A few weeks ago I had my first experience being a herder when I found a big horse and man in Alfie’s common. I had a pawsome time barking, nipping and trying to make it move.
I was SO lucky. Do you know why?
I was lucky because I got another chance a few days later *wag wag wag*
I was in the park and someone had tied a horse to a tree. OH WOWEE! I was off lead at the time and I ran over as fast as my puppy legs would carry me. I had a big bark at this one too. The horse was kicking and dancing and I was dodging and barking. I was doing a pawsome job. A man walking past even said so!
I had to concentrate on the horses legs. I was trying to make it move and I also had to dodge one of my humans who was trying to put me back on the lead. He caught me eventually but only because I got bored and let him. I was feeling really proud and I couldn’t wait to tell all my friends how brave I’d been … AGAIN *wag wag wag*
A few days later my other human sat me down and explained something to me. She said she understands that I want to chase big animals, I’m an Entlebucher and that’s what Entlebucher’s do. She said because I’m a puppy I don’t understand all of the rules yet. Especially when it comes to big animals. She told me that it’s ok, everyone has to learn the rules someday and she could teach me. After all, that’s what humans are for. She said we have to go for a special walk and I needed to listen to everything that she says.
When we got there, all I could smell was horse. Soon I could see them. Lots of them. We were at a horse village! It was so exciting I couldn’t help having a whine and a yip. I was tied to a fence and watched as my human set out some cones.
I have to weave through cones all the time when I’m at school and it’s easy. My human walked me around the edge of what’s called the ‘Sand School’ so that I could get my focus and get used to some of the smells. It was really hard because there was lots of horse poo and it’s one of my favourite treats. And a horse from next door had come to watch us. Eventually, my human managed to get my attention and we started our weave.
I heard her shout that we were ready while we were weaving. I went in and out till I got to the end and we turned round. I was busy going in and out when all of a sudden, my nose picked up the smell of horse. It was really strong! I glanced behind me and I couldn’t believe my nose. My human was laughing saying … oh, she noticed then. Of course I noticed!
Look what had come into our area! While we were practising with walking.
I tried to concentrate on walking round the cones but it was all too much. I HAD to get to the horse. It was walking round and round and herding ME! THAT is not the way it’s supposed to be. I let my human know that she was concentrating on cones while an intruder was in the sand school … if she let me go, I’d take care of it and then we can get right back to the cones.
She said NO and carried on trying to get my attention. By this point I had totally lost it with her. She wouldn’t let me off and wanted me to walk round BORING cones while there was MUCH more fun to be had. So I did what any dog would do. I went into full alert, IGNORED the food and CONCENTRATED on the horse. I even tried to break the lead.
Do you know what. My human thought that would happen. She is one sneaky human, I’ll give her that. Do you know what she did? She put the chicken back in the treat bag and then I heard her run away. I could have ignored that, but you know what she had in her hand? A squeaky toy!
I LOVE squeaky toy’s. I’m not usually allowed to play with them. OH man. Before I could even think, I was running after my human and the squeak.
Soon, we were weaving nicely and the horse was going round and round nicely too.
Suddenly, I understood. Every time I tried to get near to the horse and wasn’t calm, my human was taking me further away. Every time I was calm, I got to go nearer. Ok, I can do this. I really wanted to say hello.
She asked for my attention and told her friend that it’s time to meet. I lunged a few times on the way there because I was super excited, but my human made me lay down and get into my wait position. Then the horse came over. It was actually much better, I got a chance to say hello. I’ve never actually spoken to a horse before.
He plodded over, bent down, looked me right in the eyes and said ‘well done girl, now we can be friends. I’m Paz, nice to meet’cha’
The human said she was very happy. It had taken us about 40 minutes to get to this point, so she said she thinks it should end here. On a good note, while everyone is calm. Paz and I were so calm, we decided to give eachother a kiss.
We all walked out of the sand school together. It was SO pawsome to walk with a horse.
Afterwards, Paz & I hung out while the humans played the moving mouth game. They said we should do it again some time, that it would be good for Bella.
I can’t wait to see Paz again. I wonder when we’ll be allowed to go in the field together *wag wag wag*
I also want to say a special Thank You. To Jo for letting me come to her horse village and for bringing Paz out to play and to Vanessa, for waking up early on a bright sunny day, with a hangover, to come and take pictures for us.