HERDING DEBUTE

May 6, 2006


Last night our neighbor's bull got loose and ended up at our place. It was pitch dark and after an hour of "rodeo activity", the bull was put in our pasture. This morning I went out and moved the lil' lambs out of the barn so when the neighbors came back to put this 2500 pound Charlois guy in the barn to load him, my lil' lambs would not get trampled.

Well, long story short......they came over with two cows they thought were in heat. Left them in the pasture with the bull thinking the cows would help lure him over to the barn. Nope. So, they left again and we said we'd watch them and shut gates as they moved from pen to pen, reaching the barn in the end. By this time it was noon so I went and let out the pups as I did everyday. I needed to put a pail of water out for my lambs since they were shut in a small pasture/pen w/o water. Sasha was in with the two cows and bull as I was working with a gate/fence. I told her "bring up the cows". as I called to them. She knew what I wanted but could not get that stubborn beast to move. She air-snapped in the bull's face, circled them and when they took one step, she pushed harder. I could tell she was really frustrated but she worked her hardest as I could see she was trying hard to move these critters that didn't know her. I just watched with interest. DH, Ron came and pounded a post in for me so I could stabilize the gate I was working on. He found himself watching with intent interest and we both got a real smile out of it. : ) Then I turned around to see Copper moving my lil' lambs around the pasture, all in a very neat group, calm and quietly. I pointed it out to Ron and he was fascinated as well. : ) I then went and started mowing.

About an hour later, the neighbor came back with his two young sons (Alex's age), his father and a friend. By the time I gathered all the pups up along with Copper, Belle and Maggie (put into the kennel, out of danger) I headed towards the pen where they were. Knowing there were 3 men to move 3 non-dog broke cattle, I felt only one dog needed to help and Sasha being the "top dog", appointed herself to help. I hurried as fast as I could to make sure all was going as they wanted things to. No sooner I got down there, the cows/bull were in the next pen before heading into the barn. (Moving these from Pen A to Pen B and then to Pen C before getting 'em in the barn to be loaded into the trailer. : ) The neighbors were shutting the gate when I got down there and I got bombarded with questions! "Who trained that dog??? That is the most awesome working dog!! Wow!! That dog knows how to work cattle!! That's got to be the smartest dog we've seen! She knew just what to do! "

I stammered to say, "she's not "trained". Actually, this is the first time ever for her to be near any cattle!" They asked, "you mean, she did that all by instinct alone?" I said, "Yep!" They were sooo impressed! They said, "We could see she knew what to do and all we had to do was help guide them along!" A few more minutes of discussing the ES, my neighbor went home with one of my pups since "Mom" (Sasha) showed them what's what!: ) (And where was my camera/video ? ? .......sigh! )

They left apologizing for all the trouble they had caused us and for any damage their bull had done to our lawn/grass/area. I laughed as I said, "NO problem for I found the whole thing very FUN!" So, in turn I thanked them for the commotion! : )

What I found the most interesting of all was how Sasha worked so willingly with 2 men she's never met before and yet she worked solely for the "need" of helping, not under any direction from any human being, not even me!




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