How would you respond?
Email of the Weekend
I feel extremely compelled to tell you that I find your business extremely offensive. You’re subjecting rats to extreme amount of pain and torture. being attacked by an animal to be killed is extremely violent and inappropriate. Also the fact that you’re subjecting your dogs to diseases and infections that they can pick up from conflict from the animal bites/scrapes/cuts is shameful, ask any vet. we live in a sophisticated country at this point and I think what you’re doing is completely inappropriate and you should feel terrible about yourself. I’ll be sending your ad to the animal welfare agencies and also animal activist clubs. I wish no good luck for your company and I hope it fails quickly. I also hope that no harm comes to any of the animals involved because you’re basically just having them fight each other and that’s very very uneducated.
My Response –
Thanks for the time you took to write a email.
My personal guess is that you do not know much about country living or farming. Growing your own food and meat is good, and eggs too. Unfortunately with hay and grain and other food around, you end up dealing with rats. This especially happens when people that have no country living skills start little hobby farms and homestead.
If you have not dealt with a infestation level of rats first hand, they you also likely do not have any experience how aggressive a Norway rat is. Ive been called to farms where they are killing baby and adult chickens, and also to farms where they are chewing on baby cows. This is not even to mention that feces in the feed can cause animals to abort and other issues. They are no joke and they also cause damage by undermining foundations and can cause buildings to fall down eventually.
The next thing I would mention is that you should go and research rat poison. I had a dog poisoned and that is one of the reasons I started catching rats. It was through that experience that I learned a rat takes 3-7 days to die while in terrible pain and bleeding from the internal organs. If that is not bad enough then any animal, hawk or owl that eats the rat will also ingest all the poison and die. There was bobcats and mountain lions this year in CA that were tagged animals in studies that died from just that, there are studies that show almost all the raptors hit by cars have ingested rat poisons.
I work sometimes in education talking to groups about the danger of rat poison in the environment and also with children. I forgot to mention that certified organic farmers can not use poison.
While we may live in a sophisticated country as evidenced by sophisticated Donald Trump ? We are less connected to nature and our food than we ever have been before. I am not ashamed of myself, and the conclusions you draw are not based in the reality of who I am, or have anything to do with me or the work that I do with dogs.
I wish you all the best of luck in love and life.
P.S. All the dead rats that I catch are donated to raptors
I think this offers a good education opportunity.
Many people might look at this and see working dogs, or what they they think of working dogs. Maybe that means the dogs are doing things that they think is work, or perhaps they have never seen dogs actually working.
What do you see when you watch this video? Please tell me in the comments or via social media.
What I see? Well that is easy.
First I see far too many dogs. There is a mayhem of dogs. If your object is to work dogs you don’t need a milling mass unless there are tons and tons of rats and the need for extra handlers.
The second thing I see, is that none of the Sealyham dogs have their nose to the ground actually searching for rats, or locating rats. If you want to catch rats, you have to be able to find rats.
A dog that has the nose and the drive to actually locate rats is the most valuable dog that you own. Who cares if you have dogs that kill rats if you can not find rats to kill. A terrier by definition is a dog of the earth , its nose should be to ground.
Third, I see dogs that are totally lacking in focus. Just like athletes good working dogs need to be kept in practice and training to be sharp. My own personal dogs need to catch a few rats typically in order to calm down and get to business, but the focus they settle to is amazing. Running around aimlessly like the sealyham’s in the video is not working. There is not focus with eye or nose on anything rat related.
There are also a few Jack Russels cleverly disguised among the Sealyham. My assumption is they are likely the farmers dog’s although I don’t actually know. If you watch the video you will notice it is the few JRT that actually are working and deal with the rats.
My conclusion, is that this is what most terriers removed from work act like. These are show bred dogs that retain mild amounts of drive and instinct ( and likely bark at squirrels from kennels ) but are far from working quality.
This is likely a way to have great fun for the dogs and a way of judging the small amount of instinct they have. Like barn hunt a fun game does not make a working dog , it makes a fun game for dogs especially on rainy days in covered arena’s.
Real working ratters are focused, quick, and efficient at both locating and dispatching rats.
I am not trying to discouraging, go out there and have fun and work the dogs at hunting and at games.
Working your dogs is the only possible way to learn about the actual working traits and characteristics of your dogs.
The Leviathan has landed … aka Levi
For those that didn’t know, the Mongrol Hoard has emigrated
North of the bay area to rural land in Oregon, Grants Pass is the official address. It’s a big and very scary move after living in Sonoma county and also the Bay since 1998.
I do not have friends and farm contacts here and although it offer a lot of opportunities the present can be tough.
I spent not quite a decade visiting farms with the Mongrol Hoard and developing a cult following. It’s sobering and humbling to look at that from a far and be in a new and unknown place, where my dog’s are just dog’s and I don’t know where to start at finding rat’s.
Wish us luck as we struggle to share our work and worth in a new place , on our mission of traditional rat catching. Using quality dogs to keep poison off farms and confirmed dead rats on our board for counting.
we will continue to road trip an hunt rats in our home haunt as often as the opportunity allows.