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Farmer’s Diary: There is a dog out there for everyone

Former professional chef, Clodagh Hughes, runs a sheep enterprise on the Monaghan/Louth border near Inniskeen.

Well, it is official; I am in love!  Puppy love to be exact, I have been in puppy heaven all week.

The pups have settled in so well. As I said last week, I am glad we took two of them as they are now wee furry buddies.

Apart from this making my life easier as they can amuse themselves, I am hoping that when it comes to training and working them that they will bounce off each other.

I guess only time will tell. I could be completely setting myself up for double trouble folks!

Naming process 

Their named Peadar and Finn, and I am sorry to admit, but no special thought really goes into my naming process.

It is usually if a name fits right at that time or describes the animal pretty accurately, I will go with it.  My other half came up with Peadar and I met a dog years ago called Finn and just liked it.

But I think the names suit them now and they are already responding to them would you believe!

Now, I will probably cause some controversy here, but I believe that dogs that were originally bred for herding/work are very intelligent and that collies are at the top of this list.

Of course, I love all types, but I have always had a preference for collie dogs. It so happens that I am now a sheep farmer with the opportunity to have, and train up some canine helpers for my flock.

A dog out there for everyone 

What I am trying to say is that there is a dog out there for everyone; it is a matter of choosing the right doggy companion for your lifestyle and situation.

With the bank holiday this Monday (October 26th), I have an extra pair of hands to call on, so we are going to set up a nice pen for the pups.

I have got a fine insulated doghouse that will be their new home.  I just need to ‘puppy-proof’ the pen as they are small enough to fit through the sheep wire at the minute.

They have been outside at every opportunity with me this week and they are well fit to be out in their own area.

Meanwhile, back on the ranch, breeding season is in full swing with woolly shenanigans morning, noon, and night.

Mr. Woody is certainly living up to his high fleece credentials. I will admit I was a bit apprehensive when I let him in with my ewes at first, him being a young ram and new to my flock.

I need not have worried as he is settled in just fine and has been a big hit with my girls. A month has passed already guys, soon be time to change his crayon again.

I ordered two lovely books on sheepdog training and cannot wait to apply some of the techniques on my puppy victims…I mean workmates!

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