Thursday, April 29, 2010

There Are Dog Breeders, And There Are Dog Traders

This is a blog post designed to help potential hog dog buyers understand what it is to be a top breeder and deal with the public at large.

When I first started listening to the stories the old timers tell of the heartbreak they have endured as a breeder, it amazed me that potential hog dog buyers are not aware of the fact that these old timers are not going to put up with being screwed again and again.

So if you think you are going to come and play me for the fool,
be careful, I have been schooled by some really tough old timers,
and like them, I am getting really pissed off!

Although it is not uncommon for me to have people coming back for another puppy because the one they bought a month or so ago for two hundred dollars was never wormed or vaccinated since the time it left my house, and then died. But the story below is the hardest to accept, because it was my dog, my pick of the litter, and I had invested so much in this whole ordeal. Not to mention the guy in this story is an inspector with the FDA and his wife, a registered nurse.

Here is Buster, a 5 1/2 month old, 45lb., son of Patch and C.C.(daughter of Scarlet, grandson of Riley, and a great grandson of the legendary Maurice)

If you think something don't look right, you are correct. He died this morning of neglect. The owner of C.C., Buster's mother, decided after all the puppies were sold, that he wanted my solid black, pick of the litter male to raise with C.C., and I let him take it at seven weeks. Well, after I drove forty miles round trip to vaccinate his six puppies, out of my dog Patch and his dog C.C., at five weeks old, because he was behind schedule, and then after I personally sold all his puppies for him, put hundreds of dollars in his hand, he took Buster(my pick of the litter)home and never gave it another vaccination for Parvo or Distemper, ie. an 8-way shot. Two days ago the dog started vomiting, and then bloody diarrhea. After a night of agonizing pain, he passed away this morning in my living room.

You can see the shaved fur on the forelegs where the vet administered an IV for fluid, before sending him home to die. I have a homeopathic remedy that works wonders when given at the onslaught of parvo, but this was out of my hands before it was too late for my boy.

When C.C.'s owner, mentioned the symptoms the dog was showing,
I thought no way, he was vaccinated, it can't be parvo.
I was wrong, the dog had only had been given one shot by me at five weeks old.

Had I known that he did not get all of his shots,
I would have drove over there and took the dog home,
and treated him myself as soon as the symptoms appeared.

The owner of C.C. has advised me that he is accepting personal responsibility for the dogs death, but... should I have let him go in the first place?

An incident like this only makes it even harder for you the dog buyer,
to qualify for a purchase of a live animal from me.

Now I am not here to smear my good friends good name, so I won't mention it, but my hope is in mentioning this, that if you buy a puppy from me or anyone, go to the feedstore and for about $7 or $8 you can get a 7-way vaccination administered at 4, and 8 weeks, then an 8-way at 12, and 16 weeks, and you won't have to go through what this family is experiencing today. The lost of a member of their family.

One more thing, some of you are thinking: Ohh Ohh, marcus has parvo at his house!

Well people, I am here to tell you I am not afraid of bringing this sick dog into my house, because all of my dogs have had all of their shots, including a rabies vacination.

Ohh... yes some of you think this is a highly contagious disease and I should quarantine my dogs. I say bull shit! Vaccinate your puppies or they will die.

And don't live in fear of contagous diseases, VACCINATE YOUR PUPPIES!

If there are exceptions to the rule,
they are so few and far between to be irrelevent.

I am available for consultation @ 337-298-2630,
if you need to treat your pet or hunting partner, call me.

I know a trip to the vet is expensive, but there are vaccinations and worming treatments that are AVAILABLE OVER THE COUNTER and are affordable to everyone who owns a dog. Most feed stores have vaccines, and wormers for economical prices.

And on that note, here is something I want to share with you.

Valbazen a broad spectrum dewormer: meaning it kills everything. Hookworms, round worms, tapeworms, flatworms, whipworms, and liver flukes.
For puppies, a few drops in the mouth, once a week, until 4 months old, and older dogs about once a month.

This is a liquid, administered with a syringe with no needle, orally, at a rate of 1/2cc per 50# dog. I have never found a better wormer, and it is in the same class as Panacur, which I highly recommend you keep on hand too.

The beauty of Panacur is you can give 10 times the recommended dose to your dog and it will not cause the dog harm, so it is an excellent choice for puppies because it is a paste and easy to administer and if you see them pass worms, give it three days in a row as a power dose and it will not poison the dog or puppy.

Warning: do NOT overdose with any other product because it can harm the kidneys and liver.

If you are new at hog hunting, I assume you may not realize you need to keep this in the refrigerator at your house at all times. If your dog gets cut, give him about three cc's in the muscle, a.s.a.p..

Penicillin G Procaine Injectible

This is Tetracycaline Hydrocloride, soluble powder, add a little bit to the drinking water, and must not be in an aluminum or iron water bowl or the dog will not drink it because it causes a chemical reaction. Glass, ceramic, rubber, plastic, and the best water bowl is stainless steel.

This is a great antibiotic for internal bacterial infections. And can be used in conjunction with a penicillin injection too.

Bottom line on this is: If you can't afford to pay $200(and this is cheap), for a foundation bloodline, Blair-bred Catahoula puppy, and consult me if you have health issues, so I can save you from expensive vet costs, I don't have a whole lot of faith in your ability to maintain the puppy nutritionally or medically.

I am not saying you shouldn't go to a veterinarian if you can afford it, but if you can't call me. Most feed stores sell vaccination and wormers over the counter.

Huval, NALC registered, from C.W.Crews on top
and Edith Carpenter on the bottom.
Two foundation breeders I recommend you invest in.
Huval was given to me as a one year old puppy by a dog trader from Bay St. Louis, Mississippi, who had abused the dog. Huval wanted to be a hog dog and had a lot of hunt in him, and was certainly bred to become a great one, but someone named Virgil, abused him, and then gave him to me, because he was a mental case before I got him, and I gave him my best for two years. He was terrified of big men till the day I accepted he would never recover from the abuse he experienced as a puppy, and we put him down because he could not be caught, would run from us in fear, and we would not leave him in the woods to starve. I put two years into trying to bring him into a place of trust in me.

I do regret that I did not keep him as a stud dog. And I never bred him because I don't like to breed something that is not all there and proven in the woods. His shyness was not genetic, and I am certain based upon my knowledge of his mother and father, and I knew them both, very well, he would have been a good producer of woods dogs.

Simon, a son of Angel and Handsome, a grandson of the legendary Maurice on top, and Patch and Ruby on the bottom.

I have gotten a real big education in the last few years from advertising on the Internet and talking to hundreds of people who are interested in buying a Catahoula. One thing that stands out after talking to so many people who call me as potential customers, is how much dog trading goes on and how many people have been and are getting burned by dog traders or breeders who are only in it only for the money.

Apparently, after talking to the old time breeders
who are passing their bloodline to me, about this issue,
not only dog buyers are suffering, but the breeders are too.

If you call me to buy a dog
don't expect me to be eager to sell you a dog.
I don't need the money, I am looking for the right people.
If you ain't right, I don't sell!

If you want what I got, you must qualify to own my dogs.

Please be patient with me,
I am learning the hard way why so many old timers are fed up with breeding
and dealing with the public.

Another thing I have learned is that putting a cheap price on a really well bred, well started or even experienced finished dog causes me more harm than good.

Hey, I know many people are struggling financially, and I want to help. But I am not helping others as much as I am hurting myself, and my dogs are suffering too if they are going to people I can't screen first.

Why? Because a cheap price causes first time customers to think my dogs are like everybody else's dogs out there with a cheap price. And based upon stories I am getting from people who got burned, some people are breeding dogs, they should not be feeding.

My belief is: get the dogs out there and when customers who bought a two year old started dog realize how good these dogs are they will come back and give me a fair payment for another dog of the same breeding.

White boy, a three year old son of Bob and Angel
White boy is a litter mate brother of Jesse and Spider

Reality check: They bought a two year old started dog for $400 and are very satisfied with the dogs performance and now want to come and do it again for $400? And when they are confronted with the reality that feeding a dog costs about $400-$500 per year. That and everything else that goes into getting a well bred, well raised, healthy, experienced two year old on hogs. They decide that what they want to do, is go and buy the same old cheap trash that they have been getting burned on in the past before they came to me.

So I have to wonder: And what is that, a dog trader,
looking to buy a good dog from me at a rediculously cheap price,
that they can turn around and sell for big money,
and make money off of my generousity and hard work?

Or is it insanity?

What is the definition of insanity? Doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results. If they are not smart enough to come back and pay good money for good started or finished dogs, good riddance!

If you don't have the money for a finished or started dog, buy a puppy, the bloodline is already proven. Then again, there is a lot to be said for too many people who buy dogs that are bred to hunt, thinking they are smarter than the dog, and thus must train it to hunt. But actually, they got the dog so confused, no matter how well bred, it won't hunt for them like the one I bred and raised up from a puppy and sold for a fraction of it's true value, hoping to prove to them that good breeding and raising is really all you need to hunt and catch wild hogs!

My belief is: if you can't afford a well bred, well raised, healthy started or finished dog, buy a puppy from a foundation bred line like Two Diamonds, Tuska Homma, Camp a While, Blue Sky, Ray, Weems, 5L, etc.

A foundation bloodline comes from generation after generation of elite, high performance, gritty, intelligent, birth defect free breeding and goes on to produce hard working dogs. And guess what they reproduce after them? Generation after generation after them!

Way too many people believe breed good dogs to good dogs and they will reproduce.

There is a term we apply to good dogs that come out of nowhere, we call them a freak. I know, I had good dogs that I bred and they did not pass on their hunting ability because they did not come from generation after generation of proven working bloodlines.

Jesse and his son Gus, at 16 weeks old.
Jesse is a son of Bobalou, and Angel, making him a grandchild of Patch and Ruby on the bottom and Frank on top, and a great grandchild of Desire' who was a litter mate sister of the legendary Maurice.

Reality: All these top breeders I mentioned above, tell me the same thing, about 95% of the people who call them, waste their time wanting to buy a finished dog for the price of our weaned puppies.

It looks like most hog hunters don't know what foundation bloodlines are and that buying a well bred puppy from old, tried and true, foundation bloodlines is usually a good investment of your money and time. I think the problem is too many people mistakenly believe or hope they are going to find a good finished dog for a cheap price and all they have to invest is money, and they are hunting hogs.

Reality is: you will waste a lot of time and money sifting through the trash out there to luck out and get a good dog, if you are lucky.

Arnold, the governator! at 10 month old, a son of Patch and RubyArnold dug under the fence and got into the bay pen at 14 weeks old, he wanted some! The hog promptly cut him under the throat, and Arnold never missed a beat. When I realized he was in there I noticed a spot of red in the jugular area, and went in to separate him from the hog. He has always been the most difficult of this bunch to call out.

OK, so you found a well bred, well raised, healthy, smart, fast, finished dog for a cheap price, and you don't understand that a Catahoula is very sensitive to neglect or mistreatment. You are failing to understand the most important thing about owning and handling a Blair-bred Catahoula is the relationship between you and the dog.

What many people fail to realize is: you will not get maximum performance from a Blair-bred Catahoula hog dog unless you establish a relationship of love and devotion into that dog. And based upon it's loyalty and devotion to you, it is willing to lay it's life on the line to hunt hogs for you. If a dog lives to please you and you want pork on the table, they will die trying yo make you happy. The establishment of that kind of relationship is totally dependent upon you and that means you have to spend time building trust and instilling courage in the dog.

By the way if you want the best Catahoula there is out there,
get to know breeders who are breeding the Blair-bred bloodlines.

The next paragraph, details a crucial element,
in the proper raising of Blair-bred Catahoula puppies.

What a lot of people want is a dog who is big, strong, gritty and courageous. Well, when that dog is a puppy(up to about 2 years old), if it cowers down to you, rolls over belly up, and is shy, don't fuss at it or kick it, or be angry in any way, because that dog is communicating submission to you as the leader of the pack. This is body language and it is the natural instinct of a young dog in relation to you who is the highest ranking head or leader of the pack.

Praise the dog verbally with soft voice tones, and love on it and stand him up and pet his head and ribs, encourage and reward the dog for being submissive to you and he will stand up and fight to the death for you later when he comes into maturity.

Sammy, a six year old son of the ledgendary Maurice from the 1990's

Sammy, and the two sons of the legendary Maurice, at my house are available to stud if you are interested in breeding your bitch.

Do not expect a puppy to act like a big, mature dog for at least two years!

But I am making believers out of some people who are sold on my dogs that they raised from puppies that went on to be the best dogs they have ever had and want nothing but my blood line in their yard.

And then there are the dog traders...

I sold a two year old, Catahoula/Plott, dog named Amos, to a guy named Kendall from Meridian, Mississippi. He drove about 5 hours to get to me and claimed he needed a dog to produce caught hogs now, or he would lose his hunting privileges with the farmer who owned the land and was suffering serious crop damage.

He was impressed with the 9 month old dogs he saw in my pen as seen below,

but decided on this two year old named Amos.

He asked how much I wanted for the dog and I told him the dog was worth a thousand if he was worth a dime. But I would help him out and sell the dog for $500. He asked if I would take $400. (Little did I know, I was dealing with a dog trader at the time)

Anyway, he took Amos and caught 4 out of 5 hogs he got on in less than a week. Looked good to me. Mission accomplished.

But, I was about to be played like a woman who is told what she wants to hear by a man who has selfish covert motives and is trying to get into her pants.

So next weekend, kendall calls me up and advised me he didn't like the way the dog hunted, cuz it was hanging around his feet after he walked around this big briar patch and both he and the dog knew there were hogs in there because the tracks were all going in and none coming out.

I asked him what was his next move, and he said he was going in with the dog and see what happened. Later that day we talked and he advised me that after he walked into the briars, Amos went on ahead and found a sow, bayed till he got there, and caught on command, when he got close enough. In fact he caught two sows about 200# each in the same briar patch that same day about half hour apart. As he was tying the first hog, Amos went on ahead and found the other one and kept it there until he was in sight and once again Amos caught when help arrived.

How many people would love to pay good money to own a dog like this that can find, bay and catch half a dozen hogs in two weeks all by his self?

I said congratulations, you own a one dog wonder, and he said he couldn't believe the dog was laying down at his feet when there were hogs less than a 1/4 mile away. I said the dog has been with you less than two weeks and together you caught a half dozen hogs and he doesn't even know you yet. Until you walked in and he knew he could count on you to back him up, why hunt? He is an excellent short range dog and you have caught 6 out of 7 hogs you got on in two weeks. What is the problem? The dog is only two years old! He is just getting started. Give him time to get to know that he can trust you to back him up and watch what happens in a few years!

Well he says he wants to bring him back and trade him out for an other dog, I said no problem, I got people standing in line waiting for Amos.

Bring him back, I got you money right here. He says no, I don't want the money back, I want to trade him for another dog. I said OK, no problem.

Meanwhile Charlie Fontenot is planning to meet him at Fort Bayou Ranch in south Mississippi in a few weeks and they start talking on the phone and Charlie says to Kendall, you are crazy if you get rid of that dog. Do you realize you may never find another dog so valuable again, and for only $400?

Charlie went on to tell Kendall that he has always caught more hogs with short range dogs because you don't spend as much time on the chase. A good short range dog that is gritty enough to stop a hog by his self, and back up and wait for help doesn't have to chase because the hog doesn't run unless there is too much pressure as is common in running a pack of dogs versus the one dog wonder.

So after talking to Charlie, Kendall calls again and advised me that he decided to keep Amos, because Charlie convinced him of how valuable the dog was.

And about a week later, the next call I get from Kendall he advises me that he sold Amos and wants to come get another one. I said no! NO! NOOOO!

I had already lined up another customer who was waiting for Amos before Kendall started this flip, flap, flop of bring him back, then keep him, then sell him, without discussing the disposal of the dog.

Now my new customer and myself are left hanging out to dry.

I don't mind him changing his mind and keeping the dog, but it looks like maybe he sold the dog to another man in Meridian who I gave Kendall's number to as a reference, so he could call Kendall and verify my claims about the dogs I sell.

I have never heard from either of them since, in spite of repeated calls and messsages left on the voicemail. Looks like you are busted Kendall.

I believe Kendal thought he could play me by pretending to be my friend, and take advantage of my understanding these are hard times for some folks, and i give him a dog for a fraction of it's value, and then he resell it, and do it again and again.

Meaning: Come and buy a dog for cheap from someone who is trying to help you after you pretend to be their friend and don't have a lot of money to spend and resell it for big money, and make money off of my hard work again and again.

Come on! A two year old Catahoula/Plott cross who is finding and catching hogs all by his self is worth a lot of money.

Then there is John Meyers in the Sour Lake, Texas area.

John took Chester, a son of Scarlet and Elijah, who was already finding hogs all by his self before he was a year old.

John took Chester and claimed he got killed, and offered to pay me the $500 he still owed me for the dog the day he claimed Chester got killed. I told him don't worry about the money now, we can settle up later.

Well later I called because I needed the money and never got a return call. Then someone else who had got screwed over by John, filled me in on John's dog trading business and how there were many people harassing John for the money he owed them on dog deals gone sour.

He advised me that John was actually evicted by his landlord because of the constant harassment from disgruntled dog buyers coming to his house and starting arguments in the yard and that John regularly changes his phone number to avoid people who are chasing him down.

The real icing on the cake here is that Chester was seen in John's truck after John told me that Chester had been killed and the word is from a close relative of John that John sold Chester to someone near Houston for big money.

When I called John's number to talk to him, the phone had a message that the number was no longer in service.

Now why would I mention the man's name?

He screwed me over and a number of other people. And everything I was told by these other people fit my own experiences with John. Like he had three phone numbers changed in six months of my doing business with him.

BOTTOM LINE: My advise is do not do business with John Meyers!

I am not trying to smear the man's name, I am trying to protect you the dog buyer from an unscrupolous dog trader.

Now should he call me and pay me, I will apologise to him and post that news here, but I doubt that I will ever hear from him again.

I am sharing these two incidents with my readers not to smear someones name, but to hopefully protect you from the dog traders out there.

Often when people call me, I can tell that they are not expecting me to be so stand-offish, and don't know why I am so careful about screening my customers.

Don't take it personal I am being protective of my best friends,
I know them well, but I don't know you.
And... if you treat me right maybe we can become friends too.

Just like with my dogs, I am attempting to build relationships that last.

Satisfied customers come back and visit, again and again.

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Wow it is Springtime!

A painting of Uncle Earl by Lafayette artist, George Rodrigue

There was no Uncle Earl's Hog Dog Trails this year, but we did make it to Fort Bayou for our annual spring break.

Christina, sporting her Fort Bayou Ranch, Youth Bay Cap, with a puppy in the papoose!

Jimmy and Sharon Young, publishers of Bayed Solid Magazine, drove down to Fort Bayou Ranch on Thursday to visit us and announce that the Uncle Earl's would be held next year.

If you want to have a subscription to Bayed Solid Magazine, click here.

I want to report, Reggie Little hosted a first class event.

With fine, clean, shady campsites,
and easy access to water faucets for watering our dogs.
The baypen was top notch, with shade over the gate leading in, and a pond to cool the dogs about 50 foot away when your dog finished the run.
There were port-o-let restrooms in various locations, a hot shower if you were so inclined, and we had access to Reggie's camp kitchen if we needed to feed the family. I plan on bringing a sack of crawfish next time.

Sorry, I didn't get more pictures for the blog,
but I was mostly shooting video for my TV program,
when I wasn't enjoying the fine fellowship and weather.

Seems like we were in good company and made a few new friends as usual.

I only heard of one incident about poor sportmanship,
and he ain't coming back.

If you can't take the heat, stay out the kitchen!

Cuz we are here to have fun!

A few days later,
and I was back to work in the swamp touring a group of Russian women.I know it is a rough job, but someone has to do it!

I just got the word there will be a baying in Diana,Tx next weekend.

The location is at the Rockin H Arena, 10 miles north of Longview.

Contact Brandon Fowler at 903 256 7178 for more info.

I believe it is a two day event April 17th, & 18th

It is not too soon to move the dogs from the sunshine
in the middle of the yard and back into the shade of some trees.

One more word of caution about the 80' temperatures...

And let's not forget to keep an eye on one of your dogs worst enemies
this time of year. Alligators.There are three in the photo above which I took an a swamp tour last week!

Last year, five dogs were consumed from the boat landing where I launch my tours. One of these dogs, a black lab, has lived on the lake all it's life, and was eaten in front of his owner.

Because I work and often hunt out of a boat,
I am always on guard for these aggressive consumers of dogs.And if you hunt around water, you should be too, this time of year, they are just coming out of hibernation and are hungry.

Another thing just coming out now, is a bumper crop of crawfish.

So what the hell does crawfish have to do with hog hunting?

Simple: If you like to eat boiled crawfish, dispose of the crawfish peelings in your hog traps or honey hole and watch the hogs come from miles away to eat this delicacy.

Corn is convienent for bait, but the smell does not carry for miles like crawfish peelings. Recycle those smelly fish heads, and crawfish peelings into regulating the population explosion of wild hogs, instead of sticking them in the trash can and smelling up the roadside pick up.

Now... let's get our boots on,
some dogs out of the box and go get us some pork!

Serious catchdog attitude!