Shikoku Ken Discussion
Educate Me!
Hi all! So, if you're on the I Love My Shikoku Facebook group, then you'll likely see where I posted part of this question! I figured it might be better to post it here though, as I figure I may get more responses and information out of you all here than on Facebook!
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So! I have a few questions for you guys, if you don't mind? :)
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So, I've 100% decided this will be my next breed and so now I'm looking to further my knowledge on them and what living with one would be like. Everything from diet to training.
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One thing I keep seeing is that this isn't a breed that should be let off leash due to their hunting nature to roam out a distance and possibly out of distance, and and only check in every so often. But I see a lot of you with off leash dogs? Is recall training and off leash hikes/walks a possibility? If so, when you were training, how did you do so?
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I know hunters use collars with a built in mic sort of thing, so if the dog is out of hearing range, you can radio into the dog's collar to recall them. Would this be a good investment for recall purposes?
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If the dog can't be off leash, that's fine! My current dog has a solid recall but is almost always on a leash unless we're just brushing up on her training. I just like having that added back up of the recall just in case something were to happen like a breaking leash or he gets out of the door somehow!
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Also, everyone says to meet this breed in person before completely deciding, but I'm not positive I can do so? To my knowledge, no one has a Shikoku in Tennessee. I think the closest I've seen was in Virginia. Is anyone in or around Tennessee that would be willing to meet up for a hike or meet up so I can experience this breed first hand?
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How do Shikokus get along with other dogs? I have a two year old (will likely be 4 or 5 by the time I get my next dog) Shelter Mutt (really don't know what she is, but I typically refer to her as a texas heeler mutt --for those who don't know what that is, it's a cross between a Border collie and an Australian cattle dog or an Australian Shepherd and an Australian cattle dog). She's a very 'submissive' and timid dog and doesn't have a mean bone in her body, she was raised with a pretty intense, dog reactive Lab mix and that coupled with her already "oh my god I love you, let me live to please you" attitude just made her all the more soft. When she plays she is intense though, but would a Shikoku be able to live with her? She's a very high drive, high energy dog... Just a very soft dog.
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What is training a Shikoku like? I've worked with a number of breeds before (from Chihuahuas to Australian Cattle Dogs to Bull Breed Mutts and so many more) but I have a feeling those guys are nothing compared to what a Shikoku is like. Can you give me an insight as to what I can expect in the first few weeks of having one, the first few months, and beyond? How was training? Are they stubborn, easily trained, a median of the two? And what kind of diet/feeding amount/schedule to they typically do best on? What are some healthy issues prone in them and what sort of health testing ought to be done by the breeder on the parents?
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