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These pics are scattered all over so I'll try to get them all up on Photo bucket so I can share. Tough when my "computer" is a three year old IPhone. :P But I need to do it.

 

First, some of the first days Sammy got his training gear and started work. He went from hating the car to yodeling when he saw his gear come out, within a couple of days!

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Hope that worked!

 

Sam's job entails a lot of this. HOURS of this. I think you know how hard this is for a two year old Border Collie! But this did not take much training, really.

 

Please excuse the cheesy filter. The original was just bad with the lighting and camera phone. One doesn't just whip put the old 50mm with offset flash in the middle of prayer service. ;)

 

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All wet after a quick lesson in dock diving. All work and no play makes Sam a dull boy. :D

 

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I think it looks like Sam is enjoying every moment - at least the ones when he's awake and, when he's asleep, that looks like fun, too!

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What Sam looks like these days. All these are taken with my geriatric IPhone. I don't really trust myself to carrry a camera around lately. :P

 

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Sam's other job. We are reclaiming about twelve acres of badly eroded scrub wooded ridge that used to be pasture. The sheep are removing the invasive species from the underbrush.

 

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Do you see Sam?

 

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How about now?

 

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Where to now, Mom?

 

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More church. Sigh. Seriously, Mom, do we live here?

 

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All in a day's work. That's Sam's new gear on the back of the chair there.

 

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Now Sam can add "Environmentalist" and "Invasive Species Control Officer" to his list of jobs. That is one working dog, indeed!

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We've been lucky enough to host Sam (and the sheep) in his role as Invasive Species Control Officer - the sheep are helping eradicate the poison ivy and briers in the backyard! Sam certainly is a busy boy and Becca does a great job with him in all his roles! :)

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Too bad North Carolina is so far from Maryland... I have PLENTY of brambles and poison ivy in my back yard, and the current rate at which 19-year-old son is removing them (absent legitimate, paid employment) is far slower than the rate at which they're growing...

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Sam looks great! He is a busy dog, but that's what they love, indeed. And I wish I had known sheep ate poison ivy when we lived on acres in Connecticut!

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I wish Maryland were closer too!

 

Our visit to town went so well I'm wondering whether we can get a permit to do this other places (once we are done with our first gig!). Kudzu, for instance, is a very serious problem in my mom's neighborhood near Baptist Hospital. Right in people's backyards!

 

We wouldn't need a permit outside the city limits though. Hmm.

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I wish Maryland were closer too!

 

Our visit to town went so well I'm wondering whether we can get a permit to do this other places (once we are done with our first gig!). Kudzu, for instance, is a very serious problem in my mom's neighborhood near Baptist Hospital. Right in people's backyards!

 

We wouldn't need a permit outside the city limits though. Hmm.

 

Hey, Becca, here is a story about goats clearing kudzu at Davidson College right now. http://www.wcnc.com/...-123779709.html The college is paying $3000 for two months' worth of goat-chomping. The local media has been in a tizzy over goats eating kudzu......they seem to think it's the first time it's EVER been done! I don't know how many articles there were in the Charlotte Observer and stories on all of the TV stations.

 

I think you should start your own Weed Management Service! :)

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I was talking to a tree removal guy (certified arborist actually) based in W-S about the sheep and their love of noxious plants on Friday and he was very intrigued - I bet you could get hooked up with a group like that easily! Perhaps then no permit would be needed?

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Oooh, that would be very cool. Never thought of an arborist. We must chat. There are dishes in the sink and hungry lambs in the paddock. ;)

 

$3000? That's a lot of hay!

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Thank you Vaporflowers! *looks at Sam, who is currently up to his eyeballs in creek mud* yup, handsome guy, :lol:

 

Some pics of cognitive/grounding support tasks. Demos only. :)

 

Nudging to get my attention. It's not Sam's job to determine my neural or mental or physical state. If I sit down suddenly, he's just to be ready for whatever is necessary. This is kind of like targeting, but more active.

 

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Wow, note to self. That outfit makes me look huge. Looks like I'm beating poor Sam up! :P

 

Anyway, this is grounding, or one of my ways. It's kind of dumb looking because the action is all going on in my head, and Sams.

 

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Sam in the next one is simply keeping me from getting stepped on. We are still working on sit/stay and he'd never done it with the pack. Hence the ticked off look. :lol:

 

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This task is called, "Giving your dog Rub-Rubs because he's Awesome." The handler does it. :lol:

 

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Sam is staring at the car wondering why we are fooling around and not heading to church.

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Morning service went without a hitch. I think it coincides well with Sam's late morning nap. ;) If anything, he slept even sounder.

 

I discovered he needs a paws up command. I needed him at one point and not only did I have to rouse him :lol: I also had to stoop over for a while. Obvious much?

 

Anyway. The light is terrible in the morning because they draw the blinds. This is at the end - Sam's like, "Hey, singing, that means time to go, right?"

 

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Once when Sam was first starting, he heard the singing, prayer, and just went down the aisle with everyone. He sat at the sanctuary door and someone yelled, "Hey, your dog is ready to leave!"

 

I love the fact that no one panicked. They are pretty cool.

 

Places of worship have the right to deny access, by the way.

 

After church we went to Grammy's as usual.

 

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Uncle Brian was there. He needed entertaining. A working dog's job is never done.

 

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He is SO cute! Love the freckles. There are no other dogs that have such an expressive face, which is one of the reasons I love BC's. Sam has that face!

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