AppleYard's wishes to welcome Elizebeth "Lizzie" Horstmann as our new Puppy's Other Mother managing directror. Lizzie is a Senior finishing her High School career at Fulton Montgomery College with plans of one day attending Cornell University to study veterinary medicine.
Long an animal lover, Lizzie also breeds Miniature Rex and Holland Lop rabbits. She is dedicated to managing AppleYard's program of puppy socialization to insure that all puppies leaving AppleYard go forth with their hearts full of love and devotion.
All the dogs and pups at AppleYard wish Lizzie much success in her new endeavor.
After half a century of observing well intentioned folk trying to select their perfect puppy, it becomes obvious there are two major mistakes that most people make:
First: Most will go forth with a preconceived notion of what will make the perfect family pet. Such questions as: I only want a female dog? I want a small dog? I want a dog that doesn’t shed that much? I want a dog like the one I saw on television? I want a dog like my neighbor’s?, I want a dog that will get along with my cat?...
Second Mistake: “I will let the puppy choose me.” Not only the second biggest mistake people make when buying a pup, but one that makes no sense whatsoever. Just because the first puppy who runs toward you may seem like some sort of kismet, it just ain’t so. If you go back a second day, it is just as likely that a different puppy may consider “choosing” you. It may be that the first puppy who runs up to you is the most aggressive pup in the litter, and maybe you don’t want an alpha pup in your household...or maybe, he just likes the smell of your feet.
However, now that you have left all of your prepossessed options behind, let’s consider how best to look at a litter of puppies.
If the breeder is an experience dog person, then it is wise to ask for some advice to aid in your consideration. After all, the kennel keeper has spent at least eight weeks with these guys, and more than likely has some knowledge of their personalities, traits, and demeanors. She (or he) may well be the best person to ask to determine the character of each of the pups, and the one best suited to you.
For instance, if you have a young and vibrant family you may decide you would like a more dominate or alpha characteristic in your puppy to go along with your fast-paced lifestyle.
Contrarily, if you are older and live a more sedentary circumstance, you may be more inclined toward a less aggressive trait in your new puppy.
Or, perhaps you live in a apartment and as your dog matures he will be content with less activity. He may be more willing to join you in a more complacent lifestyle. Then it would be smart to choose a pup with a quieter and more recessive personality.
Regardless of the breeders recommendations, there are some biases there are very well justified. If, for instance, while observing the litter one of the pups strikes you as being too rough or too rude toward his siblings, then you may exercise your prejudice toward bullying. If the blonde curly hair reminds you too much of your brother-in-law, then too, you may dissent.
But more so, if you spot a pup that moves you, then let your inner most karma reign and offer due consideration whether or not the puppy is male or female, big or small, quiet or rambunctious. You are going to spend countless hours and years with your new-found companion and it truly has to be love at first sight...all else being equal.
As a general rule, pups that show aggression during puppyhood, will continue to be more “alpha” in their adult life. Likewise, pups that are early less extroverted will continue to be more taciturn later in life.
Also, in general, males make the best companions being somewhat less temperamental and a little more stable in their nature. Also males tend to shed much less if that is a consideration in your household.
Of course there are a variety of “Puppy Evaluation Test” or “Puppy Aptitude Test” available on the Internet if you so inclined to go that extra step.
In general, allow your heart to lead without prejudice, or attention to folklore and for sure you will have made the right choice of a loving companion.
Tail Wagging Super Delicious
Hyper Nutritious, Salubriously Auspicious,
English Shepherd Dog Treats
2 cups flour
3 Tsp. of Baking Powder
2 Tsp. Salt
2 cups oatmeal (quick cooking)
4 cups wheat bran (or crumbled up bran cereal)
2 cups hot bullion (microwave chicken or beef)
large scoop of peanut butter
large scoop of jelly
4 eggs or whatever you have available
1 Tbs. of molasses or brown sugar
Stir peanut butter/jelly in hot bullion to completely dissolve mix.*
Stir together flour, baking powder, salt, eggs, molasses and oatmeal with peanut butter/jelly/hot bullion mix before adding wheat bran...makes mixing easier.
Then stir in enough wheat bran or crumbled cereal to make a stiff cookie mixture. (You may have to add some extra)
Dollop the dough on a no oil cookie sheet and bake at 350 degrees for 12-15 minutes.
Dogs love them, keeps your best friend regular and really makes coats shine. Good stuff.
*For an extra special nutritious treat substitute one can of mackerel (mashed) along with its liquid content instead of the peanut butter and jelly. Eliminate the bullion, but then add just enough water to complete the mix.
“Thomas Jefferson believed that farmers were the most honest people because they had daily, direct contact with the world that God created, and therefore they had daily direct contact with God. He considered farmers to be the "purest" people, untainted by trying to keep up with busy city life, and so they were the people that would keep the nation morally sound”.
Oh! For the life of a farmer. You just can’t beat the leisure, affluence, and luxury of today's dairy farmer. Talk about a bed of roses, why these bucolic family couples rise and shine long before sunrise and merrily go off to the milking parlor to milk and attend to one hundred or more gentle bovine. What a joy it must be; twice each day, rain or shine, to be able to fill your days... seven each week... with meaningful chores with such generous rewards.
Why for an investment of a million dollars or more, you are privy to the satisfaction of knowing that you will receive less than one third of the consumer’s price for your product. It must truly be rewarding to know that your healthful, sanitary commodity is being enjoy by a grateful nation who pays tribute to your sacrifice with due sincerity and appreciation for your labors.
And, added to the many perks and benefits of the job, you also enjoy the fun-filled prospects of daily rolling the dice with Mother Nature herself. Think of the excitement and captivating prospects of dealing with drought or flood from season to season. How amusing to risk your livelihood on an all but daily basis. Why the life of today’s farmer is overflowing with entertainment and excitement.
Who could ask for anything more?
How the dogs of AppleYard love to play and frolic in the early morning hours. However, if one were to observe these same guys later in the day, one may conclude they were merely a pack of lazy fellows lounging and dawdling about all day long.
But, contrary to what one may see later in the day, the early morning’s belong to a frisky bunch of revelers whose antics are beyond description. All are included in the doggy circus of roust-abouts... prancing, leaping, racing, tackling, wrestling, chewing, biting, nipping like a band of brawlers.
Why it verges on homicide...no absolute bedlam. What incredible antics are displayed by this marauding bevy of hellions. Any rational bystander might well assume this hellish cavorting was a genuine attack of maniacal canines.
To the neophyte spectator, these lobo spawns roughhouse without mercy, compassion, benevolence, charity or leniency. Why these engaging curs appear to be tearing at the throats of their opponents with ferocity while menacing any who would come their opponent’s rescue. This display of violence might well give one pause to consider how innocence these ruffians appear while in the guise of devoted house pets.
The moral of the story is simple. If you chose to continuing thinking of your darling house pet as a gentle bundle of sweetness, avoid any tendency to view the alter ego of your housemate during early morning playtime.
In the most recent meeting of the “AppleYard English Shepherd Society and Coterie,” the group was meeting on the front porch to avoid the cold November rain and wind.
It was little Beauragard, Shep’s grandson and group newbie, who first spoke up to inquire: "Who was that nice lady visiting here Saturday? The one who brought along her Tobi and Rylee? She was nice. I liked her.
“Because you are new here you probably haven’t met her before. That was Laura, the Kennel Director, who comes by from time to time to take the Old Coot’s pulse and certify he is still warm and breathing. She also gives him his marching orders”, explained Miss Holly.
“Marching orders!” Countered Miss Molly, “More like stumbling orders if you ask me”.
“Now, Miss Molly you must remember our most important tenet in Dog Lore. Never bite nor demean the hand that feeds us. You would do well to mind your manners”, scolded Lady Doodles, the pack's matron.
“Well, I liked her a lot, and gave her lots of puppy kisses”, added little Beau.
“Which only contributed to her addiction, you foolish little pup” commented Miss Holly. “Poor Laura has been fighting her obsession for years”.
“You mean Laura suffers from a dependence? queried little Beau further. What is her drug habit”?
“Puppy Breath” responded Miss Bonnie. “I detected her weakness the first time I met her. Poor thing, I understand she has suffered this malady since childhood. I believe it is uncureable so there is little that can be done for her. Oh, how her family suffers from her weakness. Especially her long suffering, but enduring Husband, Lou. I understand he is a rock who has had to accommodate her craving for years”.
“But...how about all the other people visiting her on Saturday”? continued Little Beau. “What was that all about”?
“It was Puppy Pick-up Day at AppleYard. All of Miss Polly’s guys were ready to go to their new homes, and their new owners were here to claim their new pups and receive their ‘New Owner’ orientation”, explained Miss Rowdy. “It is always an exciting day for everyone here at AppleYard. What fun for all”.
“And, what really nice people”, continued Miss Rowdy. It is always reassuring to know what lengths Laura goes to make certain our guys only go to loving and caring new homes".
“Furthermore, the lengths she goes to follow up on how the little guys are doing as well”, added Lady Doodles. “She is really dedicated to keeping track of their progress”.
“I don’t know who is more concerned about the puppies’ future, Old Jim or Laura”. They both seem to do a lot of worrying about the pups”, said Miss Molly.
“Yeah, you guys, but what about Laura’s problem, is there no remedy”? asked Beau.
“Oh, she will be fine. I believe her husband is getting the family together after the Holidays to plan an intervention session. One of the most important roads to recovery is first convincing the subject there is a problem to begin with.” explain Lady Doodles.
Well, in that case, it hasn’t a chance of working for her. Some people develop a craving, but poor Laura has a real hang-up with puppy breath. There is no know cure for this weakness. She and her family must just learn to live with it”, concluded Miss Bonnie.
By James T. Hammond
Shep and I walk more slowly of late,
Neither too sure of our tread.
We step into darkening shadows
Of our December years,
Cautious of mysteries lurking
In the dusky pathways ahead.
Together our time counts most precious,
For in spite of our faltering gait,
Views of those yesterday memories
Seem to focus more clearly our fate.
Recalling the challenge of tempest storms,
Thinking of past winter’s cold
And summer’s torturous heat,
Along with sufferings untold.
Hard working guys, we will forever
Revere those hardy memories of old.
Sinew drawn and tendon strain
For whatever our chores demanding.
Our days were long and our breaths drew short
For whatever the task withstanding.
Shep since a pup and I long ago both bent,
Me now three score half still counting.
Together we have worked this thankless old farm,
Some ovine, bovine, poultry and crops,
Some lingering debts still mounting.
Not much of a place -- ramshackle, rundown,
And might be too humble for some.
But for my dog and me
There is more here you see,
For this old place our home has become.
From Shep’s point of view he would ask
No grander manor from which to preside --
The meadows his fiefdom, the barns his domain,
The fields are his kingdom, green pastures his pride
He is the sentinel, protector, warden,
And readily on call.
Grunting porcine, lowing cattle or blatting ovine
Shep somehow looks after them all.
Nights of pleasure, days of work,
Sweep sweet reveries to the fore.
Shep was a man among ladies
And many gals he was known to adore.
A handsomer dandy never lived,
As proved by his puppies galore.
How the girls loved, revered and idolized
This strutting, dancing devil
And proud was he as the lassies by three
Were often seduced to his revel.
To the pups he was just Dad, a wonderful guy,
In spite of his raucous deportment.
His pups would all romp and would dangle in play --
One from his mane, a second his ear,
still another his tail.
What a wondrous, glorious assortment.
Never a growl, a whimpered complaint,
While watching his offspring eat off his plate.
Although hungry he may be, his children you see,
Always caused him to patiently wait.
When Shep took command of the field
Neither critter, nor creature dared to ignore.
His presence, his bearing, signaled to all
This good English Shepherd’s guidance
Was inherent from centuries before.
No beast afield would dare test,
Nor challenge or attempt to engage,
To cause this farm collies’ payment
Of a reminder's penalty wage.
He was dashing; he was gallant,
Strong, true, intrepid, noble, robust --
He was both fearless and bold.
Spirited, dauntless, and always
A friend of unquestionably trust.
Search the entire world over
And, I'm sure you will never find
A truer friend or more passionate ally.
None to compare to my standby old chum.
That’s my Shep, this wonderful guy.
But now as we sit in silent shadows out back,
In the tint of the old willow tree,
The evening turns chill and we lingering and will
To lengthen our few moments left.
No more will we run, we can’t play by the creek,
Nor tour into town for a spree.
We will be passing soon, forgotten by most,
Still devoted one to another.
Either refusing to go, for we know it is so,
There will be no one to care for the other.
James T. Hammond
"Have you seen Miss Polly's new litter yet"? Inquired Miss Bonnie, the youngest of the girls here at AppleYard.
"Oh Certainly", replied lady Doodles. " And, they are the most darling. Miss Polly always has the most beautiful puppies. As Well as her being one of our best mothers".
"I can't wait to have my first litter," responded Miss Bonnie. "They are just so warm and cuddly".
"Well", Lady Doodles quickly added, "You may have some misgivings about that when you are in the throws of labor. Actually it is somewhat of a surprise to the Boss that Miss Polly turned out as well as she did. Growing up, Miss Polly really gave the Old Coot fits. As a teen-ager she was all but unmanageable. I can still hear the tirade of cussing the Old Man spewed forth when he discovered that Miss Polly had killed one of his chickens.
"Oh! That was a bad day for all of us". added Miss Molly. "I thought he was going to lose it that day. Of course, there are times when it is difficult for me to stick up for my sister...half sister actually...we have different mothers. She really was a problem child growing up.
Oh, My goodness", gulped Miss Bonnie. "What happened"?
"Well", explained Lady doodles, "The Boss grabbed her by the scruff of the neck and put her in a tiny coop with the dead chicken, and there she stayed for almost a week. Just sitting there sulking for a week with no company but the victim she murdered. She got kibble and water, but otherwise she was left to contemplate her deed. At the end of the week she smelled almost as bad as the dead chicken".
"Oh, my goodness", cried Miss Bonnie. "How horrible. Not only the crime, but the punishment. Was she even allowed visitors while she was imprisoned like that"?
"No visitors, just time to think about what she had done", replied Lady doodles. "She should have know better, but she was just one of those impulsive kids. She just didn't think about the consequences. Think for a moment about the poor chicken? What a horrible panic she must have experienced before dying. Don't be too concerned about Miss Polly. Just think about the rest of us experiencing the wrath of Jim. When that Old Boy gets going he can scare the fur off your backside".
"Did Miss Polly ever bother the chickens again"? questioned Miss Bonnie.
"Don't be silly. Nobody ever bothered the chickens after that incident. The cure to chicken killing is an old one practiced by the old time farmers around the Country.
"How about the time Miss Polly dug out under the fence out back"? asked miss Holly. "That was the worst night of my life. Miss Polly persuaded me to go with her and we went on a romp all over the neighborhood. She was just the craziest pup ever. You know what happened that night, don't you? I ended up running up on the neighbor's deck and right into their swimming pool. There was no way out for me. If the people in the house didn't hear my barking and yelping, I surely would have drown. They dragged me out and called Jim".
" What did Jim do then" asked Miss Rascal?
"He lead me back home and let it be known to Miss Polly that he didn't much care whether or not she followed. He opened the back gate and let us back in. After that experience I sure wouldn't go near the opening in the back fence again, and Miss Poly had lost her enthusiasm for her late night escapades. The next morning Jim filled the hold back in, and no one seemed to want to challenge the fencing arrangement again".
Lady Doodles added: "Is it a surprise to anyone to hear of these antics given what we know of Miss Polly today? Wow. Talk about a transformation. Today she is the most diligent, responsible, compassionate mom in the pack. no one would ever believe how wild and reckless her adolescent years were back in the time she first came to AppleYard from Louisiana. She is one of those Earth Angels English Shepherds, you know".
"That is an often told tale of growth and maturity in many families, Sometimes it is the carefree black sheep who turn out to become our best parents and citizens. " continued Lady Doodles. "I guess it proves that we all deserve a second chance in life to grow and prove our potential".
The girls, along with young Beauragard, were gathered in the kennel’s front yard to take advantage of the last warming rays of the autumn morning sun. It was Lady Doodles, the pack’s matron, who was relating a story to the assembled pack.
“It seems that some fifty or more years ago when our Kennel Keeper, Jim, was living and working in Atlanta as a Corporate Public Relations junior executive...”
“...You mean Company Liar, don’t you”? interrupted Miss Molly
“We can all do without your sarcasm, Miss Molly”, continued Lady Doodles. “It seems that Jim was required to attend several late evening meetings as part of his responsibilities. Because he felt guilty about leaving his little English Shepherd pup home alone, he often brought Jenny along with him and let her wait in the car while he was performing his late night corporate image building”.
“Well, it seems that one evening when he was coming out out of his office with several Junior League ladies including Senator Herman Talmadge...who never missed an opportunity to curry favor with the ‘beautiful people‘ among his constituents...when one of the ladies who knew Jim well, inquired if he had his pup Jenny with him tonight.
Lady Doodles continued: “Well then, Jim went to his car in the parking lot and let little Jenny out. Being an English Shepherd...who by the way has but one grand fault...that of being much too friendly... Jenny ran immediately to the assemble group awaiting her arrival and jumped and barked and dashed about with all of the excitement of a energetic puppy. Oh, how all the girls loved the little puppy whose enthusiasm became impulsively contagious. They all cooed and petting the little pup with gaiety and fever”.
“Of course, it goes without saying that with the grace of a typical politician and the savvy for gaining the favor of his electors, the good Senator Talmadge maneuvered so he would be in a position to sweep young Jenny up into his arms to display his admiration for this favorite object of the ladies‘ attention”.
“With elaborate fanfare and flourish the Senator cradled and petted the puppy with a display of adoration”.
Lady Doodles went on to explain that all of the sudden there was a moment of silent panic...that pregnant pause when in the excitement of the moment...Jenny peed down the front of the Senator’s custom tailored suit. The gathering was aghast. What an embarrassing predicament.
But with his usual aplomb, the good Senator casually placed Jenny back down and remarked: “My good friend and colleague Harry Truman once remarked that ‘if you want a friend in Washington, get a dog’.
“I might ad, there is nothing quite so leveling as a friend’s honest opinion of you. Sometimes even a cute little puppy can help correct a self image”.
Only a politician could be so gracious...and only an innocent puppy could be so candid in expressing her fondness for all people both humble and the distinguished.
“Rabbits! Rabbits? What will that old fool be thinking of next?” exclaimed Miss Molly, the most excitable of all the girls at AppleYard. “What will become of us”?
“Oh cool your toenails”, calmed Lady Doodles. It’s a dozen or more bunny rabbits up near the house in the new rabbit warren Jim has been building. Actually, they are very cute. I particularly like the chocolate and the blue coloring. Imagine, getting a real live chocolate bunny for Easter. Wouldn’t that be fun”?
“Oh, I think they are adorable” sighed Miss Bonnie who is the true romantic in the pack and believes there is good and happiness in everything around her. “They are so perky and jolly”.
“But the ears? What happened to their ears? They flop down on the side of their head. Isn’t that odd, don’t you think”? questioned Miss Holly.
“Their ears are like that because they are called ‘Lops’. There are French Lops and English Lops, Fuzzy Lops, Mini Lops, Lion Lops and I suppose several other breeds as well. But, I overheard the old man up at the house explaining to someone that these were Holland Lops...the smallest of he Lop family” lectured Miss Molly.
“Well, won’t that be fun for Old Shep? You know he considers himself the mighty hunter. He will be sniffing around up there all day just wasting his time”. Complained Miss Rowdy.
“Well isn’t that news for all of us. He’s a guy dummy”! countered Miss Molly. “When will you catch on to the fact that apart from sniffing around and wasting time that is about all men have to do”.
“Hey, you guys, I represent that”, chuckled the baby pup Beau. “I’m right here you know when you put us guys down. Grandpa Shep says it is up to the women folk to run the pack, take responsibility for the care and feeding, nurse the sick, provide for the young...and us guys have to take care of the important things like world peace, weighing questions about the universe and pondering eternal youth.
“Ain’t that the truth” agreed Lady Doodles with a smirk.