Protection for Protection
As a few of you know, we have two livestock guardian dogs. And one ol' hound dog that thinks he's a guard dog. Our LGD's are half Turkish Kangal and half Maremma. A totally perfect cross in my opinion. Our dogs are the biggest, cuddliest, love bugs when it comes to me and the kids. If Judge could be a lap dog, he would be.
But when it comes to coyotes and other predators, it's a different story. They are fierce guardians. One hundred and thirty pounds of muscle and hate. They are fearless and devoted defenders against anything they feel is a threat to the safety of our animals and our family. I love my dogs, can you tell?
Lately the predator threat around our place has increased. The dogs have been coming home from their patrols with some injuries. Nothing serious thank goodness. But some lacerations on their muzzles, a bite mark here and there and poor ol' Deuce the hound lost part of an ear.
We needed to do something to protect our protection. In Turkey, where the Kangal breed was developed, it is common to provide the dogs with wide, spiked collars to guard their neck area. The jugular vein is vulnerable so the collars are very helpful against that kind of attack.
Now we needed to find a Turkish style collar for our crew. Not an easy task. You cannot simply buy them at Petco and the like. "Hi, I need a wide collar with three inch spikes please." Might get you funny looks at the pet shop.
So I put out an "in search of" post on a Livestock Guardian Dog web page and was directed to a blacksmith that happens to live about an hour from me. He makes amazing collars in the Turkish style but out of nylon web. I gave him a call.
He was quick to interrogate me. "What kind of dogs do you have?" "How many?" "Where do you live?" What predators do you have?" At first I was taken back by the stranger asking me so many questions but then he explained. He never advertises that he makes the collars. The collars are his little secret because he absolutely will not make them for people who have dogs that are not livestock guardians. He fears people with fighting dogs, such as pit bulls, will try to get his collars. So it's our little secret. But I am so thankful for him and his hard to get collars.
Tonight when the coyotes or wolves howl, I won't have to worry so much. The dogs actually seem to like the collars. Judge put his on and went right back to his very important nap on the front lawn. Jury is looking forward to her patrol tonight and Deuce is trying to figure out if we can make him a spiked helmet to protect his ears....
Have a great evening y'all.
Now go make something beautiful,