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June's Last Run

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She’s earned enough frequent flier miles for a free ticket anywhere in the continental United States; twice to California, Seattle, Texas and that long haul across the Atlantic: DIA/CDG before crossing the Channel by ferry.


She’s swum in Puget Sound, Lake Ontario, San Fransisco Bay, the Gulf, Long Island Sound, the St Lawrence and Carmarthen Bay.


On the 8th floor of the National Geographic Building in Washington Dc, she wore a stickon visitor’s badge. She’s been my literary dog: bookstores, readings, TV, reporters.


She’s worked Rambouilettes, Scottish Blackfaces, Suffolks, Kathaden’s, St Croix, Dorsets, Tunis, Polypays, Welsh Mountain, Dorsets, Mules and Cheviot Sheep. She’s run in three National Finals and the World Trial.


She’s a favorite with kindergarden kids and grownups. She can charm a preoccupied teenager. She hates to have her nails trimmed and worries she’ll be checked for ticks when you touch her ears.


When she was young, she didn’t like getting in sheep’s faces and discovered when she buzzed them, they moved – a little trick she never forgot. She’ll do a shed but never enjoyed it.


She had one litter. She was a good Mom. She got pyrometra and nearly died.


She likes hunting moles. She whimpers for help if she gets a burr in her paw.


She worked her first lambing at eighteen months. Her first trial, age two, was the Sonoma Wine Country. She’s won open trials. Handler error often snatched defeat from the jaws of victory.


After her semi final run at Gettysburg, a Scot commented: “She’s patient with them isn’t she?” June never gripped off.


But this spring, at the big Dakota trials, June found her sheep but it was all she could do just to keep them on the course.


And at four in the morning, when I loaded up for a trial, young Fly was at the door; June stayed in her favorite chair. Traveling hasn’t been much fun for June since her husband, Luke, retired.


June instructed me. She took me where I wouldn’t have gone and opened doors I hadn’t known existed.


Last Sunday, at Rural Hill North Carolina, June ran for the last time. From now on, when I load up the young dogs, June’ll stay in her chair.


At Rural Hill, she found her sheep and brought them. She hit all the gates and got her shed and pen. It wasn’t a winning run but June finished.

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Thank you, Donald. June is indeed a fortunate sheepdog to have had you for her partner.





PS: Please keep us posted about June during her retirement.

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Oh, Mr McCaig. I'm *that* close to tears. What a lovely tribute to a grand old girl. God bless her in her sunset days. What wondrous tales she could tell.


Also, I'm charmed yet again by mention of her "husband," Luke. You break my heart so beautifully. Thank you for sharing this, and June, with us.


~ Gloria

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What a wonderful tribute to a very Blessed Partnership! :wub: I was very touched by your tribute and may June enjoy many additional years of Golden Anniversaries with her husband Luke! She has enjoyed so many wonderful times and been on so many Heart Journeys with you far and wide. Congratulations, June, and well-done!

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Lots of dogs love. Lots of dogs impress. A few, special dogs go beyond and they just totally impact and dominate our world. June obviously impacted your world Geezer and the manner that you recounted some of those memorable moments for us is a joyous tribute to your partner. Thanks for sharing.


As for you June - well done.

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