Monday, January 30, 2012

On The Road Again

After a few days work last week in Nanton, the weekend arrived - and I packed up the minipac (Yola the Jack Russell, Piper and Mitch, the Border Collies) into Dora the Explorer and started our short adventure weekend. We ended up (minus Piper, who is currently is being tried at a new place - be good Piper, be very good) at Eagle Creek Livery. A quaint place, nice people and good hospitality - and a great place to start the young dogs. There was an afternoon of working dogs (and me working on getting vaccines into the dogs) and socializing - quite a hard feat. Almost had to break out the Jager to give us that afternoon boost. An old Scotsman was in the group as well, and being recently Robby Burns day, gave us the rendition of "The Ode To The Haggis" - of which I am currently looking for a translator to find out what was said about this fine delicacy (try it Mikey, you'll like it!). I saw Dan (who is a Gin x Don pup I had raised and I recently had a weak moment and let a certain Bowdian get his hands on him), and wished I could have turned back time so I could have said no to this fellow when he asked for Dan. The livery owner showed his Gin pup as well - balancing and such - almost as good as Glen's Alice (I have this urge to throw young lambs out for lil' Becca now and get training done-guess she will settle for cats for now). The newbie couple brought their dogs out as well - and I figure I should leave my young dogs with them to get started. I brought Mitch out - maybe he will grace the field this year - and did some drills - you know, throwing a cane or two and whispering sweet nothings in his ear. The livery owner and his wife let me stay overnight, work Mitch again, and then I made it back to Nanton to work. Before I got to Nanton though, I went to the newbies and worked (or worried) their sheep with Mitch. Man, I wish it was light out longer at night - I would be there after work every night if I could. They are probably thankful it is dark early, so I don't show up on their doorstep! I do know when I get back to sunny Mankota, there will be regular workouts with the dogs - the trial season is not that far away, and there are dogs to be trained. In the meantime, I will watch the 2011 USBCHA Finals DVD that the newbies let me borrow, and I will study very hard so that hopefully a trip to Klamath Falls, Utah will occur in September for the 2012 USBCHA finals.
I just have to find the canes in the snow - if Mitch would only play fetch.

Cast of Players

Livery Owner and Wife - Randy and Val Dye

Scotsman - Abe Marshall

Bowdian - Don Grant

The Newbies - Naomi and Bill Shields

Mitch - as himself

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

I Think She Has A Split Personality

How can seven pounds scare a person to the point of peeing one's pants? No, I am not talking about the weight gain over Christmas holidays, but rather Claire (the names have been changed to protect the innocent), the Siamese cross (and she was pissed) cat I dealt with today. Really, it wasn't going to be a big deal, I just needed some pee, that is all. Claire was all nice and unassuming to start with, but when it was decided to give her some subcutaneous fluids, that is when all hell broke loose. Thank God she was declawed, but that didn't stop her from getting her back claws into my hand. "I love my job, I love my job", I said under my breath as I tried to give some needed fluids. It kind of reminded me of The Exorcist - head spinning and such, but at least there was no vomit...yet. She was going to be uncooperative, to put it nicely. "Let's put her back in the kennel to chill out," was my plan of action. One half an hour later she was the picture of perfect, purring and stretched out in pleasure. A butterfly needle was what I had up my sleeve - an ingenious piece of medical equipment - a needle at the end of a long hose so that you don't have to be anywhere close to the crazy end. The fluids were administerd, albeit with a few jumps (from her and from me). Now, I will pray for the pee Gods. If she doesn't give me a gift of urine, I will have to knock her out to get the golden juice. Maybe I will pee in the jar for her, it might be easier.

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Having Sheepish Thoughts

We have been regular sheep farmers around these parts.

The last week, it had been quite cold (putting it mildly), and most of the youngsters saw the world first in the barn. As it got warmer, the big outdoors became their new home.
There is quite a few left to lamb - perhaps they are waiting for nicer days - I know I would appreciate it!

Big old Daddeeoo is quite proud of his harem.

Who's your Daddy?

These days are full of lounging around...

...going to the snack bar.....

....and when you want to call on a friend....

...they come a running.

No matter who they are!

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Calling All Urban Shepherds

When we in the middle of buying our new spread, I had told some trialers out east about it - they thought the idea to have a get away from the hustle and bustle from citylife to the quiet of the rolling prairies was inviting.'s your chance! Chance of an opportunity - throw away your cell phones (well they wouldn't work anyway, there isn't any service) and have a week (or two if you like) and be a shepherd with our sheep(a mosaic of Scottish Blackface, Khatadins, and a hodge podge of other non-descript sheep) - get away from the rat race (no we don't have rats here, even if we are in Saskatchewan) - come to sunny McCord, Saskatchewan (promise it won't be -30 out) and use your dog(s) for intensive grazing. Dogs, exercise (just a mile to the grazing area), sheep - who needs a membership to the gym? Roughly starting May 10th-come for a few days or a few weeks - it's up to you. You can even ride a horse if that tickles your fancy -cowboy hat optional. If you don't have a dog, we'll give you one (and you can train it since I don't seem to have the time). All this and a bag of chips! It may not be the world trial..but it's our world! Only breathing individuals need to register.

Monday, January 16, 2012


Knowing it was going to be cold overnight, we moved a few ewes ready to pop into the barn. In the night we had 4 more lambs - two born outside (I guess the Scotties were closer than we thought) and two born inside. Little Gertie here, she was the lucky one to be born in the barn, but yet, the -25 C was able to penetrate through the barn and freeze her legs.

So she came in for a short spa stay.

First a nice warm bath to warm up those bones (and hocks, and ankles) and a drink of Chia Colostrum to warm the cockles of the heart.

She was waited on by the spa's seasoned help.
A good stretch and things got moving again.

Gertie, you haven't looked so good!

The watchful help was there to dote on her every need.

All this and a facial!

Tell your friends - the Lamb Inn is a great place to rejuvenate!

Friday, January 13, 2012

Am I Becoming A Hoarder?

Once in awhile I count the number of mouths that have to be fed on the ponderosa - some have smaller mouths than others, but they all have to be fed. In November we had a grand total of 20 Border Collie pups, 10 Border Collies and 7 Jack Russells. Not sure what I was thinking having litters in the winter, but the litters have since grown up, and some have found their new homes. In the dwindling numbers, I found a home for Jack Russell Tessa (who if you are a regular reader to this blog, went to Jenny Craig this fall and slimmed down to her regular weight), and will have to find a home for Jack Russell Yola (since she has found a liking to chasing, and actually catching my sheep and maiming them - she must go before I maim her). Several of the pups have left, but in the mathematical equation, there are two 4 month old (which makes an 8 month old between the two of them as they start bugging the ewes-lines are now being drawn, which means they are dragging lines), and six 2 month olds (which again equals to 12 months as they find their way out of their jail every day). In a day, we will be 2 less of these little buggers, and waiting for another one for their new home to pick him up, which will leave me three, more manageable tykes to teach their names.

But then there is this midget in the midst of things as well.

I call him Jesus - because when he was born I said, "For Christ Sake!" I certainly don't want the dog catcher of McCord to pay me a visit, although I am sure my native name is being well known throughout the community - Wendy Many Dogs (and on some occasions, Wendy Many F----- Dogs). Perhaps you will see me on an upcoming episode of Hoarders - Buried Alive (by the Jack Russells).

Friday, January 6, 2012

The Lawyers Said I Could Do It

I got out of the waiver form - and now the secrets can be shared with what happened with Christmas/New Years 2011!

Lets's start with Christmas - there were presents for everyone - but even my dad thought he should get more than what he got - we had to wipe his fingerprints off of the gift he opened that was meant for someone else. CSI Radville - new episodes to seen!

Even Mindy the dog got into the festivities!
We had our Christmas dinner at my brother Gary's - and he found out he had mice.... ...lots of them!

Then we bellied up to the buffet to eat all the fixin's.

I got my pope's nose. Chef Ramsay would be impressed with the presentation.

Then some of us, released the belts and had a nap.

A good day was had by all. The next good day would be the day I could take 7 pups and get them out of my hair! New Year's Eve was to be a puppy party at Louanne and Kyle Twa's. Doris the Explorer was happy to unload the beasts. I had brought Lynn and Dan along for some training. Louanne's Walmart Greeter made everyone welcome.

Then fun in the sun ensued!

You wouldn't think they were bad at all - the look of innocence!

Then the fun began at Louanne's - a spiffy smorg was in the future. All with fancy silverware that was actually plastic.

And seeing that 2012 would be full of resolutions including better health, some of us started early by taking the 56 herbs found in Jager-not for the weak of heart. Some found to be weaker than others.

The next morning, I packed up the dogs, less the puppies, and made my way back home. As I left, this fellow was at Louanne's, bidding me a farewell. I wonder if the Walmart Greeter met him at the gate.

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

2012 - It Starts Already!!

After a joyous introduction to 2012 from Louanne and Kyle's homestead (in which a waiver was signed, in which nothing was to be put on any blog, tweet or facebook message relating to the party-I currently have my lawyers researching whether there is a loophole or two) - 2012 has begun. I started 2012 by getting a few pups off to the airport - not without it's fun moments. There were some forms that had to be signed by the new puppy owners - and of course, no airline will tell you this UNTIL you have driven 8 hours with howling pups and an empty bottle of Tylenol by your side. Luckily, the pups where shipped off to their new destinations (possibly with slight changes to certificates, but the lawyers have sworn me to secrecy), and I quickly packed some more household articles in Dora (the Explorer) and made my way back to sunny Mankota. On my venture there, we (that being Lyn and Piper) stopped at Stormy Winters - thinking that possibly Piper will call one of Stormy's many kennels home. Having never worked Piper before, I was pretty pleased with what he had-stopping, driving and fair flanks -not yet trial ready, but what else do I have to do out here? You see, Louanne had him for about a month , but wasn't exactly what she was looking for - perhaps she was looking for more freckles and something which could digest rocks to cut down on vet costs in the future. Stormy however had just got himself another dog, so Piper was to come the rest of the way to Mankota with me. However, a flat tire was also to be a part of the day. A quick trip (14 miles is quick) after filling up a tire with Stormy's air compressor, and I made it to Vanguard, Saskatchewan. The nice tire man said, "Bad news, this tire is toast, and I don't have a replacement." He phoned the next town who did more tires, but being dinner time, they were closed (the Saskatchewan way). Not wanting to unpack my whole vehicle to get to the spare, he patched the tire, and because he couldn't guarantee it, didn't charge me anything (another Saskatchewan way). I then drove to the next town, Ponteix, to their tire shop - to find they were closed for the afternoon for a funeral (yet another Saskatchewan way). So....I prayed to the tire Gods and drove the hour back home (passing 2 motorists on the road, and forgetting to wave to them), while stopping briefly to order two tires (because I don't want to be stuck in this situation again) at McCord, and got back into the yard with air to spare. I do believe I may want to invest in an air compressor that plugs into the car - and if one doesn't exist, it will be one of those other things I will invent for the friendly folk of Saskatchewan, along with the Wavomatic - at a gas station near you near the Saskatchewan Roughrider paraphanalia (okay, at least within 30 miles, and make sure you stop in before 12 and after 1pm, and if we aren't in, we will be back in 5 minutes because we are at the bank, because they are closed during noon).