Pastures New

Please extend a warm welcome to the latest member of the LittleFfarm Dairy workforce…..

….he’s a seven-and-a-half week old Border Collie pup, who found his way into our hearts & home, today.  With a litter of eight grgous puppies to choose from I thought the decision would be difficult – but in the end it wasn’t as he chose us, really; kept on coming over to us rather than staying & playing with his littermates.  This endearing little chap already walks faithfully to heel, comes whenever called & automatically sits at your feet – what a little star!   If only Nanuk would take a leaf out of his book…

Clever Boy! His Master's choice....

Clever Boy! His Master's choice.

He doesn’t yet have a name as we want to choose something worthy of this gorgeous little lad.  As he’ll hopefully be a working sheepdog it needs to be of a single syllable only.

And after this morning’s chaos we certainly need a working dog.  Lloyd came bouncing down the drive in his robust truck as the day started to show promise of unseasonable warmth, with the frustrating news that some of our sheep appeared to have escaped onto the pasture of a neighbour’s smallholding.  This was a puzzle for us as all our fields are extremely well-fenced; however if sheep can find a hole, the grass will inevitably prove greener…..

Sure enough, a thorough search revealed that they’d infiltrated the sturdy blackthorn hedge next to an old water tank in the corner of the field concerned, after which they’d pushed their way through onto our neighbour’s land which is generally used for cattle & is therefore only bordered with a couple of strands of barbed wire.  Poor Tony, he forced his way through the Hobbit-sized hole, getting a bramble snagged in his crotch for good measure as well as stung by nettles & spiked by vicious thorns – after all, he doesn’t have the same protective woolly jacket as sported by our sheep! 

Meanwhile the rest of the flock, plus the ponies & horses, were moved onto another lower pasture.  Then I ran up & down the hedgerow, calling our errant ovines whilst Tony vigorously shook a bucket of feed from the corner.  Thankfully our girls are trained to respond to the rattle of a bucket, & soon came hurrying from their newly-adopted home.  Tony crawled back through the hole & they happily followed him, then ran over to me as soon as we’d got them safely back onto our own land.  I strode down the field, calling encouragement, & they trotted happily behind me.  Needless to say we both breathed a huge sigh of relief, as we closed the gate behind them….& added a spot of refencing to our ever-growing ‘To Do’ list (it never seems to get shorter, no matter what we do…!). 

Unfortunately though it wasn’t an entirely happy ending: we discovered that one of the lambs had become inextricably caught up in the hedge during the night & had died as a result, as he’d literally hung himself.  It’s one of the more unpalatable parts of farming; that you successfully raise good, healthy animals….& then something like this happens, a greedy break for pastures new & a life is needlessly lost.

Hopefully our latest arrival will one day patrol his own ‘pastures new’, & help keep our errant flock where they’re supposed to be – as well as safe from such harm in future.  But for now there’s a lot of growing up to be done for this tiny chap….!


About LittleFfarm Dairy

The LittleFfarm Dairy Team: Jo - Goat farmer & Gelatiere Artigianale, plus General Dogsbody; Tony - Airline Pilot & part-time Herd Manager, Product Taster, Accounts Secretary, Handyman etc!
This entry was posted in Animals, Diary, Farming, Life, Livestock, October 2008, Sheep, Smallholding. Bookmark the permalink.

15 Responses to Pastures New

  1. norman knight says:

    He looks like a little gem.

    So, how about “GEM” for the little chap?

  2. Hi
    What a lovely looking puppy. You just want to cuddle him up.

  3. Oh he’s sweet. My ‘little old gal’ Tatra was a border collie…smartest dog I ever knew. She too walked along beside and automatically sat whenever I stopped, from the first day home from the store with me. Lucky you to have found him. How ’bout Brie?

  4. Sylvia says:

    Hi Jo!
    Cute little chap – hope that he turns out as you wish. Could do well.
    Small point. That collar that he is wearing in the big photo is too heavy for him at the moment – maybe great later. He needs a light weight puppy trainer now until his neck muscles are stronger.
    Best Wishes

  5. LittleFfarm Dairy says:

    Hi folks –

    yes he is lovely – you’re right, an absolute little Gem. And as for my favourite cheese – Brie – hmmm. What to choose for a name? Tony has stipulated that it’d only be right & proper for him to have a Welsh name – so I’m scratching my head on the pup’s behalf! The little chap is exceptionally solid & muscular so ‘Bryn’ (Hill) is an option we’re considering although it’s by no means decided….

    BTW Sylvia, don’t worry about the collar – it was only put on for his security when we made our first visit to the vet (although he certainly doesn’t seem to need it yet!). Thankfully our canine healthcare professional didn’t find any fault whatsoever either with him nor indeed with said collar – apart from the fact she felt he was a bit too gorgeous & wanted to take him home with her!

    Whilst said collar might look staunchly robust it was only ever intended as a temporary measure but is actually surprisingly lightweight (we use the same type of collar on our goat kids & it hasn’t done them any harm) although at home *Pup* doesn’t wear it because being a little loose, I’m worried he could get it caught up somewhere even though he’s fully supervised at all times (of course).

    Besides, he’s probably a fair bit larger than the pug puppies you used to breed (in fact our sturdy little fellah is already the same size if not slightly bigger than an adult pug, & almost visibly growing by the minute – must be the goats’ milk on which he’s raised ;-))….incidentally speaking of pugs, I was alerted the other day to a little black female ex-breeding pug in desperate need of loving rehoming, would you be interested in taking her on in your wonderful Pug Paradise…?! Having met your pack I know you’d help her enjoy a very happy & well-deserved retirement.

  6. I’m enjoying coming back and clicking on this post just to see his little face, it is just SO adorable.

  7. Sylvia says:

    As a canine professional myself of some 48 years experience, I was only trying to pass on a piece of gentle advice.
    As to the little black pug that you mention – please email me privately with full details and I will see what I can do.

  8. LittleFfarm Dairy says:

    Hi Kristeva –

    if only you could spend some time with him the puppy-fat flesh…his personality is every bit as gorgeous!

    And many thanks, Sylvia –

    as ever, we do of course wholly appreciate the benefit of your experience. However rest assured we have taken great care to do what’s correct for our puppy – & as I’ve already said, that particular collar was purely a responsible safety measure to manage him whilst visiting the vet. Incidentally his favourite toy weighs about twice as much as that collar – yet he races around the living room with it, as if it weighed no more than a feather….! BTW sincere thanks for considering that poor little pug – I know she’d benefit hugely from your wonderful TLC – I’ll find out a bit more & be in touch via email, ASAP.

    Best wishes – Jo et al.

  9. I’ll be interested to know when he has a name! I like your idea of a local name, it’s meaningful.

  10. PS. Tatra, my ‘little old gal’ was named after the mountains that separate the then Czechoslovakia and Poland. Vysoky Tatry is the mountain range, or the ‘High Tatras’. I spent time there right before I bought her and it fit.

  11. Jo says:

    The best dog sheepdog I knew was called Bryn. He belonged to one of mum’s friends and he was big, fluffy, gentle with kids and lambs, never let a wilful ewe get past him. Excelled at both trialling and farm work.

    Mum had bitches so that’s no help – Jill, Fly, Jill II, Dell. Actually, now that I think about it, Bryn was from one of Fly’s last litters. Totally forgot that!

  12. LittleFfarm Dairy says:

    Thanks, Kristeva @ HDR Canada!

    Owing to your Comment I’ve introduced a “Puppy Naming Poll” so that guests to the site can either vote or make their own suggestions – please folks, the more the merrier…!

    Admittedly however we do favour Jo @ BringMeSunshine’s suggestion of ‘Bryn’ as the little lad is such a sturdy chap…although on the Voting Poll we’ve included the name as ‘Brynn’ meaning ‘From the Hill’ in Welsh – as the farm from which he comes, was high on a hill overlooking the beautiful Swansea Gower Peninsula: a gorgeous Welsh Border Collie Pup, brought home on a lovely warm autumn day, from one of the most picturesque coastal hillside views in Wales…..not that we’re biased or anything….!

    Regardless, “May the Best Name Win” – so please vote for our pup’s most effective recall future, folks!

    And Kris, I know what you mean about your lovely, long-lost Tatra….same thing for my darling soul-mate Abyssinian Puss, Shaui (‘Wild Lady Cat’ in Ancient Egyptian) – what’s in a name? Everything, for a cherished Friend. x

  13. Jo says:

    I voted for Brynn!

  14. I think Brynn is it! Not only from the meaning you describe above, but it just seems to suit his sweet little face. I also like Rhys, but I have to admit, it doesn’t suit the way Brynn does.

  15. LittleFfarm Dairy says:

    I suspect he’s Brynn…

    we know what you mean now about “names that just fit”. And the poll is certainly indicating that Brynn, it is – unless we have a last-minute rush for Trys or whoever….!

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