Sunday, 4 April 2010
Working animals are really remarkable; especially dogs that manage to herd deer or sheep. The former have nasty pointy things on their heads and are BIG to a dog, the others are just stupid, and how would you like to spend your day running around after thermal sweaters on legs?
Last week we stayed on a deer farm and arrived at the homestead just as the dogs arrived back after a day of worrying deer. They were vocal and wanted to tell us about their day. The other dogs we didn’t see because we were sat in a car at the time, surrounded by merino sheep. The dogs were in the ditches at either side of the road, keeping the sheep in one tight flock. We sat in the car whilst the flurry of woolly jumpers snuggled round us. Those who were tempted to eat a snack of grass on the verge were soon snapped to attention by the dog quivering in the ditch, just waiting to give the sheep “what for”.
The amusing parenthesis to this flock of sheep on a small road was the shepherd at the back with his mobile phone, chatting to the lady half a mile down the road, warning any cars about the oncoming tsunami of woolly sweaters. I think she was probably the shepherd’s mum, as there was a likeness, and she had that “Nothing fazes me, I’m a farmer’s wife” look about her.
All in a day’s work in N. Otago.