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Wendy V

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  1. Anyone ever do this before? Any advice on how to proceed? I can ship from Detroit or Wndsor, ON. Would it be easier in Windsor or not make much difference? TIA, Wendy
  2. Given natural ability, the work makes the dog. Most of the US has small flocks (under 100 ewes), so there really isn't much work for the dogs. I have 80 ewes and so can have almost 200 sheep when lambs are on the ground, but, frankly, that isn't much work for a dog. Not considering what these dogs are capable of. If all things being equal between farm vs. trial dog, I would buy the dog I like, first, then give preference to the dog from trial lines. To be successful on the trial field, the dog must be able to cope with intense training pressure. Many dogs are not up to this. Also, the trial dog has been successful in many venues and circustances. Since I trial dogs, I need a dog that is adaptable to a variety of sheep and terrains. The trial field can be a good test for what I require in a dog. But I am no fool, I know what trials are a test of the dog versus a test of the handler. I know which trials have challenging sheep or offer only dogged farm stock. I know that many good handlers can mask the faults in a dog (that is our job, really). And I know that many good farm dogs (farm, not ranch, as I cannot speak about that) shine with repetitive work on familiar ground with sheep that they are familiar with. Most open handlers I know hunger for a challenge. They will travel great distances to trial their dog on a true test of sheep. Most would donate their time in exhange for an opportunity to work their dog on tough sheep on open ground. Most would be thrilled to be able to have the opportunity to expand the capabilities of their dogs and themselves. Most are reaching for mastery. To denigrate that effort is ridiculous, as it would be to lump all trial dogs under a lable of "mechanical", "weak", "unable to move large amounts of livestock". Given the right work, many dogs of the trial field would be able to rise to the challenge.
  3. Clearfield doesn't seem to get a lot of traffic, no disrespect intended.
  4. The Kensmuir forum was very helpful in listing working dogs for sale from many of the USBCHA members. Where do people go now to list their dogs? I'm looking for a young goose dog prospect, already started. I'm not on FB and refuse to subscribe. TIA, Wendy
  5. There are still entries available for both the trial and the handling clinic, though the clinic is almost full. Hope to see you there! Wendy
  6. Winter is my off-season for work, so I train heavily during this time. In fact, I love winter training, especially when the snow is about 1 ft deep or so. It really gets a dog pushing. I am fortunate that we are cold enough in Michigan to avoid ice conditions most of the time. I am also fortunate that my field is tiled, so I do not get bogged down in mud either.
  7. Hi Rachael, The handling clinic is geared for those who are currently competing or ready to compete this spring. It is not a training clinic and it is expected that the dogs entered will have a semblance of control by the handlers. Paired with the two trials the next day, it will give novice/pro novice handlers much trial experience and feedback on where they need to target their training/handling. Since I don't know where you are with your training on your dog, it is hard for me to assess the appropriateness of this clinic and trial. If you are just starting out, then I would suggest targeting your dollars to a training clinic nearby, of which there have been several announcements recently within driving distance of SE Ohio. If you would like to observe a novice/pronovice trial, then you are welcome to attend the Sunday trials at no charge. Due to space constraints, I am not accepting clinic auditors at this time. You are welcome to contact me privately if you have any more questions or require further training contacts in your area.
  8. It is no more complicated than repackaging food for your own consumption. If worried about electrical outages, than limit your purchases to one weeks worth of food. This apply to your food as well. IMO, a week's supply of raw food would keep in the fridge for a week without worry. A 10 lb. bag of chicken leg quarters will feed 2 dogs for a week for about $7.00. Don't over think this. It is no more difficult than feeding yourself.
  9. I have fed raw for over 10 years in a multi-dog household, 10+ dogs. My costs are about 70 cents per day per dog; less if we source the food ourselves (culls and venison). The LGD is double that, since he eats twice as much as the border collies. Raw feeding can be done simply and inexpensively, or it can be complicated and expensive, depending upon owner choice. When traveling, I use a cooler and pack food frozen. On longer trips I add ice and use a grocer Simple. If backpacking, which I don't do, I would leave the dog at home. Maybe it is easier to feed raw to a pack than just a single dog. With a pack, you have already invested in a freezer that is dedicated solely to dog food, and so have removed capacity issues. There is no repackaging of purchased meat since one is thawing out 10 - 20 lbs. at a time; I'm dealing in chucks, not pieces. At no time would I consider a commercial raw product; I buy or butcher whole animals. And my local meat guy loves me because I buy 100 lbs or more of his special "grind" at a time. And I always show up since I don't have the option of spoiling the relationship. And cooking veggies and other such is not an option with a large pack. I don't have the time or a stock pot large enough to handle what I would need on a daily basis. And I feed once a day only; saves time and I feel it is better for the dogs. Large packs force you into efficient, simple feeding regimines.
  10. I welcome my Canadian friends! Gas prices are low right now, and there will be plenty of trialing to be had over the weekend. Come on over!
  11. Borders on the Grand Farm in Onondaga, MI is pleased to announce two events dedicated to the Novice/Pro Novice Handler. Ever wish you had an Open handler at your side? On Saturday, March 9th, 2013, Wendy Villarreal will conduct a handling clinic titled: Trial Strategies for the Novice/Pro Novice Handler. This one day course begins as a lecture/discussion in the morning and moves into the field as a trial course dry-run. All aspects of the trial course will be discussed, with an opportunity to practice a course on the same day with Wendy at the post with you. Ever wish you had a second chance at a run? On Sunday, March 10th, 2013, Borders on the Grand Farm will host two judged Novice/Pro Novice trials, run back to back. This will give Novice/Pro Novice handlers opportunities to learn from mistakes made on the first run. It will also give Novice handlers a chance to try out the Pro Novice course, as non-compete runs are accepted if time is available. Get a jump start on your trial season and join us this March! Entry forms attached. Novice ProNovice Handling Clinic 2013.doc BoGrand Novice Trial Entry 2013.doc
  12. I called and the dogs have not been relinquished yet.
  13. Thank you for posting that photo. It means a lot.
  14. Wendy V

    RIP Burl

    My beautiful Burl, dog of my avatar, died in a house fire early Monday morning a week ago. He was in the care of my stepson, who risked great injury trying to save him and another dog. Burl was employed as a goosedog and worked side by side with my SS for the past two years. He was only 8 years old and in his prime. Our family is heartbroken over the loss but grateful that our SS suffered no lasting harm. He will be greatly missed.
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