times :beurk:

    Do you think where the cat lives makes a difference? The cats I babysat had fields full of small animals right outside their door, and Lyle's parents are fairly out the way and a lot of birds frequent their garden.

    Okay, so why are cats different to dogs? This is something I get really confused about. I know, way back when, my dad lived at home and had a dog and dogs were treated like cats. They were allowed to roam, behave however, and do whatever they wanted. They came home for feeding, fuss etc and exercised themselves.

    So if dogs were treated like that, but now it has evolved and their needs are met in this new way, why are cats different and how come they have this need to be allowed out and not have their behaviour managed?

    I'm not being argumentative (I genuinely find talking about dogs, cats and pet rodents interesting) and I'm also not saying that I think every cat should be kept indoors, because I recognise that the average cat owner would not put in the effort needed to keep the cat happy...ie. playing with hunting toys, puzzle feeders, giving the cat things to climb, finding ways to exercise the cat outdoors etc. I think if cats weren't allowed out on their own 99.9% of cat owners would leave them indoors with nothing to do apart from a few toys scattered about, and when the cat developed behavioural issues they'd either lock them in a room and forget about them or rehome them. Let's face it a vast portion of dog owners do this.

    What I'm thinking is that cats *could* be perfectly happy living the lives that dogs do, whereby they get stimulation, ways to act out their natural urges and outdoor time...I just don't think the world is ready to put in the effort needed, and cats have been roaming for so long I don't think it will ever change.

    I really do find it so interesting that cats and dogs are seen as entirely different animals, where one is allowed out to do what they want and the other often has to be kept on lead. In some ways the reasoning seems obvious (dogs are bigger and can cause more damage to livestock and scare people), but dogs did roam free not that long ago and there are still many issues with cats, such as pooing in people's gardens, killing wildlife and running in front of cars.

    Do you think the collar would cause any issues for a cat, in terms of balance or during a scrap?

    I'll do another post...
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      CommentAuthorRed
    • CommentTimeDec 12th, 2015 5:10pm (Dec 12th 2015) edited
     

    Keeper of the hens

    Posted By: Kateb2) I agree partially, but just as you generalise that oldies see youngsters as rude and in the wrong, you are tarring them all with the same brush.


    I agree with your first sentence completely, but where I think we (me and Lyle) differ is that if someone older than us treats us politely and with respect, we begin beaming like idiots!! We are always willing to give people of any age a chance; we may be quicker to judge when an older person is rude to us, but we *always* begin treating them respectfully...if they in turn are rude, then yeah we do think 'Oh god another old person being an arse because they think they're better than us', but until they give us reason to think that we're very open.

    It doesn't seem like adults are like that towards children / teenagers, do you think? We genuinely aren't rude to anybody until we have a reason to be, and it makes us so happy when we don't have to be :bigsmile:

    I completely agree that kids can be really bloody annoying. When we had some preteens playing knock a door run because they liked hearing Kasper bark (not bothering to think how stressful it was for him) I found it infuriating and really upsetting. We watched where the kids lived and told their parents, and it didn't happen again.

    I don't mind that, I think it's more...the idea of someone correcting a child themselves, rather than telling their parent and letting them sort it out, if that makes sense?

    Then again you bring up a valid point: if the child is doing something towards you, and you ask the parent for help and they do nothing, THEN what do you do?! If the parents of those kids playing knock a door run hadn't put a stop to it, it would have broken me...I get really stressed out when people knock on our door; add to that it was stressing out our newly adopted dog and I wouldn't have coped well.

    So are parents to fault these days because they don't care as much, therefore other people are having to step in?

    Posted By: KatebThe second woman though would have assessed it quickly and her instinct would make her concerns lie with her peer. She may have been just as rude as the first woman - did you explain the situation? She may well have apologised and sided with you!


    We tried to explain, but she was having none of it...this inflated the first woman's head even more and she started screaming at everyone to call the police, after she'd just driven her car into one of us... :sarcastic:
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      CommentAuthorRed
    • CommentTimeDec 12th, 2015 5:12pm (Dec 12th 2015)
     

    Keeper of the hens

    Thanks Kate I really enjoyed reading and thinking about your replies...I do love a good discussion, and I enjoy them far more in a forum setting where you can spend as much time as you like thinking and formulating a reply :smile:
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      CommentAuthorchief chicken
    • CommentTimeDec 12th, 2015 7:18pm (Dec 12th 2015)
     
    Tuppence eats what she catches and those are mostly mice. However she loses a fair few of them and we end up having to hunt them or put traps down and let them go in the morning. On the whole she loves to watch birds and chitter at them but rarely goes after them. As you know we live in a big green space.
    Re kids, yes they ARE ruder because nobody knows who they belong to in these days of dislocated families and they know they can get away with it. Kate's right - if we misbehaved and were seen by a neighbour we got a telling off from them and another when we got home. They are also aware of their 'rights' and run screaming and sometimes lying to police/parents when rebuked. A child has a right to be warm, fed, safe and loved but (as in the case of a friend of mine) telling everyone they've been assaulted when the 6' teenager concerned had had a protractor (small, plastic, light) tossed at his chest is not on.
    I find a sunny smile and 'good morning' at most teenagers renders them stunned and elicits a snigger in most cases. But I persevere...:face-smile:
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      CommentAuthorKateb
    • CommentTimeDec 12th, 2015 8:58pm (Dec 12th 2015)
     
    I love these discussions too - I really enjoy hearing/reading someone else's well reasoned view (as opposed to a "you're wrong" with no justification).

    I think the cat/dog difference is that dogs are pack animals, cats are solitary. Dogs will join up and roam together, but years ago people would still take care of their dog, it would often just be let out to pee on the grass verge because houses didn't have gardens. Nowadays (as you've written about yourself) people aren't as caring with their pets or in control of their dogs. Also a dog is capable of killing a human - I doubt any cat could do that (unless they play the long-game and give them an infected bite to kill them a month later!) We have a small wood next door to our cul-de-sac so I'm not sure if availability is an issue. Maybe - we don't have many birds in the garden. Also have you ever tried to walk a cat on a lead?! It is natural for them to jump and climb, whereas dogs don't have that need. And again you are right that many owners wouldn't give their cats an interesting life. Watch any behavioural programme and the problem with a cat will be boredom and no interaction.

    Your view of adults is very much the same as my view of teenagers. It's also difficult where I live because there are a lot of er, shall we say, not nice people on this estate so you always have to be careful of even making eye contact with some people. Every now and then I'll walk to the shops and if I pass someone elderly will say hello/morning/afternoon and am delighted when they reply, and they always look pleased that someone has done that - there are a lot of isolated elderly people around here. I don't think it's an age thing, it's more of a human nature thing. We are becoming more and more diverse and less tolerant. Years ago parents trusted other adults to reasonably correct their child - adults were more tolerant, kids were more respectful. People who lived in close proximity were from similar backgrounds - nowadays in one street there could be people from a variety of countries, religions, and ethnicities and they don't always have the same values, beliefs and restraints which means it isn't a reasonable thing to do now. Sadly. It worked both ways - kids would be 'disciplined' (shouted at) but they were also protected and cared for. It wasn't all negative!
    As for the woman you came across - mad as a box of frogs!! (Wasn't you was it CC?!) xxx
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      CommentAuthorchief chicken
    • CommentTimeDec 13th, 2015 2:33pm (Dec 13th 2015)
     
    Probably. I'm going to get a t shirt printed with 'DANGER Keep This Bag Away From Children':face-devil-grin:...
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      CommentAuthorRed
    • CommentTimeDec 13th, 2015 6:47pm (Dec 13th 2015) edited
     

    Keeper of the hens

    There was a huge variety of teenagers at my school; my group of friends were somewhere in the middle in that yes we were idiots and had fun, but we were unfalteringly (is that a word? falteringly is a word, why not unfalteringly?) polite to adults. And it got so tedious to always be polite and respectful and never get anything back in return. There was one old woman in the village who would come out and make us wait by the red traffic light, on the pavement, until it went green - then we could carry on. We weren't crossing the road, she actually made us wait when the light was red just to walk on the pavement. This happened until I was about 14 and we always just waited, we were never rude to her.

    The story about the kid and the protractor is funny CC. When we were in Year 8 (so 13 years old) our English teacher at the time had a mean streak...and looking back more than likely a lot of issues. One time he was yelling at us all and proceeded to kick chairs around the classroom whilst shouting. He actually made a hole in the classroom wall. As thirteen year olds this was pretty damn scary, and afterwards a few of us went to our head of year to report what had happened...the head of year ended up telling us off, saying we needed to be careful what we said and stop making accusations. The teacher disappeared soon after.
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      CommentAuthorRed
    • CommentTimeDec 13th, 2015 6:48pm (Dec 13th 2015) edited
     

    Keeper of the hens

    Dogs actually aren't pack animals, and when feral dogs have been studied in other countries they actually don't roam or hunt together at all. Their interactions with each other are brief and fluid. I guess some dogs from the same household might try and stick together if they were let out alone for short periods of times, I know Zoey would try follow Kasper for a while, much to his disdain :bigsmile:

    Yeah, I think cats could be kept happy indoors with proper care, but people wouldn't do it. I think cats are also seen as being an easier pet than dogs...you can let them go out alone (less effort than walking a dog), they tend to be more independent (meaning they can be left whilst you work), and they usually have less behavioural problems. I know quite a few people who opted for a cat over a dog because they work full time, and cats don't need that constant attention or the walks. If a law was put into place saying cats couldn't go out unsupervised, most the people I know who have cats would probably end up rehoming them.

    A significant number of dogs that present with behavioural problems do so because they are untrained and get no exercise or stimulation. It's heartbreaking the number of posts you see on rehoming sites listing dogs from anywhere between 8 weeks old and 10 years old, saying they haven't got the time to walk or train the dog...what were you expecting? I don't know which is worse, an advert listing a puppy they've only had for two days because "it's toileting in the house and biting me" (wow really, an 8 week old puppy?!) or one that's selling a dog a few years old and says "haven't had the time to train her so she doesn't know much and is a bit naughty"...

    Cats could also be taught to walk nicely on a lead or stay close when off lead (it's really just the same as teaching a dog, you should see how most puppies / adult dogs that have never walked on a lead behave in the first few weeks!!), but the problem is people wouldn't put the effort in because cats are seen as being impossible to train. You can train cats, you would just have to put more effort in than the average affable Labrador. Cats would require more effort.

    There are plenty of examples that show cats can be trained, and I don't just mean videos on YouTube of cats doing tricks...in my parents' village there was a cat that would sit outside Co-op for hours, because people fussed it on the way in and out - he offered a behaviour because he was rewarded for it. Similarly there are two cats around here that walk up to people for fuss, especially people they recognise, because they get a good thing for doing so...they are reinforced for doing something and so they do it more, training at its best :bigsmile:

    I know someone who has a cat that actually joins them for dog walks (they have woodland joined onto their house). The cat trots at their heels, explores and even climbs trees as they go - it gets upset if they walk too far away him!
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      CommentAuthorKateb
    • CommentTimeDec 13th, 2015 9:41pm (Dec 13th 2015)
     
    Thing is those cats have trained themselves - we hear loads of anecdotes of cats exhibiting such behaviour, but it tends to be from the very friendly and confident cats, but they only account for about 10%. There are far more timid and scared cats, and they are the ones that really need the understanding owners, and we try to home them accordingly. I really must disagree about how easy it is to train a cat - it's the exception rather than the rule. Cats are mostly nocturnal too - I really hope they don't bring in a law l ike that - I really don't want to go on 6 hour long walks in the middle of the night!!! We have cats surrendered for similar reasons - one woman brought a kitten back after less than 24 hours because it had scratched her - her other cat (which it shouldn't have even met in that timescale) had chased it and it ran across her. She didn't deserve it. Another man brought his cat back because it scratched his leg. The cat had jumped up onto his lap for fuss and he pushed it off - the poor cat was trying to save itself. We have lots of "the cat doesn't like the new puppy/kitten/baby" - people really are stupid aren't they. I think the attraction of a cat is it's independence and a dog it's loyalty.

    I love the traffic light story!!! She was obviously a little eccentric, but how wonderful that you did what she asked and weren't nasty to her. If all kids were like you and your friends then I'd be very happy around them.
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      CommentAuthorchief chicken
    • CommentTimeDec 14th, 2015 5:52pm (Dec 14th 2015)
     
    The kid with the protractor actually accused my friend of assault (she's just over 5 foot tall) and she was hauled in front of the headmaster who thought the whole thing preposterous but 'procedures have to be followed.' That stupid boy could have lost Suzy her job. However she got her own back - she's a supply teacher whose normal role is games teacher. She went back there to cover and guess who she put in goal while she taught the other kids how to shoot...?
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      CommentAuthorRed
    • CommentTimeDec 16th, 2015 6:41pm (Dec 16th 2015) edited
     

    Keeper of the hens

    I think cats are harder to train than most dogs, but I don't think they're as hard as people imagine. A lot of training I use with the dogs I work with is capturing their behaviours, which is simply marking them for behaviours they naturally offer so that they do it more. That would be a good starting point for scaredy cats.

    I think the harder thing with cats would be finding something they find very high value...easy if you've got a cat who loves food or play, harder if your cat snubs most things :smile: I've only done a very small amount of training with cats; it was before I was as experienced with training as I am now and it was confidence training rather than 'trick' training.

    Think of all the people who struggle to train dogs or who don't put the effort in, even with the most basic things. Dogs aren't born understanding how to learn and pick up tricks, they have to be taught how to learn...our youngest two are far better at training than Kasper, despite the fact Rey is just 5 months old and Kasper is half Collie, and I put that down to the fact we began training them instantly...we activated their little sponge brains and they can think for themselves. Whilst Kasper is clearly intelligent and can be trained, he doesn't offer new behaviours and will just sit and wait to be told what to do. I worked with a 6 month old large breed puppy who had difficult picking up even the easiest things - he wasn't stupid, far from it, his owners just hadn't put any time into training him and he had no idea what he was doing!

    Two of my dogs are also not loyal at all, in the traditional sense. Kasper is amazingly independent, but he does have times where he wants to be close and cuddle. The things he wants has to be on his terms though - he will ask to play, he comes to you for snugs etc. He is not the sort of dog who will do whatever you ask him to because he wants to please you, he is the sort of dog who will do what I ask because he has been taught that doing so will result in him being 'paid', either with treats, fuss or a game of tug (the gambling aspect keeps him even more interested!). Zoey on the other hand is a dog who would do things 50% of the time just because somebody wants her to, she hates people being sad or angry.

    Lots of dogs are independent, some breeds are well known for it, just as plenty of breeds of cat describe their personalities as being more 'dog like'. I imagine cats of a certain breed would generally be easier to train than cats of a harder breed, just as most Collies are easier to teach tricks to than most Chow Chows.

    The animals' background also plays a massive part. Someone with experience of animal training who gets a kitten has a much higher chance of blitzing through training than someone who adopts a 5 year old cat that has always been feral. Of course genetics play a part, but in general a younger animal with a nicer start will be easier.

    I follow a lot of cat training blogs with a variety of cats ranging in age, backgrounds and personality, and the results are amazing. Do I think cats are as easy to train as most dogs? No. But I think it's very much possible.

    People always assume that dogs are easy to train, and yes some are...but even in biddable breeds such as Springers or Labradors you find those 'impossible' dogs that require a lot more effort. Then there are breeds like Beagles, who were bred to follow their noses, or most small Terriers who were bred to be independent, tenacious and feisty. It's not a one size fits all with dogs either, and some breeds require a lot more effort and knowledge than others.
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      CommentAuthorRed
    • CommentTimeDec 16th, 2015 6:42pm (Dec 16th 2015)
     

    Keeper of the hens

    Posted By: chief chickenThe kid with the protractor actually accused my friend of assault (she's just over 5 foot tall) and she was hauled in front of the headmaster who thought the whole thing preposterous but 'procedures have to be followed.' That stupid boy could have lost Suzy her job. However she got her own back - she's a supply teacher whose normal role is games teacher. She went back there to cover and guess who she put in goal while she taught the other kids how to shoot...?


    That's really bad. We had something similar happen to a friend of ours who worked in a school, he almost lost his job over something a kid said until it was proven otherwise. I understand why it's so important to listen to kids and take everything they say seriously, but it's scary that lies can have such an impact on someone's career...
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      CommentAuthorKateb
    • CommentTimeDec 16th, 2015 8:15pm (Dec 16th 2015)
     
    Kid thing first - the balance of 'power' has swung in the opposite direction, toward the kids. Some of them exploit this, just as some adults did (I wonder how these kids will fare when they are adults). This is why the adults in professional roles have to be so careful and follow the procedures to the letter to protect themselves. They also rely on the honest kids in the class to support them when they are wrongly accused, or to stand against them if it isn't lies.

    One of my son's teachers used to drink in class, throw things around, shout at the kids ... he couldn't cope with the stress of teaching. The kids reported it and they were told to stop lying or they'd be in trouble. The teacher committed suicide. If the headmaster had listened and got him some support he might've got through it. Very sad.

    Cats - yes some breeds are easier to train but it is mostly down to personality of the individual feline. I see cats of all backgrounds and personalities at rehoming, and often hear stories of how they get on. I think most people who get a cat don't want to train it - they like it's independence - and the owners are just happy that it settles. They are all trained to a certain degree - they know to use a litter tray, how to get fed, let out, stroked etc. They are better at training their humans than vice versa!!! Majority of people that rehome a cat want something friendly, sweet, pretty or strong features, maybe a bit quirky, or something odd (disabled in some way are always popular). Each one looks for something different which is great for the multitude of cats. I've never met a trained one yet, but will keep looking! I think training for dogs is good to ensure they don't get bored - cats are usually self-entertaining. Of mine, I think Meow Meow would be the trainable one - he is destructive when he doesn't get attention, whereas the others aren't.
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      CommentAuthorRed
    • CommentTimeDec 16th, 2015 11:05pm (Dec 16th 2015) edited
     

    Keeper of the hens

    Posted By: KatebThey are better at training their humans than vice versa!!!


    But isn't that just because it's so rare for cat owners to try train their cat behaviours? The fact they are so good at training their owners surely shows how intelligent they are :smile:

    A lot of the cat videos I've seen makes me think it would almost be more fun to train with a cat, or at least very different to dogs - when you watch cats perform tricks they are so different from most the dogs I work with. Dogs tend to be over-enthusiastic and dive into a trick headfirst; for delicate tricks they're often clumsy and fall over their own feet. Cats are precise and delicate and take their time. Some of the more complex tricks look so amazing with cats because they have such incredible balance...in fact it's not even complex tricks, cats have such awesome balance they look amazing doing beg!!

    I think cats can benefit hugely from training too; it's not all just to keep dogs busy and tired. Training can be useful for hundreds of reasons and then there's the fact most dogs reeeaaally enjoy it!

    This article's interesting and raises some good reasons why cat training's awesome, I particularly liked the crate training and body handling ideas.

    https://projectanimals.wordpress.com/2015/08/24/five-best-ways-to-train-your-cat/

    This is a nice point I'd never really considered, but training is an awesome way to get an animal to do something without force...I never thought about it with cats, but being able to send a cat to a mat / into a crate is an easier way to keep them out the way than shutting them out of a room (easy example, I've been wrapping presents and had to send Zoey to a place as she was trying to 'help'!!). The post also mentions that the cat will probably start offering new behaviours in the hope of earning a click, which is what I was trying to say above and which Kasper doesn't do :tooth:

    http://maueyes.com/2015/08/04/why-train/

    Oh and this is a photo from the same blog, it's not about training but this is a good example of an outdoor cat enclosure...I love this for how simple but spacious it is. I talk about outdoor cat pens quite a bit, especially for house cats, and thought this was a really nice example of one :smile:



    This blog has a video of some cat training...look at the cat's grace!! If I was trying to get Kasper to jump up somewhere he'd dive up, miss his footing and probably fall into me :rolling:

    http://diaryofdennis.com/2014/04/19/some-minutes-of-cat-training/
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      CommentAuthorRed
    • CommentTimeDec 16th, 2015 11:14pm (Dec 16th 2015)
     

    Keeper of the hens

    It's funny that disabled cats tend to be popular, that's rarely the case with dogs. How hard do you find older cats to rehome, and what is considered to be an older cat? With dogs it's usually anything over the age of about seven, breed dependent...larger breeds tend to have significantly shorter lifespan and get old earlier.

    I know when we volunteered with the cats there were a few older ones, but they usually found home pretty quickly. The ones over about 13 years seemed to have the most issues, and especially if they had other health problems. With the rescues we have experience with I've always noted there are far more kittens there than puppies too; they come in more often and there's usually a few waiting to be rehomed about at any given time. Does this hold true with your experience?
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      CommentAuthorKateb
    • CommentTimeDec 19th, 2015 9:55pm (Dec 19th 2015)
     
    I haven't read the links yet as I only have 5% battery left, but will do when I get it on charge.

    Older cats is an odd one. They can be really hard to home - we currently have a 14 and 15 year old in homing and they don't get any attention though they are both really fantastic, friendly, gentle cats. Some people think anything over 5 is old! Occasionally people will say they want a kitten so that it "lives longer", but the younger ones go out and get run over whereas older ones stay closer to home. Lots of people have cats that live to 15 plus. People usually fall into 3 categories - kittens, under 5, or happy to take anything depending on personality. (The last group are the favourites with us!!) The other thing - which relates to your original discussion item - is that people underestimate the work involved in a cat. We had 3 brought back this week, 6 weeks after being homed, saying the child is allergic I can't believe it took 6 weeks to find out, more likely they realised the work and cost.

    I'm looking forward to seeing the training items - I'd love to try it but not sure I have the patience! Not sure which cat I'd try it with either - I think Tabby is the only realistic option. Ting Tong is clumsy and nervous, Meow Meow is too busy attacking the others (and them busy keeping one eye open for him). Kitten, being feral means tricks are unlikely but I suppose I've already achieved a degree of training to get her in the house and to trust us. Emmett is too old, and Jenson is very independent so would be difficult. Hmm, Tabby .... !