Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Musings from the sheep king

From the desk of Hamish Braeburn Moy, Sheep King Extraordinaire (in training)

It's been a long time since I posted here, I know (actually, it's been a long time since Pippin posted as well). I've been after my secretary for some time but she had this and that to do. You'd think that Pippin and I (and the rest of the pack) would be the ONLY thing she should be doing, but she had different ideas (Note to self: Consider new secretary ASAP).

Anyway, since the snows went away a few months ago, we've been working with the sheep twice a week. Naturally I'm the best, but I encourage Kyzer, Tansy and Rafe to do the best that they can. And they do, bless their hearts. Pippin and Renzo keep watch over the home fort--we tell them that's really important work so they don't feel bad staying at home.

Still, I'm the best. In fact, we went to an important stockdog event two weeks ago. It's called the Bluegrass Stockdog Classic and it's where all the really great sheep dogs (like me) strut our stuff.

There are two fields at the Bluegrass: the "Open" field and the "Novice" field. Since my person is still a trainer in training, we went to the Novice field (I could do the Open field of course, but I wouldn't want to have embarrassed my handler since most of the Open dogs are great themselves AND have great handlers). On the first day, my handler didn't trust me (silly handler) and called me off before the run was done. I still smiled encouragement at her, though--you know these beginners need lots of strokes. Kyzer and Rafe went on the first day, too. Only Rafe got a score. His handler is better than mine (even though, I'll remind you, I'm infinitely better than Rafe). Kyzer was a little zoomy and a little confused, but it was only his second time at a Stockdog Event.

On the second day, Rafe decided he'd most like to look at the sheep rather than disturb them, so his handler had to call him off. Kyzer, well, Kyzer was still pretty zoomy and this time, he did one of the biggest no-no's for a stockdog at a stockdog event--he grabbed a sheep with his teeth and rode along with it while it ran. The judge said "Thank You, Kyzer", which is a polite way of saying, "Yeeerrrr Out".

But, me, well, I won the day. Seriously, I won first place (I even got some money.) Now, you see I have the chops to claim my rightful title as the King of the Sheep.

Here's my winning run (my handler tells you what's going on--as if you can't tell the awesomeness all on its own). Since it's the Novice field, it's not as hard as what the Open dogs do--but we've got our sights set on that Open field. Once my handler gets just a little bit better....