Ranch work is solitary so it frequently appeals to me to have a dog along. Some days there isn’t much that we do in terms of working sheep but on those days we’re company for each other nonetheless. More often though there are little bits and pieces to fill an evening with and these little bits and pieces that happen daily make life with these dogs that much richer.
Take yesterday evening. I took BlackJack along and first we stopped by the orphan lambs and did some training on them. He’s definitely a lamb hunter but what I’ve been able to teach him while working lambs has been worth it.
Afterward I always give BlackJack a squirt from the milk bottle (I’m only feeding milk to one of the orphan lambs so am using a bottle and not a milk pail).
Next we made our way to the water bus. It needed to be refilled which meant pailing out the water in the tub trough first. My other dog, Coyote Mic, taught BlackJack the joy of chasing water spray. He chased water, I laughed at his craziness.
Where I go, he goes, so after that he came along for another ride to refill the bus and then scouted for sheep while I hooked the trough and float back up again. A sweet and comfortable evening; one woman, one dog. No fan fare, no one else to know about it. Nothing else in the way, all worries momentarily forgotten because of the enjoyment of time, and place, and tasks done with a dog.