Sunday, May 15, 2011


This weeks homework was to get my dogs on as much different terrain as I could. Terrain can be the biggest nightmare for young dogs and their handlers. I wanted to get Craig out so I could maybe know what to expect from him in the near future. In the past big rolling hills have been a nightmare with me when I am running Isla the terrain makes her run wider and she tends to get lost. Outrunning is not Craig's strong point. But I will take it considering how good his mother has gotten at being wide.
we started out at Jerry's in a field we call the buck brush field. The buck brush adds another element which is sight and sound. The brush is noisy to run through so the dogs really need to listen and they also can not always see the sheep and like wise with me not being able to see the dog. This is especially true with Meg who likes to drag her belly on the ground.

The pictures really don't show the rolling terrain and how far away Jerry is standing with the sheep. The outrun is about 450 yards. Turns out Craig really had no problem with the hills or the bushes but his problem was with the set out person. He has patented what Jerry calls the fish hook lift. He comes around the top and proceeds to go around the setter on his left and then between the handler and sheep back to 12 o'clock and then lifts the sheep. Not sure how a judge will point that. Time to fix that. I went down the field closer to Jerry and worked on fixing the fish hook. So far it has not made an appearance again. Only time will tell if I have fixed it. 

A couple days later I traveled a few hours north the work dogs with Randy, Abe and Lisa. As promised by Randy hills were a plenty. I have never worked dogs in this field before so it was interesting for me as well.
Started on this hill.

Again the pictures really don't do it justice. There is a dog and sheep at the top of the hill if you look closely. That would be close to 600 yards. I did not send Craig that far but I did send Meg and she did good. I sent Craig to the dark spot on the right. Which still was about 450 -500 yards. He did good. The fish hook did not appear and he stopped good at the top and brought the sheep nice and quiet down the hill. This day I was very happy with him. He was nice and steady on his driving and not exploding into his flanks. I hope that is the Craig that shows up in Kentucky. 

I sent Meg on this outrun. She was too wide and got a little lost. But frankly if I had just shut up she would have been fine. But I had to step in and screw it up. 

I have tried to finish this blog post four times in the last three days and now I have run out of time. I leave tomorrow and have so much to do. Off to move ewes and lambs and then bath dogs.

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