Sunday, November 23, 2008

That's My Girl!

5:30am comes early, ( especially for me, as I am NOT a morning person) but that's what time we got up yesterday morning to get things ready and loaded up for the much anticipated trip to Robins farm for a day of friends, food, and working dogs.
We started the morning out by having to sort out a yearling ewe that I was dropping off for Julie. I was headed to get Lex to help with this chore, but at the last minuet decided to take Chris instead. If she is going to start being my all around dog, I guess theres no time like the present. It cant be all training and drilling, I have to start trusting her for the practical work too. It was still dark at 6:00am when Chris and I approached the sheep pasture, and for some odd reason, I felt very calm about my decision and had all the confidence in the world that Chris would locate and bring the sheep up for me. Lex and I have worked in the dark many a time, but Ive never trusted Chris enough to send her out in the dark. Imagine my elation when I realized we, Chris and I have finally come to this em pass in our relationship. Once again in our recent new working relationship, she gave me no reason to doubt her, and with one word from me, smartly and swiftly brought up all the sheep to my feet with no fuss, no muss, for me to find the one I needed. I quickly became consumed in my work, squinting in the dark trying to sort through to find the right ewe, when all the sudden, a dark thought crossed my mind. Oh shit! Wheres Chris?! In the past, Chris would have picked an opportunity such as this, to dive in and maul a sheep, or cut one off and take it to the bottom of the field to ravage it. My first instinct was to to look up towards the bottom of the field. In the early dawn, with the sun just starting to lighten up the morning, I could see no sheep and no Chris down there. I brought my search in closer, and low and behold, there about 15 feet from the little group of sheep I was standing in the middle of, lay Chris, lying down, happily and calmly still holding the sheep to me with no apparent desire to go wrong. I didn't say a word, just kept working on getting the ewe, but I think my smile upon seeing her choosing the right actions all on her own, lit up the whole pasture for us. I found the ewe I was needing, and grabbed a back leg and pulled the sheep into me to hang on to it, while I asked Chris to walk up and flank around between the fence and sheep to drive them off down the pasture so I could load the lone ewe. Being as this was all pretty exciting stuff for Chris,( close work) I wasn't hesitant to ask her, but still a bit leery, and crossed my fingers and hoped she would continue on with her good behavior. With stealth and precision, she quickly dispatched the rest of the sheep, and called off easily, and calmly waited while I loaded the unwilling ewe into a crate for transport. As I opened the pasture gate to push out the crate with the ewe in it, Chris followed happily, she had a gleeful jig in her step, and a look of satisfaction on her face that melted my heart. As I dropped the tailgate on the truck to load the crate, Chris jumped up into the back of the truck, making sure she saw the job through to the end, inspecting the ties to make sure her charge was safe and secure. I called her out of the truck bed, and shut the tailgate and turned to look at Chris and let her know I thought she'd done a nice job of the work this morning, and her face was lit up, with a look that said "What next!?" What heart and drive this little dog has. No quit, and always happy and ready. I simply adore this little dog, and have been so glad I decided to dig down deep within myself for the will and tenacity it was going to take to do the work to turn this girl around. I feel sure that she some how understands this and will continue to reward me for giving her another chance. Chris is truly and simply, in my eyes, an awesome little dog!
More to come later about the fun we had at Robin's as soon as I sort through all the many pics I took, I just had to first brag on my little dog. :)


Dancing shepherdess said...


Darci said...

Thanks! Some days that girl just inspires me!