No. 4 Meet the dream "dog" team
Below is a picture of our working dogs. They are all Hunterway cross collies and Fly has a bit of Kelpie in her. They are excellent working dogs capable of running for miles, barking when required and sniffing out sheep in any wood or dingle on the farm. They are also my husbands best friends. First thing in the morning he goes to find them and they are with him all day. True companions.
On the left is Richie, a 4 year old dog, the top dog. A bit too head strong but he is totally loyal to my husband and will not work for anyone else! Excellent at working both the cattle and the sheep, when they see him coming they know there's no messing. He can clear a fence without battering an eye lid. Ritchie has a unique bond with our son who is 3, he can always be found stood guarding him when we are helping on the farm.
In the middle our youngest dog Fly, she's two years old now. She's the newest addition to the farm, we had her as a youngster. She fits in just right. Still playful and full of excitement but shes learning the ropes well and has become a big help when working the sheep. She's not got the stature of Richie when it comes to the cattle but she will bark! She is a real sweetheart. She loves to play with the children and have a cuddle. Fly is expecting her first litter of pups this month so I will keep you posted. Richie is the father.
And last but by no means least, out first Hunterway bitch Blue. The "boss". Blue is 6 years old now and is starting to take things a bit easier and I think she is getting a bit hard of hearing (not sure if this is just intentional) and can be found wondering around the field whilst she is supposed to be working. Blue is now happy to let the other, younger dogs do the work while she sniffs around for anything interesting. But she has worked incredible hard over the years. She's a real lady.
Blue has a very special place in my heart. We are lucky Blue is with us today as when she was 2 and had her first litter of pups she suffered from a retained placenta and nearly died. She was very poorly and had to have a full hysterectomy and then lost the use of her back legs. As a result she couldn't rear the pups herself so we found ourselves hand rearing 5 pups and nursing her back to health in the house. This was a very challenging time but they all quickly became part of the family and thankfully after lots of physio Blue was able to walk again. As you can see from the picture shes made a full recovery and aside from not being able to have any more pups she is as happy as ever. Much to the children's disappointment the pups all found new loving homes across the UK. I still recall this time very fondly and miss them all - stripe, blacky, pip, spot and chunky pictured above.