Just wanted to send out Happy (First) Got Day wishes for Ray! I can’t believe it’s been a year already, time sure does fly when you’re having fun.
The weather’s been FRIGID. Herding is out for now, due to the snow. We play kickball etc., and still have the normal livestock chores but other than that we’ve been more housebound than usual. Neither of us likes it but we’re coping;-). I got the clicker out for some brain games but he’s been surprisingly chill about the down time. Yesterday he dug out his Busy Buddy Squirrel Dude (aka The Poopin’ Squirrel) and brought it to me to fill. It had been living in the bottom of his toybox since last winter. Right now he’s upside down, hanging halfway off the couch with his eyes closed, looking like a dead bug.
I’m sure it comes as no surprise to you that he’s smart;-). Not a day goes by that he doesn’t remind me that those wheels are constantly turning and there are many “Timmy’s in the well” moments.
He has a ton of stuffies and is usually good about not ripping them up. We recently had a friend’s dog here for a couple of weeks and she wanted to gut them all. I was working with her one day about not shredding one while Ray was standing by, watching intently. After a minute he left the room and came back with a nylabone, which he carefully placed directly on top of the stuffed animal she had.
He’s so quick to learn every last detail of a routine and he’s very honest, so I can leave him to things while I do something else, without having to worry about what he’s up to behind my back. He obviously knows my routine better than I do, like the time I was filling the stock tank and forgot about it when I was done with the other chores. I called him to go back to the house with me, but he ran over to the stock tank instead. I called him again and he came, but turned and once again ran back to the stock tank and stood there looking at me. I then realized I had forgotten to turn the hose off and the stock tank was just starting to overflow. That could have been, at the least a mess, or, since we’re on a well, a disaster. Whew.
He’s incredibly sweet, intuitive and affectionate (and the world’s best snuggler). He’s a perfect fit for our family, (although he might be a nightmare in the wrong household). He loves most people but can still be a little nervy about certain men and I continue to work on that. He’s quirky and delightfully weird and very sensitive to some sounds and movement. He’s not afraid of loud noise (he’ll work sheep/ducks with the next door neighbor shooting off his gun or a thunderstorm coming up without missing a step), but he finds many noises exciting. You’re going to make an espresso – ohboy! The toaster beeped AND it popped! The egg timer went ding which is too cool and that also means you’re going to open the oven door, which is also cool because the oven door makes the most intriguing squeak! (or it did until yesterday when I oiled it, which just sucked all the fun right out of checking on supper.) Hey, the dryer buzzed, aren’t ya gonna fold that stuff? Other, similar sounds are ignored (yeah yeah, the microwave, so what). A lot of it is stuff that anyone used to herding dogs wouldn’t bat an eye at, but if not, you might wonder about his sanity;-).
He wants to be involved in everything but can stay out of the way if necessary. He’s energetic and always ready to do something but he has an off switch and settles beautifully. He definitely knows how to relax and can do a great boneless imitation. He tries so very hard to behave and is a total goody two shoes around the house. He’s wonderful with the cats and our ancient blind rescue dog, who can be grumpy. You never need to raise your voice to him and he’s very responsive. He’s quick to get overstimulated but usually a quiet word will stop any nonsense. We still have a few things to work on (ongoing socialization, jumping up-which he still can’t sometimes resist, etc.) but he’s a lot of fun, great help with the sheep and ducks, a real pleasure to live with and he is very, very loved.
We decided to make his “got day” his birthday as well, since the actual date is unknown. So, happy second b-day Ray! Looking forward to many more.
I attached a few recent photos. Once again, thank you for all you do,