Wheaten Terrier

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History:  

In Ireland, the terrier was the poor man’s dog, a versatile farm dog who could rid the place of vermin, do a little hunting, and help guard the property against intruders, both animal and human.

Much of the Wheaten’s early history wasn’t recorded, but he probably shares a common ancestor with the Kerry Blue Terrier and the Irish Terrier. They also share a sign that they were working dogs: a docked tail, which told the tax collector that they were exempt from the tax on dogs.

The Wheaten wasn’t recognized as a breed by the Irish Kennel Club until 1937, on St. Patrick’s Day. To win a championship, he was required to qualify in field trials, with rats, rabbits, and badgers as prey, a rule that’s since gone by the wayside.

The first Wheatens arrived in the U.S. in November of 1946. A Boston Globe Post report listed seven of them among the cargo of the freighter Norman J. Coleman, which docked in Boston after journeying from Belfast. Two of the pups went home with Lydia Vogel of Springfield, Massachusetts. Vogel showed them the next year at the Westminster Kennel Club show, and they produced 17 puppies.

It wasn’t until 1962, however, that the Soft Coated Wheaten Terrier Club of America was founded in Brooklyn. Naturally, the first meeting took place on St. Patrick’s Day. Attendees included three canine pioneers of the breed: Holmenocks Gramachree, Gads Hill, and Holmenocks Hallmark.

The American Kennel Club (AKC) recognized the breed in 1973, and Holmenocks Gramachree became the first Wheaten to be registered by the AKC. Today, the breed ranks 62nd in popularity among the 155 breeds and varieties recognized by the AKC.

Description:

The Soft Coated Wheaten Terrier. The moderately long head is rectangular in appearance and in proportion with the body. The strong muzzle is relatively short compared to the skull and has a defined stop. The black nose is large for the size of the dog. The teeth meet in a scissors bite and the lips are black. The wide-set eyes are almond shaped and come in a reddish brown to a medium brown color. Light or yellow eye color can occur but is a breed fault in the written standard. The V-shaped ears fold forward and are level with the skull. The medium-length neck gradually widens into the body. The back is straight, forming a level topline. The front legs are straight and the paws are compact and round with black toenails. The high-set tail is either docked or kept natural. Note: docking tails is illegal in most parts of Europe. Dewclaws are usually removed. The single, wavy coat comes in shades of wheaten. Puppies are born dark brown and lighten to the final adult wheaten color by age two. There are two coat varieties, the American and the Irish. The Irish coat tends to be thinner and silkier.

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Temperament:

The Soft Coated Wheaten Terrier is strong, agile and well-coordinated. It is a happy, playful, spirited and friendly terrier. Alert, it makes a great watchdog and barks at the arrival of guests. It is usually very loving with children and gets along reasonably well with other dogs. An unsocialized dog with a meek owner who does not know how and when to correct negative behaviors may end up with a dog-aggressive dog. Some of these dogs that were not raised with cats may not get along well with them. All it takes is some fast movement on the part of the cat, and the dog’s instincts will take over and he will chase them. The dog needs to be corrected right before it takes off after the cat. These dogs have a puppy attitude that remains with them throughout their lives. They are sweet-tempered, docile and self-confident. This breed needs to be taught, preferably when young, but older dogs can learn what is and is not acceptable behavior. It is very intelligent, so it will generally grasp quickly what is required of it. It has a straightforward nature and needs to be handled in a straightforward manner. Soft Coated Wheaten Terriers bond closely with their family. They seldom bark unnecessarily. The Soft Coated Wheaten should be well socialized with other dogs while it is a young puppy, but adults can learn what is unacceptable behavior if they have an owner who properly communicates with them. In order to have a well-behaved Wheaten, you must be firm, but calm, consistent and confident with the dog. Meek owners will find the dog will easily take over the home and will be hard to control. Do not allow this dog to jump on humans. Jumping dogs are not “greeting” the human. Jumping is a respect and a dominancy issue.

Size:

Height: Males 18 – 20 inches and Females 17 – 19 inches

Weight: Males 35 – 45 pounds and Females 30 – 40 pounds

Life Span: 12 to 15 years

Health:   Prone to protein wasting disease and flea allergies.

Exercise:   Wheaten Terriers are very active dogs they need to go on daily walk.

Grooming:

 When grooming the Soft Coated Wheaten Terrier, the object is to achieve a natural look, and brushing can make the soft coat fuzzy. So using a brush is not recommended. Instead, frequent, even daily, combing of the long, profuse coat with a medium-toothed comb is recommended to keep it free of tangles—beginning when the dog is a puppy. Clean the eyes and check the ears carefully. Bathe or dry shampoo when necessary. The Soft Coated Wheaten Terrier does not shed in the spring and fall, but loose hair should be combed out of the coat from time to time. A well-groomed dog will shed very little. This breed is good for allergy suffers.

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http://www.dogbreedinfo.com/softcoatedwheatenterrier.htm

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Soft-coated_Wheaten_Terrierhttp://

http://www.animalplanet.com/tv-shows/dogs-101/videos/soft-coated-wheaten-terrier/

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Chihuahua

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Description:  Chihuahuas are very small dogs, and are the smallest breed recognized by some kennel clubs.[9] There are two main varieties recognized by kennel clubs, the short-haired and the long-haired.[9] There is a second varietal split as well, having to do with the shape and size of the dog’s head. These two descriptive classifications are “apple head” and “deer head”, but only the apple head is conformationally correct. The body is longer than it is tall. The head is well-rounded, apple in shape and the muzzle is short and pointed with a well-defined stop. Puppies have a soft spot on the top of the skull called a “molera,” which usually closes by adulthood. The large, round eyes are set well apart and are dark, ruby, and may be lighter in white dogs. The erect ears are large. Dewclaws may be removed. The tail is long, sickle-shaped and either curled over the back or to the side. The coat can be short, long and wavy or flat. All colors, both solid, marked or splashed are accepted. Colors include, but are not limited to, black, white, chestnut, fawn, sand, silver, sable, steel blue, black & tan and parti-color.

Temperament:  Chihuahua’s enjoy affection. Brave, cheerful and agile, Chihuahuas can be strong-willed without proper human leadership. They are loyal and become attached to their owners. Some like to lick their owner’s faces. Tempered Chihuahuas can be easily provoked to attack, and are therefore generally unsuitable for homes with small children. The breed tends to be fiercely loyal to one particular guardian and in some cases may become over protective of the person, especially around other people or animals. They do not always get along with other breeds.

Health: This breed requires expert veterinary attention in areas such as birthing and dental care. Chihuahuas are also prone to some genetic anomalies, often neurological ones, such as epilepsy and seizure disorders. Many Chihuahuas have molleras, or a soft spot in their skulls, and they are the only breed of dog to be born with an incomplete skull. This is not a defect; it is a normal adaptation facilitating the passage through the birth canal and growth and development of the domed type of forehead. The molera is predominant in the rounder heads often and is present in nearly all Chihuahua puppies. The molera fills in with age, but great care needs to be taken during the first six months until the skull is fully formed. Some moleras do not close completely and if particularly large will require extra care to prevent injury. Many veterinarians are not familiar with Chihuahuas as a breed and mistakenly confuse a molera with hydrocephalus. 

Chihuahuas can also be at risk for hypoglycemia, or low blood sugar, which is especially dangerous for puppies. Left unattended, hypoglycemia can lead to coma and death but can be avoided with frequent feedings, especially for chihuahuas who are younger, smaller or leaner. Chihuahua guardians should have a simple sugar supplement on hand to use in emergencies, such as Nutri-Cal, Karo syrup and honey. These supplements can be rubbed on the gums and roof of the mouth to rapidly raise the blood sugar level. Signs of hypoglycemia include lethargy, sleepiness, low energy, uncoordinated walking, unfocused eyes and spasms of the neck muscles or head pulling back or to the side, fainting and seizures. Chihuahuas have a tendency to tremble or shiver when stressed, excited or cold. Chihuahuas, especially the short-coat variety, are less tolerant of cold than larger breeds, and may require a sweater or boots in cold weather. They will seek warmth in sunshine, under blankets, or on furniture, human laps or the back of a larger dog. Chihuahuas have a notorious problem with dental issues. Dental care is a must for these little creatures. Over-feeding and insufficient exercise can result in an overweight Chihuahua. Overweight Chihuahuas are susceptible to increased rates of joint injuries, tracheal collapse, chronic bronchitis, and shortened life span. 

Size: Weights ranges 2-6 pounds for both Male and females

Height ranges from 6-10 inches tall for both male and females

Grooming: The smooth, shorthaired coat should be gently brushed occasionally or simply wiped over with a damp cloth. The long coat should be brushed daily with a soft bristle brush. Bathe both types about once per month, taking care not to get water in the ears. Check the ears regularly and keep the nails trimmed. This breed is an average shedder.

Lifespan: Chihuahua usually live to be about 15-20 years old

Exercise: Although it is tempting to carry these dainty creatures about, these are active little dogs that need a daily walk. Play can take care of a lot of their exercise needs, however, as with all breeds, play will not fulfill their primal instinct to walk. Dogs that do not get to go on daily walks are more likely to display a wide array of behavior problems, as well as neurotic issues. They will also enjoy a good romp in a safe open area off lead, such as a large, fenced-in yard.

Do Hypoallergenic Dogs Actually Exist?

The short answer is, no. However, I imagine you all require some evidence to back up this claim.

First things first; what even causes a persons’ allergic reaction to dogs? Proteins contained in the saliva and urine of dogs attaches to the dead skin cells (dander) and is released into the air. When a person who is allergic to dogs breathes in that dander their body has a hypersensitive response, attacking the rather harmless substance and causing itchy eyes, a stuffy or runny nose, and sneezing.

Some people have mistakenly made a correlation between the allergenic nature of a dog and the amount of hair a dog produces; this assertion just isn’t so. In fact, hair is the same thing as fur, as both hair and fur have an identical chemical make-up. Only a linguistic difference stands between hair and fur. Fur usually refers to hair on non-human animals, and hair usually refers to fur on humans.

The American Kennel Club highlights eleven alleged hypoallergenic breeds: Bedlington Terrier, Kerry Blue Terrier, Schnauzer, Bichon Frise, Maltese, Soft Coated Wheaten Terrier, Chinese Crested, Poodles, Xoloitzcuintli, Irish Water Spaniel, and Portuguese Water Dog.

In July of 2011 an article was published by the American Journal of Rhinology and Allergy which compared the allergen levels of hypoallergenic dogs to non-hypoallergenic dogs.

The study by Henry Ford Hospital researchers looked at 173 households containing a single dog one month after bringing home a newborn and tested dog allergen levels in the house. Among the 173 dogs, there were 60 breeds, 11 of which were hypoallergenic breeds.

From an article by SciencyDaily.com pertaining to this study:

“Based on public web site claims of hypoallergenic breeds, dogs were classified as hypoallergenic using one of four “schemes” based on their breed for comparing allergen levels. Scheme A compared purebred hypoallergenic dogs to purebred non-hypoallergenic dogs; Scheme B compared purebred and mixed breed dogs with at least one hypoallergenic parent to purebred non-hypoallergenic dogs; Scheme C compared purebred and mixed breed dogs with at least one hypoallergenic parent to purebred and mixed breed dogs with no known hypoallergenic component; Scheme D compared only purebred dogs identified as hypoallergenic by the American Kennel Club to all other dogs.”

When comparing these four schemes, the Henry Ford researchers found no statistical difference between alleged hypoallergenic dogs and non-hypoallergenic dogs.

In summation: the amount of allergens released differs between each individual dog, regardless of breed. There are no consistent differences in amounts of allergens concerning specific breeds, including those breeds labeled by the AKC as “hypoallergenic.”

If you would like to read the study in its entirety, you can find it presented online right here.