Wednesday, April 30, 2008
I’ve been a sheep herder for years now. I compete in herding trials, and my mom takes me and my other brother, Flash, out to work with sheep whenever we can. Although it’s been a while, I remember how to do it, and I occasionally get to practice with KittyHawk, our cat, when he runs outside by mistake. Though herding is fun, and I absolutely love it, it is a lot of work! I not only have to keep my eye on the sheep, but make sure none of them are about to go in the wrong direction, be sure they are moving correctly, make sure they don’t spook, and all the while, responding to mom’s commands, whether by word or by whistle. Yes, it’s definitely hard work! Real dog work!
Flash has also been herding with us, too. I understand that in the few lessons he’s had, he did pretty decently. But mom has mentioned that now she’s going to start something called “tracking” with him. As I understand it, this is using his nose to find things like lost items or even people! It sounds like fun, though I’m not personally interested in using my nose quite that much. I’ve seen mom practice with Flash out in the yard: she’ll lay a scent trail with him in a stay, where he can’t see her, then send him out to “find it.” It looks like he’s enjoying it, but again, it seems to be hard work, having to follow the scent trail and really think about where he’s going, what he’s searching for, and eventually finding the item. Like herding, this is real dog work!
But, what about Buzz? A career in Freestyle? Seriously? He gets to do his tricks and heeling maneuvers to musical tunes. He’s working right next to mom, who gives him every single cue, and he doesn’t have to worry or think about anything else. He doesn’t even get dirty, or have to walk through mud or rocks or dirt to do his thing! And to top it off, he gets to wear all kinds of cool collars, like that Swarovski Crystal collar that he wore for the Fur Ball this year. I know he’s a beautiful white dog, and the collar really did show nicely on him, but I deserve pretty things, too! Pretty things are the best way to get more attention from all of the humans, which I’m certain that Buzz got at the Fur Ball. I can just picture everyone ooh-ing and ah-ing over him, giving him all kinds of yummy treats and scratches behind the ear at the Ball. I never get treats or affection from strangers in herding, and I doubt if Flash gets any in tracking, either.
Mom says Buzz is a “free spirit” and so he gets to pursue this career in the Arts. We all play in Flyball and Agility - both real dog sports, by the way. But now Buzz does not have to find a real dog job. Instead, he’s a freestyler. Next thing you know, he’ll be changing his hair color and asking to get a tattoo. (Side note: my older brother, Cooper, had a tattoo – a bunch of numbers on his ear. Very cool.)
So, “free spirit” Buzz, I hope you’re happy. We all get to work, while you get to attend the most fun events with mom and dance your life away! Hmmph…