Sunday, October 21, 2012

Farm Bureau Ag Day

I was asked by our local Farm Bureau to do a sheep dog demonstration for the annual Ag Day. So Tate and I were honored to "show off" for the 4th graders! The kids were "impressed" and asked lots of really good questions. Of course they all wanted to pet Tate, and he wasn't too sure at first - but realized that the kids just love him!! We sure had a lot of fun!!

Thanks to for bringing you this post!

Saturday, October 13, 2012

Pete Update

I could write and write and write and ooooo and ahhhhh about my Pete pup! Thanks to for making this post about Pete possible.

I'll preface my update about Pete by saying that without Emil

and Spot

there wouldn't be a Pete nor an update by me about him.

Emil raised Pete from his nice gyp Hope who is a daughter of Spot. Spot was 2010 Reserve Champion of the Meeker Classic, 6th at the 2010 USBCHA National Trial, and the Texas Sheep Dog Association State Champion in 2010 and 2011.

Now to Pete - I think I was a little tentative starting Pete, but Emil got us "jump started" about a 10 days ago. (He kicked me in the hiney, but got Pete going out on stock!!) Well, we are doing super good!! I want Pete to be "my" dog, but I'm depending on Emil to help me get him to his best!

By the way, Pete's half brother placed 6th at this year's USBCHA Nationals in Nursery and was voted "Most Promising Young Dog". So needless to say, Emil has put a little pressure on Pete and me to get qualified in nursery. I'm open to the concept, but I've seen too many cutting horses ruined at a young age because of too much pressure, so I don't plan on putting Pete or me in that situation. Besides, Pete is a 2 year nursery dog, so we've got plenty of time to make it to nationals! 2014 Nationals are back in Carbondale, Colorado - my home state - so what a thrill for sure to make it there!!

Without further ado - a few photos of Pete's latest working session!

Happy Trails to Ya'll!!!

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Update - Bess

Now that the weather is cooler, I'm getting a lot more dog working time. The sheep and goats are happier, the dogs are happier and I'm a whole lot happier. Thanks to for making this post about Bess possible.

Bess is now 17 months old and should be further along in her training, but due to my "noviceness" and wanting to do it right, I've taken it slow. She is also a slow to mature, and really my goal is to have a solid dog that will work on the ranch and show at trials, so I'd rather go slow than have to back up and fix a lot of things.

One of the things that I have had to work on Bess is her confidence. She "busts" the stock when she feels like they are "challenging" her. Once I realized that is what caused her to bust, I've worked a lot on creating work/practice situations that builds her confidence. So, we're still in the round pen, but she is driving and rating her stock much better and her short outruns and flanks are getting much better. I use the round pen to "shape" the sheep, and she has to drive them around the pen. By doing this she is learning to "hold the pressure" correctly and not cause the sheep to squirt out off the fence, and to keep them going around in an easy manner. She has been a difficult dog to "get out" off stock as when you correct her, she thinks you;re wanting her to take to the stock. So, it has been a learning process for me to see what makes her "tick" But she is such a fun dog, loves me and really wants to please. So, I'm very pleased with what we have accomplished thus far.

Thanks so much for stopping by and seeing what is going on in my little corner of the dog world!

Happy Trails to Ya'll

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Another Dog Update - Tate

I know that I stated that I wasn't going to let this blog slide, but alas...I did! But August was just too "dog gone" hot to work dogs much, so I turned the sheep out to pasture and did as little as I could!

But we have had cooler weather and even some rain, so my "temperature" is a lot better, too! Soooo...back to the round pen and the practice trial field. Also, a special thanks to for making this post possible.


I've still been using Tate every day to gather goats. I've been also getting ready for our fall trial season. Again, I opted to not do any of the arena trials, but there are two weekends in October, where I will be entered up for two runs each weekend. Therefore, Tate and I have been working on our "whistles" - Tate "taking" them and me "giving" them correctly! We're getting there, thought at times it is slow. Since I've moved up from the Novice class to the Ranch class, we now have to do a shortened version of an Open Ranch Run. Tate and I have been working on drives and cross drives. Our drives, both right and left are pretty good, if I do say so myself, but alas, still lots of work on our cross drives, though we are getting better!

Tate bringing in goats

Tate moving sheep in the pens

Stayed tuned for updates (and new photos) of Bess and Pete!


Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Pete Update/Working Stock

I've had Pete on stock about 8 times and he is doing very well, balancing, going both ways, wearing sheep. I don't have a lie down on him yet and as you can see I still have the drag line. He is VERY keen, and a lot of fun to work!!

Happy Trails To Ya'll!!!!

Monday, June 25, 2012

Can't let it slide any longer!

I've decided that I've let this blog go stagnate for long enough. Even though the dog world doesn't talk much, I'm going to use this as a way to journal my progress with my dogs.

I received the cute little flower bag from one of my daughters for my birthday - Yes it says "TRIAL TREATS" and she had it monogrammed specially for me and my dogs and yes it is full of doggie treats, but not treats for me!

My whistles - I have been working very hard on my whistles. These are the two that I'm using right now for Bess, Pete and Liesl. For Tate I've converted strictly to whistling with my fingers (which I have been able to do since 8th grade and that was a LOOOOOOOONG time ago!). I started him with that, and he doesn't seem to want to convert to the dog whistles. So, we're doing pretty well with them.

Dog updates:

Didn't trial with Tate much this spring. We were very busy kidding out goats. Made one trial and Tate did okay - tough sheep that ran all over the place, but Tate kept his five together, but we just didn't make the course. 2nd run, I got in a hurry and my voice was a little pitchy so made Tate a little pitchy, same running sheep, made the course, but retired at the pens because one ewe was bound and determined to go to the exhaust and Tate was gonna help her!

Bess is doing very well in her training. She's outrunning, fetching and wearing her stock very well. I've started driving her some in the round pen and she is picking it up very well. We're both gaining confidence in each other, and I think we will be a great team down the road!!

Pete is 10 months old and I've had him on stock a couple of times - shows a lot of keenness and desire. I'm working on dry work commands, but we're soon to go to stock!

Liesl - well - a friend/mentor of mine took her for a spell to work her. I wasn't doing the dog any good and I knew it, so wanted someone with more experience to work her. My friend tells me that I didn't hurt her at all (thankfully!) and that she is doing well. So far not any big bugs, just needed a confident handler to get her listening!

Would love comments and a chance to visit with any dog person! Love to hear what your doing with your dogs, because each time I make contact, I learn something from each and every one of you!

Happy Trails to You!!

Thursday, April 26, 2012

TMT 2012 - #15

I just finished working in the garden - weeding, planting tomatoes and peppers and watering. I'm a little slow this year getting things done, but I love to garden - vegies and flowers. But I'm tuckered out and got a glass of tea and plopped down at the computer to "rest" a little. And low and behold, but Laura is back!!! Oh yeah - she now has a new name - The Pruninator!!!! Wish she would come to my house - got a few trees and bushes to work on!

1. Are you a morning person? A night owl? Do you pop out of bed with song and happiness? Do you hit your stride after dark? 

I am definitely a "DO NOT TALK TO ME UNTIL I HAVE HAD MY FIRST CUP OF COFFEE (OR MAYBE EVEN MY SECOND"!! But I love getting up early and enjoying the cool of the morning - love to see the sunrise, hear the birds sing, smell the dew etc. etc. All with a cup of coffee in hand and no human voices!! After about 30 minutes, I'm good to go for the whole day! Like to be in bed by 10:30 - you know gotta watch the evening news. When I was a kid, I never could see why my parents watched the news!! It is definitely a grown up thing - but I only watch the weather and the sports!

2. What is your favorite candy? 

Milky Way Dark!!! The best ever. But basically anything chocolate is fine with me!! At Christmas time I usually make home made chocolate covered cherry nougat candy - then my daughter and I see who can eat the most without getting sick!! I usually can eat the most! LOL

3. What is your biggest driving pet peeve? 

Oh my goodness, can I get on my soap box!!! I promise I will keep it short enough that it will only take one cup of coffee!!


People who drive small cars and then pull out in front of me! Remember I drive this:

A One Ton Ford 4X4 with a ranch hand grill guard. Don't those people realize that if I hit them -

THEY WILL LOSE!!! I'm bigger than they are.


People driving small cars that pull out in front of me when I'm driving the big red PU pulling a loaded 20 foot goose neck stock trailer going 60 miles an hour - it does not STOP ON A DIME!!!! DON'T THEY KNOW THEY WILL LOSE!!!!!!

What's funny -  it happens a lot!!! One time I swear I could smell the guy's pants when I nearly hit him! Serves him right!!! I think there should be a law that states that in order for any one to get a driver's license they have to drive my PU pulling a trailer and have some one in a little car pull out in front of them!!! (won't be me - they might hit me!!)

Okay - maybe it took a whole pot of coffee!!

4.  How do you prepare yourself and your dogs for summer?

Pray for winter!!!! My dogs live outside year round, so they acclimate well. The dog runs are surrounded by trees and they have big water tubs to climb in. Unless there is a ranch emergency, we try to do all of our stock work early in the mornings or late in the evenings. Did I mention pray for winter! Oh yeah pray for lots of rain and cool days! Pray for winter to come soon!

5.  Lets talk about grass in your dog yard. Do you have any? How much maintenance do you do? 

Nope, no grass in the dog runs, though they are dirt runs. There are a few weeds - I just leave them. Don't have much grass in the real yard either - mow the weeds and call it good! Did I mention - I pray for lots of rain - takes rain to grow grass - oh yeah it's cooler then too!

Now I'm rested, refreshed and ready for the rest of the day! Thanks Laura - when are you coming with the pruners? Or do I need to go prune my own rose bushes?!!! LOL

Happy Trails to Ya'll

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

TMT 2012 #14

Thanks Jaenne' for hosting TMT - life is crazy for everyone - and I'm just now getting around to posting!

1. Give me at least one good thing that has happened recently - dog wise and non-dog wise or both.

Non-dog wise: Our son just got married on Easter weekend! We had such a good time. Here are some pictures if you want to take a peek!

Dog wise: Bess is doing awesome!! She turned 1 year old on the 18th - and it is such a joy to work with because she is a dog that not only loves me, but loves to do her job! Tate is still stepping up to the plate and proving to be indispensable helping me here on the ranch. We're shedding!!!!! Now to just convert all that to a trial field!! LOL The first spring trial that I'm able to participate in is May 12 and 13 - so we've been practicing trial field stuff too!

2. How did you end up working in the field/profession that you are currently in?

I was raised on a ranch in north central Colorado/south central Wyoming and then I married a rancher from Texas - so though I am college educated and worked outside the home for a few years - I'm the stay at home Mom (kids are all grown) promoted to number one ranch hand. And wouldn't change a thing!

3. What kind of response to you get when people ask you what your hobbies are and you answer:
"I train and trial Border Collies"? 

Different responses ranging from "duh" what's that? to Wow, that's cool. I haven't interviewed for a job in 30 years, so it is just people I'm newly meeting that ask that, so I don't feel too "committed" to give a good impression - but if they want to listen - I'll talk about it!!

Thanks again Jaenne'!! Sorry I've missed a couple, but I love reading what everyone writes!!

Have a great weekend!

Thursday, April 12, 2012

TMT 2012 - #13

I've missed a couple TMT's , but am glad to get back in to the groove!! Thanks Jaenne` for hosting this fun linky party!

1. One thing you would totally redo (if you could) in regards to dog training?

I would totally do Liesl differently. I'm not sure what it would be, I just know that what I did didn't work. I've had dogs all my life, a couple of different breeds, and have always felt like I accomplished what I set out to do with each dog. With each dog my goals may have changed, but none the less I have felt successful. Liesl is 2 1/2 and I still can not trust her when I work stock. She is extremely inconsistent: sometimes she works like a champion and then sometimes she works like she has never had any training at all.  For the first time, I'm considering sending her to an outside trainer to get another opinion.

2. One thing that you enjoyed doing in the past that you no long participate in (dog or non-dog related)?

I kinda miss hauling my kids around to stock shows, rodeos and horse playdays. I miss seeing them compete in those activities and interacting with their friends and parents.

3. Best dog and/or training books that you have read (fiction or non-fiction).

Big Red by Jim Kjelgaard. In fact I love every one of his books! I have to confess, that I have never read a training book, but have watched lots of videos and talked to lots of people one on one.

4. What is the best part of dog trialing for you?

Competing. I am extremely competitive, but in a healthy way. I really just compete against myself - always trying to better each thing that my dog and I do. I like to try and 'out think' the stock and be a team with my dog. The next best thing is watching dogs work - just love it. Then the fellowship with fellow handlers is a big plus!

5. Puppy Pictures!!!!!!

Pete playing with his littermates (he's on the top!):


Happy Trails to Ya'll !!!!

Thursday, March 8, 2012

TMT 2012 #9

Yeah - a free for all edition of TMT - I can hardly wait to read what everyone puts down!!!

Random thoughts - sometimes I have them - but maybe I think too highly of myself - I think my thoughts are concrete and very constructive!!! lol Hubby tells me that my 400 HP brain functions way too much!!!

But I do have new pictures - not of Tate, though, just of Pete,  Liesl, and Bess.

Pete will 7 months old tomorrow! He has sure grown - check out his puppy picture in the side bar!
Isn't he a handsome fellow - all you girls dogs are droolin' I know!!!!

I know these aren't the best pictures, but it does show Liesl working goats. She is doing fairly well in her training. She and I still have our "alpha female" moments, but she does love to work!!

And here are some awesome still shots of Bess. She is about 10 1/2 months old and is coming along fine in her training. She is so biddable and INTENSE!!! We still have a long way to go, cause we're still in the round pen, but I'm in no hurry and I want to do things for her benefit!

And finally here is a very, very short (don't blink you might miss the action - but you won't be bored!) video clip of Bess working goats.

P.S. The chicken in the video is for your benefit Laura!!! LOL

Disclaimer: No chickens were injured or killED in this filming - just a few ruffled feathers!!