Sunday, November 9, 2014

Covelo Work Day

RESDA sponsored a sheepdog work day last weekend at a ranch in Covelo, CA. It is a long drive but definitely worth the trip! We went last year and when the opportunity came up to go again this year, it was a must-do on the to-do list.

The green grass in the pasture was ankle deep which was a shock both to our systems and to the dogs. We are used to dried up brown, hard dirt with a few springs of brown here and there. To walk and work in nice lush green grass was a real treat.  I guess they have had rain up there that we just haven't gotten yet.

The sheep were older Dorper lambs who had never been worked in small groups, so that was the major challenge.  They also had their heads buried in that lush green grass and did not want to move. That changed what I was able to do with my dogs but I am still very grateful for the chance to get out on different sheep in a different place.

Coal did a nice outrun and fetch but then was pretty much unable to drive the lambs very far without some help and encouragement. Most of the dogs were similar, and had to kind of weave back and forth to get the lambs to move once they had planted themselves in a location. In contrast, Spot was able to pick them up and drive them without the sheep hesitating.  Spot did a nice outrun then picked up the sheep and drove the sheep away from me as straight as a string with no weaving.  That made my weekend to see!

I was super happy with all three dogs that I took to work as I felt that they all tried hard. The drive back and forth to Covelo is a long one and we left early enough to get home (or at least out of the area of the winding and hilly roads) before dark, the weekend of the time change.

It was also great to see many of our handler friends and have a visit in such a pleasant location. Oh and the fact that there was surprise barbecue and fixin's made it extra special.  Thank you to everyone who helped!

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