Saturday, January 16, 2010

The Grande Old Man

Scott was my retired Open dog. I retired him a few years ago and he was my farm dog. I saw him many years ago when he belonged to Chris and Terri Hanson and it took a few years to get him. He is a an excellent dog that reads his stock and is sensible. He had worked as the main cattledog on a large cattle ranch in Canada and then came to me. I ran him in cattle  and sheepdog trials and he was succesful in Open. He won trials and made it look easy as he could handle any type of stock. He is not an easy dog to run but will run right if you handle him proper. He is a true gentleman of a dog and a kind, old soul.

He was enjoying being the main male dog and farm hand in his retirement. One day, a upcoming nice handler came by and she wanted a dog and she proved her worth by coming out twice a week and working him. Soon they fell in love and Scott went home with her. Janet Thorpe is the new owner of Scott and he has showed her how to run a dog and become a better handler. She runs him in PN and he takes very good care of her. He makes you look good as he knows what to do. She has had him since Nov 2008.

I swear sometimes he says "Just stand at the post and look cute, I'll do  the rest" and then *poof*, you have a great run. Janet takes good care of Scott and he takes good care of her. Just like how he took good care of me. He is a Grande Old Man!!

We were at Whidbey Island trial and needed a dog to up round up the class. Janet volunteered me to run Scott. Do realize that, I haven't run him in a trial close to three years and he has been with Janet for over 15 months. Also his whistles are opposite of Tess's and Roo's whistles and no where near Nan's whistles.

Scott's ritual before we would go to the post was "I got your nose" and I would play/pull on his nose  and it would *disappear*  and I would  say, "Oh no, your nose is gone!" Then we would goof around looking for his "nose" and he would spin/be goofy and then I would play/pull his nose and ti would magically appear again. He loved this trick and when I did  that day, his eyes shone as he knew he was going to the post. He was not certainly acting like a 10.5 year old dog but more like a 2 year old dog. He was so excited!!

At the post and he sees his sheep. He was really happy to be there. So was i!!

A nice fetch. We had to do the Z dog leg fetch (which I will show in Nan's  post) but he got it. I had to stop him short at 9:00  to have his walk straight on the sheep to have them lift to hit the first leg which was way off to the right. He did stop but I am sure he thought that I was crazy.

On the first leg, the sheep took a quick run back to the setout but he got them. We made out Z leg fetch but in areas it was wobbly and funky. Part way through it I REALIZED the poor dog was not only listening to his whistles, but Tess's whistles and then Nan's whistles. It must have been confusing to him as Tess's whistles are opposite of his, so when he took him and I thought he was wrong, I would down him then reflank him. Then I blew Nan's whistles which made NO sense and he looked back at me, and  then I realized what I had done. I went to voice commands and the run went a lot nicer (duh!) and he completed  his fetch. He has the patience of a Saint.  He knew what to do and didn't get bothered by my frantic whistles. He settled the sheep so they remained calm.

He had a nice drive, going high on his first turn but got them back on line. He got his second panel and went straight to the pen. He was on the muscle at this point.

I think it was one of the best pens of the day. He just walked them in. My part was to shut the gate for him.

The sheep  bolted out of the pen but he quickly rounded them up into the ring. He can calm sheep quite easily and soon had them settled.  We were lined up nicely for a shed and timed out. Scott ran like  a champ, was on the push and quite pleased with himself. He placed 8th in this class and I was very happy as he was the senior citizen in the class. He was only a few point off from 4th place.

Later that day, Janet ran him in PN and she placed 2nd. He ran very well and was also on the push. He was very happy that day and quite pleased with himself. It might had to do with the fact that he got to ride in the front of the truck with the girls and get fussed over. He loves being the center of attention. I appreciate that Janet let me run her fine ole wise dog!!

And I am especially happy that Scott is yet, once again, teaching someone else the ropes!

Did I fail to mention he is a house dog, has his own room and a big screen TV?

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