Gavin of Gracehaven
Squid is registered PRGN with the American Farmcollie Association!
Squid (named for the long legs he inherited from his mother) helped me move a goat for the first time at the ripe old age of 10 weeks. The goat, Max was in the process of ripping the downspout off the house again, so I ran over yelling, “shoo!” Squid took it from there and nipped Max’s heels to get him away from the house. It was smoothly done for such a young fellow – he was very controlled, quit when I called him off, and was pleased with his new skill. He was also rather lucky the goat didn’t realize it was the puppy moving him, but he’s gamely continued trying to enforce the rules since, despite being on the wrong end of the goat a couple of times (he’s gotten adroit at ducking those headbutts!).
And he learns quick! It pleases him to know what the “right” thing is. He’s laid back and gets along with everyone he meets, but does like to enforce when others are stepping out of line – he swells visibly with importance, quite funny to see on such a tiny puppy. We were in the process of teaching him not to apply that new skill on the free-ranging chickens when I made the decision to trade them in for ducks. He sat in on duckling-cuddling sessions when they arrived as well as the next wave of chicks, once those made their inevitable return. Needless to say, this is something I wouldn’t do with every puppy that’s grown up here.
He’s developed a love of treeing and has proven himself as a hunter! His favorite job at the moment is to lie in wait for predators and scavengers near the duck/chicken yard. This started last year when I put netting over the duck pen to stop the crows from making off with duck eggs. Instead, they got into the netting and couldn’t find their way out. With very little direction, he cornered and retrieved most of them for me. Since then, he’s been reliably helpful at chasing crows off without disturbing our poultry and has applied the knowledge to other pests, like raccoons. Squid’s great at treeing those just outside the duck pen and holding them until we can dispatch them. He’s also able to catch wild rabbits, which he considers a real treat. We’re not too big on that skill or the gas it causes, but it may come in handy should we ever start an outdoor garden (life in the rain favors a greenhouse).
Squid’s health clearances:
- CEA: masked affected (per CERF and Optigen)
- rcd2 PRA: normal
- MDR1 sensitivity: mutant/normal
- Degenerative Myelopathy: Clear per DDC Veterinary
- Cyclic Neutropenia: Clear per VetGen
- DMS: 002:01/046:01 aa bb – low risk per Clemson University
- Hips: OFA Good
Fast asleep after his first day home