It all depends on how much time you have on your hands when you’re about ready to get one. When they are puppies, you need to dedicate a LOT of your waking hours, to which there might be very few sleeping hours, to building a solid foundation for your pup. They need to know that you’re the one to listen to, and despite they have a natural disinclination to listen, it’s imperative that you demand that from them at a young age. They’ll grow to listen to you. For the most part. lol
They are extremely lovable, yet independent dogs. Absolutely, and in almost every way, different than a Golden or a Collie. They are stubborn and will continue to test their boundaries, your patience, and the rules you have set for them, even into older age. If you want a dog that you’ll be able to stop training after they get it down, a Zoi is not for you. It’s training, and a lot of it training for the life of the dog. Also, they are extremely sensitive. They may wrestle hard, but if you scare them or yell at them when you’re trying to train them, then they’ll be even less inclined to listen. It’s a strong positive reinforcement thing. You can’t get frustrated with them, and if you do, you can’t show it. They’ll egg you on and, I swear, they’ll do it on purpose. Then you’ll have a disobedient dog that WILL NOT LISTEN. You’ll have to do trust training exersizes with them to rebuild that relationship.
As far as prey drive goes, it all depends on what you’re looking for. If you have a cat in the house and bring a Zoi pup home, things should work out just fine. Allow the cat to show dominance over the dog and then the dog won’t seek to harm it, only play with it. (Depending on the dog, of course.) Granted, if the cat runs across the room, it’ll chase it, either way. It’s the end game that’s important. If you are looking for a hound to start coursing, then I wouldn’t recommend small dogs of cats to be in the same house as them. Coursing rewards they’re prey drive and can cause cat chasing to end in a dead animal. It all depends what you want out of the animal. A strong prey drive can be culled with proper training, but it takes a LOT of time and way more patience than you might be willing to deal with.
As goes for the ‘fenced yard’ deal? I don’t agree with it. I live in an apartment and he’s (Nikolai, of course) just fine here. I take him out to the tennis courts almost daily and for a few hours, he gets to run it all out and come home to nap it off. We also take him to a dog park around the corner, but he’s still intact, so I’ve been keeping him home more often than not. If you have another dog and don’t mind wrestling in the house, It’s a good way for them to burn off some steam until you can get them out. Of course, with small living spaces, comes behavioral issues if you don’t get them the exercise they need. A dog that doesn’t get a walk a day will chew his bedding, destroy anything they find on the ground, claw at the door and bark excessively. If you do get one and you are in an apartment or have a really small yard, just make sure they make it to the dog park, or other dog-friendly fenced in place, and give them walks. They’ll be just fine and super happy.
Then there is the common sight hound things to beware of. Don’t allow them off leash (Unless they have an acceptable recall. I mean PERFECT recall.) Don’t allow them to be sedated without your consent, because certain sedatives can ultimately lead to death. Bloat and Hip dyspepsia, obviously, and certain eye and heart issues may apply to poorly bred dogs, but otherwise they are extremely healthy. They can gobble their food and choke, which is something I’ve learned because I think Nikolai has a screw loose somewhere, so if you get a food bowl insert or feed them in handfuls at a time, you can avoid that.
Another thing people don’t tell you, they’re collars are EXPENSIVE. I just drop $20 on a 2” leather collar because Petsmart didn’t have any more martingales in his size. Martingale collars are collars that have a second loop that tightens the collar when it’s pulled, so it can’t slip past their ears. Zoi have skinny heads and thin ears, so a collar that fits just right is important. They’re food is expensive, if you choose to feed your dog something that will keep it healthy for longer, and it’s a better deal to buy it in bulk than small packages. I feed my Zoi Authority from Petsmart. It’s about $40 for the largest bag they have here and it’s the best food for the best price before moving up to brands like Diamond and Blue Buffalo. You can always raw-food diet it, but I don’t want to cause a deficiency in Nikolai since he’s still growing, but here’s a link that I’ve found helpful if you’re considering it. —-> http://personal.palouse.net/valeska/fresh-food-diet.htm <—-
I recommend, if you’re going to get him fixed, do so after two years of age, because that’s when they’re bodies are done developing the muscle structure and the growth plates have done their work. After a bit of research, if you are going to get your Zoi fixed, and it’s a male, then I would suggest a vasectomy. If they are female, then you can opt for an operation where they remove only the uterus, leaving the ovaries. I’m not too sure about the female half of it, but I know that if you leave the hormone introducing bits when getting fixed, usually the dog won’t have the typical cancers or illnesses that comes with getting fixed, or leaving them intact. If you read up on it yourself when the time comes, It’ll probably make more sense to you, or they might have better procedures out. XD
Here’s the last of it, I promise. This is a novel of a post, but I feel it’s necessary since you’ve asked. :3 Owning a Zoi is probably the best thing I’ve ever done. They are extremely loving, like, sit down and they’re head is in your lap waiting for pets. They are super sweet and just goofy clowns that want to make you happy when you’re sad. (Not considering Training, of course. XD) Nikolai is particularly prone to whine a lot, but he didn’t much like the plane ride over and I think that gave him a bit of separation anxiety. Everyone that meets him is in love with him. He has a tendency to jump up on people’s shoulders so he can kiss their faces and ears, but he’s good about getting down when asked. He just likes to be on your level. Other than him choking on his food and the fact that I don’t trust him with stuffing because he might eat it, and a particular taste for condoms that he has, Gross I know, He’s a pretty well behaved boy besides for those things. Of course, he listens when he wants to, but that’s a Zoi thing.
And as always, don’t just go by what I say. :3 I’m a first time owner, myself, and have had to learn most of these things as I go. I’ve done a ton of research myself and I’d go as far as to say theory just isn’t enough when faced with experience. :3 I’ve had to ask a few people about some weird things he does, but it seemed like a great deal of them are normal. They play different than other dogs, as goes with their instincts of wolf hunting and don’t let anyone tell you that they aren’t lap dogs. They certainly are. :3
And if anyone else disagrees with me, please reply or ask your opinion! I’m just as open myself to anything that anyone might want to tell me. :3
I hope I helped you out and was at least a little informative, Roadbones! Please, don’t be afraid to ask anything specific if I didn’t answer your questions! I’ll do my best. :3#Borzoi #Owning a Borzoi #Nikolai #Sighthound #Dog
We’re not entirely sure~ We were told he was a Shepherd/Husky cross, but we feign to believe it. We do believe the Shepherd bit, but we believe he’s either got Husky/Border Collie in him, or maybe Akita? Some people have easily said Akita. If you have any dogs or coats that look like his, by all means, show me! We did a test for him, but the results were bogus. lol