68 – Why Are You a Border Collie?

The Border Collie, also known as the “not-Lassie collie”. That’s right, the collie that everyone knows about is not the one that everyone knows about. The Border Collie is however, THE herding dog. These dogs are used to herd just about everything. Including sheep, pigs, chickens, and any other kind of bird you can imagine. Oh were you going to say ostrich? Yeah, they herd those, too. I wish I had video proof, but I can’t find any on such short notice.

The Border Collie is also one of the few dogs that are workers and show dogs. In fact, the working dogs are also allowed to show with their scars and damage from herding work. Interestingly though, as the Working Collie Club doesn’t seem to get along well with the AKC. Because of this, in the past, they have removed registration from dogs that have won in AKC shows. They also dominate in agility trials, and have even forced show runners to created ABC trials (Anything But Collies).

In this episode, we talk about Caitlyn’s resolution to take care of chickens if we ever got them. We finally follow up on the Chihuahua episode where Caitlyn went to the dentist. This time Kyle went. What were the results? Find out in this episode of Why Are You A Dog?!

Song this week is “Border Collie Song” by Rich Hall

66 – Why Are You a Bernese Mountain Dog?

The Bernese Mountain Dog, or known as Bernies or Berners, is a big dog from the mountains of Bern. As a mountain dog, it’s probably not shocking at all that they are super furry and large. It’s almost like they developed the way they are due to the elements. As they are larger dogs, they were mostly used as guarding dogs for their owner’s farms. They were even strong enough to pull carts into towns. Granted, I don’t know how big these carts were, but still cool to say about a dog.

The dog is unfortunately a rather unhealthy one as it has, among even large dogs, one of the shortest life spans. They get all the popular diseases, and they often have mobility problems even at young ages. But even so, they are as playful and fun as just about any other dog.

Caitlyn and Kyle talk a lot about their recent experience visiting the 2018 AKC National Championships hosted in Orlando. They went around meeting several breeds, and watching some of the agility trials and dock diving. Both of which were amazing to watch, as any of the dogs could have a great run or an awful one. It was chaos incarnate. We even got to witness a Bernese Mountain Dog in action.

Song for this week is “Bernese Mountain Dog” by Nancy Simmonds

65- Why Are You a Siberian Husky?

The Siberian Husky is THE snow dog. When you look at people doing sled racing, it is likely this dog that you think of. It’s also the dog that someone who doesn’t know much about dogs thinks looks like a wolf. These are actually a pretty healthy and old breed, and you would be surprised that it actually comes from Russia. That’s right, it’s not a misnomer like the Australian Shepherd or the Labrador (which is totally from Newfoundland, ha! Well, originally I mean.) The dog has a lot of breeding and popularity in the United States. 

The dog can come in several different colors, and it made its claim to fame with the Nome Serum Run. The famous trek in Alaska where several dog teams carried serum for diphtheria. These dogs have been used to pull sleds in both the Arctic and the Antarctic and are regarded as the best sled dog around. It is actually a much smaller dog compared to sled dogs of the time it was introduced. 

Kyle talks about how he started reading a sad book about dogs. Caitlyn is excited that we use a lot of latin, since no one can stop her mispronunciations. 

Song is “Snow Dogs” by Brunswick Project

55 – Why Are You a Yorkshire Terrier?

The Yorkshire Terrier, or the Yorkie, may be one of the smallest dogs, but they had a pretty big impact. They were originally bred for clearing mill houses of small pests. Or not? The men who bred the Yorkies were not very good at keeping records of what they did or why. This is actually a point of frustration for later breeders.

One of the smallest dogs of all time was a Yorkshire Terrier, not much larger than a matchbox. That is insanity that something could be that small. One of the most celebrated dogs of WW2 was also a Yorkie. Smoky started out as a stray, that travelled across the world with their master helping out with the war. Yeah, actually legitimately helping out with the war.

Caitlyn and Kyle talk about their recent trip to Disney. It’s pretty good. I feel like I’ve already given away too much of the episode in this text, so just check it out!

Song is “Natalie and Effie in the Park” by Of Montreal

47 – Why Are You a Lhasa Apso?

The Lhasa Apso, is a dog of surprising feats. You look at it and just assume, “Ah yes, you are just a dog of no substance.” Wrong. There’s this little ol’ thing you may have heard of called, “Dalai Lama” whose soul will possess a Lhasa Apso while waiting to become human again. Yeah, the leader of Tibet is technically a dog for a little while. Honestly, I would love it if we had the option to vote for a dog every so often. Cause if a dog got to be King of America, if you have a bad opinion, you’re just gonna look like an jerk.

Besides their history with the Tibetan ruling class, this breed is very old. In fact, the link between the Lhasa and the wolf is a very short link. The more I learn about genetics, the more I don’t understand genetics. I look at a wolf and the Lhasa, and I have to assume something happened between them. Turns out, that something wasn’t a lot. They’re also known for their long hair “show cuts” which looks a lot like human hair. Probably just as annoying as having long hair as well, showing up wrapped around your foot, or in your clothes.

This episode, Caitlyn goes on a tirade about birds. In case it somehow has not come out at this point, Caitlyn doesn’t like birds. As pets, specifically. I have seen her enjoy pictures of cute birds, and she has a LOT of owl stuff in the apartment. So. . . it’s complicated I guess.

Song for this week is “Lhasa Apso” by Ne’er Do Evers

43 – Why Are You an Akita?

The Japanese Akita, or as it’s known in the United States, the Akita, is a very storied dog. Like many of the dogs in East Asia, they have a very long history. The strangest part about that history has to be that Helen Keller is a huge reason they came state side. Yes, that Helen Keller’s favorite dog was the Akita. Because of this, the dog actually has some variations from American and Japanese. The Japanese version looks more like the Shiba Inu and the American one has more of a bear head.

The greatest claim to fame that the Akita has is the story of Hachiko. This story has been retold several times, but this is the true and real one. He’s the dog where his owner rode the train to work, and passed away before returning. This prompted Hachiko to return to the station for 9 years until his own death, awaiting his master to come back from work. There’s two movies made about this, and the story is referenced all over the place.

Kyle learns that Caitlyn doesn’t have a soul, in that she didn’t think the Futurama reference to Hachiko was very sad. The two also talk about how if they made a Hachiko movie, what it might be like instead of the real movie.

Song is “Like Falling Snow” by Suara.

38 – Why Are You a Leonberger?

We have another request! This week we talk about the Leonberger, the giant breed from Germany that was bred to look like another animal (probably). Which seems like a complicated solution to a simple problem. The guy who created this breed really loved large animals and was a great marketer, but didn’t live long enough to see the breed truly come into their own.

As with most dogs, especially German dogs, the two World Wars took a toll on their numbers. They’ve made a comeback recently and their numbers are increasing across Europe and America. Did you see our Facebook post recently? If you did, you know these guys are the Tom Cruise of the dog world and do their own stunts. They jump out of helicopters and save people who have no business swimming!

Outro song is Take Me Higher by Leon Berger.

36 – Why Are You a Catahoula Leopard Dog?

This week on “Why Are You A Dog?” the show gets real. During her research, Caitlyn found some fascinating history about the Catahoula Leopard Hound/Dog/Cur or whatever you call it. These dogs were essentially put into a contest against one another to see who was the fittest. The rules for the contest are ludicrously unfair, and it sounds like either an action movie from the 80s or a Young Adult novel.

We also learn more about how the AKC seems to have something against American dogs. Not only is the Plott hound (another American dog) a recent addition, but the Catahoula still is not officially a recognized breed. What do these pups gotta do to get a shot at recognition? I guess they could always harass some AKC officials into doing what they want.

Kyle tells Caitlyn about his foolproof system to identify whether hats have a purpose. Caitlyn immediately tries to break the system.

Song is Catahoula by The Bellamy Brothers.

34 – Why Are You a German Shepherd?

German Shepherds, I don’t think we have to ask why you’re a dog. They’re almost ubiquitous with the whole idea of dogs. Seriously, you see a dog doing an actual honest to goodness job, making a living, it’s more than likely going to be a German Shepherd. Also, some of the more famous dog actors are German Shepherds. They also enlist in the military, work on the police force, and even take long stints as personal tour guides. They’re not really good at guiding though, go check out the Labrador episode for that though.

Unlike some other dogs, this one actually is from the country of origin that is given in it’s namesake. I’m looking at you so-called “Australian Shepherd”. Although in the scheme of history, they haven’t been around too long, they’ve certainly made an impact on it. Although burdened with the world wars, they somehow remained popular, and are one of the most popular dogs around (at least in the United States.)

In this episode, the dog talkin’ duo get a little bit too Monday, so be prepared for extra comedy, and a lot of word issues. Kyle tries to retell a “humorous” story, and naturally forgets important things in the telling of. All in all, this was an episode. This episode was also requested (kinda. . . ) by Jane DS of twitch Justin.tv and Twitchin’ Kitchen fame, so thanks, Jane!

Outro song is “German Shepherd Dog Song” by Luke Farrugia. Probably. It was made for the German Shepherd dog tips group on Facebook, apparently.

20 – Why Are You a Jack Russell Terrier?

Ever wonder “Who is Jack Russell? Why does he have a dog names after him?” Well, we’re here to tell you. And no, he’s not related to anyone named Parson… Interestingly, it seems that there are multiple Russell Terriers out there.

This week, learn about the man behind one of the most ubiquitous small dog breeds. There’s also an opportunity to name a potential new book idea Caitlyn and Kyle came up with, to learn about a nightmarish occurrence in the TV show Arthur, and Caitlyn mistakes Arthur for a badger and not an aardvark. Don’t @ her about it.

Outro song is “My Little Jack Russell” by Richie Kavanagh.