One of the positive sides of many weeks of persistent rain is that when it's far too wet to train sheepdogs, you can spend more time catching up with various other jobs that you've been meaning to do for a while. In my case, it's adding subtitles to our online sheepdog training videos
I should explain that 'too wet to train sheepdogs', doesn't mean we don't normally train dogs when it's raining, we do, but this year, we had to postpone all sheepdog training days, and we even stopped training our own sheepdogs, because the ground was so wet, it was difficult to walk on, let alone move around quickly. I hope we don't get that much rain again for a long while.
Feedback from the tutorials and our First Steps in Border Collie Sheepdog Training DVD has brought it to our notice that subtitles are in demand, not just by people with hearing problems, but from those who's first language is not English. Anyone who finds it difficult to keep up with the dialogue will find the subtitles can be a big help. If you pause video, the dialogue disappears, but if there are subtitles, they remain visible. Once you fully understand what's going on, you can activate the 'play' button again.
Our training field is drying out nicely now that we've had several days without rain. I'm hoping to be training again within a day or so. I can't wait!
There are numerous dogs in the yard who I'm really looking forward to training, including Oliver, Justin and Jess - three seven month old litter mates with Aled Owen's Roy and Bob as grand and great grandfathers. Also high on my list is a three year old female called Fen, and the three pups we call 'the girls' - that's Tiny (see left) and her sisters Isla and Smudge. These are home-bred pups from our own Audrey and Eli.
The girls were named by Gill because until recently, we couldn't tell which was which unless they happened to be together. Tiny had the least amount of white on her face, so she was 'Tiny White'. Smudge had just a smear of white on her nose (Smudge White) and Isla has the most white on her face. She was called 'Most White' for some weeks but we eventually agreed we couldn't really call her 'Most White', so Isla is was (after the Isle of Wight).
If you're interested in training a border collie to herd sheep, why not subscribe to our online sheepdog training tutorials - we're adding more videos regularly, and you're welcome to ask questions on the Tutorials Library page.