Tuesday, March 29, 2011


At night, Alaska, who is now 5 months old, roams the farm helping Togo bark at real and imaginary predators.
During the day, she is stuck in the barn and the adjoining corral. It's time for her to learn some boundaries and she's not in there by herself.
I have a sheep with an abscessed hoof who is also in there.
Not everyone is happy about the situation but that's just too bad.It also allows Togo to catch up on some neglected tasks that he couldn't do with the White Princess tagging along.Alaska wants to know the number for the local Humane Society.She wants to report some abuse.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011


It's supposed to be spring. The Easter bunny is all but hippity hoppitying down the bunny trail.
We had no snow and things were thinking about turning green, and then this...Fortunately, it should all be gone again by Friday.

In the mean time, the chickens are getting mad.They hate snow and think this is all my fault.

Help! I'm melting!
Whew! Made it just in time.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

The Wearin' Of The Green

Of all the dogs at our kennel right now, only Cullen's mommy loves him.She was the only one with the foresight to send him in for training with a green shamrock collar. He won't get pinched on St. Patrick's day.

Better start running, Skid.

Friday, March 11, 2011


My parents rough collie, Kane, has had a busy life, and he's only 2.At 6 months old he had a neurological episode that the doctors were not able to diagnose. They just hoped he'd live and would have a pain free life.
Kane not only lived, he completely recovered.
He and my mother took obedience classes for some discipline and then started competing in agility. Just for kicks he took his Canine Good Citizen Test and a herding instinct test (to make me proud!) and passed both.
Now, Kane has decided to take on a new challenge. Therapy dog.
It's not a surprise to anyone who knows him that he would excel in this area. He has long been my niece, Katie's play toy and he has enjoyed every minute of it.He impressed his instructor from the very beginning and she asked my dad to bring him along on visits to retirement homes while he was still training for his certification.
Yesterday, Kane took his Therapy Dog test and passed it with no mistakes. Now he is official. My father has plans to visit the library with him to have kids "read to him" and he'll also start visiting a lock down facility for people with deep emotional problems. After his certification this week, my father and Tag visited with some mentally disabled children and he had this to say:
" I took Kane to meet a young girl who was not more than maybe thirteen, who was sitting on the grass. She was attended by two young girl volunteers who sat on each side of her. She was bent over, hiding her face with her hand while one of the attendants held her other hand, helping her stroke a dog's fur. The dog had short hair. When Kane lay down in front of her, she was apparently surprised at his long fur. I had her stroke his mane to feel how soft it is, and by bending over, I could see that she was smiling. Kane touched her hand with his nose and she began giggling and they no longer had to hold her hand as she continued to stroke his fur. "I don't suppose I need to say it but, "Good boy, Kane".

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Career Changes

As I'm sure you have noticed by now, not all of the border collie pups that are raised here at Alta-Pete Stockdogs become great herding dogs. However, being border collies, alot of them find different careers in their new homes.

For a herding washout, (relatively) Gyp is an over achiever. She does a little bit of everything. She still herds some and she excels in agility with many titles behind her name, but her most valuable talent must be as a therapy dog. Now that's a very good girl.

Bet doesn't believe she was supposed to be a border collie. She scorns herding but found a different job training Siberian husky puppies for the Iditarod.She started out as just a way to lure the pups back to their kennel after walks in the woods but she has ended up helping evaluate the future sled dogs. She teaches them to run out ahead of the training quad and shows them which direction "gee" and "haw" are. (see, if she was supposed to be a border collie, her directions would be "come bye" and "away to me")I don't think she was supposed to be a husky either. She is much too partial to living in the house, dining on waffles, and sleeping on big fluffy dog beds. If you ask her, she is a one of a kind and there's no need to get any more specific than that.

Gael is a super cute bundle of energy.I really loved her and when she didn't work out as a herding dog, I knew that agility would be her specialty. She spent too much time around here showing us how she could climb things - very fast.I didn't think her speed was going to be for beginners though and I was overjoyed when an agility instructor saw her potential and brought her into her home (and on to her bed!) - her new name is Pixie and I think it fits her perfectly.

Davey is our most recent career change dog. He wanted to please me. He really did, but he told me there was too much pressure in learning how to be a herding dog. I was really attached to him so I asked my friend Amanda who had helped me place Gyp, if she could find me another perfect home for Davey. She took him to her house for a while and taught him how to be a well mannered house dog. Then she found his new, perfect, home.
Davey has only been with his new owner for a few weeks and hasn't found his career yet. For right now, in addition to the important task of bone chewer, he has the job of being an "in-house therapy dog" and helping his loving owner get over the loss of her old dog. I hear he's very good at it.