Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retrievers, commonly called as Tollers, are sporting dogs used to lure and retrieve ducks. Their name basically came from the technique that they use to lure ducks. Tolling refers to their way of playing fetch on the shore in order to attract ducks within shooting range.
Appearance-wise, Tollers look like Golden Retrievers but with more copper-colored coat and white markings.
However, they are more stubborn and more strong-willed than Golden Retrievers. You would have to be firm and consistent when it comes to instilling discipline in a Toller.
If you are someone who wants a highly active dog, a Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever is the perfect breed choice for you.
In acquiring your Toller, be sure to transact with a reputable breeder. Some breeders may have a higher Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever price than others. However, they compensate the high price with ethical breeding and sanitary facilities.
Daintree Kennels, a home-based breeder in Canada, is a Canadian Kennel Club registered breeder of purebred Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retrievers. The founder, Trisha, was originally from Nova Scotia, which was where the first Tollers were bred.
Although based in Canada, Daintree Kennels ship its puppies to America. If you are interested in purchasing a Toller, it would cost you $3,200, excluding the travel expenses. The cost already includes Canadian taxes and currency exchange fees.
Most US-based breeders do not have a price rate on their websites. If you are interested to find a breeder, you can go to the website of Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever Club (USA).
PuppyFind also lists Toller puppies at $2,500 each.
Tollers do not really require more than the basics when it comes to grooming. For their medium-length and water-repellent double coat, only weekly brushing is required.
It is advisable to use a firm bristle brush and to focus the combing on their undercoat. For this purpose, the GoPets Professional Double-Sided Pin and Bristle Brush priced at around $15 will be perfect.
Daily brushing, however, will be needed during spring and fall. These are the seasons when they shed more than the usual.
When it comes to bathing a Toller, it should only be done when necessary or when it already stinks. This is to preserve the natural oils in its skin which gives its coat that water-resistant quality.
On normal days, you can use dry shampoo to keep its coat fresh. Pupkiss Pets’ All Natural No Rinse Dry Shampoowhich costs around $14 is a good choice as it is suitable even for dry and sensitive skin.
Aside from combing and bathing, check your Toller’s ears regularly for any dirt or debris. This is a must especially for those that are used in hunting. Also, every week or two, make it a habit to trim its nails.
With regard to its dental health, frequently brush your Toller’s teeth. It will be helpful to use a flavored toothpaste like Petrodex’s Enzymatic Toothpaste which is poultry-flavored and costs around $8. This will make the process easier as your Toller will enjoy the taste of the toothpaste.
To prevent tartar build-up and to remove the bacteria, brush your Toller’s teeth two to three times a week. Daily brushing is also recommended for the prevention of gum disease and bad breath.
For Tollers’ nutrition, they should be fed twice a day with high-quality dry food. Opt for canned dog food instead of human food since not all human foods are suitable for their diet. Also, incorporating human food into their diet will result in higher caloric intake.
Barkspace lists three dog foods as the best for your Toller. They are as follows:
- BLUE Wilderness High Protein Grain Free Adult Dry Dog Food (Chicken Formula) – from $62 for a 24- bag
- Purina ONE SmartBlend Vibrant Maturity Adult 7+ Formula Dry Dog Food – from $52 for a 31.1- bag
- Pedigree Adult Dry Dog Food – Roasted Chicken, Rice & Vegetable Flavor – from $29 for a 33- bag
The amount of food that they need depends on their age, size, metabolism, and activity level. Although Tollers are highly active in general, it is still best to measure their food daily, depending on their needs. This is more preferable than just leaving food on their food bowl.
Suggestively, puppies between eight and twelve weeks have to be fed four bowls of food in a day. For three to six-month-old puppies, they need to have three meals in a day. For six-month-old to one-year-old puppies, one big meal or two small meals will be sufficient in a day.
Importantly, do not forget to leave some water on their bowl. Remember that they are a highly active breed. They will need water to hydrate them throughout the day.
Generally, the Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever breed is healthy. However, just like humans, it may potentially develop genetic health diseases with the passage of time.
The following are the diseases that Tollers are prone to:
1. Hip Dysplasia
In canines, the hip joint is composed of a ball and a socket. Normally, the ball and the socket grind with each other smoothly. However, for dogs suffering from hip dysplasia, they do not fit or develop properly; causing them to grind or rub each other.
The number one cause of hip dysplasia is genetics. Thus, before getting a Toller, ask the breeder to provide a health certification of the puppy’s parents or grandparents. This is one way to ensure that your Toller is not suffering from this condition.
Aside from genetics, other causes include rapid growth from a high caloric diet and injuries that resulted from jumping or falling on floors. Thus, taking good care of your Toller will be a big help in the prevention of hip dysplasia.
2. Progressive Retinol Atrophy (PRA)
This is an eye disorder caused by the loss of photoreceptors at the back of the eye. Eventually, PRA leads to blindness.
3. Collie Eye Anomaly
This is an inherited condition that leads to the dog’s blindness. Usually, it manifests by the time the dog is already 2 years old.
Deafness in dogs tends to develop by the time they are already between 7 to 8 years old.
Although some diseases are genetically inherited, it is your responsibility as the caregiver to prevent these diseases from developing or to just prevent them from worsening. Do not forget to bring your Toller to the veterinarian for its annual check-up and needed examinations.
CareCredit, which is a healthcare credit card that can be used for your pets, has a price list on its website. The list contains the average prices of annual check-ups and other examinations and surgeries for your pet.
- Annual Vet Visit (Office Call): $45 to $55
- Heartworm Test: $45 to $60
- Fecal Exam: $25 to $45
- Allergy Testing: $200 to $300
Another important factor in your Toller’s health is vaccinations. Vaccines will help in maintaining the overall health of your Toller. Below are some of the vaccinations that your Toller has to receive:
- Distemper, Adenovirus, Parvovirus, and Parainfluenza (DAPPV): $60 to $100
- Rabies: $10 to $20
- Coronavirus: $20 to $30
- Leptospirosis: $20 to $30
- Canine influenza: $20 to $50
- Annual vaccine booster: $18 to $25
Being a sporting breed, Tollers crave activities where they can use up their energy. They need to spend at least an hour every day for exercise. This is to prevent them from expending their energy on less productive stuff such as chewing and digging.
For their daily exercise, you can take them on a walk, a run or a hike. When doing so, put your Toller on a leash, especially when on public property. Primal Pet Gear Dog Leash has a 6-feet leash with double handles for around $14.
They also love playing fetch. You can throw a tennis ball for that purpose. Or, if you are feeling a bit generous, you can purchase an automatic ball launcher by All for Paws, priced at $140.
Additionally, when training your Toller, give it treats to serve as positive reinforcements. Tollers do not do well under pressure. But, if you reward them for a job well done, training will become an enjoyable activity for them.
Loyal Paws has premium dog jerky treats for a starting price of $17 for a 4-oz pack.