I had lots and lots of good work from all my dogs this week. I pushed Star as far as I could and he was up to the challenge, getting better all the time.
This week's lessons:
- Your trust
- My trust
As we walked from the truck today, I told him to "look" and pointed in the direction of the sheep. He scanned the field without spotting them, but when his head swiveled in the correct direction, I sent him with a shush. Uncharacteristically, he became unsure, and about 100 yards away, slowed and looked back to me. I gave him another shush, and this time there was no reservation. I watched him as he pulled in and widened out once or twice. Then he pulled in just about to the point where I started thinking about him crossing between me and the sheep, and that's when it hit me. He is mature and well-trained enough to trust that there are always sheep out there when I send him. I need to return the favor. "Trust your dog." Those words were said to me at a trial once after I had given Mirk an unnecessary re-direct that cost us a few placings. I lowered my whistle. At about the same time, Star spotted his sheep, kicked himself out, and finished right where he was supposed to.