Tuesday, July 29, 2014

My Essential Teammate

There was a discussion recently over on Facebook about how no one blogs any more. I do like to blog but I often do not have the time to sit down and be creative. That said, there were several folks who encouraged blogging to continue. So okay, I will try! :)

I had a thought last night about my right hand man, Ryme, that I thought I could blog about. He doesn't get the kudos that sometimes the other dogs do. But I could not be doing what I am doing, without his help. Ryme does all the sorting and sheep moving that makes it possible for me to work the other dogs.  I am working an extra dog for a friend, so that makes three dogs I am trying to work (besides Ryme). Ryme never quits, he never gives up, and he just keeps doing what I ask. Go get the sheep in, help me get the sheep sorted. Move this group here, move that group there. Deal with the cranky mama ewe, or, the uneducated ram lamb who thinks he can walk over the top of the dog.  Gate sort this group, shed off those mamas and babies so they can get fed. Hold the sheep off of me when I am wheelbarrowing the alfalfa out to feed. Yes, all that and more.

So even though he is not a trial dog, Ryme is a very essential part of my dog team. Here's to you buddy, I couldn't do it without you!

Sunday, July 20, 2014

July Rain

While back home in Illinois they are getting a lot of rain, normally here we don't get any rain from May to October. We are also in a serious drought, because we haven't been getting enough rain from October to May, either. The past week has brought two different short episodes of actual water falling from the sky...an un-heard of event in these parts for July. It is delicious and refreshing, and oh-so-not-enough for the parched landscape. But, it is good for the soul anyway. And plus you get to see if your windshield wipers still work. They do. :)

July has been quite a busy month. We went to Carmel over the Fourth of July and escaped the firecrackers at home. I am told by my local friends that it was the worst year ever for the illegal fireworks here in town. We had a great time getting away to the ocean, the cool weather, and no booms, pops, or smoke.

The beach was really busy because of the July 4th holiday. So it was hard to find space like in the above picture, to walk the dogs off leash. This walk shown above, was about the only time, unlike in other years past when the dogs have had more freedom.  There were just dogs and kids everywhere, so that part was not as fun as perhaps in the past when we have gone and the Fourth was a mid-week holiday.

Besides our trip to Carmel, it feels like other activity has been nonstop. I have been working dogs a lot it seems. Spot has really turned the corner on his progress in the past few weeks...he is partnering up and wanting to work with me, for which I am really grateful.

Spot is doing short gathers, lift and fetch...and a few steps of a drive here and there. We're working on his flank commands and stops. It looks more and more like we are getting together as a team, and that is really encouraging. :)