Friday, July 26, 2013
Savoring Moments with an Old Dog at Sheepdog Camp
At age 11, Mickey isn't as fast as she once was. She tires more quickly, and she's losing her hearing. But she still loves helping out at sheepdog camp.
One of our favorite tasks is the big gather -- or gathering 80 or so sheep from the pasture and moving them to holding pens so that they can be used in the sheepdog clinic.
Mickey has done this task hundreds of times over the years, and she knows where she needs to be so that the sheep stay flocked together.
She moves them along the creek and over a wooden bridge.
Once across the bridge, they move up a hill and into the holding pen. Then, Mickey gets a break while I use the young dog, Raven, to move groups of 6-10 sheep onto the practice field.
Mickey finds a spot in the shade and snoozes, waiting for me to call her to do a task.
I've had Mickey for almost two years now. Her job was to teach me about sheepdog handling. She's taught me to be a better handler, but she's also taught me about savoring life.