Updated: Aug 19, 2019
Dust rolled thick through the air, afternoon light flicker through it. The small mob of freshly weaned calves all stood, backs to the gate, staring my dogs and I down. They watched our every move, but no matter the pressure we applied to the mob, we could not get them through the gate. The stock where calm but, I knew, if we made one wrong move it would be game over, we would be back to square one.
I was very much regretting my decision to bring the weaners this way, my frustration at the situation quickly rising to anger. I was watching that sun set lower and lower and the weaners still would not go through the gate. The lead of the mob would walk past the gate every time.
The small team of Kelpies I had with me, some young, some older, were all but spent. They had been working their hearts out all day, educating the cattle. But still they worked to the best of their ability, with out complaint, as Working Kelpies do.
Their calmness and sureness soon brought me back to earth to think more clearly about our situation. The cattle weren't going any, so why was I rushing around so madly trying to get them to move when it clearly wasn't working.
Sure enough, once I figured out my place, with the dogs went about doing what they do best, being furry Panels. After some more careful movements, it really was a terrible place for a gate, we got the cattle slowly through, up the fence and back to bed in the yards for the night.
This is just one example of my wonderful dogs teaching me about working stock. They will always blow me away with their knowledge and skill. And I am forever grateful for the lessons they teach me each day.
There really is no better teacher than a Working Dog.