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Thursday, March 01 2012

This is another Tale Of Two Dogs . . . and some idiots

I was minding my own business, happily eating my breakfast, absorbed in my black & white world of Timmy & Lassie, when I heard the screams . . .

Hear hysterical barking of police dog in outside kennel. See sheep zoom past living room window at the speed of sound. Window is open. Lily-The Border Collie, and Ice-The Black Wolf, who have been watching Lassie with me, run to window as the last of the flock speeds past. Ice leaps through open window. Lily follows.

Leap off couch faster than I thought 48 year old body was capable and begin screaming at dogs. Ice has only run a few feet from the window. Call her back. Lily has kicked into warp drive and is heading off sheep.  Call her back. Sheep are  still screaming.

Is police dog loose?  Holy shit! That would be a bloodbath!

No, police dog is in her kennel, bouncing off the bars like a lunatic. She is high on "sheep crack." Running, screaming sheep have pushed her over her very low threshold. Wonder for a moment if her head will explode. Or perhaps she will have a sheep cocaine-induced heart attack.  Decide that is Other Half's problem. I must figure out why sheep are screaming and running around yard when all dogs are apparently confined.

Whistle Lily up and put her in the house.  She is most disappointed. Put on rubber boots. Yes, it's still muddy. Yes, the weather man says we're still in a drought. Rush through front door in time to see flock galloping past again.  Something is most definitely chasing them.


Nope. Briar is still in outside kennel where I locked her this morning so Lily could work sheep.  Briar has decided that Lily's uppity butt aggravates her and has several times attempted to rid this world of Lily's arrogance. Understandably, this doesn't go over well with management. Thus, when Lily is loose, Briar is not, and vice versa.

So back to the original problem:  What is chasing the sheep?

Hear lamb screaming and thumping through driveway.  ???

Yes, thumping.

Lamb finally thumps into view.  Oh dear . . .

Apparently said lamb has been climbing on flatbed trailer which contains junk destined for the dump. She is now adorned with a lovely broken flower pot.

"AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!  The pot's got me!  The pot's got me!"

This has resulted in a race to the flock, which is horrified at her fashion choice and has run from her. Thus beginning the vicious cycle. Flower pot chases lamb. Lamb runs to flock. Flock runs from lamb. Lamb follows flock. Flower pot follows lamb.  It is a warm day and the entire flock is now in danger of overheating.

Need help. Do not DARE wake Other Half for this drama. He has been asleep for 3 hours.  Don't want a repeat of the Chuck Episode. Whistle for Lily.  She almost breaks screen door in her haste.

Lily rounds sheep up and holds them. I grab lamb and remove pot. Chaos stops. Just like that. Chaos simply stops.  Enter Border Collie. Exit Chaos.

Put Lily back in house. Let Briar out of kennel. She is ready to stroke with concern for her flock. First she checks out Roanie.

Yes, they are best friends, thus Roanie gets preferential police protection.  She then begins the cautious "I'm not looking at you" game to allow her to get close enough to lamb to check her out.

Lamb freaks.

"AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!! The dog's got me! The dog's got me!"

The rest of the flock is unimpressed. She runs to her father. He is the picture of sympathy.

"Shut up and graze, kid."

Briar is satisfied that lamb is fine. She meanders through the flock for a quick check of everyone else.

"Sheep need patience and gentle guidance."

"Sheep are stupid and must be dominated."

And so it goes. Two dogs. Two jobs. Too many idiots in one flock.  All that drama, but in the end, peace is restored, reminding me once again that if you have sheep, you need a Border Collie, and a Big White Dog . . . and caffeine, lots of caffeine.

Note:  This lamb will now be named: Flower Pot

Nuther Note: Police Dog's head did not explode.



Posted by: forensicfarmgirl AT 12:46 pm   |  Permalink   |  11 Comments  |  Email
LOVE the story! Love the photos! Thanks for sharing.
Posted by Brenna on 03/02/2012 - 09:10 AM
Had to laugh at that. Change the flowerpot to a cowbell hung around a lead ewe's neck, and that could have been my story. Well, minus the dogs:)
Posted by Karen on 03/02/2012 - 10:32 AM
Aside from the humor that you so deftly added to the chaos, I find the dog situation very interesting. Lily and Briar have such different jobs, but they both are most definitely needed. Maybe someone should start breeding GPs and BCs? PS...Interesting that Briar has finally decided to be the big girl that she is. Too bad she's decided to do it with top hand, Lily. Must be a scary fight!
Posted by CeeCee on 03/02/2012 - 02:01 PM
"Maybe someone should start breeding GPs and BCs? " Please no. We have had Border Collie Maremma cross in rescue. Each bit of genetics works against each other and the dog is pretty useless certainly as an LGD. Possibly be ok as a herder but the cross is full of problems.
Posted by Liz (Vic Aust.) on 03/02/2012 - 04:16 PM
Speaking as another Border Collie rescuer, dear God no to the Pyr/BC cross. The last thing we need are giant mutts with genius IQs and independant streaks. BC/Husky mixes are bad enough. Though I do know someone with a BC/Newf mix (rescue) that's 90 pounds of pure cupcake. Though admittedly, a cupcake that doesn't always come when he's called.
Posted by Peggy on 03/02/2012 - 09:28 PM
Oh dear! Breed a BC and a LGD? An OCD version of Briar??? Think Monk meets The Incredible Hulk. That cross would probably be illegal in all 50 states. No sirree! I love both dogs, but that's a mix I wouldn't want to keep ahead of. (grin)
Posted by forensicfarmgirl on 03/02/2012 - 11:02 PM
Briar HAS decided she doesn't have to put up with Lily's crap. Lily brings it on herself. She is an elitist who treats Briar like a peon. Any time I tell Briar to move, Lily races over and nips her heels. If I say, "No Briar, don't come through this gate," Lily is there, nipping Briar's face. "Mom said 'Get back, Moron!'" From time to time Briar snaps and serves Lily her butt on a platter. Fortunately Lil doesn't try to defend herself, but merely hunkers down and waits for me to haul Briar off her. Then, she nips her in the heels as I drag an enraged Briar away. Lily cannot change the fact that her biggest thrill in life is telling someone what to do, and while slow to anger, Briar is a force to be reckoned with when she's pissed.
Posted by forensicfarmgirl on 03/02/2012 - 11:12 PM
I was just kidding about cross breeding the two dogs. :) Goodness knows there enough dogs on the planet with problems. No sense making more of them. With Lily and Briar now at odds, you have an even bigger case of musical crates going on. Juggling who can be out together is even more complicated now.
Posted by CeeCee on 03/03/2012 - 08:16 AM
OK. You've now convinced me that sheep are total idiots. At the beginning of your story, I thought that a coyote must have gotten into the pasture -- that much fuss over a bucket - hahaha! As much as you love Lily, I'm getting the impression now that she's the annoying bossy girl that takes over any group of beings and tells them all exactly what to do. I fully understand Briar not appreciating that ;-)
Posted by Terri's Pal on 03/03/2012 - 06:24 PM
I had a similar panic one year when I first put winter blankets on my two weanlings (horses). The one was absolutely terrorized by her new "blue" corral companion, who in turn thought it was a chase game! The first filly ended up crashing into a four-foot-tall horse proof wire fence so hard she cracked a 6X6 post! Luckily she wasn't hurt.
Posted by EvenSong on 03/03/2012 - 09:39 PM
I slmost had that happen with some young horses. Montoya picked up a branch. (yes, a BRANCH) and started carrying it around. The filly he was corralled with freaked and ran. He followed her - because she was running, but never dropped his branch. I thought she was going to stroke before he finally dropped the darned thing. (Or maybe he was doing it on purpose, who knows, he's a strange horse with a wild sense of humor)
Posted by forensicfarmgirl on 03/04/2012 - 07:53 AM

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