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What do you feed Breeze/Sky/Jiji? Breeze & Sky are fed a natural, healthy raw diet. They gets raw meaty bones, and raw mixes which consists of 80% meat, 10% bone, and 10% offal. She also gets raw eggs, yogurt, and sardines, as well as joint supplements. I also feed her pre-made raw food from K9 Natural, Ziwipeak and Hello Woof.
Jiji is fed a premium, grain-free kibble as well as various tinned foods including Ziwipeak.
How often do you need to exercise your dogs? Australian Shepherds are a working breed, and thus they need a job to do or something to occupy them both mentally and physically. Breeze is very laid back and calm for the breed, however I still ensure she gets plenty of stimulation every day. Breeze & Sky gets training most nights, as well as walks and runs during the week. They also have a dog treadmill for fitness and conditioning. On weekends they go swimming, or exercises in an underwater treadmill, and we also go on long hikes. They gets lots of fitness conditioning with the use of balance balls and discs. However I believe keeping them mentally stimulated is as important (if not more) than physical exercise so training is the main part of keeping them busy. Just as well seeing that we dabble in so many disciplines there is always something to train! :) Play is also a big part of our training. I also make sure Breeze & Sky have days of rest just lazing about and not doing anything, as to not overwork them and especially after a big weekend of trialling or hiking.
Why doesn't Breeze have a tail? Some Australian Shepherds come with a bobtail gene - this means they are born without a tail. It does not affect their health in any way, and the happy wiggle butt dance they do is very endearing!
How did you train a dog and a cat to get along? I didn't! Breeze was raised around cats by her breeder so she has a healthy respect for them. However when I first brought Breeze home, I made sure to keep them separated but still able to smell or see each other for the first few weeks, gradually allowing more interaction if they were comfortable. Jiji was provided with plenty of places to hide or escape up high. Breeze was not allowed where her food and litter boxes are located. I rewarded Breeze when the cat was around so she associated Jiji with good things. Over time, they gradually built up a friendship however they were pretty much amicable with each other from day one. I was lucky. Plus Jiji loves dogs so that helped!