was bred to be a herding dog, and this breed has become a favourite with
sheep and cow farmers throughout
Mid-Southern Sarvonia. Other dogs can be
trained to do this task, but the Cattrel is the best choice. They have a natural
knack for this type of work and it fits their energetic personality. Even though
the Cattrel would make a fine house pet, they tend to be better at herding than
other breeds and generally enjoy the open fields.
There are a few different types of Cattrel, allowing people to select one to their liking. These are the Chrondran Cattrel, the long-haired Cattrel, Silky Cattrel, and the Short-haired Cattrel. Pure breeds of this group of dog are hard to find and highly prized by wealthy land owners. Aside from working these animals are sometimes bred as pets and 'show dogs'. Some choose some of the more showy forms of this dog to increase their popularity by attempting to have the 'most perfect hound'.
Appearance. Cattrels are usually medium sized dogs, weighing from about three hebs and a hafeb to five hebs. Different types tend to have different heights. Mostly the Cattrel is a fairly light build dog with a pointed snout and ears that stand up most of the time and droop a bit at times. The herding dogs of this breed tend to be a bit stockier than the dogs bred for pets. Here are some descriptions of the individual types:
The Chrondran Cattrel
This is the basic breed of the dog, given its name from the city of Chrondra, were it originated from. It has long, rather coarse hair, and its colours range from pale ten to a golden brown with some black and white at the collar and legs. They have a very soft undercoat that is covered by the longer and coarser outercoat that protects them from cold. Their eyes tend to be dark brown or golden. They stand from about one fore and two palmspans to one fore and three palmspans at the shoulder with females being shorter by a few nailsbreadths.
The Long-haired Cattrel
The hair on the body of this type of Cattrel tends to brush the ground as the dog walks. Its face and eyes are almost completely hidden among the hair that hangs around its head. The Long-haired Cattrel stands from about one fore and three palmspans to two fores, making it the largest of the Cattrels. Unlike most of this breed, this specific hound has long droopy ears that hang beside its face and extend slightly past its jaw. Its long coat is usually black, white, and grey, with white being the predominate colour. Some times a bit of brown is thrown into the mix as well. Their eyes are rarely seen, but they are usually a dark brown colour.
The Silky Cattrel
This hound about the same height as the Chrondran Cattrel, and is slightly longer than it is tall. It tends to be a bit different than others with its long muzzle and nearly flat skull. This type has a soft and warm undercoat with a thicker outercoat that is a few nailsbreadth long. This outercoat is a bit courser than the undercoat but still nearly as soft. The most common colour of this hound is black and tan with white markings. Its colour can also range from a pale tan to a golden brown or a silvery grey with black and tan. All have white on their chests and legs. Blue eyes are most common with this type, but they can also be brown or amber.
The Short-haired Cattrel
The short-haired version of the Cattrel has a thick, short coat that is a mix of black and white most of the time. Mixes of black, tan, and white or red, tan, and white in this short-haired breeds coat are not unheard of, but not necessarily widely seen. There have even been some completely black Short-haired Cattrel, but that is rather uncommon. Eye colour for this type ranges from brown to amber and occasionally blue. Males stand from about one fore and one palmspan to one fore two palmspans at the withers. Females are slightly smaller by a nailsbreadth or two.
This dog is extremely energetic and agile with great stamina. Running all day is
like nothing to this creature, even over rough and uneven ground. They are
highly motivated to work and very intelligent. These three things are put into
full effect when this animal is doing its job. They also take to herding cattle
and other animals well; it is almost as if it is just natural instinct. These
animals are great herding dogs and they make good family pets, but only for
people living on a ranch, farm, or large plot of land. They have too much
energy, can be destructive, and sometimes suffer from depression if they live in
the city and are stuck in a house or kennel all day.
Territory. Cattrel are usually owned by mid-Santharian farmers, and hence are usually found in this area. Breeders of this dog have made an attempt to keep the pure bred hounds of this line to themselves, and so they are not usually found in the Santharian provinces further north than Xaramon.
Habitat/Behaviour. The Cattrel is a very hyper and loveable animal. They are not very good indoor pets because it takes a lot to tire them out. When left alone in the house it is not uncommon for them to destroy the place. Most times they should be kept in a kennel or in stables, whether they are kept as a pet or a herding dog. This breed is great with people, but they can not always be trusted alone with small children because they do not understand their strength. Most Cattrels love being outdoors and working on a farm where they can run around as much as they like, but as they grow older they adapt to life indoors. They can be trained to behave around people, but when on their own they revert back to their explorative instincts.
Diet. The Cattrel eats mostly meat like all other canines, but will eat other things. Vegetables and grains are also a favourite of this animal and sometimes it will eat these more than meat. When living as a pet, most owners tend to give it table scraps. While the animal appreciates this, it isnít always healthy for them. Giving them food from the table too often can make them sick. Herding dogs need a strict diet of meat, with grains and vegetables given every five to six days. Any type of food that is not necessarily healthy for people defiantly isnít good for the Cattrel.
Mating. At approximately a year old, Cattrels reach maturity. They mate about twice a year. Females tend to give birth to small litters, leaving the numbers of purebred Cattrels low. After the bitch is impregnated it takes two months before the pups are born. Most litters consist of two to three pups. Four or five pups in a litter is not unheard of, but is uncommon. Female Cattrels cannot have mixed breed pups, but males can father pups on other breeds of dog. The number of purebred Cattrels in Sarvonia has remained stable throughout the years, as there are quite a few breeders that are attempting to raise the population of true Cattrels. However, the efforts of those who do breed this type of dog have not been completely in vain, as they have played a large part in keeping purebred Cattrels in the world.
Usages. The most common use for Cattrels is herding. They are superb herding dogs and make life much easier for cattle and sheep farmers. While the purebred dogs are not easy for the lower class to get hold of, mixed breeds are almost as good. The wealthy have been known to take in Cattrels as pets. Most that own purebred pets of this breed often make deals with breeders that are trying to keep the true Cattrels alive. Trading and coin is the bargaining chip for these deals and in the end, both sides find the outcome to their liking.