Sunday, June 29, 2014

Herding With The Big Dogs!

Watch for Stout & me at a border collie trial soon!  :)

Yes, Stout had a big adventure at our herding lesson last week! And I about had a heart attack!

We were working in the regular field at Fairwether, doing some out runs, fetching, etc. Just normal stuff. We had 5 sheep in with us and the rest of the flock was out in the BIG field.

Anyway, one of our sheep broke away from Stout. He went to bring it back. Normal Stout stuff  :)

But this sheep chose to run straight into the fence near the gate. It hit so hard that it bounced the gate open. It then ran through. Stout followed.

Now Stout & the sheep were in the HT field. The sheep runs for the gate to the big field, with Stout in hot pursuit. The gate to the big field was open!!

Oh no! The sheep is busting ass down the hill to his friends. Stout is bounding after it, having to bounce occasionally to see over the tall grass.

I'm still in the original field, just watching. The remaining 4 sheep & I are just staring in awe, watching Stout fly across the BIG field.

Wendy yells something about going over the fence. I reply "Stout didn't go over the fence, the gate was open!"  Duh. She yells back "No, you climb over the fence and help him!" Oh yeah, that makes more sense...

So I climbed over the fence, having flashbacks to 2nd grade when I ripped my pants open doing the same thing at softball practice...

About this time, the rogue sheep has joined his 500 other friends (ok, maybe there weren't quite 500, but it sure seemed like it!). Stout hits the bubble of the big flock and seems shocked to suddenly see all of them!

He then does the most amazing thing. He proceeded to push them across the field ever so nicely until they reached the fence at the very far end. It was at least a mile (probably not really, but it was a freaking really long way!). I held my breath, waiting for them to bust through that fence as well.

Nope. Stout holds back, they all turn and he falls in behind them. Wendy is yelling "Tell him he's a good boy!"  :)

So now I have a herd of sheep coming up a fence line straight at me. Unlike another corgi I know, Stout does not run them over top of me  :)  I was waving my stick in the air, jumping up & down, so he could see me & know where to bring them. It was kind of cute to see him hopping up to see over the grass & sheep butts!

About the time I'm trying to figure out what I should do with the whole situation, a sheep breaks loose from the herd. I swear it was that same damn sheep! Stout takes off after it, again. Thankfully, he only got about 100 yards away when he got distracted by the 4 sheep that were still in the original field. I called him back and he proceeded to fetch the ~50 sheep back through the open gate into the HT field.

I got his "lie down" and called him off. And I finally breathed. Good dog, Stout. That'll do  :)

Here is a photo representation of the whole ordeal:

(You may have to click on the photo to get a bigger view)

See? It was a really big field!

Stout was so pumped up after that  :) He thought he could conquer the world! But not until after he cooled off in the pool. And then rolled around in the grass like a doofus...

So maybe I wasn't that far off when I said I wanted him to do B Course Sheep  :)

Thursday, June 12, 2014

PNAC Porter in the Canine Chronicle!

It's great having your own personal doggie Biographer / PR Specialist / Social Media Coordinator / Agent, etc.   :)

But seriously, thank you to my talented friend Megan of Megan Arszman Communications (She is also owned by Dally & Mesa) for including us in her article!

I'm not sure the pdf above is working correctly - I've never tried that before! So here are some screen grabs. Apparently it's time I got some other types of specialists as friends!  :)

For the whole publication, click here!

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Herding Ducks

3 for 4. Not too shabby for a pushy little jackass...

Porter & I entered the CKHGC club's inaugural duck trial over the weekend. It was a 3 day trial, with AKC in the morning and AHBA in the afternoon, so dogs had the opportunity to actually run 4 times each day.

Although Porter rarely practices on ducks, I couldn't pass this up  :) I thought it would be a good training opportunity for both of us to work on our trial stress & issues.

And we did pretty darn good. Not just with being able to qualify, but I never did feel like puking  :)  I didn't cry. I kept my nerves well under control, even when I realized that an HTD duck course sure looks an awful lot like B course! There were no fences & just wide expanses of tall grass around the perimeter... I was well aware of the possibility of Porter pushing those ducks straight out into the wild green yonder & having his own little slaughter...

But we conquered it. Twice! Which earned him his HTDd I title!

We also did one run of AKC A course, looking for that last leg... Didn't happen. But he really did a nice job once we got the ducks out of the corner on the outrun & chose to forego the fetch to the cone. He just drove those duckies right around the course! I got a "nice recovery - good choice to go on" in my comment section. I always get a lot of compliments on knowing when to quit  :)

Here is a video of Porter running HTDd on Friday. I also filmed on Saturday, but ended up with almost 2 hours of the inside of my jacket pocket & then the back of the lens cap...

Sorry about the terrible YouTube music... I had to cover up the wind noise.

I also had the usual great comment son my score sheets. I love that! 

If only I had a nickel for every time they commented on how pushy he was... Or maybe a Q instead of a nickel  :)

And when I first looked at this sheet, I was a little taken aback. I mean, I thought our Z chute was pretty darn good! LOL?

But it's actually "1 OL"  (1 point for off-line)