Friday, August 31, 2018

Winter has something to say...

Hi everyone,Winter here!  I'm taking over the blog to share an extra special review with you!  As the youngest collie in the family, I wanted to try doing a review all by myself! 

One of my favorite things to do is to take a long hike with my family.  We get to explore new places, with all kinds of new smells.  But all that walking sure makes me one hungry puppy!  Fortunately, my friends at sent us one of their special Goody Boxes!  They have one for birthdays, one that contains grain free treats,and one that contains items made in the USA.  Did you know they made these?  They even make them for kitties!

We were sent the Grain-free Goody box from our friends at Chewy.  And oh dog, was I excited to see what was inside!  I couldn't wait to get my paws on this box!

Just look at all this stuff!  Six kinds of treats and a new toy!  Mom said I am sure one lucky duck dog!  And I have to agree, even if I have to share the treats with the other collies.  Check out what wrote about what they put in every Grain free Goody Box:

  • Five or more full-size goodies from premium brands, all grain-free.
  • Handpicked gifts for dogs of all sizes. Recommended for dogs of all ages except for LID food for adult dogs.
  • Great savings on everyday prices on this selection of treats, food and toys, plus free shipping on every Chewy Goody Box order!
  • Surprise your own precious pooch, or give the Chewy Goody Box to friends and family as a thoughtful pet gift box.
  • It’s great for special occasions, new pet adoptions, pet birthdays or a special present for any day of the year.
I couldn't wait to try every delicious treat, and they were so yummy I didn't even mind sharing!  I am hoping I can convince Mom to get me the Birthday Goody Box when my birthday rolls around in January.  (paws crossed!)  I think you should all get your dogs and kitties a Goody box for their birthdays or Gotcha days...or even just because you love us!

Thanks Chewy for sending this Goody box.  (which we received for free, so I could share my honest O-paw-nion with all of you!)

Tuesday, August 28, 2018

Drug sensitivity in herding breeds

What is MDR1? 
Multi-drug resistance 1, or MDR1, is a gene mutation found in many herding breeds.  This mutation causes toxic levels of certain drugs to build up in the brain; which leads to severe neurological problems, such as seizures and death.  It is estimated that around 75% of all collies have the MDR1 mutation, so all collie owners should be aware of which drugs are potentially harmful to their dogs.  If you are concerned that your collie, or herding breed, may have this mutation, there is now a simple, inexpensive DNA test offered.  For around $70, and with just a quick cheek swab, you can have your dog tested.

How does a dog end up with this mutation?  Each collie receives one allele, or gene, from each of it's parents.  Dogs that receive a "normal" MDR1 gene from each parent are +/+ (homozygous normal) or normal/normal.  All offspring from these parents will be clear of the MDR1 mutation, and will not be sensitive to the drugs listed below.

Dogs that receive a "normal" gene from one parent, and a "mutant" gene from the other parent are +/- (heterozygous).  While they are considered to be only carriers of the mutation, studies have found that they may also be sensitive to certain drugs.  These dogs will pass along the mutant gene to half of their offspring.

Dogs that receive a "mutant" gene from both of their parents are -/- or mutant/mutant. (homozygous mutant)  Dogs that are mutant/mutant are very sensitive to certain drugs, such as Ivermectin, and will pass on the mutation to all of their offspring.  According to the Collie Health Foundation and other leading researchers, the low dose of Ivermectin found in monthly heartworm medications will not cause a reaction.  However, many collie owners and breeders still choose to avoid use of any products containing Ivermectin, preferring to exercise caution instead.

Because of the need for caution, if your dog tests mutant/mutant or normal/mutant, you should make sure that any veterinarian treating your dog is aware of the risks of using certain drugs.  You will also want to make sure your dog does not ingest horse feces, because horses are treated with large quantities of Ivermectin and the drug is eliminated from their bodies in their feces.

Herding breeds at risk:
Australian Shepherds
Collies (rough and smooth)
English Shepherds
German Shepherds
Long-haired Whippets
Shetland Sheepdogs
Silken Windhounds
and any mixed-breeds with any of these breeds in their ancestry.

Dogs with the MDR1 Gene Defect should avoid the following drugs:

 Class A

Ivermectin substances (antiparasitics, such as Diapec, Ecomectin, Equimax, Ivomec, Noromectin, Paramectine, Qualimec, Sumex, Virbamec)

Doramectine substances (antiparasitics such as Dectomax)

Loperamide substances (antidiarrheal, such as Imodium)

Moxidectine substances (antiparasitcs such as Cydectin, Equest, Flagyl)

Class B (used only under CLOSE supervision of veterinarian):

Cytostatics (chemotherapy)

Immunosuppressive (Cyclosporine A)

Heart glycosides (Digoxine, Methldigoxine)

Opiods (Morphium)

Antiarrthymics (Verapamil, Diltiazem, Chinidine)

Antiemetics (Ondansetron, Domperidon, Metoclopramide)

Antibiotics (Sparfloxacin, Grepafloxacin, Erythromycin)

Antihistamin (Ebastin)

Glucocortoid (Dexamethason)

Acepromazine (tranquilizer and pre-anesthetic agent)

Butorphanol (analgesic and pre-anesthetic agent)






Class C (used in permitted application form and dose):




When choosing a veterinarian for your dog, please make sure they are educated on the MDR1 mutation and know which drugs pose a risk to your dog.  You should also keep a list when you are traveling with your dog, because not every veterinarian is aware of these potentially harmful drugs and in some emergency situations time is limited.

For herding breeds, there is an old saying - Got white feet?  Be careful before you treat!

Monday, August 27, 2018

Awwww....Monday is here again!

I am not a fan of Monday.  Mainly because it means leaving my collies and going back to work.  Don't get me wrong, I love my job, but I wish one of my collies could come with me!  But here we are another Monday, but to make your Monday a little sweeter, we are joining the "Awwww" Monday bloghop.  It's a hop designed to make you smile and say....Awwwww!  It's hosted by Comedy Plus and this is our first time joining.

This picture is from when Ryder was just a puppy, looks like he shares my feelings about Mondays!

Sunday, August 26, 2018

The collies share a review for #NationalDogDay

It's not a secret that dogs love the taste of peanut butter, and the collies are no exception.  And you've read our previous product reviews, I am sure you have noticed the trend, the collies love treats!  This month our friends at offered Bil-Jac Gooberlicious dog treats for a product review, and I was excited because I already knew the collies love them.  This is actually one of their favorite treats, so I jumped at the chance to have them do a review of this product.

What makes these treats so special?  Well, they are small, and very soft, and apparently they are highly addicting....if you are a dog!

Their small size make them ideal for training, and the peanut butter flavor always gets the collies drooling.  Maizie used them to practice her "leave it" this morning, which was a challenge for her as she loves these so much!

Ryder practiced "leave it" at the Nursing Home today, just look at that concentration!

You can check out the ingredients here:

Chicken Liver, Chicken, Chicken Meal, Wheat Flour, Glycerin, Phosphoric Acid, Salt, Potassium Sorbate and Citric Acid and Mixed Tocopherols and Calcium Propionate and BHA (preservatives), Titanium Dioxide Color, Natural Peanut Butter Flavor, Rosemary Extract.

And here are the Key Benefits:

  • Scrumptious, tantalizing treats feature real fresh chicken liver and chicken as the first two ingredients, along with natural peanut butter flavor.
  • Soft, chewy morsels are an ideal positive reward training treat and the perfect bite-sized bits for small breed dogs.
  • At less than 3 calories each, these tasty treats are a great-tasting, guilt-free way to let your best friend know how much he means to you.
  • Bil-Jac has been made in the USA since 1947; never contains gluten meals, soy or added rendered fat.
  • Resealable double-zipper pouch helps keep the irresistible aroma, taste and texture fresh.

Since today was National Dog Day, we took these treats on our walks and to the Nursing Home, as today was a day to spoil our best friends.  But you don't need a special occasion to buy these for treats for your dogs, because every day should be National Dog Day!  Just click right HERE to order some for your best friends!  The collies swear these are one of their favorite treats, and would those faces lie?

We were sent this package of Bil-Jac treats in exchange for our honest opinion.  The collies were not paid for this review!

Saturday, August 25, 2018

I and Love and You...and your dogs will too!

I love my collies dearly, they bring me joy and happiness every day.  So when I choose a dog treat for them, I want the company making those treats to put quality ingredients into every bite.  We love doing product reviews as it helps us discover new foods, treats and toys, and allows us to share them with our readers. knows that pet bloggers are a great way to reach pet owners, and it helps new customers find products they can trust.  That's just one of the many reasons we are so excited to be part of the #ChewyInfluencers campaign.  This month Chewy sent us packages of dog treats from I and Love and You, a company that really cares about our pets.

I and Love and You Jerky treats come in multiple flavors, and our friends at sent us a three pack, so we could try them all!  I loved this idea, because for those with picky eaters, they can try a couple varieties to find which one their finicky friend will love best.  Now, it's no secret that the collies are not choosy, they love most varieties of dog treats.  But I was curious, would they show a preference for one of these flavors of jerky treats?

They loved them all!  I could not discern if they found one variety more tasty than the others, they seemed to find them all to be drool-worthy!  Check out the ingredient list, and key benefits:

Key Benefits
  • With three recipes made with real meat as the first ingredient, including beef, lamb, chicken, duck, and salmon.
  • Tender and chewy treats are perfectly bite-sized so they’re great for dogs of all sizes
  • Perfect for training or anytime your pal deserves a tasty, high-protein, all-natural treat.
  • Made with premium, handpicked ingredients like New Zealand lamb and North American beef.
  • Lovingly made in the USA with never any fillers, grains, or artificial flavors, colors or preservatives.
Chicken + Salmon: Chicken, Salmon, Glycerin, Brown Sugar, Salt, Natural Mesquite Smoke Flavor, Mixed Tocopherols (Natural Preservative).

Chicken + Duck: Chicken, Duck, Glycerin, Brown Sugar, Salt, Natural Maple Smoke Flavor, Mixed Tocopherols (Natural Preservative).

Beef + Lamb: Beef, Lamb, Glycerin, Brown Sugar, Salt, Natural Hickory Smoke Flavor, Mixed Tocopherols (Natural Preservative).

Our friends at sent us these treats in exchange for an honest review, we were not reimbursed for this post.  The collies really did love them, and they were the perfect size for training or for taking into the ring at dog shows.  I think they will make a yummy treat for any dog, no matter if they are big or small.  You can order yours, by clicking here!

Wednesday, August 22, 2018

A (not so) Wordless Wednesday

Last month our good friends at sent us a surprise in the mail!  It was a box full of Summer fun!

Kori begged to be the one to show you what we received.  And Kori has the "collie pleading" look down to an art form, so of course she got to be the collie model!  I think she looks awesome in her new shades, don't you?

In the box there was also a pretty blue bowl and a new toy, both with the Chewy logo.

And there was one more item....a new hammock!  Winter didn't want to miss out on all the fun, so she snuck onto the hammock.  She thinks it's awesome!  Thanks for thinking of us, we sure appreciate your thoughtfulness!

Sunday, August 19, 2018

Summer days pass so swiftly...

I always plan to write more posts, but it seems like the days are just racing by and time is fleeting.  I walk by my computer, and I remind myself I need to post about this or that, and then I get caught up in some other activity.  So this is going to be an update on what has happened this summer.  As you probably all know, we lost one of our sweet seniors, Holly.  She was the Queen of our collies, and ruled over all the others.  But she was also sweet, and smiled all the time, and brought so much happiness and joy into our lives.  She is so missed, and has left a hole in our family.  I wrote about her here and also here, and when a little more time has passed, I will share more memories of our Holly, the Happy Collie.

Over the 4th of July week we attended a 4 day dog show.  We had Scarlett, who is already a champion, entered in Best of Variety so she could earn points towards her Grand Championship.  She won Select Bitch two of the days, and Best of Variety another.  The Best of Variety gave her a 2nd major towards her Grand Championship, she needs 3 majors all together.  And we also had Maizie and Winter entered, as they are working towards their championships.  They took turns winning, both winning Winner's Bitch and earning points. (I'm sure the other handlers weren't too happy with us winning four days in a row!)  Usually my daughter handles our collies at shows, but with three girls entered, I had to step into the ring as well.  And one of the days I won Winner's Bitch and then went on to win Best of Opposite Sex to Best of Variety with Maizie!  I was pretty nervous, but it was exciting to show Maizie myself and watch her win from inside the ring instead of watching as a spectator outside the ring.

Scarlett, proud of her Best of Variety ribbon

Scarlett, napping before going to the Herding Group

Early this month we attended a Scottish Festival with Ryder, Scarlett and Winter.  We were there with friends and their collies, to represent the collie breed.  As collies originated in Scotland, you couldn't have a festival celebrating all things Scottish without them!

And this week I went to Washington DC, for the first time, for a work conference.  I spent a few days there, and visited some of the historic sites.  It was quite an experience and I think every American should get to visit at least once in their lifetimes.

This weekend was The Gathering at Sunnybank.  Long time readers of our blog may remember my previous posts about Sunnybank, but if you haven't read them, then please check them out by clicking on the links below.  Sunnybank is a very special place to us, and to collie lovers all around the world.
Books and movies for dog lovers
It's that time of year again
Sunnybank, Then and Now, Always Beloved
A collie named lassie, and a place called Sunnybank
The Gathering at Sunnybank

Ryder took his Therapy Dog test at Sunnybank two years ago, and has been doing a wonderful job ever since.  I had decided to get one of our smooth collies tested this year, as so few people know about the smooth collie breed.  I figured it would help the people we visit and it would also help educate the public about these special dogs.  I signed up both Scarlett and Sophie for the Therapy dog test.  Scarlett just loves people, and with her happy nature, people are drawn to her.  So I knew she would be a good choice.  She is beautiful, and greets people with not just a wagging tail, her entire butt wags in greeting!  And Sophie is unlike any of our other collies, she lives for attention.  All our collies are very sweet and love people, but Sophie takes it to a different level, in that she needs it more than food and water.  If she is sitting next to me, it's not enough, she has to be touching me.  If she is touching me, it's not enough, she has to be kissing me.  And she makes prolonged eye contact with me and other family members.  And when she stares at me, all the love in the world is shining in her eyes, she is so devoted!  I couldn't decide which one to get tested, so I signed them both up.  And yesterday, they both passed the test with ease, which shouldn't surprise me, as my collies are always willing to do whatever I ask of them.  It's just one of the hundreds of things that make this breed so special.

Scarlett, on her long down-stay, with her eyes on me the whole time.
Sweet Sophie, the day before the test, maybe dreaming about becoming a Therapy dog?

Sophie's brother, Finn, also took the Therapy Dog test and the Canine Good Citizen Test, and he passed them both as well.  I know his family was very excited when he passed the tests.  It was a very proud day for me, as their breeder, to see three of my collies achieving their goals.  Sophie and Finn aren't the only ones accomplishing their goals, their brother Nigel is well on his way to becoming a service dog, and their brother Gibbs has already earned herding titles on sheep.  And of course Maizie is working hard towards her championship.  This is a post that contains videos of Sophie and Finn, along with their litter mates, when they were just little pups.  I worked hard to socialize and train them, and I think it's evident in all they have accomplished.

Today, Ryder and I visited our local Nursing home, and told all his friends that his sister and niece would be visiting Therapy dogs soon.  They were so excited, but made me promise Ryder would continue to come visit them too.  This summer has been bittersweet, with some very sad moments and some very happy ones.  But I guess that pretty much describes life, and my collies make it a good one.