Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Working dogs

Roxy ready for action. Dogs are a key part of station life.  Jim and Tommy have 6 dogs working the property.   Top dog is Crackles, a Kelpie with a leg lost through an altercation with cattle some years ago.  Although she is three legged, she gets around like nobodies business, and teaches the other dogs how things should be done.  She is a valued member of the team. Crank, Crackles pup is only 9 months old.  With a lot to learn, she has a big heart, and tries hard to keep up with her Mum. Roxy, a Stumpy Tailed Cattle Dog, is a little more reserved than the others, but is a gentle soul.  With legs shorter than the others she works harder to get through the lush scrub as it currently stands, but has no intention of being left behind when work or adventure is on offer. Ferrett, a Border Collie Cross is the character of the bunch, named for her knack of getting into mischief.  If something is up, you know that Ferrett will be in the middle of it.  That said, she is lots of fun and buddies up with Crank for a regular game of rough house. Nikki, the matriarch of the property is close to retirement.  Jim's best worker and most reliable dog, she is a red Kelpie with a soft and gentle side to her.  At 8 she is ready to have her last litter to provide a pup to take up the Keswick farm dog legacy.  Extremely loyal to Jim, she likes nothing more than to snooze in patch of sunshine, with half an ear cocked " just in case" Jim whistles for her. That leaves Cocoa.  Named for her colour she is similar in look to Nikki.  The most reserved of the crew, Jim is working with her to dispell a fear of motorbikes.  With bikes and four wheelers essential transport on the property she will tolerate being told to jump on to go and work, however would choose to hide in her kennel if the choice is on offer. Then there is Benny, a big old cream labrador, who is the home paddock dog.  Almost 15 he is definitely in retirement, but is a big old sweetheart.

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