This week I'm going to do a little wrap-up on a few stories. I have had many emails and questions on Facebook wanting to know the status of a few past posts and this week I am going to answer the questions.

Bodhi, now officially known as “Tucker”
After nearly 800 miles of road trips to Indianapolis, Winchester Ky, Ohio and Louisville, Tucker now lives near Carrollton Kentucky. During the ordeal and re-homing process, I got a message from someone who had one of our dogs from Meg’s past litter. She felt that Bodhi needed a job and I agreed. She asked  if they could meet him and if they could bring their dog too. Of course I said yes and several days later, everyone met and had a wonderful day. Bodhi acted like the perfect gentleman and put on the charm. He would sit by them and act like he had known them his whole life. That was the last time I saw Bodhi. It broke my heart for him to go, again, but now he has his forever home and is very happy. 
They are in agility with their dog, Errin.  Tucker (Bodhi)  had his first formal obedience lesson and will hopefully get into agility too. I get emails and Facebook messages from his owners telling me of his progress and accomplishments. He is doing very well.
Tucker with his ball, running agility with his new sister Errin
When I get the photos it kinda makes me sad, but in a good way, I miss him like crazy but I am glad he has found his forever home and a job and a special thanks to two wonderful people who took a chance on a dog that I knew was a keeper.  He has made an impact on me that no other pup has. Enjoy your life, until we meet again at the bridge, Dad.

If anyone wants to keep up on Tucker, you can friend request Hilary Ann Wain on Facebook and see photos and updates.

Link to more on Tucker
"Tess of the d'Urbervilles" was her official name but she was called "Tess" and this is the notice I sent out;

Just found out that "Tess" may be coming home. Tess was from "Molly" and was picked up on January 21 of this year during an ice storm because they wanted her so bad and couldn't wait. I remember her human mom "Karen" so well. Karen was so excited to get her and they came down and saw her many times before "Tess" was old enough to go home. Karen couldn't wait for the day that she and Tess would spend a lifetime together. Little did I know that the lifetime spent would be the end of Karen's.  She always held Tess in her lap on visits the whole time and would get kisses and licks from Tess. Karen passed away very unexpectedly and Tess needed a home, ASAP.  
After the notice was sent, many people came to the rescue wanting to help in any way they could. The problem was Tess was in central Florida and needed to be picked up  immediately. Some offered to set up a fund, some wanting to help transport and some even wanting to pay to fly Tess back home so we could find her a new home. Tess was only 4 months old and needed a mommy because she lost hers.   Many people came to the rescue, more than I would have thought.  I’m not really surprised because these people were dog lovers and not just dog owners.

While we had deposits on Dutchess’s litter, one of the people who had a deposit sent me an email stating that they would be willing to help. I called the caregiver to see where they lived in Florida and then called the people who were willing to help and they lived less than an hour from  each other. After giving each of them phone numbers, they made contact with each other and on that very day, Tess was picked up and went to a new home. I am so grateful for the responses from various  people who were willing to pick up, help out financially or with travel from place to place to get Tess to her new home.  Hopefully, this will be Tess’s forever home, time will tell. Karen was one of those people that you never forget. She was full of life and  so excited that she was going to get her puppy. I remember her visits so well because she was "just fun to be around". As I said before, Tess was picked up during an ice storm in January and I met them at a little store close to our home because of the icy hills.  Karen was so excited, she wept with joy.
I know Karen loved her very much and it would be her wish that Tess was well taken care of and loved. With the out pouring of love, Karen would be very pleased. Rest in Peace Karen, this time you’ll have to wait for Tess at the "Bridge" and take her across getting licks and kisses the whole way holding her in your arms once again, "forever"... 


What A Wonderful World...

This has been a wonderful week here on the farm, most are, but this week has been especially good. While my son is in London, England, Angie our daughter-in-law (daughter) and of course Maddie our granddaughter spent most of the week here just to spend some time together. When I was trying to think what to write about, this song came to mind, because it really is a wonderful world we live in.

I see trees of green, red roses too
I see them bloom, for me and you
And I think to myself What a wonderful world

I did see trees of green on the walk in the woods we took, Maddie in the middle holding onto a finger as we maneuvered around the lake just the three of us. We purchased some red roses at a local retailer when we went shopping and I will planted them in our memory garden, always going back in time when they bloom to the very day we were together, what memories.
I see skies of blue, and clouds of white
The bright blessed day, dark sacred night
And I think to myself What a wonderful world

I saw beautiful blue skies all week with white clouds floating by in the lazy days we spent together just doing nothing but enjoying doing nothing. The night skies were filled with stars and when I went out and checked on the dogs, I was amazed at the beauty of the night sky and rejoiced for the blessed days we have have.
The colors of the rainbow, so pretty in the sky
Are also on the faces, of people going by
I see friends shaking hands, sayin', "How do you do?" They're really sayin', "I love you"

The colors of the fields were spectacular. On our walks, Maddie found a multitude of flowers and would pick them for us.  She even blew a dandelion or two, something her Mother taught her to do. Angie even found two 4 leaf clovers and I said want a lucky day we have had and yes, we are lucky. Maddie will say many words throughout the entire day and seems to learn more each day, but the ones I heard that pierced my heart were “Pap Paw, I love you”.
I hear babies laughing', I watch them grow
They'll learn much more, than I'll ever know And I think to myself What a wonderful world
Yes, I think to myself What a wonderful world

I heard Maddie laughing all day. She would play and pretend and was a busy little girl giggling every minute and finding the good in life, if only our hearts could be as pure as hers.
We did have a wonderful week, all the dogs seemed to join in on the fun and activity.  Maddie got to play with most, but on this trip, she and Clancy shared a special bond with each other which most people do, even us.  They shared breakfast, snacks, fish food, a pacifier and even sugar which got a big giggle from Maddie. 
If you just look around, and see the things that are really important, you too, will see it is a wonderful world if we just open our eyes.
Yes, I think to myself, What a wonderful world. Thanks Angie, Maddie and to you too, Louie, Hurry back Son your sorely missed.

What a Wonderful World Link
Shuck's Border Collies on Facebook


Balls, Boat Rides and Lots of Action

Why is it, that border collies love balls and Frisbees? It’s nothing like their intended job which is herding. The Border Collie is descended from landrace collies,  a type found widely in the British Isles. The name for the breed came from its probable place of origin along the Scottish English borders. Mention of the "Collie" or "Colley" type first appeared toward the end of the 19th century, although the word "collie" is older than this and has its origin in Lowland Scotts dialects. Many of the best Border Collies today can be traced back to a dog known as Old Hemp which was a tricolor dog,  born in September 1893 and he died in May 1902. He was bred by Adam Telfer from Roy, a black and tan dog, and Meg, a black-coated, strong-eyed dog. Hemp was a quiet, powerful dog that sheep responded to easily. Many shepherds used him for stud and Hemp's working style became the Border Collie style. All pure Border Collies alive today can trace an ancestral line back to Old Hemp. I’m sure that “Old Hemp” would not know what a tennis ball or Frisbee was, nor would he show any interest in either. But it still doesn’t answer the question.
If you have a BC then you know what I mean. Usually when we have a play day, we will play for what seems like a long period of time. Many times people will say “they will do this forever, won’t they” well yes, they will. I once said to myself, “we’ll just see” and off I went with several tennis balls and two Frisbees and walked to our play area ready to solve the mystery. Nearly two hours later I was pooped and the dogs were still raring to go and I quit, I was tired. They won…The question is still unswered.
I keep the extra balls and Frisbees in an old gas grill on the dock of our small lake. If I even go toward that area, they go crazy, knowing I am getting ready to get their favorite things in the world. They will spin around and Dutchess will bark while Abbie will give off this high pitched yelp knowing I am going to get the toys. I have even seen Dutchess stand on her back legs and try to force the grill open and if I pass by the “toy chest” OMG you have never seen so many sad faces in your life. You would think I had done a terrible thing and to them I have. But that doesn’t stop them. A friend that attends our church plays tennis. She is a very good player and  will only use the tennis balls for a couple of games and then bring me all the used balls and needless to say, we have them scattered all around the farm.

At the point of passing the “toy chest” the dogs are on a mission to find a ball so we can play, which they usually do. Just yesterday, Clancy found a bleached out ball that had roots growing in the fuzz and I’m sure it had been in a undisturbed place for several years, but it was still round and still had lots of fun left in it and as we usually do, we tossed it, how can you say “no” at that point. Truth be known, somewhere around the farm, there are hundreds of tennis balls in a hollow log just for emergencies.
Size doesn't matter
Most BC’s are typically extremely energetic, acrobatic, and athletic, they frequently compete with great success in dog sports. In addition to their success in sheepdog trials, they  are cited as the most intelligent of all dogs. In January 2011, a Border Collie was reported to have learned 1,022 words, and acts consequently to human citation of those words which is amassing and I don’t know if I know that many, but the most important words to mine are food, Frisbee and ball.
You CANNOT play Frisbee in the boat
Another thing I have discovered is they like boat rides and if I get in a canoe or on the pontoon boat, they are not far behind.
I have been in the canoe fetching tennis balls in the lake and have had a few of the dogs swim to me and of course, I pull them in the canoe getting me wet, but they are happy and so am I, except the wet part. There is never a lack of action on the behalf of a Border Collie. I just wonder what “Old Hemp” would think?
Old Hemp 1893-1902

Vacation Days Ahead

This week we were watching two of our adult pups. They are here because they are on vacation at the farm while their human parents are on vacation too. It can sometime be a little hectic because we don’t just kennel them, they live with us and interact with us and our dogs in everything we do. What that really means is that they run free with our dogs and get into everything possible with our dogs and if you think it’s a hoot with 6, then try 8 or 9 and then throw in a play day or two. This is not a bad thing, it’s just hectic at times. There have been times when Elaine comes home from work and I have seemed exasperated and it was because it was like running a day care except it was for dogs. After I would take the edge off with a stiff ice tea, I would always reflect on the dogs and then would go right back in the thick of it again in just an hour or so throwing the Frisbee and ball, and why do they wait until they are right next to your leg to shake all the water off?

Last night Elaine and I were in a local eating establishment and one of the employees came up to us and said “Good evening Mr. Shuck” I was at the table and looked up and was thrown a little. He then went on to explain his family owned Annie. I remember Annie. She made an impression on me because she is a sweet, loving, beautiful tri color girl. We talked about all the things she does and I asked how old is Annie? And when he said, four years old, I was shocked. It just seems like a few months ago that she left and a few weeks ago that she had come for a visit. This set me to thinking about all the dogs and pups and the impact we have had not only on ourselves but the people around us with our dogs.
Every dog that comes back for a visit will jump from the car and run to us giving us kisses and licks. They always seem to know where they are. We love hearing their stories and the many antics that the dog will get into and I love every minute of it. I have seen many pups grow up and become beautiful dogs when they come back for a visit. We love to raise our pups and many people will ask “How can you let them go”. It’s because in my heart they have never left and I see the impact they have made on their owners and how they have become the love of their life. When a pup goes home, I always encourage people to keep us informed of how they are doing and any problems that might come up. Most people do and will supply us with emails loaded with photos and stories which I will forward to various people that are also interested.
This month is busy with visitors to the farm and it will be fun with all the dogs running around and around and around. One of the dogs (Bob) that went home yesterday ran the whole time he was here. At home he loves playing Frisbee and ball, but here he runs and won’t even give it a look. Many of the dogs do this because there are no restrictions, they are always off leash, which sometimes is not always the case at home, so they take advantage of it here. It’s like a kid in a penny candy store with a dime, “what do I do next”.

I brought in a pontoon boat for the big lake and one of the reasons was to give the dogs a boat ride. Well we got to try it out this week. Elaine and I got in and of course Clancy wanted to go and Dutchess didn’t want to miss anything so she jumped in the boat from the dock. The other dogs were a little unsure and scared to get in at first. Off we went and as we would move around the lake, all the other dogs would run on the shore just to follow us. As I got near the shore, they would line the bank in-front of the boat and as I pulled closer, they would jump on, eventually all the dogs were on and two of them swam to the boat. So here we were, all the dogs and visitors, some wet, some not, taking our first boat ride. I looked at Abbie and in her mouth she had a tennis ball. Elaine said, “Whatever you do, don’t throw that ball”
As hectic as it is, I love to see our pups again. I never in my wildest dreams thought that we would make an impact on other people, dogs and even us as we have, but it is the dogs that make us what we are because of the love and devotion they bring to us. Thanks for the visits and stories, we have a ball and the dogs do too.   Ken

PS.  Tucker (aka Bodhi) is doing great.....

Gone Home...

Since I have been writing this blog, I have never had as much interest from people writing, calling or emailing me as I have had with Bodhi. Everyone has been very positive and it was people wanting to know if he was OK and their concern in finding him a good home. I will also tell you that he has affected me in a number of ways. It seems like I have lived a lifetime through Bodhi and have traveled many miles just to make sure he was in the best place for him. My emotions have been all over the spectrum with him, always wanting to be up but sometime being very down and concerned. There were many times when he was the first thing I thought of and the last thing at night, and yes, I even prayed for him and his safety knowing that God loves him too because I loved him.
The sad part, Bodhi was a good dog, he was just misplaced in some of his homes and time was not on his side. You see, sometimes it takes a special person that will take that special effort and attention for him to excel to his fullest, but it was finding the right person and it was becoming hard.  He had good people, but the environment was the downfall in some cases.
I want to thank all of the people that contributed to him and their attempt to help Bodhi.  I will always say that every time he came back from a trial home, he came back a better dog than when he left and I think it was the different people and situations he went to. He faced more new home situations than a salesman selling vacuum cleaners and he always adapted to each home, some good and some in a bad way, but it bettered him and helped in his progress.
Bodhi is the dog I will never forget, I remember when he first came to me and how scared and troubled he seemed, and how loving he was when he left, you see Bodhi was re-homed 5 times and each time, it tore my heart out. When he left the last time, I remembered before he left, he ran to me and jumped on the couch and put his paws in my lap and his head on my leg and then reached up and gave me a kiss, I can still see his eyes and will aways miss them so.
I want to thank his original owners for bringing him back to us so we could do the right thing and try to find him a new home. Bodhi was a nipper because he was scared, but in a shelter, he would have been put down. It’s something that would not be tolerated at all and there are no options. I know the original owner has struggled along with me in finding him a new home and has kept up with him via emails with me.  She was so concerned and wanted the best for him because she also knew he was a good dog, we just needed for other people to see it too.
Bodhi has gone home…It’s funny, just last week I found in my computer some videos of his litter. Molly was the mother and there were ten pups all running around and having a blast with each other. Not only was Bodhi in the video, but little “Oreo” was too, she was killed a few months ago by a delivery truck in her driveway. Little did I know any of the future scenarios when I shot that video.

Errin is a beautiful dog that needed and wanted someone that could and would keep up with her, she is a very active Frisbee and agility dog and has a wonderful home life. She is from a litter of Clancy and Meg. Her human mom has two dogs, but one is a senior and is blind and Errin needs a playmate.
Tucker came into her life quite unexpectedly. She was looking for another dog from Meg’s upcoming litter, but none were available. Tucker caught her eye and he is now part of their life, living a dream. Very soon Tucker will start his life in agility and all the fun that’s goes with it. It was said "Tucker just needs a job" and I agreed. You see, “Tucker” is “Bodhi”.
Not only does he have a new home, he has a new name. It’s only fitting to have a fresh start, something we all may need once in a while. God Bless all of you that have followed me on this journey, I think “Bodhi”, now “Tucker” had found his forever home, and he deserves it. I’ll never forget you…You have so much to give and want nothing but a home and now you have it, thanks to a few special people.    Love Dad…