Sue and George put on one nice trial. Nice sheep, heaters, hot food and hot drinks. No want for anything....they even supplied a few moments of sunshine. Some folks came from the east side of the state and spent the night. We all piled into his truck with Nan, Rain, Maid, their dogs. Maid was the first of my dogs to run and she was the first dog to run. I have been working with her to team up better, let her work on her own if she is right, tell her what to do when she is wrong and not give excessive commands. Her sheep were wild from the first step on the field and as she ran up and went behind the hill to do the lift, and came over the hill, they had already bolted. She was not amused and ran after then with bad intent, no doubt wanting to punish them for their foolishness and then bent out kindly when I shouted at her to behave. It didn't' t start off well but she then took the down and listened quite well. The sheep were hair trigger light and she had to be well off them, much farther than I have ever worked her. She had a tidy turn at the post and set them up for the first drive, then they bolted , luckily in the correct path. They made the panels and she swung wild for the turn then they pulled through due to their lightness. She held a nice pace across the crossdrive and pushed them through and again, she flanked wide for a turn and they pooped back through the panels. She was in the proper place but the sheep were very reactive and I had to handle her off the sheep. She did everything that I asked of her and she brought them to my feet. The last part was a Maltese Cross and she held her position to put them through. When they charged out of the first part, she badly wanted to flank to cover but they had to complete that section and her eyes told me she need to stop the runaways. I told her to hold and she did but her body told me she wanted to break. I let them drift out then sent to to curve them back and she did. she held her side and we put them through the second part. She was happy after her run and I told her she was a star. I enjoyed that she tried to work with me and the score was proper but you can't put numbers on a heart of a dog. She danced about and her eyes showed her pleasure that I was happy with her.
Rain was second and she had an off day. For some reason she didn't want to hold the pressure on the comebye on the fetch and we missed the panels. She started her first leg well then at the panels, either didn't hear or didn't want to hear so the first part of the drive was high and she had a hard time at the second panel. She was actually not putting my pressure on the sheep, we got the first part of the cross and on the second part the sheep broke and she held them off the exhaust and we timed out. I don't know if she was affected by the drama at the house with Tess, her mom, having bone cancer and being very lame and Getty and I being very distraught and crying the last few days. She is very sensitive so I don't know.
Nan was the last dog and by then I was chilled to the bone and wet. The sheep had settled down after the first three runs and were lovely to work. On a side note, the runs after me had the same issue and pull throughs as well. Nan ran out like a champ, a textbook run and I wisely shut my mouth. I gave her a steady at the top, a few short flank to get the sheep lined out and they came nicely down the hill. She turned them at the post smoothly and set them up for the drive. The first line was nice and I gave her few short flanks and steadies, made the panel. They turn a little high and tied to run up the hill but she stopped them and put them back online. She was pushy but listened well. She held her side and we got them through the cross. On the second part they tried to make a break for the exhaust but Nan, with her speed got them put back to me and she finished the course. She was quite smug with herself and we sat down after our run, and we shared a reflective moment of peace and love. She won the trial with a 90 and I was very happy with her run and how she really loves to please me. She just turned ten and we don't have much time left as a team but I love what partnership we have now.