But as humans are want to do, we started moving these animals around the world. Dogs soon became pets and it was up to the human caretaker to realize that not all dogs were made for all climates. Sheepdogs were NOT meant to live in Oklahoma. Even inside, these poor dogs can overheat.
Thus enters Maggie the sheepdog into this story. Sheepdogs have a coat that grows and grows and . . . grows. People may think these dogs don't shed, but they'd be wrong. Chunks of fur tend to get caught under chair legs, not to mention the furry dust bunnies that just appear within hours of the house being cleaned. This dog's fur is unique in that if a sheepdog has to fight a wolf -- to protect the herd, of course -- it is so thick the teeth of the wolf can't 1) get a good grip, 2) get deep enough to do major injury.
Uh, we don't wolves in Oklahoma, at least none that I'm aware of, nor do we own any sheep.
So we do what we have to do to keep the dog comfortable -- we shear it. Well, truthfully, my hubs does the hard work.
This first picture was taken at about 0730 last Saturday morning.
|The fur from the back of the dog|
|Same fur pile, different view|
Did you know people can and do use sheepdog fur to spin yarn? We've also found it in bird nests and bunny nests around the yard.
Four hours later, we had a sheared and bathed dog.
I don't even want to think about how much it would cost to have a professional groomer shave this dog, but I could hazard a guess that the $200 Oster clippers would be paid for within two visits to the groomer. If you have a dog that needs grooming, consider doing it yourself . . . of course, you have to start when they are very young to get them used to the sound and feel of the clippers, and fork out a chunk of money for some very good clippers, but it's worth it.
If we could train our cat to like being vacuumed (Yes, Kato was vacuumed weekly. When we would clean the house, he would chase the vacuum down to remind us he wanted his turn!) , then you can train your dog to behave while being groomed.
Remember to take care of your furbabies. They are the only critters out there that give us their unconditional love. In fact, my Maggie is currently taking up room under my desk where my feet should be. . . . it was cute when she could actually fit under the desk, but now she pushes the chair out to have enough room to curl up.
Okay, I'll admit it . . . it's still cute.