Sunday, February 21, 2010


Wish that Spring would come a little faster. Go to this link. You will get a black page. Drag your mouse over it and see what Springs up.

Iron Cowboy Event

PBR and the bullriders got together with the new Cowboys Stadium and decided to have the Iron Cowboy event. A little different than the regular bullriding events it was supposed to be a big, big deal for both the PBR and Cowboys Stadium. And maybe it was. But only those that went to see it and those fans that are lucky enough to get Versus TV channel saw it.
So what good was it? If only a very few of the bullriding fans got to see and since it was not televised on any of the local or sports channel it was unable to be seen by anyone that might become a fan?
I know I didn't get to see it, which means no one in the Albuquerque area got to unless they have Versus.
It is depressing that such a good sport can only be seen by those that can get Versus on Dish TV.
That is certainly not a way to promote a sport.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010


Tuffee is our Border Collie. She was six years old on Feb. 15 so I have done a birthday tribute for her. She is our first BC. We have had other breeds of dogs, mostly German Shepherds, plus a Lab cross, a Beagle and a Beagle cross, and 2 that were Dachshund and Boston Terrier. I knew that BC's were herding dogs but wasn't really prepared for just how strong the herding instinct is in the BC breed. When the books say it is obsessive they are right. I would never recommend a BC as an apartment dog or even as a dog for a small yard or where the family is gone most of the day. BC's need lots of room to run, and lots of attention. BC's are extremely cute as puppies. Usually a small black and white ball of fluff. But even from a very young age, 6 weeks and on, they will try to herd anything that moves. I had to watch Tuffee constantly as a pup to keep her out of the horse pens. She was determined to herd those big horses and I was so afraid she would get kicked or stomped.
Not being allowed to herd the horses she turned to herd other things; like my older Lab cross, our German Shepherd and our cats. She never backed down from them even when the older dogs nipped at her and the cats scratched her. She even decided that she could herd the water coming out of the end of the water hose. It is fun to watch her, yes she still does it, as she jumps and grabs the end of the hose, or just trys to catch the water in her mouth. Of course there is problems even with this as she swallows water and chokes on it sometimes and once she grabbed the metal part of the hose end and broke a tooth.
As she got older there were lots of chores that Tuffee learned we do on a regular basis and she is more than ready to help each time we do them. She knows when we take the plastic bag out of the trash can we are going out to the large outside trash can. When we pickup the cat litter box to change it she understands we are going outside to dump it in the big trash can. When we do chores outside she knows when we go toward the water fosset we will be turning on the water hose. First she runs ahead of us, picks up the in of the hose and brings it to us so we can attach it to the fosset and turn on the water. As soon as she hears the water going through the hose, and yes she will stand and cock her head listening until it is running, she runs to the other end of the hose and picks it up. This time she runs around in a tight circle with the hose in her mouth and the water spurting out. If I'm not careful when I take it from her she will give me a quick shower bath. In the summer this feels good but in the winter it is cold. As soon as I have control of the hose she will run first to one horse pen then to another trying to anticipate which pen I am going to first. As I finish putting fresh water in a horse bucket she will run to the next pen and bucket knowing the way to go after we do the first one. I don't always start with the same one.
She helps us clean horse pens, too. From an early age she would grab the wheelbarrow tire with her mouth when we would roll it to the pens. Now older, she mostly does the anticipation thing running from pen to pen to figure out which one we will clean. She has learned to herd the horses sort of since she is now grown. Still horses don't herd well and when they get to perturbed with her I will get her to leave them alone by ordering her OUT and pointing to the gate. She will then leave the pen. Or I will call her to me and she will stay with me while I finish cleaning or watering. She only trys to herd the horses when I am out with them. If I am inside the house and she is out in the yard she never goes into the pens. She figured this one out on her own.
Tuffee considers her most important job is to help us feed the horses. We feed them 3 times a day on a fairly regular schedule and Tuffee knows when it is time to feed. She is never late with telling us when to feed although she is frequently early. When time to feed she will come to us and start telling us to get with it. She makes strange whining, yelping, yodeling dog noises that almost sound as if she is talking to us. I have heard lots of people say that their dogs sound as if they are talking but Tuff is the only dog I have personally known that has done this. The longer we wait the more fussy she gets. When I finally get my jacket she will grab it for just an instant and then turn it loose and stand by the door while I put on my shoes, hat, and gloves. She leads the way to the hay shed, and will sit right in the way where I want to get the hay for the horses. She understands when Lee has to pull a big bale down from a large stack and will stand out of his way. She goes in the pens when we go to feed each one but never trys to herd them at this time. As soon as we are finished she follows us into the house and gets one of her toys out of the toy basket and plays with it for a few minutes. Then she will go get one, notice I say one, of my shoes that I leave by the door, pick it up and take it to the middle of the livingroom, drop it and leave it there. Never does she get both shoes and I have no idea why she does this at all.
Of course Tuff does lots of other things but there is to many to write down here, but it makes me wonder what other things she will learn in her life.
And it also makes me wonder if all Border Collies do things like this.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Herding Water?

Tuffee is so determained to 'herd' something she trys to 'herd' the water coming out of the water hose.

Hay for Horses

Tuffee helping Lee unload hay for the horses.

Tuffee Herding

Tuffee is our Border Collie. She was 6 years old as of Feb. 15. As you may know BC's are herding dogs. So Tuffee is determained to herd our horses since we don't have any sheep. In this photo she is trying to herd Sundance, my paint gelding. But horses don't herd as well as sheep do. So instead of moving like Tuffee wants him to do. He will just stand there and once in a while raise a back hoof to threaten her or to tell her to leave him alone. When she botheres him to much he will make a half hearted kick at her. He has been known to actually kick her enough to make her yelp but never enough to actually hurt her. So Far. And I hope he never does. Two of our other horses, Nita and Star treat her the same way. But Trave, one of the ponies will only take her "herding" so long and then he will charge at her and try to stomp her with his front hooves. The dumb dog doesn't seem to learn not to bother the horses. Maybe it is her way of finding adventure in an otherwise dull life. When I see she has bugged him enough I tell her to get OUT. She knows that means to leave him alone and get out of his pen. I am glad she only trys to herd the horses when I am out in the pen with them. She never goes in their pens when I am not in there.


Tuffee knows when I tell her OUT she is to get out of the horse pen. This is her slipping out the gate. She knows how to push it open just enough she can get out.

The Dogs

Here is Tuffee, our Border Collie, Spanky the small brown dog, and Daisy the large white Great Pyrenees Pup. Yes she is only a pup and over 100 pounds. I think she was about 8 months old here.

Tuffee & Spanky

Tuffee and her friend Spanky playing their game of race along the fence.

Spanky & Tuffee

Spanky is Julie's dog. He and Tuffee are friends and like to run up and down along the wire fence between our places.