Tuesday, August 16, 2016


The dogs and I have been getting out and working sheep, nearly every day. Today is a rest day for us which they are agreeing to unwillingly, but they have no choice. :) Spot has bounced back from his month off of work and has not missed a beat in where he left off. In fact after a few on-the-muscle moments the first couple of sessions, he has settled in to working at least as well if not better than before he got sick.

I have to thank Marnie for the above quote. I don't know where it came from, otherwise I would credit that source. Spot and I are now working on the finer points. His basic work is mostly all good. He lacks experiences so I am working on that. We've had a couple of really good lessons. We are stretching Spot out a bit and giving him experiences that I hope will increase his confidence level. I'm asking friends to help me to hold sheep for us to simulate a trial situation. I'm working on getting us there!  Spot is starting to get it with shedding a larger group of sheep so he is ready for me to work on four or five head now, once in a while. I am not going to push it as he clearly knows what I mean when I set up a shed. Again, we are working on building experience and slowly layering on the finer points. I have started working on a look back, too.  Spot is ready to just soak up all of these experiences and I am certainly enjoying it.

It has been really fun lately to follow along with the UK National trials and to see the high standard of work that they are showcasing. Here we are again in the high season for sheepdog trials...the four UK National trials, then Soldier Hollow, the International, Meeker, our Finals. So much great work to observe, and learn from, thanks to the internet. :)

Sunday, August 7, 2016

Inspiration and Losing That Loser's Limp

Spot, "waiting for the word..."

Ryme, pleased with himself and happy after his work session
I am inspired and uplifted and humbled by friends. I had allowed myself to develop a "loser's limp". A loser's limp is an ongoing excuse where you give yourself permission to fail, or at least to not perform up to your capabilities. This definition of the loser's limp is loosely gathered from the book " That Winning Feeling!" by Jane Savoie, where I first heard of the concept, years ago.  I haven't pulled this book off the shelf in a while but I am going to read through it again. I realized recently that I had a loser's limp.  I am so grateful for my friends who have been patiently inspiring me in ongoing fashion, and finally I took some action to flush that excuse and get rid of it...mentally erasing it off of the chalk board where I had been underlining and highlighting that limp. Page 66 from that book states, this quote:  " It's not what you don't have that matters. It's what you do with what you have."  

 I am also inspired by these good dogs who continue to amaze me.