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Old 08-02-2007
supersig supersig is offline
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Default CHOW CHOWS

OK. I Am sorta new to the forums and if this topic has already been discussed my sincere apologies. I have been in the line of work for 13 years with 3 differant agencies and everyone that i have worked with agreed that chow chows are the aco's worst nightmare. impounded one the other day that was not leash trained and it bent my catchpole. It busted its lip and blood went everywhere. i had to explain to a citizen that it is normal chow behavior and not uncommon for a chow chow to act like a complete "doofus".
I hope i have not offended any chow chow owners but is it unanimous? chows stink
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Old 08-03-2007
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Okay, so you already KNEW this was going to happen, right?





No offense meant, supersig. We've all had dogs at the end of the pole and thought, oh, Jeez, THIS isn't good. And I do really sympathize with the rough day.

But, seriously, though, the ACO's worst nightmare should be pitbulls (39% of fatalities in the last 20 years) or malamutes/huskies/wolves (20%) or rottweilers (18%), right? Not chows, down there at 4%, barely keeping up with the St. Bernards.

Fellow ACOs, from ten years of doing chow rescue, please let me give you a few tips:

The key to understanding chows is that, mentally, they are not really dogs: they are cats. They hunt like cats, they guard territory like cats, they are independent like cats. Try and imagine a 60-lb. cat on a control pole ... not pretty. Lure them, trap them, sweet-talk them. They are very, very bright: Make the direction you want them to go the logical choice, and they will choose it. If you put them in a place where the logical choice is to fight like a wild thing, they will go feral in a heartbeat, and, again, do you really want to waste the time fighting a 60-lb. wildcat? Not an efficient way to handle the animal.

They have been bred for 3,000 years to make independent decisions related to guarding territory and hunting things, and they do their job. My "guru," who raised three national obedience champion chows, used to say that a chow never does what you tell him ... he just takes your advice under consideration, and then makes up his own mind. They do have an insane, one-on-one attachment to their owners, from the old imperial hunting days, and a lot of times the owners who dump them in the back yard and throw food at them are the only human they'll even start to answer to.

Chows do not stink. People in general -- who breed an animal to do something and then wonder why they do it -- and people in specific -- who treat a living creature like a cheap alarm system -- stink.

Wow. I got all agitated there; who knew I had it in me? Again, no offense ...
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Old 08-03-2007
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That explains why, like a cat, they wave their tail when they are agitated. I thought they were thanking me in advance for feeding them my A&&.

I learned a lot here today. I knew Chows had a purpose but thought it was that they made good target practice. That was a joke Winnie, don't hit me.

I always noticed their fierce dedication to one person and it always killed me when people turned them in or turned them loose, or abandoned them. They rarely adapt to a new owner. I have seen my share of real sweet hearts too. The one I'll never forget is the 12 week old puppy with the ingrown collar so bad that I thought her head would fall off. She's in a new home and I distinctly remember her saying "get me outa here" and "thank you".
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Old 08-03-2007
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ellie View Post
... I thought they were thanking me in advance for feeding them my A&&. ...
Oh, Ellie, you are too funny.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ellie View Post
They rarely adapt to a new owner.
So true. I made a rule, about a year into rescue, that I was not going to even try with any chow over 3 years old, unless I knew that the ex-owner was WONDERFUL and the dog was very well-socialized. Too many heartbreaking tries with dogs that simply could not adjust to a different life, kept stressing out waiting for their old crappy-a$$ owners, slowly losing weight or getting obnoxious at me until they just disintegrated, personality-wise. So unbelievably sad. I finally had to stop rescuing -- just too heart-breaking on top of the ACO job. Now I just give advice on the phone, and do chow-specific temperament testing for some local shelters.

Now your average 12-week old chow, THAT's a hard animal to find a home for :

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Old 08-03-2007
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stmelangell View Post
The key to understanding chows is that, mentally, they are not really dogs: they are cats.
That's ok, I don't like cats either.

As far as being the worst nightmare breed for ACOs based on fatal dog attack stats is sort of out of the realm of what we deal with since as an ACO we're unlikely to be the victim of such an incident. Obviously responding to such an incident would be a nightmare, but I think the original poster was talking about direct ACO to Chow Chow encounters.

As far as my own experience, I haven't had too many bad encounters with Chow Chows since they usually just run away. Rotties on the other hand have given me a few problems here and there, but my two most dangerous encounters were with a doberman on one call and two german shepherd mixes on another call.

Jeff
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Old 08-03-2007
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SixbyFire View Post
As far as being the worst nightmare breed for ACOs based on fatal dog attack stats is sort of out of the realm of what we deal with since as an ACO we're unlikely to be the victim of such an incident. Obviously responding to such an incident would be a nightmare, but I think the original poster was talking about direct ACO to Chow Chow encounters.
Fair dinkum. I just meant to suggest that, in terms of how serious the situation was likely to get, chows are not all that scary. I think the "run away" thing is very true ... most chows are interested in preserving their independence first and foremost. I tracked Kira for two weeks on the street before I got a hold of her ... and to this DAY she would rather have the right to make her own decisions -- e.g., run away from me at the park -- than have any treat I have ever tried on her. Dagnabit!

That "wait until your back is turned" thing that Rotties have is kind of spooky to me, or the "now we will hunt you" border collie weirdness ... but, on the other hand, these dogs too are just living out their breeding.

For the record, my own personal bite statistics: 1 rott, 1 shep mix, 1 baby opo. Maybe we should run a poll ...
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Old 08-03-2007
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SixbyFire View Post
That's ok, I don't like cats either.

Jeff
You beat me to that one sixby.
I have to say that I would rather wrestle with a pit, rottie or doberman before trying to reason with a chow. At least with the others you just know it's going to be a challenge. Chows on the other hand are so unpredictable in MY opinion ! I have been bitten on the job by 3 different breeds,(a Pit, a weimeraner and the dreaded chow) I have been bitten off the job countless times by two different breeds ( a shepherd and a the dreaded chow)
My wife's aunt owns a chow and every time we go to visit they have to put the chow in the basement or it WILL bite me, no ifs, ands or buts about it.
I very much dislike the breed!

Sorry Winnie, I'm happy for you that you have such a great rapport with them, they just don't seem to like me and they have absolutely no qualms about letting me know it !!
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Old 08-03-2007
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Default yeah right

sorry, I could not resist.

hope it is not over the line.
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Old 08-03-2007
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Oh, supersig, you nut.

Quote:
they just don't seem to like me and they have absolutely no qualms about letting me know it
See, that's the REAL reason people don't like chows ... that whole "no qualms" thing.

Well, in the words of a great t-shirt, "Afraid of a chow? Have you seen who's running the government lately?"
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Old 08-03-2007
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Quote:
Originally Posted by supersig View Post
OK. chow chows are the aco's worst nightmare.
For me, it's chihuahuas. Little land pirhanas bite every chance they get; they run and hide under small objects, so I'm always crawling; and I'm afraid to use some tools (i.e snappy snare) and too much force because they break so easily. I'll take a pit or chow over a chihuahua any day.
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