Australian Terrier International
Meeting the Needs of Aussie Owners Globally
© 2010 Australian Terrier International
February 2010, Vol 1, Issue 2
In This Issue
Education Night
Celebrate Valentine's Day
Vaccine Protocols
Parent Clubs
Cook's Corner
Education: Muzzle and Skull
Muzzle and Skull Photos
Sweden's Aussie History
Report from Sweden
Report from Sweden
Rally with Ruthann
Bark Out
Bark Out-Mentoring
Happy February
Breeder Question
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Join Our Mailing List!
Quick Links

Dear Founders, Members and Friends,
ATI is off to great success thanks to YOU!

Our first newsletter was opened over 1500 times, in 12 countries.

Facebook had over 100 members in less than a week and continues to grow.

Our website has been viewed in over 14 countries.
Welcome Australia, Belgium, Canada, Colombia, Denmark, Finland, India, New Zealand, Norway, Poland, Sweden, Switzerland, United Kingdom and the USA.

There appears to be a need and we hope we are meeting that need.

To all the people working so hard on this effort, contributing stories and photos, a very big thank you!

We will be funding Canine Health Foundation (CHF) grants and look forward to your input on those studies. All membership dues go to CHF.

Pamela Levy
ATI Newsletter Editor



6PM PACIFIC               7PM MOUNTAIN

Join us Wednesday evening, February 17th, at 6pm PST for a discussion about vaccinations.
Dr. Ronald Schultz and Dr. Jean Dodds will be our guests.

They will be answering questions and providing us with current regimens for optimal health for our Aussies. There will be a Q &A.

This is an amazing opportunity please do not miss it.
Resume links below:


Photo Courtesy of Cheryl Mechalke

Valentine's Day was created just for us to love our Aussies just a little bit more.

Instead of sending your Aussie a card this year, how about...

Taking him or her for an extra long walk.
Cooking an extra special meal for them.
Bake some homemade treats. (See our Chef's corner for a great recipe.)
Make a extra special crate pad. (See our Craft corner next month.)
Out of money, hate to cook, sew or take walks, well just smother your Aussie
in kisses and cuddle up. They'll give you plenty of love right back.

Happy Valentine's Day to you All.

Remember...can we give our Aussies chocolate?...We say NO, NO, NO!


Gillian Barlett 5 generations
Photo Courtesy of Gillian Bartlett

This article is meant to be a dialogue to get us all thinking. Different ideas and thoughts are shared. That is on purpose to have you ask questions.

You should consult YOUR VET before following any of the information or advice below.

It is, also, important for pet people to understand that THEIR breeder should be their primary source of information on the care of their Aussie. Not all lines respond the same, do well on the same  foods, share the same temperament, etc., so that is important. Sabine Baker (Kennel Aussome, USA) Sabine has been breeding Aussie's for 16 years and is the 4th generation of her family in dogs.

Jean Dodds, DVM, Sabine Baker (Breeder) and Heather Rife, DVM, answer several questions that many people have about vaccines.

1. As the Breeder can we start our puppy shots later and only give two shots instead of three?

J. Dodds DVM- YES

S. Baker (Breeder)-I give distemper/parvo at 8 and 12 weeks. No puppy leaves until they're at least 12 weeks for a multitude of reasons. 

2. How long do maternal antibodies last?

J. Dodds DVM-It varies, but most are gone by 12 weeks of age.

H. Rife DVM-Virus protection from diseases such  as distemper and parvo are received from the mother through the blood supply and the very important colostrum ingestion during the first few days of nursing. Depending on the mothers immune status, these protective antibodies start to disappear as the puppy reaches 4 months of age. We do not know exactly when they will not be protected, so we "boost" them with vaccines , starting at 8 weeks of age, every month until over 4 months of age. I t is crucial that the puppy receives its final vaccine after the 4 mo birthday. 25% of puppies vaccinated only until 12 weeks of age are susceptible to parvovirus, a canine killer of young and old dogs. Rabies vaccines are directed by the state and county you live in, but are usually required between 3-6 months of age. Although rabies is a virus the pups must come in contact and be bitten by a rabid animal....not a very common scenario here in Conn. So I suggest Rabies be given at around 5-6 months of age. In very young small breed puppies, I do not adminster more than 1 vaccine at a time. This vaccine is a combination vaccine protecting against distemper, adenovirus, parvovirus, parainfluenza. More than 2 vaccines at a time are not recommended and vaccines should be given at least 3 weeks apart.

3. Is it true if you give a puppy a shot too early the shot is ineffective and you wipe out the natural immunity leaving the puppy unprotected?

J. Dodds DVM- Not entirely. The dangers of early vaccination are two-fold:  You can increase the chances of adverse reaction, when puppies are vaccinated too early, especially at or before 6 weeks of age. Distemper vaccine is not safe to give to puppies this young as it can cause distemper. Secondly, much of the vaccine's effect will be neutralized by the pups' residual maternal immunity and so it will most likely be ineffective or only partially effective. 

4. If your puppy is vaccinated at 7 or 8 weeks and your vet said you did the above and wants to revaccinate at 12 weeks...does that sound right to you?

J. Dodds DVM-Yes, but you should still have one more booster at or after 14 weeks of age, especially to protect against the new virulent parvovirus 2-c strain.

5. I just got my 9 week old puppy. It has had one shot. Can I take it out in public? NOT YET   How about to a dog park? NOT YET
Why or why not?

J. Dodds DVM-Because this vaccination will likely only be partially effective because of the neutralizing effect of residual maternal immunity. You can take the puppy out 3 days after the second booster at 12 weeks, but don't let it walk on the ground where other dogs have been. Going to puppy training classes is usually safe, as most if not all pups there are healthy from reputable responsible owners

6. Can I give all my shots at once? Such as, Puppy shot, rabies, bordetella, lyme's, giardia?
J. Dodds DVM- Never
Why or why not?

J. Dodds DVM-First of all, the vaccine adverse reaction rate in published studies increases as the number of vaccine antigens given together increases. Secondly, rabies vaccine gives the strongest antigenic challenge of all, so I believe strongly that it should be given separately from all others , by at least two weeks, and should be given as late as possible according to the law where you live. Thirdly, giardia vaccine is NOT recommended for use by the American Animal Hospital Association (AAHA) Vaccine Task Force.  

S. Baker (Breeder) I wouldn't. Some vets may love you for it. They make money on the shots and then later on treating a pup with a compromised immune system.
7. I've heard some people request a certain brand or manufacturer name of shot from their vet. Can we really do that?

J. Dodds DVM-Sure, although your veterinarian may not carry that brand, and so you may have to buy 25 doses yourself (except for rabies) and bring it to your vet or give it yourself.

Why do some people do that?
J. Dodds DVM- Because of prior reactions or concern for the fact that others have experienced adverse reaction to a certain brand of vaccine.

S. Baker (Breeder)-You should certainly be allowed some input into your dog's care! Good vets do not feel threatened by questions or by reasonable requests. Remember, you are paying the bill.

8. Do I have to worry about Lepto in my state or my country?

J. Dodds DVM-Yes, but only IF it's endemic where you live, with proven cases, or IF you take your dogs in the fields or for field trials, etc., on farmland or along slow moving streams.

S. Baker (Breeder)-Lepto is on the upswing in many areas of the U.S.; however, the vaccine does not protect against all strains of it anyway.
9. I got a 2 year old rescue...instead of shots can I do a titer?

J. Dodds DVM-Sure you can run a vaccine titer test.

Can you explain the difference between just giving the shot and drawing a titer?

J. Dodds DVM-Drawing blood for a titer test is completely safe and will determine whether a dog (or cat or horse) needs a booster vaccination. Giving an unnecessary booster is clearly unwise. 

S. Baker (Breeder)-Why would you take a chance like that with a dog whose vaccination history is unknown? Titers do make sense for old dogs or dogs that are known to have problems with vaccines, but since there are still some questions regarding the reliability of titers, I would vaccinate a healthy young dog. 

10. How late can I wait to give rabies?

J. Dodds DVM-As late as the law allows where you live, usually 6 months of age, in some places, 5 months.

S. Baker (Breeder)-As late as your state's law allows.

Have you seen any complications with Aussies that have been given shots at 12 weeks or so?

J. Dodds DVM- Absolutely, and not just in Aussies.  The most commonly seen adverse reactions are seizures and hind limb weakness or paralysis. Other reactions also occur, such as fever or swellings and even tumors at the vaccine injection site. 

S. Baker (Breeder)-Yes, I've seen a reaction to rabies vaccine in a 3 month old pup.

11. What about states like OR that are required to give Rabies early and report to the state?

J. Dodds DVM-What do you mean by "early"? See below; it says before 6 months, not that it must be given at 12 weeks.

OREGON -- Oregon Administrative Rules Division19 §333-019-0017 (with medical exemption)
Rabies Vaccination for Animals
(1) Except where specifically exempt, all dogs at least three months old shall be immunized against rabies by the age of six months.

12. Can you tell me if the Bordetella, Lyme's disease and Giardia vaccines/shots really work?

J. Dodds DVM-Bordetella vaccine is not fully protective and the disease it can produce is mild; so, it's not really needed. IF you do it, give the intranasal vaccine. Lyme's disease vaccines are only needed in endemic areas with high exposure risk. IF you give the 2-dose series, remember that protection is short-lived, so it needs to be repeated annually.

Is there a down side to using them?

J. Dodds DVM-Giardia vaccine, as mentioned above, is NOT recommended by the AAHA.

S. Baker (Breeder)-Dogs will forever test positive for Lyme after vaccination.
13. Is it better to do a heart worm vaccination or use the pills?

J. Dodds DVM-Never use heartworm vaccination. Use the monthly pills such as Heartgard or Interceptor every 30-45 days. Please use the plain and not the Plus versions of these medications. OR, give the plain daily heartworm medication now available again (Dimmitrol).
S. Baker (Breeder)-We favor Interceptor over Heartguard. From a friend with an epileptic Standard Schnauzer I learned that Heartguard lowers the seizure threshold. The ProHeart6 vaccine did not have a good safety record. Not surprising, since it is Ft. Dodge. Here's what a vet had to say:

14. If I'm thinking about importing/exporting a puppy what should I consider as far as vaccines are concerned?

J. Dodds DVM-The recommendations should be the same whether importing or exporting pups. Also, remember that shipping animals causes stress to them.

15. What countries are currently considered rabies free?

J. Dodds DVM-The UK, Australia, New Zealand, Hawaii. BUT, you cannot enter those places without documentation of their acceptable level of rabies immunity. The amount required is specified by each place, so you need to find that out well in advance. 

Photo Courtesy of Elaine Strid
Note: Three Generations of Aussies

Vaccination Protocols Country to Country

Finland- We have VET recommendations supported by the Kennel Club and everybody follows them. No private person is allowed to vaccinate or to even have a possession to vaccinations, so vets do all the work for us. Kirsi Ola (Finland)

Sweden- We vaccinate our dogs following this protocol: at 7 weeks we give a parvo shot and at 12 weeks we give shots against distemper, parvo and kennel cough. This is given at 12 months as well and then repeated every second year.  As we don't have Rabies or Leptospira here, we don't need to give shots for either of these diseases unless we are travelling abroad with our dogs outside Sweden/Norway. Carin Sandahl (Sweden)

The U.S. seems to have a little bit of flexibility from state to state. Breeders are allowed to give their own puppy shots excluding rabies, which, must be given by a vet. One such protocol is CSU; click on link below.

Colorado State University's (CSU)
Small Animal Vaccination Protocol
Veterinary Teaching Hospital

CANINE:   Pfizer's DHPP (distemper, hepatitis, parainfluenza and parvo)

Intranasal Bordetella/Parainfluenza
To be used just prior to possible exposure to kennel cough carriers, i.e., shows, field trials, etc. May be repeated up to six times per year.


Canine Respiratory Coronavirus and Canine Parvovirus Type 2c  
Canine Respiratory Coronavirus (CRCov) causes respiratory infections in dogs, and recently gained media attention when a shelter in Lee County, Florida experienced an outbreak that sickened many animals. For a Frequently Asked Questions document with information provided by Dr. Cynda Crawford of the University of Florida College of Veterinary Medicine, go to
Canine Parvovirus Type 2c (CPV-2c) is a strain of canine parvovirus that has recently emerged in the United States as a cause of vomiting and diarrhea. For a Frequently Asked Questions document about CPV-2c, to to


Zippy car
Photo Courtesy of Cheryl Mechalke

How many Australian Terrier Clubs are there? Can you name them???
Where are they? Can we drive there???






For more information go to

Is there an Aussie Club in your country that we are missing?
email us at [email protected]



Photo Courtesy of Cheryl Mechalke

Izzy's Apple-Cheddar Dog Biscuits

Makes about 16
2 cups barley flour
1/2 cup old-fashioned oatmeal
1/3 cup shredded cheddar
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1/3 cup unsweetened applesauce
2 tablespoons olive oil

1.     Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a baking sheet with a nonstick baking mat or parchment paper; set aside.
2.     In a large bowl, mix together all ingredients and about 3 tablespoons water to form a dough. Roll out mixture between two sheets of plastic wrap to 1/4-inch thick; remove plastic wrap and cut out biscuits with a 3 1/2-inch bone-shaped cookie cutter. Reroll scraps and continue cutting out biscuits.
3.     Space biscuits 1 inch apart on prepared baking sheet. Bake for 30 minutes until nicely browned and firm.
4.     Transfer biscuits to a wire rack. Turn off oven and place biscuits on wire rack in oven overnight. Remove from oven and store in an airtight container up to 2 weeks.

Photo Courtesy of Cheryl Mechalke
Associate food producer Courtney Knapp shared this recipe from her mother, Marcia Knapp.
From The Martha Stewart Show, October 2009

BREEDER DISCUSSION...a conversation
Skull and Muzzle

Why are the skull and muzzle important?

From The Australian Terrier History and Origins by Pamela McDougall Douglas

The Aussie history describes a working dog known for it's ability to kill snakes and with it's strong powerful jaw, to kill rats. "The head structure, dictates that the length is required for strength,so that in defence, the Aussie is able to get in the first bite when hunting dangerous snakes and rodents."
When referring to "type"....
"The skull should be of moderate width." Too wide it will resemble a Cairn Terrier and too narrow a Fox Terrier.
You want a strong and muzzle to allow the Aussie to do it's job. With one bite an Aussie should be able to break the back of a sizable rat. The second bite should break the rat's skull.
A snipey muzzle indicates lack of strength. 

The AKC approved Australian Terrier Standard states:

The Head is long and strong. The length of the muzzle is equal to the length of the skull.
(The distance from the tip of the nose to the stop is equal to the distance from the stop to the occiput.)

The Skull viewed from the front or side is long and flat, slightly longer than it is wide and full between the eyes, with slight, but definite stop.
(The skull is flat, not rounded [domed].)

The Muzzle is strong and powerful with slight fill under the eyes. The jaws are powerful.
(The muzzle is strong, not narrow.)

What does that mean?
What does that look like?
How do you define the stop?
What is an occiput?

Below are examples of skulls and muzzles.
You be the Judge.
Decide how you would rate the heads below using the Standard.

We have Breeders judging the heads and you will find their comments on the website. You be the Judge first and then compare your thoughts to others.

We can continue the conversation on the website and on Facebook.
No dog names will be used.
Please note we are ONLY looking at the skull and muzzle.
(We are judging the photo of the dog, not the dog. The dog, in person, may look different depending on the angle at which the picture was taken.)
Make sure when you make comments that they are respectful and
refer only to the Standard.

Good example: The head appears domed and not flat. The muzzle does not appear strong but rather narrow OR that head looks like the proportions are correct with the length of the muzzle appearing equal to the length of the skull.

Skull:  Bone components that make up the head; composed of a braincase (area from stop to occiput) and foreface or muzzle.  Many standards use term to refer to the braincase, topskull or backskull.
Muzzle:  Foreface; forward portion of the upper and lower jaw and nose portion of the head; the head in front of the eyes.

Occiput: Back part of the head or skull; the high point of the back part of the head.
Stop:  Dividing point between skull and muzzle.  The changes in profile line between skull and muzzle; the step up at the junction of the nasal (maxilla) bone and the frontal bone of the skull.  The Cocker Spaniel has a pronounced stop, Bull Terrier has none.
Snipey:  Muzzle pointed and weak; no fill under the eyes, with narrow, thin jaws.
Fill:  Fullness of bone.

From the glossary of  "K-9 Structure and Terminology" Edward M Gilbert, Jr. and Thelma R Brown, second edition


Photo Courtesy of Cindy Brennan






Holsinger 4



Tina Nordgren all eating
Photo Courtesy of Tina Nordgren

Australian Terrier

The history of the Australian terrier probably began during colonization in the 19th century, when emigrants from England and Scotland came to Australia. Not only people arrived in the boats, but also the animals they kept, among them small dogs. These dogs were crossed with the native rough black and tan terrier. Their task besides being a pet, was to be a right hand in the mines. They had to be capable of everything from guarding the farm to hunting vermin.

The first standard of the breed was put together in 1887 and has since then been supplemented and more detailed. The history of the Swedish Australian terriers began in Denmark in 1953. A Danish woman, Comtess Lise Moltke, brought an Aussie to Denmark which she had been given as gift from the Duke and Duchesse of Gloucester, where she had been working as a nanny.

The first litter was born in Sweden 1964. Thereafter litters have been born sporadically. From the beginning of the 21st Century there have been approximately 120 - 150 puppies born per year. For being such a small breed, quite a large number of dogs have been imported. This has resulted in the access of a quite broad material for breeding.

The Swedish Aussie club was started in 1975 by a few enthusiasts and today has about 400 members. There are 24 more or less active breeders at the moment.

What to expect from a typical Australian terrier:

The Aussie is a frisky and tough little dog who is not always aware of its small size. It is perfect for those who want a big dog in a handy size. It has the capability of a big dog, maybe except for pulling a pulka. It loves to run alongside when you ride a bike or ski and can stand both cold and warm weather. Their love for children and their loyal character is the main reason why we Aussie-freaks can't imagine a better family member. It loves to be where you are and is a true and loyal little friend. It is capable of anything a big dog is and once a person gets an Aussie, they tend to stick to the breed.

Swedish dogs

Photo Courtesy of Tina Nordgren



Photo Courtesy of Carin Sandahl

We have had a real old fashion winter this year here in Sweden, like the ones I remember from my childhood. There is currently about 50 cm of snow on the ground and the temperature has not climbed over zero C since mid December, with temperatures under -15 C for the past three weeks, so our dogs have been staying indoors with us.  During periods of such extreme cold, one needs to have to take extra care to watch the dogs when they go outside and put some fat cream on their paws to keep them soft and without cracks. And the use of warm coats and sweaters are very nice for all dogs, especially older dogs  or dog's that do not have thick coats, at least when the temperature goes under -10.  This seems to have been a very cold year all over the world, with much snow and extremely cold temperatures.

On the Show Beat-

Regarding shows here in Sweden, there are not many show being held during this time of year. The last and biggest of the 2009 Swedish Shows was held was the Swedish Winter Show held in Stockholm, mid-December. The judge for Australian Terriers was from Australia, Mr. Guy Spagnolo, and there were 36 Australian Terriers entered in this show. BOB and Best Male was Multi Champion Jaskarin Bravo. The male CAC went to Pariservikens Earth Boy. BOS and Best Bitch was C.I.B. Nord Ch Twee-Dle-Dee Without Makeup and her young daughter Twee-Dle-Dee With Makeup On, who took the bitch CAC.

We also had a big double show in Gothenburg, Sweden in January, called My Dog. Judges there were Mr. Jose Vidal, from Portugal, the first day and Mr. Frank Kane, from England, the second day. There were not as many dogs entered, 5 the first day and 9 the second. Both days BOB went to the male Ch Jaskarin Master-Himself and BOS went to the bitch Ch Jaskarin Surprise-Herself.

Vaccination for Ticks, here in Sweden
(Please find information under Vaccination Protocols Country to Country)

During the summer, we have a lot of ticks everywhere in areas with grass or thick bushes. Tick diseases seem to be on the rise and more common every year so we have to give the dogs some anti-tick preparation. Each year many people here get Borelli or TBE (cerebral membrane infection) from ticks. There is a vaccine against TBE for people, but nothing for Borelli, and since many here we live so close to our dogs both summer and winter and it's common to have the dog bring in a tick on its coat that transfers to their human guardians, so we are on the watchful of ticks here and remove of them as soon as they are found.




Dog Life in Finland
Aussies here do well in the winter time, as long the temperature stays above -20 C, and they keep moving, of course they can't be kept outside for long time at these temperature nor be out for longer walks nor when it is really windy/cold. Aussies at these temperatures should have and wear winter clothes. They get use to these outfits very quickly and are very happy to be in them after they notice that they can stay out longer when wearing them. Urinary tract infections can be common in the winter as bitches have to go faster when it is cold and they tend to sit down on snow. Coughs and similar things are not uncommon during the winter months. But many Aussies love winter and they love to play in snow!  My Aussies are excellent helping to pull the sled of my 4-year old daughter - two strong Aussies and her mother - and oh fun it is to hear her verbal expressions of her happiness as we travel on our way! Aussie's are especially happy when spring returns to Finland and the warmth of the sun and many hours of daylight return for all to enjoy.

Photo Courtesy of Minna Kaartinen

FACTS regarding Finland
In the end some facts of our beloved country:

5.3 million inhabitants
Aussiemagazine with 40 - 60 pages and being printed 755 copies
312 Aussies registered year 2009
Over 600 members in national Aussie club (Suomen Australianterrierikerho)
1.8 million saunas (a place that we all LOVE - as they are warm! Have look: (

Other fun facts
188,000 Lakes (10 % Suomen kokonaispinta-alasta)
180,000 Islands
475,000 Holiday cottages
203,000 Reindeer
200,000 Salmon
35 forest parks
5.2 million mobile phones
and...One Father Christmas - the REAL one!

Finland snow
Photo Courtesy of Minna Kaartinen
LET'S GET READY TO RALLY by Ruthann McCaulley

WallyWe are so delighted to have Ruthann writing a monthly column for us. She has an Aussie named Wally and enjoys doing obedience with him.
Ruth is an AKC Rally Judge and proud member of the 2010 AKC Rally Advisory Committee comprised of 7 Judges and 2 AKC Representatives.

This month I will give you a brief introduction to Rally Obedience, I hope you may be interested in this wonderful sport.  Next month I will provide a little information on the state of Rally around the world as well as the different venues available to those living in the US.  This will be followed by monthly articles detailing each of the rally exercises with the exercise sign, performance requirements and some training tips.  There will also be links to Youtube videos demonstrating some of these exercises.  This information will be condensed from my book, Doodle by Design, the Comprehensive Guide to Rally Obedience which is an electronic book availably only at as a download or CD. 

What is Rally Obedience?

The best way to describe Rally is to let the introduction from the AKC Rally Regulations speak for themselves:

AKC Rally is a sport in which the dog and handler complete a course that has been designed by the Rally judge. The judge tells the handler to begin and the dog and handler proceed at their own pace through a course of designated stations (10 - 20, depending on the level). Each of these stations has a sign providing instructions regarding the next skill that is to be performed. Scoring is not as rigorous as traditional obedience.  (My note, there are no half point deductions.)

The team of dog and handler moves continuously at a brisk, but normal, pace with the dog under control at the handler's left side. There should be a sense of teamwork between the dog and handler both during the numbered exercises and between the exercise signs; however, perfect "heel position" is not required. Any faults in traditional obedience that would be evaluated and scored as a one-point deduction or more should be scored the same in Rally, unless otherwise mentioned in the Rally Regulations. After the judge's "Forward" order, the team is on its own to complete the entire sequence of numbered signs correctly.

Unlimited communication from the handler to the dog is to be encouraged and not penalized.  Unless otherwise specified in these Regulations, handlers are permitted to talk, praise, encourage, clap their hands, pat their legs, or use any verbal means of encouragement. Multiple commands and/or signals using one or both arms and hands are allowed; the handler's arms need not be maintained in any particular position at any time. The handler may not touch the dog or make physical corrections. At any time during the performance, loud or harsh commands or intimidating signals will be penalized.

Rally is a companion sport to Obedience. Both require teamwork between dog and handler along with similar performance skills. Rally provides an excellent introduction to AKC Companion Events for new dogs and handlers, and can provide a challenging opportunity for competitors in other events to strengthen their skills.

All Rally titles will follow the dog's name.

At this time there are 49 different Rally exercises and each has a specific sign (plus start and finish).  Each exercise has a description of the performance requirements that must be met.  Every time you go into a rally ring the course will be different making it a unique and exciting challenge.

There are three levels of competition; Rally Novice (RN), Rally Advanced (RA) and Rally Excellent (RE).  To earn a title you must qualify three times under two different judges.  A qualifying score is a minimum of 70 out of the possible 100 points possible.

The Wonderful Rally Retry

How many times in your life have you wished, dreamed, drooled over having another chance, getting to try something you know you can do just one more time to prove to the world and everyone watching you really can do it right?

Well, in Rally, you can have another chance at an exercise/station that you've blown or done incorrectly (Incorrect Performance). The Rally regulations define Incorrect Performance in the glossary of terms as: Incorrectly Performed (IP) stations occur when a team attempts a station and fails to perform the principal parts of the station on the 1st attempt. The handler may choose to retry the station once, for a correct performance, accepting the mandatory 3-point deduction for the retry of the station. The station is considered an Incorrect Performance (IP) if the handler chooses not to retry or fails to perform the station correctly on the 2nd attempt.

This is not only one of the biggest differences between Rally and traditional obedience, but it is one of the very best things about Rally. When you perform an exercise incorrectly, it's called Incorrect Performance and is a deduction of - 10 points. If you know you've made a mistake and have an Incorrect Performance, you may (or repeat, redo) the exercise/station that you did incorrectly. A retry erases the -10 and replaces it with a -3, so you're already 7 points ahead!

Because you are allowed so many aids in rally, unlimited communication, multiple commands and signals, using your arms and hands, bending and twisting to help and guide the dog, rally exercises are judged very stringently. Each exercise description contains "the principal part" designated by bold type and/or italics.

If the principal part of any exercise is not done correctly, the exercise must be scored as Incorrect Performance.  Incorrectly Performed (IP) stations occur when a team attempts a station and fails to perform the principal parts of the station on the 1st attempt. The handler may choose to retry the station once, for a correct performance, accepting the mandatory 3-point deduction for the retry of the station. The station is considered an Incorrect Performance (IP) if the handler chooses
not to retry or fails to perform the station correctly on the 2nd attempt.

Exercise # 27. Stop and Down - While moving with the dog in heel position, the handler commands and/or signals the dog to down as the handler comes to a stop next to the dog. Once the dog is completely down, the handler moves forward, commanding the dog to move forward from down position.  (Stationary exercise)

Only one retry is allowed for any one station. You may retry each and every exercise that you perform incorrectly one time for a total on two attempts at each station. The maximum number of points that can be deducted at any one station in Rally is -10.  
A retry does not fix a Non-Qualifying Score (NQ).

See You Next Month.......


Valentine's sled ride Mechalke
Photo Courtesy of Cheryl Mechalke (USA)

Photo Courtesy of Jennie Worthing (USA)                          Australian Import Ch. Taralee Fakir
Photo is from 1976. "Fakir" received a BIS in Canada. He was a gift to Jennie from the Wilcox family in Australia who owned the Taralee Kennels, in 1973.

Jennie Worthing
Photo Courtesy of Jennie Worthing  (USA) Am Ch. Mailia Truly Survivor "Bender"
Bender is a grandson of the Australian import Ch. Taralee Banana Bender.
Jennie is 90 years young in this photo and still going strong.

Ch Sprite Lea Fancy of J'More
Photo Courtesy of Jennie Worthing  (USA) Ch. Sprite Lea Fancy of J'more.
Sprite Lea Kennel belongs to Katherine Barnes.

Photo Courtesy of Cindy Brennan (USA)

Barbara Schmidt
Photo Courtesy Of Barbara Schmidt (Germany)

Goiffon 8 weeks
Photo Courtesy of Theresa Goiffon (USA)

Photo Courtesy of Diane and Kevin Cahill (USA)

Barbara Schmidt2
Photo Courtesy of Barbara Schmidt (Germany)

BARK OUT                                        We publish YOUR comments


Ozzie Wall
Dianne Wall Ozzie

My membership in the ATI club has already provided me with more than the value of the Founder dues I paid.   When I mentioned that my precious Aussie may be facing a serious health issue, other members quickly contacted me not only to give me moral support, but to provide me with an accumulation of years of knowledge and observations about Aussies.   It is great to be a part of a group of people who truly put the welfare of Australian Terriers as their prime objective.  Dianne Wall


cody cahill
I was really impressed with the ATI newsletter.   It is something that I will look forward to reading each month.  And for such a worthy cause.  I really appreciate what you and the others have done to make this information available. Diane Cahill

Cartoon Petry
Marie Francis

Hello from Belgium.
Just to let know that it was a pleasure to read all the  interesting articles in your newsletters.  Your mission to help owners and future owners of Australian Terrier, as well as to support the work of Canine Foundation to better the health of Australian Terriers is  worth to be known world wide.
All the photos taken are beautiful and are showing all  the potential this  "big" little dog has to lighten our Lives.I am eagerly waiting for the next newsletter.
Congratulations. Marie Francis Petry

Please send your comments to [email protected]


Recently I was picked by AKC to become a dog show exhibitor mentor.  This is not the same as a breed mentor; it is helping people learn the ins and outs of exhibiting their dogs.  I thought about mentorship and I thought about novices.  

Maybe it is a sign of the times, but it seems to me we are lacking equally in both mentors and students of the breed.  Often people say to me they are amazed at my knowledge of pedigrees, top dogs, etc.  When I started in Aussies back in 1989 I became what is called a student of the breed. I contacted established breeders by mail and phone and begged and purchased pedigrees.  I collected old newsletters and old magazine articles, anything I could, to learn about the breed.  I would go to shows where I was not entered and watch.  With the advent of email my ability to learn from people expanded.   A student of the breed desires to learn not only the breed history but also about dogs of the past.  They desire to learn everything about the breed and never quit learning.

In my quest to learn as a novice my biggest hurdle was lack of mentorship.  You can have someone who desires to be a student of the breed but they lack mentorship.  So where do they go to learn?  Not everyone is as persistent as myself.  As I said, I tried to learn from every available source.  I still have quite a library of letters from breeders.

The other problem is that not all long-time breeders are students of the breed. I have met long time breeders who are not open to learning.  They do not want to attend seminars.  They are stuck in a rut of, "this is how we always have done it."  They are not open to new ideas.  Frequently, the novice has to try to sift through what they learn.  There was a novice I sold a puppy to who asked opinions of literally everyone.  Problem was she was inundated with too many opinions and when she made her decisions she ended up not really following anyone's advise! She also would get rather upset when people offered her advice.  I remember her getting quite upset with a judge when he gave her a suggestion.  

The true guardians of the breed feel it is their obligation to mentor new people to the breed.  If new breeders and exhibitors are not introduced properly then where are our breeders of the future going to come from?  What is the future of the breed?  Now, I know as well as anyone about time we sometimes feel is wasted on some new exhibitors.  For every dud, though, we do have our stars.  I also realize that not everyone is a perfect "fit" for mentoring.

The point is to keep trying.  A good teacher can uncover that diamond in the ruff that can turn into a student of the breed.  A true student of the breed will keep looking if they haven't found a good mentoring fit. It becomes a pay it forward type of situation.  A good student will often become a good mentor.  

When I bounced this topic off my best friend she saw a different problem though.  Her question was, "is the novice going to want mentorship in breeding or showing?"  My response was, "a true guardian of the breed is going to want to produce healthy and sound dogs."  My feeling is, it doesn't matter if the dog is in a pet or show home; we all want healthy and sound dogs.  No one wants health problems.

To insure the health of our breed, though, we not only need students of the breed, but honest mentors.  I feel we need, breeders who are not afraid to disclose and discuss problems their dogs may have. We need people who put the breeds' interest first instead of ego or personal glory and whose ultimate goal is to produce healthy and sound dogs. If they win in the ring, then so much the better!
I would like to congratulate ATI for its honest efforts to help mentor the many Aussie people who feel they have been left behind, in the US.
I think it's wonderful to finally have a group that is also globally concerned about the welfare of this breed. We have so much we can learn from each other.

ATI sends you Valentine love.  Have a wonderful February!

Valentines Day 2010
Photo Courtesy of Cheryl Mechalke


The number one belly ache for pets on Valentine's Day is chocolate since it's so readily available. Depending on the amount ingested, chocolate is potentially poisonous to many animals. A good rule of thumb to remember is the less sweet the chocolate, the more toxic it could be. These particular chocolates contain theobromine, which is a substance similar to caffeine. Even in small, non-toxic doses, chocolate can still cause stomach upset, diarrhea, vomiting, hyperactivity, dehydration and seizures. It's best not to tempt fate with tempting chocolates. Leave the sweets for your human sweetie.

Candy and Gum

Many sugar-free candy, gum and baked products today contain xylitol. Xylitol is a sweetener found in plants that is used as a sugar substitute and is highly toxic to dogs, so be sure not to leave these snacks laying around where your pet can find them. Dogs ingesting significant amounts of gum or candies solely or largely sweetened with xylitol may develop a fairly sudden drop in blood sugar, resulting in depression, vomiting, loss of coordination, seizures and even liver failure. Symptoms come on very quickly. If you suspect that your pet has ingested any amount of xylitol, call your veterinarian immediately.


Baby Enzo
Photo Courtesy Of Pam Reinert

By what age do you like to see both the testicles decended?

The question comes from a breeder with 2 male puppies. The more correct puppy, for conformation, has only one testicle down at 16 weeks. How long should one hold onto both puppies? We asked our International Breeders.

Normal puppies testicles should be down by 6-8 weeks. Anything later than that is abnormal, and while the dog may be shown if they do end up dropping, ( which can happen as late as 7months! ) the dog should not be used at stud.The testes that drop late will eventually produce testes that don't drop. Heather Rife DVM (Kennel Merrigang, USA)

Check with your veterinarian about when the inguinal ring closes.  If the testicles are not in the scrotum before this happens the testicles will stay in the abdomen or at least not be in the scrotum.  So I guess that would be a good time frame for judgment with regards to when to be concerned about a possibility of retained testicles. Thalia Rott (Agility, Rally and Obedience)

I expect testicles to be down at 8 weeks and will not hold on to a puppy that by 12 weeks does not have two testicles of normal size. When it comes to selecting the better puppy, I think you always have to ask yourself whether you're looking for "better show dog" or "better breeding stock" as the two are often not the same. Sabine Baker (Kennel Aussome, USA)

Puppies should have their testicles descended into the scrotum at 8 weeks.  This is normal.  The testicles may be correctly present at an earlier age, but in a small breed such as ours, may be difficult to find.  So eight weeks is optimum for me.  At this age I photograph the puppies, make decisions whether I consider each one to be a pet or show prospect, and start making arrangements for the pets to go to new homes at 9 or 10 weeks.  I would be disinclined to hold pups beyond that time while waiting for testicles to descend, and here is why.  Having both testicles descended and correct puppy dentition are normal.  Anything else is a deviation and is probably an undesirable genetic combination which may be passed to future generations.  So keeping a puppy until 4 months, 6 months or longer waiting for the testicles to descend may give you future generations of puppies whose testicles are undescended or slow to descend.  I simply don't have the patience for all that waiting or the space in my home to care for those pups who can't seem to make up their minds about whether to bring them down or not.  So I cull early and am done with it.
Optimum for me are decent sized litters(4 to 6) of healthy puppies.  They should grow and thrive normally.  Males should have both testicles descended at 8 weeks, and both sexes should have correct dentition as the puppy teeth emerge.  Litters like this give me the most flexibility when choosing future show prospects. Sue Holsinger (Kennel Redwing, USA)
I know that you should be able to feel them by 8 weeks.  The problem is that sometimes the cord does not grow and when you think you have both all of a sudden you only have one. A long time ago, someone told me that you need to stretch that cord by putting them in the sac and holding them there.  That seemed to have worked. I have also seen or talked to others who said the ring did not close until after 6 months.  There is also something called a testicle tac and that is when the testicle is in the sac but because the cord is short, it keeps coming out; a suture is then used to hold it in place until the cord stretches -- same as the manual but more precise.  Bottom line -- if you do not see testicles down and ears up by 8 weeks, you have a problem that needs to be addressed. (ATCA Breeder)

"I want of course testicles down at the age of 8 weeks but I see testicles come down on a male puppy at the age of 5 1/2 months. In my breeding I haven't had any testicles to not come down..yet!"  Tina Nordgren (Kennel Nellyson's, Sweden)

When I first started breeding Australian Terriers, I had several litters where undescended testicles and soft  ears showed up...they almost seemed to go hand in hand. In almost all cases,  the ears eventually came up, but the testicles never came down so they were off to pet homes and neutered. I can't speculate if they would have eventually come down and by what age, because they were neutered at six months of age according to my contract.  I did  hear of another breeder reporting one instance of late testicle descent but am of the opinion that is not the normal course for this problem.
Even though it may be a small challenge for some to find them, my opinion is that if I can't feel both by six to eight weeks of age, a red flag goes up for close monitoring. And if they aren't down by 12 -14 weeks, I am of the opinion that it is unlikely that they ever will be. I have had several with testicles that I could feel in the groin area and could manipulate them to move down to some degree, but, found the testicles have a mind of their own and will end up where they want to be whether you as a breeder like it or not!  Some breeders will massage but I am unaware how much success can be proven as a result of that therapy.  However, if a breeder has an exceptionally high quality prospect and is able to make room and hold on to that dog for a while, I would advise them to do so. Even though I think the likelihood for a testicle to descend at this point is very remote, there is always the chance as each dog is different.  In the event the other testicle did descend much later, I would have the dog checked very closely by a veterinarian to ensure there is no abnormality in size, shape, etc.  Marsha Gray
(Kennel Southern Cross, USA)

In answer to your question, like everyone else I like to see puppies' testicles descended as early as possible. I have found they are usually down by the time our puppies go to their new homes at 9 weeks. Having said that, I have known Aussie puppies' testicles not to fully come down until about 5 months of age. Brenda Brown (Kennel Ralindi, Scotland, UK)





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