Full Bellied and Content For Now

And just like that the ewes are onto the new ground. It sounds pretty good until mention of starting the fencing project a month ago. It's been an argumentative and arduous month but now we can look from the other side. 

On the last half mile of fence we were forced to change our plan because of water. How ironic to be beat by water in such a dry, dry year. There is only this one spot where we have to cross water but it proved to be too big to get across while it is in its water state so we’ll wait until freeze up and finish stretching wire across when the water is ice. The wire material is in place right up to the water though so it will keep sheep in unless they learn to swim. 

The ewes are full bellied and content enough they barely make a peep. At the moment there is little need to travel far before getting a fill. The guardian dogs are acting energetic with the new space they find themselves in (although you wouldn't know it from the photo I chose). 

On the first evening in the new space the girls were all together and didn’t need to be gathered at all. I believe they had memory from when I grazed them here in the summer and returned them to the adjacent fenced pasture every day. They were parked right near there as though expecting to be put back in. 

The second night they were further afield but were once again all together. I think they too feel the greater vastness of this space and until they grow comfortable they’re being cautious about it. 

Tonight we wanted to catch a ewe lamb having some trouble so Cajun did the job of bringing the flock closer and keeping them grouped which allowed us to find our lamb, catch and remove her. It is such a comfort to have this dog so familiar with the work, taking only a moment to figure out what the game plan is and then fulfill the need while we concentrate on finding one lamb amongst six hundred sheep. The fact that he is nine and half years old, now tugs at my mind. 


  1. It makes me very humble when you write of the awesome work the dogs do for you..( get tears in eyes also...)Having worked with Guide dogs for the blind in England I know what it means to have a 'working dog'.It makes me happy to know how you appreciate them and enjoy the work you do.

    1. I often feel as though I am grasping for the words to describe what the dogs are - to me and for me, - and the remarkable way we're entangled with each other in this life. I think you will understand a similar thing through your work with guide dogs.


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