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About Stafford

  • Birthday 09/30/1965

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  • Gender
  • Location
    Portland, OR
  • Interests
    Herding, agility, flyball, politics, geekly pursuits.

Stafford's Achievements


Newbie (1/14)

  1. I'm taking lessons with Dave Viklund now, and was back a few years ago before we took a hiatus from herding. I think he's great - super low key, easy going guy. The only potential problem is that he can be pretty booked up and difficult to schedule time for lessons.
  2. Yep, Brigands Hideout. This was during the Northwest Belgian Sheepdog Club's fundraiser.
  3. I hadn't done any herding with Grace, my border collie, for a few years when I saw the announcement for a herding instinct test at a local venue. I know that she doesn't need her instinct tested, but I thought it would be fun to show up and get her a bit of sheep time while I was trying to arrange training with my old instructor. Bonus - they took video of all the runs, and pretty decent video at that. I think she's ready to get back in to it:
  4. Here are a couple of the height dogs on my team, the X-Fidos (http://www.x-fidos.org/)... Eli, a somewhat large but really cool pap: Speedy the chihuahua mix: Kodi the pomeranian: They all use either the medium (smaller than standard) or really small sized tennis balls. Edit! Can't leave out Nigel, our three-legged border collie/spaniel mix flyball dog, who is also an all-star therapy dog:
  5. Thanks much for the nice words! Just to be clear, though, that first posting I made in this thread was from 2006, when we just started out. I'm also "Dad", and not "Mom"... We've been together now for five years, after adopting Grace from PNW Border Collie Rescue at just under a year old. She has many great flyball tournaments under her belt now, as well as a fair bit of agility and not nearly as much sheep herding as Grace would like. Given her preference and natural ability, she'd make a pretty fine herding dog. This past Summer we also added a small-ish auxiliary dog to the mix, adopting him from a litter one of our team mates was fostering for the local animal shelter. Now Grace has to put up with an annoying little step-brother. She is taking it pretty well, and plays bitey-face quite nicely.
  6. Heh - sorry for the ancient thread necromancy, but it's been a couple years since I've posted anything here. It's fun strolling down memory lane every once in a while. Grace is a complete flyball veteran now, earning her Flyball Master title at our tournament back in April. She's even attended several tournaments without me, as she'll happily run for any of our team handlers. Instamatic flyball dog, just point and shoot.
  7. We had snow in Portland, OR Tuesday morning, and it just now is all starting to melt. Snow days! I grew up in Southern California, so snow is still a very magical and happy event for me and my family. Grace had a great time chasing after me and my daughter on sledding runs at the local park. I'd guess that she's not the only dog that seems to love colder weather, just so long as it's not too wet.
  8. My disdain for John Katz started well before his dog related writings. From his Wikipedia entry: Bleah. Personally capitalizing on public tragedy, writing as an authority on subjects about which he has no real knowledge... Bleah.
  9. I saw the following email on a local agility list. Yuck. I'm refraining from replying... To: AgileCAT@Yahoogroups.com X-Mailer: 9.0 for Windows sub 5060 From: [deleted] Sender: AgileCAT@yahoogroups.com Date: Tue, 10 Oct 2006 11:40:54 EDT Subject: [AgileCAT] A Good Dog Hello Cat's, My friend, Jon Katz, author of The New Work of Dogs, Katz on Dogs and The Dogs of Bedlam Farms will be reading from his new book, A Good Dog, at Annie Bloom's Books in Portland on Thursday Oct. 19th. I am certain most have read at least one of Jon's books, if you are living with a border collie you will want to read, A Good Dog. For more information go to: www.anniebloomsbooks.com [name withheld]
  10. I was a music major for a year, then got a B.A. in Russian Language. Now I'm a network engineer. Logical progression there, for sure.
  11. Does this look like a cattle dog to you? Some lady at the park swore that Grace looked just like her "cattle dog". She even seemed a bit offended when I assured her that Grace is, indeed, a border collie.
  12. Why would anyone want to remove a perfectly good goose dog!?! (ba-dump ching) Sorry, I just had to. No, the border collie made me do it! Yeah, that's it!
  13. I went to lambing school - it was cool, one of the ewes was kind enough to drop a lamb with us in attendance. We learned how to clean the umbilical cords, give injections, stuff like that. It was a totally new experience for this city/suburbs boy...
  14. It's not a bad place. Dave Viklund gives lessons out of Brigands Hideout and also out of another farm somewhere south of Salem. He's first and foremost a stockman, but is competitive with his kelpies (and _not_ AKC). Here's a short bio from last year I found from a cached page at the Brigands website: I don't mean this to sound like an ad for him - but he's good guy. He is very gentle with dogs and stock, and very soft-spoken but challenging to his students. You won't go wrong with him. The biggest problem with him is scheduling, as he has a lot of students now, plus some trialling. He's not very good about answering email, as he's definitely not a computer guy. His rates are extremely reasonable as well, which makes him even more popular.
  15. My experience has been a bit different. We moved up to Portland from San Diego about ten years ago, and in general I've found Portlanders to be quite a bit friendlier and more likely to talk to strangers than folks from SoCal. The dog-friendly factor can be a bit...weird...here. There have been some pretty heated battles over public off-leash areas, and while we do have them, some of them can be pretty crowded and are not places to which I'd want to take my dog. However, there is a very big canine sports scene here. I'm currently looking for a new agility instructor, but I frequent and love the afore mentioned Brigands Hideout for sheep herding. I happen to think that my herding instructor, Dave Viklund, who gives lessons out of Brigands, is about the very best in the area. He's a real deal stock man, and made a living with stock handling before even getting in to dogs. He also has a great demeanor with dogs. He's very low key, and has great timing and body language. My favorite Daveism: "You have to be honest with the dog, then she'll be honest with you". I also want to get in a plug for a great flyball team - the X-Fidos. http://www.x-fidos.org We're not the most super competitive team around, but we have a lot of very nice folks and we always have a good time. Anyhow, welcome in advance to the Great NorthWest!
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