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Guest Aria The Border Collie

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If you have a moment, take a look at post #35, page two, in this thread by Geonni Banner. It has a welcoming, kind tone. She explains that this forum has much to offer Aria (OP) and her BC. The message is personal, delivered in the way a spectator would chat with a friend during halftime of a soccer game. Gave me a good feeling. -- TEC

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If you have a moment, take a look at post #35, page two, in this thread by Geonni Banner. It has a welcoming, kind tone. She explains that this forum has much to offer Aria (OP) and her BC. The message is personal, delivered in the way a spectator would chat with a friend during halftime of a soccer game. Gave me a good feeling. -- TEC

Thanks TEC. I appreciate it.

But Gloria's post is the voice of experience speaking. She's one of several here who have helped me to what understanding that I do have - imperfect as it must be, given that I've never even been present when sheep or cattle were being worked. But the long-timer's here at the Boards who actually work dogs, trial dogs and breed good working dogs are great teachers. When I see a post by Julie, Liz P, Tea, Gloria, Donald, Sue, Pearse, and Delta Bluez Tess, I read it - no matter what it's about. Because there's always something there to think about.

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CMP,

Surely training decisions aren't based solely on a puppy's first exposure to sheep? Those poop eaters could end up being the best working dogs. I can't imagine deciding a pup's fate on a single exposure, but maybe I'm misunderstanding.

 

J.

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CMP,

Surely training decisions aren't based solely on a puppy's first exposure to sheep? Those poop eaters could end up being the best working dogs. I can't imagine deciding a pup's fate on a single exposure, but maybe I'm misunderstanding.

 

J.

Oh no, not at all. Those farm bred puppies will all get treated like they will be working dogs until they are at least a year (barring obvious misfits). No dogs are really ruled out for something or other until they are 18 months. The first trip out is to get a feel for them to aid in setting up a training schedule and for the stockpeople to place dibs on puppies - it's quite a lottery, actually. It's more "sorting hat" than "weeding out".

 

It was MY dog's fate that was decided on that single exposure. She was never meant to be a stock working dog and was not bred here. I exposed her because she has to live here on a sheep farm and if she was one of those dogs who would always pine for the sheep, I would have let her be a sheepdog and started over. I figure a single exposure would let me at least know whether I was being cruel and I decided she was not going to be unhappy based on her response that day and the next. Could change, of course, but I suspect not.

 

Clear like mud again, was I?

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. The first trip out is to get a feel for them to aid in setting up a training schedule and for the stockpeople to place dibs on puppies - it's quite a lottery, actually. It's more "sorting hat" than "weeding out".

It was MY dog's fate that was decided on that single exposure. She was never meant to be a stock working dog and was not bred here. I exposed her because she has to live here on a sheep farm and if she was one of those dogs who would always pine for the sheep, I would have let her be a sheepdog and started over. I figure a single exposure would let me at least know whether I was being cruel and I decided she was not going to be unhappy based on her response that day and the next. Could change, of course, but I suspect not.

Clear like mud again, was I?

Well, even if Molly does get turned onto sheep when she's a bit older, what's stopping you just training her on a few to indulge her need? and then you still keep her rather than handing her over to another.

 

IMO It's clear from everything you' ve written about Molly, that you have a strong bond with her. She's your dog, You shouldn't need to have to justify that to anyone... least of all yourself.

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I don't work sheep. And don't want to :/ Well, let me rephrase - I have not got the temperament for it and the few times they tried to get me into it when I was young, the experiences were not good ones - for me, the dog or the sheep. I am pretty content being an admirer of people who can work stock (and a wee bit jealous, 'tis true) and an advocate for the dogs.

 

I would have only given her up if she had been one of those gaga for sheep dogs - I've seen a few puppies that do nothing but sit and wait for the next trip to the pasture once they've gone. I've seen a few that hide if they think they have to go back, too :)

 

Her interest, while encouraging for the stock people, was not over the top and so while she might be a good sheepdog and a happy one, I am pretty satisfied that she won't be *unhappy* not being one. I am selfish enough that this is enough for me.

 

It was all on me. I live in a somewhat precarious world in relation to dogs: amongst people who might shoot a conformation breeder on sight, if you catch my meaning. Let me put it this way, when I inquired as to the political correctness of bringing a BC puppy to the farm who was not intended to work stock, I receieved replies that ranged from "why don't you get some other kind of dog that was bred to do that?" to "as long as you never teach it to dance and let Uncle Ian know". No one has trouble with the dogs that don't make the stockwork grade being made into pets or sports dogs - they just weren't really behind the getting a BC specifically NOT to do stockwork. It is this very thing, someone said, that is going to be the ruin of the breed.

 

Like that. *sigh*

 

We're Gaelic (Gàidhlig Cheap Bhreatainn) and given to ridiculous, if not poetic, passions - whether they be grounded in reality or not :/

 

I have often considered writing a novel based on the whole crazy quagmire. They're just dogs to most people but here they're something more and people's livelihoods have been tied up with them for so many generations that they have become ... well, more.

 

I must stop writing posts so early in the morning :/

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It shows an attached jpeg file, but it's not visible to me either. The only one who could have removed the attachment would be the OP, but since there's something there that seems to indicate an attachment, I don't think it was removed and don't know why we can't see it.

 

J.

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Thanks, I was curious after reading through 8 pages of this to see what the OPs puppy looked like. Seems the conversation has drifted a bit off topic. :)

It shows an attached jpeg file, but it's not visible to me either. The only one who could have removed the attachment would be the OP, but since there's something there that seems to indicate an attachment, I don't think it was removed and don't know why we can't see it.

 

J.

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