Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Suspect handling

The day did not start out promising. On the road from Bellingham to Arlington, we drove through driving sleet and rain. It looked to be a miserable training session, but the sun briefly appeared around Burlington and on the field it turned out to be cold and overcast.

Jennie, another of Brian’s students, was finishing up with her dog Elsa when I arrived. Elsa has come a long way since Jennie had to use an air horn to get her attention. She was working with calm and confidence when we walked through the gate to join them.

We did some outrun work, with Jennie and Elsa holding the sheep for me and Rodeo and us returning the favor. I was tentative to the point of being passive, and Brian yelled out in mild exasperation: “Start handling him! You’re wasting your money if you don’t handle him!”

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Some awful dog news out of BC

Apparently a sled-dog touring company called Outdoor Adventures killed about 100 sled dogs after business slowed down and they were forced to cut costs. (link)

Whether or not it was necessary (the company claimed it did all it could to find homes for the dogs), it was apparently done in just about the worst way possible.

The Vancouver, BC Humane Society apparently called for a ban on sled dog businesses, which seems pretty stupid to me. More regulation should be considered, but a ban makes no sense. Working dogs should have the opportunity to work, and that includes sled dogs.