At present we have three border collies on our farm. All of them are used at daily chores with the flock. I generally use one of the border collies daily as the "main" working dog. The others might get a spot of work and or training
In memory of Meg CBCA 126311 and Jan CBCA 722
There is the border collie pup from last of Jan's
breeding (with Kate Broadbent's Decks). Her name is Tara CBCA 1929
and she is quite as little terror. She is now just 8 weeks old (born Jan
02) and full of life and always under foot. Feb 2003: She is
really developing in one nice dog - hard to say if she is more like Jan
or her dad Decks. Sure likes to work so far have only really played with
her but come spring! Can't wait. Feb
2004: Am using her o lot for chores and she is
as eager as her dam, Jan while at the same time exhibiting a lot of
Decks's traits. Am really excited about her!
August 2005: For the first few trials Tara was quite happy in giving me the finger as soon as I sent her on her outrun. With nobody to hold sheep for us at home she liked to cut in on top as by this time the sheep at home would be in full flight away from her. Slowly we are overcoming this and she is developing in quite a nice dog. She is now the main "working" dog on the farm. While she is always tempted to cut in on top once she has control she settles in to a beautiful pace and is probably the most responsive dogs that I ever had. At first she seemed a little soft (which was disappointing as her dam - Jan- stood up to anything) but suddenly she dropped this and demands and gets the respect from all of the sheep- even the rams. Hopefully I shall be able to run her in Open in 2006. Dec 2006: This year it started to come all together - early in the season we went to some trial in New Hampshire with different terrain than ours and I was very happy to realize that Tara was not faced by trees on the course nor by sheep on top or on the bottom of a hill. Unfortunately family obligations did not let me trial or train for large part of the middle of the summer but when we got back onto the trial field in August, Tara was ready and I slowely but surely learned to adjust to her speed. Towards the end of the season she placed quite well - so I am eager to get back to the handlers' post in 2007. 2008: Both 2007 and 2008 turned out to be very successful trial years and I enjoy every trip to the post with her. She is generally a very reliable dog. Hope to breed her this fall as I really would like a pup out of her and some of my friends have been pestering me for a year or two for a pup. Tara was retired in 2014 after a very successful career. Unfortunately I never got any offspring off her as I never bred her. Unfortunately Tara passed away Feb 09, 2015
Big Bend Roy CBCA 4741 - my first male dog in quite a
while. He is out of Barbara Ray's Trim ABC 185505 (daughter of her Roy who
was a superb though unfortunately short lived dog ) and Amanda Milliken's ##Imp
Star CBCA 3031. Just one year old (Aug 2005) he is developing into a very
thoughtful dog with lots of drive. He is coming along well and I should be
able to run him next year in ProNovice and with any luck might even be able
to move him up during the year. While his first few outings to sheep were
a little wild he very quickly and without a lot of fuss started treating them
with more respect and has stopped his wild rushes.
Dec 2006: For a long time Roy was very hesitant to drive. So I basically stopped training him for trials but just used him for farm chores - this seemed to have a great calming effect on him and he is now developing into a real nice all round dog with lots of power. We started placing well towards the end of the season and so 2007 will see him in ProNovice for a few trials at least - to get him used to competition and then on to Open. Nov 2008:2007 was a very good year for Roy - he finished as the Ontario ProNovice Champion, even after we missed several Ontario trials. He has become a steady dog, always respected by sheep. In 2008 we ran in Open and he was fun to run and did quite well - all he needs is a little more mileage. The first time I got a good offer for him it was a little hard to turn it down but now I am really glad I did not succumb to the temptation and sell him. 2011 Roy is just becoming more and more stable and this year won the first day at Kingston. Tara and Roy have become a great team and they have done really really well the last two years! 2015 Roy was such a pleasure to work with but towards the end of the season I realized that he is losing his hearing. Any communication past 30 or so yards becomes a question of luck: no background noise, wind with sound rather than against etc and he might hear otherwise he is on autopilot. So Roy is now retired but still helps around the barn yard, sometimes stubbornly so!
Stardust Sigi CBCA 7719, the son of Amanda Milliken's Purdy CBCA 6719 and Leslie Gamble's Bob CBCA 217. I have always admired Bob and when I heard that at last Leslie used him as a stud I was very eager to put my name on the list and was very pleased when Amanda agreed to sell me one of the pups. Sigi was named by my son, Duncan, even though I changed the spelling a bit. Sigi has a great feeling for his sheep, he treats them with respect but firmly. I am really looking forward to run him in ProNovice and Nursery this year. 2015 For the past few years Sigi has been competing with Roy about honors of top dog at Navall Farm - pretty much a toss up. But I have decided to retire Roy for 2016 - might run him in a few small trials just to let him have fun and call him off if his hearing loss becomes too much of a handicup. So Sigi is now the main dog. Will still use Roy for farm chores and set out as both are close distance or pretty much automatic work.
The only young dog at Navall Farm right now is Scotia Rosie. She is just 2 (Jan 2016) and comes from Hilary Flower in Nova Scotia. She goes back to Hilary's Tide which is a Gem X Craig pup (see below). Rosie is quite a useful little dog but is still a bit uncertain driving at some distance from me. Hopefully after putting on some miles this spring she will gain the confidence needed to run successfully. Right now she is pretty good at most of the farm work. She has great stock sense and treats the stock with respect but at the same time handles even cantankerous rams with ease. So once we sort her insecurity in driving far distances she should make a very useful dog indeed.
There was Gem CABC 126310. She is a daughter of my
Meg CABC 126311 and Amanda Milliken's Imp Boy CABC 116622.
She seems to be a worthy successor to her mother. I bred her
to Amanda Milliken's Craig CBCA 54 (Supreme Champion of 1995 under the
handling of Stuart Davidson). Her pups from that litter were great, one
of them, Kate Broadbent's Frank did really well all over the US and
We had some nice pups in spring (2001) from a repeat breeding with Craig. Hopefully they will all do as well as Kate Broadbent's Frank or Hilary Flower's Tide.
Fall 2002: Gem did really well this season - in many ways she is the ideal trial dog as she never questions a command and does as she is told, but at the same time has a beautiful sense of balance.
August 2005: Now with Jan gone (died in July of cancer of the spleen) Gem is my only Open dog - she is doing quite well but really would like to be an "only" dog. Even though she is getting older (8 years) she still managed to be quite high up in the NEBCA High in Trials points (despite the fact that we really do not trial that often). However after this year it will be time to find her a home with a ProNovice handler or not too demanding farm environment. Gem has been semi retired to Alberta. She became the love of a young teenager and has introduced him to herding,