Thursday, January 31, 2008

Little Red Riding Hood



I'm in love! (Hey, and just in time for Valentine's Day)
Her name is Sedona and she is a 2 year old red and white border collie. The first couple of times when her owner, Mark from the local feed store, brought her and her other family members by the farm to herd sheep she barely showed any interest in me. But the third time, when he brought her to me for keeps, she seemed to know that I was to be her person and she immediately became my BFF. Upon introduction to my trailer she straightaway claimed the couch and my bed as her two favorite spots. Thankfully, I had planned ahead and bought a cheap blanket from Kmart to cover the couch and an old sheet from Goodwill for the top of my bed, as she is definitely a farm dog, replete with dirt and mud.
She is also a nervous pee-er, which I discovered the first time I tried to move her over on the bed so I could get under the covers. She is really lucky that she is extremely cute and lovable because I've kicked boyfriends out of bed for less. I can't say I've known a sweeter dog, actually. She likes to always be near me, and is happy to ride along in the truck and hang out while I run errands. When I am sitting on the couch typing at the computer or watching a movie, she jumps up next to me and has to have her head resting on my lap. She keeps me warm at night sleeping on my bed because she likes to be touching me, with her head on my knee or stomach. Sometimes I'll wake up to a strange noise, only to realize it is her snoring with her head on my pillow.

The first couple of visits to the farm she showed promise as a herder, working the sheep with her grandma Ruthie. Border collies are very alert, intelligent and sensitive dogs which make them such good stock dogs. Unfortunately, it also means that Sedona was scared shitless the first time she encountered the electric fence when it was charged. I heard her yelp and out of the corner of my eye, saw her run back toward the barn. By the time I made it around the trailer and past the barn there was no sign of her. After spending the day looking all over the farm and neighborhood, yelling her name, I called Mark, only to discover that she had run to his house, 5 miles up the hill toward Mt. Madonna. Then two days later she did it again, but at least this time I found her closer to home.
Since then she seems to have learned not to touch the fence, which is good, but also seems to have associated the whole experience with the sheep, which is not so good. Every time I move the sheep or a few get out, I call her name and she comes running. Once she realizes that I want her to come near the sheep, though, she tucks tail and turns around. She is gradually getting closer to the sheep before chickening out, so hopefully, with time we'll get past this! Mark is going to bring Ruthie the dog back out to work with us, so maybe that will give her the encouragement she needs to get back her herding drive. Regardless, I think I am stuck with her for life because she is the sweetest thing ever. As I type this she is lying upside down on my bed with her feet in the air sleeping looking incredibly adorable, despite the pee-stain on the sheet under her :P.

2 Comments:

At 10:00 PM, Blogger foodhoe said...

oh what a cute sweet pup!

 
At 4:52 PM, Blogger Tana Butler said...

Oh, she is so beautiful. I love Border collies: they are smart and true.

I came by to drop something off for Jean yesterday and got to visit with your sweet animals. I just LOVE their sheep necklaces: they are so stylish. I got some nice photos, too, if you want to see them.

I'm getting ready to take a hiatus from blogging, but would you like me to point people to your want ad? It can be my penultimate post for a while.

Still getting such a kick from what you're doing out there. And what a long way you've come from a year ago!

 

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