Friday, December 31, 2010

No Corn Fed Deer

This was sent to me by a friend...don't know if it true but it sure is quite funny.


This is a lot of words but it is worth it. Can anyone say, "Wild Animal?" For the hunters in your life - or- if you just like dumb people stories.

Actual letter from someone who farms, writes well and tried this!

I had this idea that I was going to rope a deer, put it in a stall, feed it up on corn for a couple of weeks, then kill it and eat it. The first step in this adventure was getting a deer. I figured that, since they congregate at my cattle feeder and do not seem to have much fear of me when we are there (a bold one will sometimes come right up and sniff at the bags of feed while I am in the back of the truck not 4 feet away), it should not be difficult to rope one, get up to it and toss a bag over its head (to calm it down) then hog tie it and transport it home. I filled the cattle feeder then hid down at the end with my rope. The cattle, having seen the roping thing before, stayed well back. They were not having any of it.

After about 20 minutes, my deer showedup -- 3 of them. I picked out a likely looking one, stepped out from the end of the feeder, and threw my rope. The deer just stood there and stared at me. I wrapped the rope around my waist and twisted the end so I would have a good hold. The deer still just stood and stared at me, but you could tell it was mildly concerned about the whole rope situation. I took a step towards took a step away. I put a little tension on the rope and then received an education. The first thing that I learned is that, while a deer may just stand there looking at you funny while you rope it, they are spurred to action when you start pulling on that rope. That deer EXPLODED. The second thing I learned is that pound for pound, a deer is a LOT stronger than a cow or a colt. A cow or a colt in that weight range I could fight down with a rope and with some dignity. A deer-- no chance.

That thing ran and bucked and twisted and pulled. There was no controlling it and certainly no getting close to it. As it jerked me off my feet and started dragging me across the ground, it occurred to me that having a deer on a rope was not nearly as good an idea as I had originally imagined.

The only up side is that they do not have as much stamina as many other animals. A brief 10 minutes later, it was tired and not nearly as quick to jerk me off my feet and drag me when I managed to get up. It took me a few minutes to realize this since I was mostly blinded by the blood flowing out of the  big gash in my head. At that point, I had lost my taste for corn-fed venison. I just wanted to get that devil creature off the end of that rope. I figured if I just let it go with the rope hanging around its neck, it would likely die slow and painfully somewhere. At the time, there was no love at all between me and that deer. At that moment, I hated the thing, and I would venture a guess that the feeling was mutual. Despite the gash in my head and the several large knots where I had cleverly arrested the deer's momentum by bracing my head against various large rocks as it dragged me across the ground, I could still think clearly enough to recognize that there was a small chance that I shared some tiny amount of responsibility for the situation we were in, so I didn't want the deer to have to suffer a slow death. I managed to get it lined back up in between my truck and the feeder - a little trap I had set before hand...kind of like a squeeze chute.

I got it to back in there and I started moving up so I could get my rope back. Did you know that deer bite? They do! I never in a million years would have thought that a deer would bite somebody, so I was very surprised when. I reached up there to grab that rope and the deer grabbed hold of my wrist. Now, when a deer bites you, itis not like being bit by a horse where they just bite you and then let go. A deer bites you and shakes its head -- almost like a pit bull. They bite HARD and it hurts. The proper thing to do when a deer bites you is probably to freeze and draw back slowly. I tried screaming and shaking instead. My method was ineffective. It seems like the deer was biting and shaking for several minutes, but it was likely only several seconds. I, being smarter than a deer (though you may be questioning that claim by now), tricked it. While I kept it busy tearing the tendons out of my right arm, I reached up with my left hand and pulled that rope loose. That was when I got my final lesson in deer behavior for the day.

Deer will strike at you with their front feet. They rear right up on their back> feet and strike right about head and shoulder level, and their hooves are surprisingly sharp.. I learned a long time ago that, when an animal like a horse strikes at you with their hooves and you can't get away easily, the best thing to do is try to make a loud noise and make an aggressive move towards the animal. This will usually cause them to back down a bit so you can escape. This was not a horse. This was a deer, so obviously, such trickery would not work. In the course of a millisecond, I devised a different strategy.

I screamed like a woman and tried to turn and run. The reason I had always been told NOT to try to turnand run from a horse that paws at you is that there is a good chance that it will hit you in the back of the head. Deer may not be so different from horses after all, besides being twice as strong and 3 times as evil, because the second I turned to run, it hit me right in the back of the head and knocked me down. Now, when a deer paws at you and knocks you down, it does not immediately leave. I suspect it does not recognize that the danger has passed. What they do instead is paw your back and jump up and down on you while you are laying there crying like a little girl and covering your head. I finally managed to crawl under the truck and the deer went away. So now I know why when people go deer hunting they bring a rifle with a scope to sort of even the odds.

All these events are true so help me God...


Chuck O'Hearn

Thursday, December 30, 2010

We are doing well...

The blog has been picture heavy recently so now it is time for a wordy blog. Kuro is off next week to his new (hopefully) home and it seems like a good fit. Once it is all finalized, I will post info. He will be a Open dog with a super nice handler and placing him in a loving home is what I want for my dogs. I have been working him and he has one of the top work ethics that I have ever seen in a Border Collie. He just wants to please and Scott put wonderful training on him. After I work him, we play fetch and he loves that and that deepens the bond.

Taff has been good but a couple of times he has pushed the envelope with me. With him, I need to work him each day, even for ten minutes. He is that type of dog. He lives to work. He has gotten good at his cleaning up his flanks and stopping. He does get so eager that sometimes he forget to stay down. With a slight arrr, he downs and then waits. I am working on trying to get him to get up S-L-O-W-L-Y than leaping up. That is going to be a long process. His is doing well on his whistles now and I changed them, not realizing it. His whistles are backwards to Roo and sometimes I will reverse it and then realize I screwed up when he does the flank. A duh moment for me! His breeding is impeccable, Nan is his dam and Ralph Pulfer’s Tweed is his sire. I have heard some of his pups are fantastic workers. He was bred by the prior owner and she kept a pup. Off stock, when I am sitting in the barn having my pop, he likes to snuggle up to me and be fussed over. He especially loves to be brushed and told he is a handsome boy. I swear he puffs up with pride. Sometime, I will take him and we will play fetch. He has no interest in playing fetch when the other dogs are around but wants one on one time. So I toss for him and he gladly brings back the stick or ball. That is when I see a really goofy side of him.

Nan was x-rayed and has four pups. Roo is the sire and she should have the pups in early January. I plan on keeping a female. They should be really nice working dogs. Both parents are DNA CEA Normal, good hips and CERF- Normal. Both parents are top Open dogs with tremendous breeding behind them as well as great temperaments. I am so excited to have pups again hers since the last set was over three years ago. Rainey was the pup we kept from that litter and she was Getty Christmas present. He spoils her a lot and she knows she is a princess!

Nan is enjoying the time off from working and being coddled. She is round but not huge. Nan has been eating over 8 cups a day. She is not fat but the right weight. She loves to have her belly rubbed. She has several choices of beds but seems to prefer the square bed. Or next to me on our bed.

Tess enjoys her role as the poultry dog. Each night she gets to put away the ducks, chickens, turkeys and guineas. If she is not available, then the job falls to Roo. I put an igloo out in the run and some of the hens decide they want to sleep in it but we have to get them out as the owl will get them. So Tess has to squeeze into the igloo and nudge them out. Once there was about ten hens and one angry rooster in the igloo. She would shove one out and then go back in, and put her nose under another hen and then lift her and shove her out. Then she has to herd them all back into the coop. The ducks, turkey and guineas all go into the coop so that is easier. As a reward for her efforts, I give her a piece of kibble.

Last Sunday we had a new dog in for a lesson. It was a Schnauzer and was very cute. Tess got to sort the sheep and then do back up in the round pen. She loves doing back up as that is mainly her keeping the sheep moving and doing it on her own with only a few commands from me. We got Oscar to work a little bit and Dawn, the owner was laughing quite hard. Oscar is small and the sheep were amazed at his sheep and were quite curious. They did move, although not very fast but it was fun.

Janet has been working Rainey and has gotten her to drive a PN level. She has been diligent about working her and she will be running her for the next couple of years. I still do training on Rainey but Janet will be trialing her. Janet won Novice and ranch at the last trial and will be moving her up to PN. They mesh quite well and are doing well.

Roo has been enjoyable to work. I use him for chores and some training on him. I am taking it easy on him so we can do fun stuff together. When I don’t use Tess to put away the chickens, I use Roo. The first time I sent him into the igloo, he barked and the chickens never moved. He barked louder and they squatted closer to the floor. I about died laughing. He finally used the shovel technique but it was hysterical. Now he has the hang of it and it is an enjoyable chore for him. I want him to relax during chores as it helps him relax during the trial. He is learning not to rush and not get excited. He just turned eight years old and finally is settling down. I am really enjoying working him too. He gets a lot more freedom now and is the main male dog. He really has a playful side to him and after his work, loves to play in the pond pasture.

Sleat has settled down and has been softer to work. Before she would bully through her down and race to get to the sheep. Now she is more thoughtful and trying to team up. I hope that by spring, I will be running her in PN. It’s a lack of me working her that is holding her back, than her talent. She has some nice push to her but can be a bit stubborn sometimes. Sleat is quite affectionate and loves to have her head massaged. Often after the dogs have had their evening playtime, she will stand next to me and be peaceful and want to be loved on. She will gaze into my eyes with her ice blue eyes, I will talk softly to her, and she smiles. She is a real sweet dog that finally matured and has stolen a place into my heart.

Tam and Sava are at Scott for the winter training. Wynn and Kiwi also started their basic training there too. By all reports, all are doing well and Scott is pleased. Save will be coming back to me in the spring so I can run her in PN. If Tam continues to do well, he will be the Nursery dog. He is a willing dog and I hope his progress keeps going well. Wynn and Kiwi will be coming back and going through summer sheep camp with me.

Kate, one of the newest member of the team is being puppy raised by Deborah and Ben. Her dam is Ellie who is the full sister to Faye. Nan is her dam and Imp Drift is her sire. Imp Drift was owned by Joni Swanke and then by Jo Woodbury. Ellie was bred to Nap (George MacDonald) and he is a son of Alasdair’s Nap. When Kate and Epic are visiting over the holidays, she has managed to slip through the fence when I am working other dogs and she is quite keen. I look forward to starting her. Deborah and Ben are doing an excellent job in raising her. She is learning manners and is going to be a pistol.

The barn cats have adjusted well. Sara is my pal and often in my lap. Vicki did a great job in taming the wild kitten, “Sarah” and “Simon”. Her brother, Simon is still reserved and will only allow me to pet him when he is eating. Sarah is quite vocal if her canned dinner is late. She loves to be carried about, fussed over and told she is a darling. Cleo, the black fuzz ball has warmed up to Getty as well. She is the queen in the barn and ruler of all. She maybe the tiniest of the cats but her paw is the most deadly! She is not a lap cat but loves to be carried about. She loves to have her head scratched and will purr to the heavens when you fuss over her. Sarah is quite the huntress and the moles, rats and mice population has decreased. She even snagged a wild duck and proudly displayed it to me. Sarah takes great joy in bouncing in the middle of the hens to see them scatter. She won’t attack them but thinks it is great fun to see them squawk! When I put the chickens away at night, she often will help. She will follow Tess into the igloo, then follow the chickens to the gate. When I shut the gate, she will dart to the barn with Tess for her treat. That is usually when I will give her the canned food. She likes to see what is happening on the farm.

Christmas was a quiet and relaxing time. Mom and Kimiko came over and the dogs went crazy for them. As usual, the girls ran rampant and we let them. They got their full of treats and extra dinner. We had prime rib, beef wrapped asparagus, gyoza, veggie and shrimp rolls, corn and other goodies. Getty cooked the prime rib to perfection. Nelson and Jim went to CA on a road trip to Yosemite Park. We had a good time and laughed quite a bit. The dogs got the leftover prime rib and soon they were passed out. That was until we started to unwrap the present. The girls for new beds, a bunch of new toys and bones. Tess has fun running through the house with the toys and general mayhem soon followed. We were cat sitting Nelson’s cat, Henry and he came up. He used to belong to us but Nelson took him home after the barn fire. He never returned and soon lead a life of luxury. Nelson called and one (if not the first question) was “How is Henry”. Oh, he is just fine and so am I!

Henry wadded about and lifted his paw the at the Border Collies and they are ran for their lives. He enjoyed his stay here and hopefully had lost a few ounces. He loves to eat and is quite plump. He was plumper when we had him. Nelson has him on a diet but he still is large. He has a sweet friendly nature and was a pleasure to have.

After dinner, Mom, Kimiko and I wandered down to the barn. The sheep and horse got double rations and grain and were quite happy. Every time they seem Mom and Kimiko, they know they are in for a treat. It is good to see Mom and Kimiko have a good time at the farm. Mom feed the chickens and I saw her slip Tess a slice of bread or two. I pretended not to notice that. Tess knows how to work Mom and Kimiko. They managed to get Kimiko to play ball for a bit. Finally they wore out Kimiko.

I really enjoyed my mom’s and Kimiko’s company at Christmas. It’s all about being family, life, appreciating life and enjoying what you have. I have a happy life, a great husband, a great brother, good caring friends, a lifestyle that I love, dogs that I adore… is what you make out of it. Don’t be negative, feel sorry for yourself or try to make other people’s lives miserable. Look deeply at yourself and see that your time is limited on earth. Sure, we all have bad stuff happen to use but you have to go on. I lost my Korean sister, Jean and it still hurts deeply to this day. Sometimes I dream of her. I still miss Shiro, who was my first Border Collie. I miss Kuro Kuma, the black Manx who brought joy to my life. Their life was short but they made my life complete. I appreciate the people in my life who are my family and good friends.  I am looking forward to the New Year and all the joy it will bring.
Have a Wonderful New Year.

Happy Birthday, Getty

Happy Birthday, Getty...aka Jeff Freeman.

Master and Lord of the farm!

Ultimate and Disc Golf player

Talented musican

Cute, to boot.

Happy Birthday from Diane, Tess, Nan and Rainey!!

.....and all of the other animals on the farm!

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

What an utter moron!

TV review: One Man and his Dog; David Suchet on the Orient ExpressForget The Apprentice, this was one TV final where the bleating was left to the sheep

I've just had a friend staying, from the country. It had been a while since he'd last been to London and he arrived in the evening, wide-eyed and excited about it – all the people, the madness, his own insignificance on the planet.

I'm a bit like that with One Man and his Dog (BBC2, Saturday). Or the opposite really, because this is the countryside and I'm a townie. The brilliant thing about OMAHD is that it brings the country to me so I don't have to go to it, and deal with the smells and the cold and all of that. Anyway, I watch it with a mixture of confusion and wonder. It's so amazing that just by whistling, these people can get their dogs to steer whole gangs of sheep through gates, and cajole them into pens. (Is that even right, a gang of sheep? Or is it a posse?) The dogs are brilliant, so intelligent and quick and eager to please. Where I live, owning a dog isn't even about making a fashion statement. They're only good for defecating on the pavement and attacking children.

I like the sheep too. So they're a bit sheepish and lack leadership qualities, but they're very pretty. Look, that one looks a bit like Kate Humble. Oh, it is Kate Humble. I see, she's presenting.
Kate's got some proper country folk to help, real men with red faces who know stuff. Are the judges expecting a good competition? "Oh yes," says one. "Good," says Kate. See, I told you it was exciting. "Who's going to win?" she asks an expert. "On paper it could be Wales," he says. But on paper counts for nothing, and in the junior competition Wales turns out to be a bit useless. Very undisciplined, I'd say, from my position of knowing nothing at all. It all goes wrong in the shedding ring where sheepdog Eryri Taran (translation: Snowdonia Thunder) shows shedloads of naivity and overenthusiasm, totally fails to separate off two sheep, and loses points for young handler Elin Pyrs (it can be One Woman and her Dog too). "It's a lonely place, that shedding ring," explains one of the experts.

When the juniors are done, it's time for the big boys, who get twice as many dogs and sheep to handle – two and 10 respectively. It's incredible: 10 stupid animals being made to perform complicated manoeuvres on the other side of a field by two clever animals which are controlled, via whistling, by an even cleverer one. One of the country dudes puts it more succinctly: "There's three species, really: there's you, there's your dogs, and there's the sheep, and if you get it all right at once, you maybe win the trial."

But we don't find out just yet. There's a whole second day to go, and at the time of writing I don't know who the winner is (the BBC quite rightly is keeping it a keenly guarded secret). Never mind Strictly Come Dancing and The Apprentice, this is the one that really counts this weekend. My money's on the Irish, I think they're looking invincible.


In case you want to contact them

Christine Crowther

PR Executive

Guardian of the Sheep

We need guardians for our sheep. Otherwise the coyotes think they can eat sheep anytime they want. Not a good idea. So I have several type of guardians.

Emma is a retired show horse. She competed in the Arabian big show called "Scottsdale".  She also competed in quite a few other shows and did well. But since I got her, her life is to be my trail horse and guard the sheep.

She comes when I call. Notice the sheep are right behind her. If something scares them, they run to her and she runs around the sheep scaring them off. She is quite the good guardian. If a human is tending a hurt sheep, she will hover over you and makes all sorts of displeasing noise to let you know you are in big trouble if you hurt her charges. (Ask Jeanne B about this!)

She takes her role very seriously.

She turns into a dark bay in the summer and he coats get dark dapples. She loves to show off all the time. She is quite a talker too. Her sire is Desperado V, owner by Sheila Varian.

She keeps between you and the sheep. She can be quite snarky to the Border Collies if she thinks they are too pushy. when we work the sheep, we have to put her up in one section as she keeps the sheep in a tight circle and won't let the dog move them. She is a good mare and a great asset to our farm. 

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

DOTSTER fails again

OK, so if you have tried to email me since this morning, I didn't get it! And you probably got an email bounce. I called Dotster and the tech guy couldn't figure it out so he will get back to me. . I asked him to call me back in an hour with a status call but I doubt he will call back. He couldn't figure it out so passed the buck to some other group and couldn't tell me when it would be fixed. When it  is fixed I will let you all know. Don't hold your breath!

I told them this is my business and ho-hum....

Again, once every three plus months Dotster fails again! The entire system goes down for a day and no one there notices until I call. Usually when I get home so it is over 8 hours and still busted  and in one case three days before they got around to fixing it. Do they forgot to see if their servers are busted? Or do they rely on their customers to call them and tell them when their systems fail?

Another issue with them is when  I go to the website to fill in the "service request" and ask them to email me back with a status. Not once, in many years, they have done that. My service request goes into a black hole as well a I am sure, numerous other customers. If I email them, it never gets replied to....

So I don't know when I will get my email back online so either email via facebook or at my old email huck @ (there is a space between huckit and the @ to prevent spammers picking up the email so remove the space)

Anyone have a suggestion for a reliable hosting company...preferably one that doesn't have their system go down every three months.

My requirements are:
  • reliable (that means the servers do NOT bust every three plus months)
  • price competitive
  • word press availability
  • toll free customer service phone (Dotster is not toll free)
  • 24/7 customer service.
  • tech support that actually helps than pass my issue on to someone else

Horse Whisperer

Getty is so not the country guy. But he has done well stepping up to the plate and living  the country life. It doesn't mean he likes sheep (he doesn't) but he does a lot of farm chores. he does the morning feeding and I do the evening shift.

Then there are the guy projects he does. fixing fences, unjamming the ponds and so forth.

This was the day he checked out the ponds to see if there were any issues. He says he hates the horses but when my back is turned, he fusses over them. The mares adore him. Maggi thinks he walks on water.  Getty now has a new field assistant, whether if he wants it or not.

Getty did the field walk and his new field assistant is providing moral support.

Maggi was trained quite well on her ground manners. She doesn't overrun him and keeps her distance. When he stops, she stops. Getty didn't know I took these was very cute watching them stroll parade around the field. He  would stop and check something out, then pet her and talk to her.

Aren't they just cute!

Monday, December 27, 2010

A Winter Day at the Farm

Here are some pixs of the farm during our short stay with the snow. It was nice while it lasted but I was ready for it to go. I hope it is the last we see of snow  but Getty said the weatherman said it might snow this week.

 The view from the office. Maggi and Emmy are in the lower pasture.

Another view from the office. This is the island and the bridge.

View from the deck. See the snow in the canoe.

View from the barn of the carport and house.

The back lawn and the island pond.

Emmy telling Getty that she is hungry. So he gave her some treats.

And she gave him a kiss in return.

Sunday, December 26, 2010

A different side of Kodi

Kodi is the best guardian dog. He works tireless all the time...well, most of the time. Sometimes he will take a break. Often if I am working dogs in my far field, he will amble over and watch. He wants to make sure that no sheep get harmed and perhaps laugh at my whistling. At my last lesson with Scott Glen, my whistles were horrible, yet Scott refrained from smacking me on the head and pretended not to hear my imitation of a strangling cat. Sometimes, Scott does take pity on me. Kodi, on the other hand, howled at my whistling.

Once I start to whistle when I am training dogs at the far field and Kodi is at home, he will come over to the far field to be my assistant. He will lounge around and see if I have left any of my lunch for him to eat. He likes my coffee so I have learned to either drink my coffee or put it on the gate.

Today, he decided to make a face at my flank whistle. "You call that a flank whistle...I call it bug meets high pitched blender!"

Kodi sees the cookie in my hand. Of course, I give him a piece and he doesn't eat it. But he has me fooled. Over the years, he often asks for a piece of whatever I am eating and I give it to him and he never eats it. The only item he will eat are big raw bones. He likes his dog food in the barn near the tack room or in the stall. He has been getting a bunch of raw, kibbles and canned food in his old age. Recently he has been running around and acting like a puppy.

I love this pic. He is so regal in this pose. This is the Kodi we all love. He has been here ten years and rescued the sheep from a barn fire, killed a coyote and ran off many more, let the bear know that going to see his sheep was not an option and announcing all visitors. He loves small children and will let them ride him and pull his ears. He is the best lamb sitter,  cleans the lambs and lets them use him as king of the mountain. But most of all, he is our beloved dog and companion.

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Christmas Holiday Trivia

The word Christmas is Old English, a contraction of Christ's Mass.

The first president to decorate the white house Christmas tree in the United States was Franklin Pierce.

Germany made the first artificial Christmas trees. They were made of goose feathers and dyed green.

Electric lights for trees were first used in 1895.

The first Christmas cards were vintage and invented in 1843, the Victorian Era. (You can read more about the history of Christmas Cards here.)

"It's a Wonderful Life" appears on TV more often than any other holiday movie.

Rudolph" was actually created by Montgomery Ward in the late 1930's for a holiday promotion. The rest is history.

The Nutcracker" is the most famous Christmas ballet.

Jingle Bells" was first written for Thanksgiving and then became one of the most popular Christmas songs.

If you received all of the gifts in the song "The Twelve Days of Christmas," you would receive 364 gifts.

The poinsettia plant was brought into the United States from Mexico by Joel Poinsett in the early 1800's.

Holly berries are poisonous.

Contrary to common belief, poinsettia plants are non-toxic.
Mistletoe was chosen as Oklahoma's state flower in 1893 and later changed to the state floral emblem.

In 1843, "A Christmas Carol" was written by Charles Dickens in just six weeks.

The first state to recognize the Christmas holiday officially was Alabama.

Christmas became a national holiday in America on June, 26, 1870.

An angel told Mary she was going to have a baby.

Clearing up a common misconception, in Greek, X means Christ. That is where the word "X-Mas" comes from. Not because someone took the "Christ" out of Christmas.

Traditionally, Christmas trees are taken down after Epiphany.

More diamonds are sold around Christmas than any other time of the year.

In Mexico, wearing red underwear on New Year's Eve is said to bring new love in the upcoming year

Santa tracker.....Where is Santa?

Track Santa....if he hasn't arrived yet....find out where he is....

and check this out!

Friday, December 24, 2010

Merry Christmas from Getty

Getty is an accompished muscian. He plays guitar, harmonica, sax and drums. In addtion, he is the best husband, ever!

He wrote this Christmas song today. Have a Merry Christmas from Getty!

Book Review- Communication With All Life - Joan Ranquet

This book is a great read. If you are just wanting to know more information about Animal Communication, or maybe already practicing Animal Communication, then this is the book for you. Joan is not preachy but writes straight from her heart. You feel at ease, as if you are sitting on her couch, talking to her and having a cup of tea.

I got this book and planned to read it in sections. Instead, I stayed up most of one night, reading it from front cover to back cover. I put it down, felt as if I had a new chapter of my life was ready to be written, and I just had to write the words.

The first half of the book is about Joan’s journey. She didn’t know she would be an Animal Communicator but realized it would her destiny. You read about her struggles with her animals, cry with her in her sorrow and realize that her journey and your journey are the same. We all have the ability to be an Animal Communicator but need to take that first step.

In the second half, she helps you take that first step. She guides you and makes you feel like you can do it. She shares techniques so you can start to communicate with your animals. You feel like she holds you hands during this journey.

Joan takes the stance that you can talk to your animals and from that help them, whether it be have you go to the Vet, changing the saddle or the dynamics in the households. Often the issues with the animals are how we communicate with them. Joan offers ways to resolve this.

She gives you tool and techniques to start communicating. It is broken down in small steps so it isn’t formidable anymore. Soon the puzzle is not a puzzle but a completed piece. She puts in story and most of them are very familiar, meaning we have a lot of the same issues. Suddenly it is clear that these issues can be solved by trusting your instinct, opening up to talk to them and soon you feel like you made a major breakthrough. You did, indeed!

The last part of the book deals with nutrition and a holistic approach. You deal not only with the mind but the physical part and that makes the whole package. By dealing with both sides, you are now armed to go into new territory and enjoy your new life with your animals.

A well written book that will set you upon a new journey.

It is available in paper format as well as the Kindle edition

Santa Funnies


This explains why no presents were ever delivered.

Even Santa can't escape the new TSA screening process.

The reindeer got the flu so Santa had to use his back up Harley.

Merry Christmas

May your Holidays be filled with joy.

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Born a Champion, Died a Hero

Have your tissue handy as you will need it.

Cole was born to be a champion. He died a hero.

The black Labrador retriever once owned by a Dover family gave his life for his country, saving a U.S. Marine on the killing fields of Afghanistan.

In Cole's last moments on earth, as Cpl. Brian Holm's three-man unit searched for mines along a dangerous road in Helmand Province, the black Lab looked over his shoulder at Holm, his handler. Holm later told his wife, Brittany, that he will never forget the look on Cole's face. It seemed to say, "I won't let them hurt you."
Then came the explosion.

Bo's King Cole JH was born Aug. 1, 2007, in Iowa, one of the sought-after pups of two field-trial champions.

Had he taken the course of his litter mates, Cole might have spent his life training and competing in field trials, in which dogs make complicated retrievals in competition with one another. But Cole followed a different path, one that led to Dover, North Carolina and, eventually, Afghanistan. Steve Tull, a Dover hunter and dog handler, bought the $3,000 puppy because he wanted to try his hand at field trials with a dog bred for the task.

Training can be costly, but Tull had a friend who took it on. When the friend moved away, Tull was left with a partially trained dog and a decision to make about what to do with him. Tull hunted ducks with Cole and trained him as best he could, but he could not spend the $600 or $700 a month it would take to send Cole to a professional trainer. Tull could see Cole was getting bored: He was a working dog without a job.

One day, Tull spoke with Bob Agnor, a friend from the Delmar Waterfowl Club, a Dover hunt club. Agnor works for K2 Solutions Inc., a North Carolina firm that trains dogs to sniff out IEDs, the improvised explosive devices that claim lives and limbs on today's battlefields. Tull and his wife learned that military handlers form a deep bond with their dogs and treat them well, which is what they wanted for Cole. So Cole shipped out for North Carolina, where he met Holm, the man who would become his handler and comrade in arms.

Brian Holm, a 26-year-old Cleveland native, joined the Marines on Oct. 30, 2006. His military occupation specialty -- his MOS -- is combat engineer.

The Marines needed more handlers for dogs that sniff out IEDs in Iraq and Afghanistan, so when the call went out, Holm volunteered. He was sent to K2 Solutions in Aberdeen, N.C., at the time, home of Bo's King Cole JH. The two met about Jan. 10 of this year, hitting it off immediately.

"We clicked real well. He just kind of responded to what I did," Holm recalled in a telephone interview from Twentynine Palms, Calif., where he is stationed. "He always understood what I wanted him to do. That's why I never switched to another dog."
Trainer and trainee graduated in mid-February. Cole became Sgt. Cole, USMC -- Marine dogs traditionally hold a rank one level above their handler's. By April 9, they were on their way to Afghanistan.

When Cole left, he took a piece of Tull's heart with him. Tull was determined not to lose track of the dog who had spent so many nights on the family's couch -- always with his head on a pillow -- or playing with the family's two yellow Labs. Eventually, Tull received a photo of Cole with a Marine corporal with the name "Holm" stitched on his uniform.

Armed with that information, Tull e-mailed Navy Lt. Bryan Davenport, a chaplain assigned to the 3rd Combat Engineer Battalion, 1st Marine Division.

"Cole was, and is, a very special dog and carries a big piece of my heart with him," Tull wrote. "I feel that it is important to let Cpl. Holm know the history behind Cole, and I would like to be able to send the two of them care packages if and when they are deployed. I do not know this Marine personally, however, I pray for him and his canine companion daily."
Davenport responded with e-mail and postal addresses for Holm.

First mission showed skill. On Cole's first mission in Afghanistan, the black Lab settled any question about his ability. He sniffed out an 80-pound IED. Before long, he was top dog. Only days before Holm and Cole had shipped out, an e-mail arrived in Holm's inbox from Tull.

"I miss him terribly, and not a day goes by in my life that I don't wish he was still at my side, however, I know that he is doing important work and will do everything he can to keep you and your other Marines safe," Tull wrote.

They swapped e-mails, and Tull and wife, Lisa, struck up a friendship with Holm's wife, Brittany, who lives in Cleveland with their three young boys.

"I must say my husband is more on the 'manly man Marine' side," Brittany confided. "And when he received your first letter while still in the States, he was reading it to me and began to get teary-eyed. I just said, 'Brian, you really love him, don't you?' And he told me he will do everything he possibly can to bring Cole home safe."

She said the original date for Holm and Cole to return home was in September, but their orders had changed.

"We'll write back soon."

When the summer heat ended, Cole's routine ramped up.
"There were two other dogs in the platoon. One dog had one find, one dog had zero finds. Cole was our go-to dog. He was finding IEDs every mission in October," Holm said.

Oct. 15 was scheduled to be their last patrol. Holm, Cole, two other Marines and another dog were searching for mines on a busy paved road lined with houses.

"We know the route's heavily IED'd, that's for sure. It was known for kite-string, command-pull IEDs," Holm said. Those explosives are tripped by an insurgent hiding nearby who pulls the string when the target is close. Cole was searching about 50 feet in front of the men. The Marine with the mine detector was the closest man to Cole.

"There was no sign of kite strings," Holm said. There was no sign of insurgents. Cole looked over his shoulder and caught Holm's eye. Someone pulled a string.

"Cole was probably not even 3 meters [10 feet] from the IED," Holm said. No one knows why the insurgent pulled the string. Perhaps nerves got to him. Maybe he did not like dogs. All Holm knows is that if Cole had not taken the hit, the Marine with the mine detector was next in line.

"If it wasn't on Cole, they would've pulled the cord on him. It's not just me that believes that," he said.

Holm's hitch with the Marines ends next month.

"I'm going to pursue dog handling in the civilian world," he said.

Holm did not talk much about the aftermath of the blast in his interview with The News Journal. That part of the story was told in an Oct. 23 e-mail from Brittany Holm to Steve Tull. In it, Brittany worried about the hurt she could hear in Brian's voice.

"He told me they gave him two choices when it came to Cole's body. Either he could bury him or have him cremated," she wrote.

"Brian chose to bury him. He buried him where the incident occurred. He said he wanted him to be there because that's where he became a hero."

In an e-mail to Davenport, the Navy chaplain, Tull wrote: "I now know that this was God's plan for Cole all along. He was a very special animal and touched many hearts in his short time on earth. I truly believe that God has a special place in heaven for him."
Tull thanked Davenport for his help, then closed his e-mail with a salute to the black Lab who had slept on his family's couch -- always with his head on a pillow.

"God Bless and RIP Sgt. Bo's King Cole, USMC."


Wednesday, December 22, 2010

What Happened to Santa Claus?

I believe in Santa. Then when I was about 42 years old, he quit bringing me presents.  I knew that I wasn't a bad girl but never could figure out why he suddenly disappeared.

But thanks to the cool invention called the Internet, I soon discovered why.  Who Killed Santa? Reward offered. Milk and Cookies.

Your Daily Posters

Nice matched set.

This is when you realize that your day is gonna get worse.

Gee, all they need is a few males dogs and they can get that fire under control.

I really hate Mondays. And I am really glad that I am not that lizard.

I would have used an aluminum bat myself.

Got a Cat. Get a Harley. Go naked Jogging. That should solve this issue.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Best Friends

Everyone needs a best friend.

Someone to share secrets with.They don't care is your hair is messy or you look different than they do. They love you for you, and just you.  Emmi and Maggi are best friends.

I love the dark outline on her ears and back.

Winter fuzzies.

Monday, December 20, 2010

Why Tess gets to sleep on the couch

This is the real reason that Tess gets to sleep on the couch!

You will have to click at the bottom of the video clip for this to work.

Watching TV

Climbing for a living...

You know sometimes we complain about our jobs. But after watching this video, I am not going to complain about my job! In fact, having my two feet on the ground, really makes me appreciate my job.

Check out what this guy does for a living. You will have to watch the brief cartoon before you get to the job video. In case, you were wondering what his job is...climbing transmission towers


Winter Sheep

Sometimes the sheep have fun in the snow.

 Nothing like a gallop around the pond to get the blood circulating.

Check out the air under that one ewe!

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Feathered Friends

We have our usual suspects at the farm that we feed: dogs, sheep, horse, chickens, ducks, geese, turkeys, guineas, cats and cattle.  Then we have the free loaders.  They seem to know when we feed the animals. As soon as we go out with the grain and bread, they arrive.

Two black birds...anyone can tell me what type?

 They are the bullies and chase everyone off.

Ah, we get a bunch of these. They flutter about.

Is this the female of the above?

I wasn't quick enough so this one turned around to let me know that I was slow.

My Boldness...he was dancing about to get his grain.

He got it and stuffed his cheeks full.

and...more....and  more...

But they all left when Cleo arrived.

Saturday, December 18, 2010

A Dog's version of Christmas

This is a very cute video! A dog's version of Christmas.  This took some serious training! I am very impressed.


Friday, December 17, 2010

Happy Birthday to Kinloch Kiwi and Kinloch Wynn

Happy Birthday to Kiwi and Wynn! They are one year old today. Time sure flies by.

Angie Driscoll of Kinloch Sheepdog (UK) sent me these fine young dogs this summer. Their dam is the talented Meg. Mag is an outstanding trial dog as well as a farm dog, Her tremendous work ethic is par to none. She is the 2011 Welsh Team Member for the World Team. She has won three open trial and placed in top six in 24 other trials.

Bobby Dalziel's Joe is the sire. Joe is one of the top dogs in the UK. His record is outstanding.

2009 Scottish National Champion

2006 International Supreme Champion
2010 Royal Welsh Show 'Champion of Champions' winner
2009 International Supreme Championship
3rd 2009 International Qualification
Semi-finalist 2008 World Sheepdog Trial
Winner of over 80 Open trials and well over another 60 top six placings in Open trials in the UK and Europe.

Kiwi as a pup. Look at the spark in her eyes!

I love the huge ears. What an adorable puppy.

Kiwi is in training with Scott Glen. She is learning to be a fine sheepdog and keeps Scott on his toes. She is learning the basics and is one of the Nursery prospects when she is ready to take that role. She will be one off my main trial dogs when she matures and will also be a house dog.

Wynn. He is the talented male. He is also getting his training with Scott and he will be one of my main trial dogs as he matures. He has a keen stock sense about him and a very nice working dog. I think Scott would like to have him stuffed in his Christmas stocking as a present but no such luck! His training is quite well and he is going to be a nice Nursery prospect.

I like this move, sideways and the keenness to his eyes.

Kiwi and Wynn will be one of my cornerstone for my foundation lines. It was a great honour to be able to get these talented dogs from Angie and I thank her greatly for them. She is the best resource for dogs from the UK. She also breeds some of the top lines and should you get a dog from her, you are getting the cream of the crop.

We want to wish Kiwi and Wynn a "Happy Birthday and many more to come!!"