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Dogs With Jobs – Diva’s Domain

January 8, 2014

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAMany farms and ranches make use of dogs to help with daily operation. A dog with a job is a dog less likely to get in trouble.

Often when we hear of working dogs we think of police K9 or search and rescue dogs. Certainly those are working dogs. Livestock guardians are dogs that live with sheep or goats, or sometimes calves or other animals, to protect them from predators.

Herding dogs can be specialists – cattle,  or sheep, for example – or sometimes there’s that special dog that herds anything. Often dogs will learn things just in day to day work. Missy is a good example of this.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAMissy is half border collie, although she looks like a little black mutt. She follows me around faithfully when doing chores, and has learned what belongs and what doesn’t. Recently a rabbit escaped the 3×6 hutch – and when she noticed him loose she penned him in an open dog crate and waited at the door until it was shut and he was captured. Many don’t think much of this until you think how opposite predator (dog) and prey (rabbit) is…and like her grandmother Gael, Missy did not harm the rabbit at all.

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Last night she got excited and was pulling me towards a rabbit cage – with the cold weather, we gave many of the rabbits plenty of hay to snuggle in and eat. In the nest box Missy was pulling me to was a big giant chinchilla doe grooming herself – and with where she was and her actions Missy thought *babies!* Not the case this time – but she was observant enough to notice what seemed to be!

Missy can be a bit of an instigator. She’s the boss that got demoted. She learns by repetition and observation,like most dogs. She’s generally well behaved and, like Diva, loves going to TSC.

Dogs with jobs are happy dogs, even if that job is just around the house.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAToday as we are concerned about Blue (above photo with Missy) aka BooBoo as she took ill last night and is at the vet’s. She’s a rough story who came in with five pups 7 years ago. Girl remains, but Blue wasn’t so easily convinced. It took sitting on the ground and hand feeding her to win her trust. She’s been alarm dog for several years, and has really become a part of things. She’s one of my “road dogs” that goes with me to Illinois for company and to some degree protection. (Her bawl carries for some distance!)

Many people think of farm dogs and think abused dogs left to fend for themselves, but most are valued members of the team,be it purebred or ‘mutt’. Blue’s heeler and beagle, and definitely a part of things. She sleeps inside, and like Diva loves her cats.

And we miss them when they’re gone. Blue’s at the vet and we’re hoping she recovers but she’s a sick girl. While finances are tight,like many we see that they get what they need – and fluids, warm and quiet place for recovery from an unknown issue is what she needs. She could use extra prayers.

Often it’s not just cattle, pigs,poultry or sheep on farms and ranches. Sometimes dogs make things go easier.

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2 Comments leave one →
  1. January 8, 2014 3:45 PM

    Prayers for your poor Blue, who reminds me of my lovely Pixel. She is a red tick beagle, and is shaping up to be a wonderfully dedicated hunter. (Her pic is on our site.) I never knew beagles came in tick colors until Pixel ran into our lives – she is very affectionate, and a wonderful addition to exploring our mountain. (She does love to exercise a chicken though!)

    Does Blue nip like a heeler?

    • January 8, 2014 9:22 PM

      Thanks for stopping by and for the prayers…she needs them for sure. Blue’s more of a loose rabbit and food bowl hunter, but pretty mellow unless she gets stirred up, usually raised voices bother her. She’s absolutely imperfect but we love her!

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