Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Imp Sava

Photos by Jennifer Glen (Winter 2008)

Sava is my upcoming youngster. She just turned two year old. She is a slick coated black and white bitch. I got her when I was in the UK in July/August of 2007. Scott set up the connection for me to get her and her sister ( known as Nell) when I went over to the UK for work and then a bit of vacation.

While I was there I spent time with Angie and Kelvin. They picked up the sisters for me, got crates and did the paperwork. I just had to fly home with them. In case you want a GREAT AGENT to do all of that stuff or get you a fine dog, I suggest, no I recommend using them. They are very knowledgeable and make it painless.

Sava was a terror to start but finally settle down. She went to Scott over the winter and he got a great foundation on her. She is home for the summer for *summer camp* and she will get lots of miles on her.

I have 24 ewes and 33 lambs so far. I normally use Tess to put them away at night in the lambing corral. But one day I decided to use Sava. I went into the back lawn pasture and sent her. She ran out and stopped and looked back at me. Her eyes were huge as if to say "Holy Gee, what that the heck are those mini senseless things. And whoa, there are way more sheep that I am used to!!"

I gave her a shhh and she bent out and then stopped her at the top and let her down for a few seconds and absorb all of this in. Then a slow walk up and she began to gather the ewes. When she let a lamb behind, I would down her and tell her to look back and resent her and finally the lightbulb clicked on.

The lambs will not move too well off the dog at this point so she had to get close and her presence spooked the lambs to their moms. A couple stood there and she marched into them and they moved. She gathered the flock and brought all of them to me and then I downed her and petted her and praised her.

She looked up and me, her chest all puffed with pride and eyes glowing. It was a big job for a little dog but she stood up to the plate and did it well.

We then walked to the far end of the pasture and I sent her to get the flock again to see what she had learned. She cut back right and left and brought them to me. She was learning to tuck the lambs in and hold the line. It's tough when you have over 50 sheep.

Then we did a bit of driving and she held the line. She is very stylish like her sire. She is a very serious worker and wants to do it right.

After we did a few more gathers and short driving then I opened the pen gate and sent her. The sheep are used to the routine and all ran into the pen. I had Sava push the stragglers in and we were done for the night. I'll take pictures this weekend of her working the flock but for now, you'll see the pictures when she was at Scott and Jenn's place.

We walked back to the barn, Sava dancing at my feet, pleased with herself, knowing that she had done the job that one of the "Big Guns" normally does.

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