Saturday, February 20, 2010

This Week

This has seemed like a long week. Monday, we went to Zamora for the Nursery/Pro-Novice portion of the Slaven's Zamora Hills Sheepdog Trial. Coal drew up later in the P-N running order so we did not take our turn at the post until about noon and by then the sheep had turned cranky, as they had on the prior days by midday/afternoon. We timed out on the drive, so it's back to the drawing board. The trial was very nice though, the weather fantastic, and of course as always the field and sheep the most challenging around. Candy Kennedy put an excellent write-up from her perspective (link below, to "Training Border Collies") and it says it all. A hearty thank-you to all involved who helped to bring this wonderful event to us once again. I clerked on Sunday afternoon for the Open with judge Elgar Hughes from Wales, which was most enjoyable.

We've had several days with no rain, so it has been really nice to have things dry out a bit. Coal and Rime have gotten in a bit of sheep work several days this week, and all three dogs have been able to run off some of their craziness. However, rain is in the forecast for the next few days, so I fear we will be right back where we were in terms of mud.

This week also marked the one-year anniversary of Rime's arrival and it is hard to compare the lanky 42-pound 14-month old teenager of the present to the tiny 10-week old who flew into SFO in a 100 crate last year. Rime and I are coming to a meeting of the minds on his sheepdog work; foremost right now is letting him develop his method without too much interference, but the only thing I am insisting upon is his stop. If he will stop for me then I can really broaden his horizons, so that's where we are. He shows some nice things and does not lack for enthusiasm.

Today was the Redwood Empire Sheepdog Association's annual meeting. You must attend this meeting in order to be in contention for the high-points competition during the year, and beyond that all the important decisions for the year are made, a new Board is elected, and so on. The meeting went very well, except for one thing, that I ended up on the Board! What's up with that? So now I am on the Board of not one, but two sheepdog clubs. But, it's nice to look forward to spring, and the RESDA trial calendar beginning in April.

Coal's next trial will be the Sonoma Wine Country here in Santa Rosa, followed by an AHBA ranch trial. Then the RESDA year begins, followed by (I hope) at least a few more USBCHA trials. We are still working on that shedding!

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