Saturday, November 01, 2008

Herding News by Murphy

Hey everyone,

Sorry me and Porter haven't posted in a while. Things have been a little rough for our family and we have been working on keeping them entertained as only a good Corgi can. Mom told me that I should post about our weekend trial.

I got to herd four times last weekend. It was so great and I showed Mom and all those other people just how hard a Corgi can work. Mom kept being told how good a worker I am and that I have great drive. I think I heard Mom mutter something like "he's great at driving me crazy," but maybe it was "better he has drive than being lazy." I can hope, right?

Even though Mom and I got some practice in for the trial this summer, I had a rough time in our first class. Mom had me moving the goats around a pole and through a chute. She kind of gets weird when gets to the panels as I don't think she knows how to make things work. I just want to keep the goats with her. We were heading across the field again and she was telling me to stand. I was worried about them goats and then Mom started running a little--so I thought I needed to hurry too. I was wrong--but I saw her get a gate open on a little pen. Between the two of us, we got them penned.

Here is where it went a little weird again. Mom had me stand outside the backside of the pen. I could tell she was getting a little confused--she opened the pen and the goats just stood there. A couple were staring me down through the pen. Mom was trying to get me to move a bit to see if the goats would leave. I thought she was trying to keep them in there so I ended up blocking them a few times. After a bit of time, Mom was told to stop due to time being up. I know she was sad that we did not get to finish. The judge lady gave her some tips as well as some friends who know a bit more on things to try the next day.

We had another class just a bit later. It was easier for us and Mom did much better on figuring out what to do with the panels. The only problem we ran into was the goats decided they don't like mud. Mom is so used to the stock wanting to get through the gate, but it was so sloppy there. Poor Mom was slipping and sliding, the goats were balking and Mom was giving me a bunch of things to do to try and encourage the goats through the mud. It took a little bit but they finally went through. Mom got a sheet and I got a couple of ribbons--one said "Qualified" and the other "First Place." We were the only ones to run that class with goats--but Mom was so happy that we qualified.

We did the same things the next day. I think Mom tried thinking a little too much again. We finished the first class but Mom kept saying it was sloppy. I know I was a little pushy and not all the goats went through the chute. Mom tried something new at the panels and it went poorly. She thought if she stepped to the other side at least most of the goats would go through the panel...nope they went around with her. But I was kind of blowing her off on her stop commands--sorry Mom.

These goats decided they did not like the pen. Mom was able to get the gate shut on two of them. Lucky for us, those two wanted out with the others bad enough we got through that part of the course really fast. The hold and penning was easy for me to do for her then. I got two ribbons for this class then...a "Qualified" and a "Third Place."

We also did the other simpler course. It went about the same as the day before. We got them penned pretty quick. I received two ribbons again. Another "First Place" ribbon as I was the only one to work the goats. Actually there was another dog to try the goats that day in the experienced class. I felt bad for him--the goats kept trying to butt him and would not move at all. His mom wanted to give him something other than sheep as he works really hard and she thought a change might be good and get him to think things out more. Boy--he really had to think.

So Mom gave me lots of love and pats for being a good dog. I was told that I earned my HTD I on goats and have one leg of my HTAD I on goats. She bought a picture of me driving the goats. She says to let you know when the photographer puts up the images online--we will let you know so you can check them out.

We did go for a lesson today and she let me work sheep. We did the course that we had trouble with, although things were a little changed around already. The pen was still there. Sheep like to come out more than those goats do. We are still working on me keeping farther away from the stock, but it is so hard for me to do. But the sheep-goddess (Mom calls her trainer) told her that I am coming along really well. It just takes time and practice. Lucky for me, Mom likes to practice at least once a week.

High Paw and Out,

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Great Murphy You seem to be having fun. I bet your mom is very proud of you. You have great instinct from your mother.