Dog and People Stories and Pictures

memorable dogs, memorable days

Susan Boyd on ranching with dogs on arid land

Susan Boyd is a Working Aussie Souce member with amazing photos and a recent video clip that led to this article. WAS:Can you tell us about your operation? My husband Curt and I purchased and established Boyd Ranch, LLC in 2004. It is situated on 25,000 acres and is located in Central NM about 75 miles SE of Albuquerque. The headquarters are in the old ghost town of Chupadera, NM. Over 100 years ago this town was a hopping little…

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An interview with Joe Sheeran

Ed note: I asked Joe some questions because of late he has been doing an amazing job of educating not only the Aussie folk, but the stockdog folk in general about the amazing potential of these dogs and how to use them. He plans to continue to make useful videos and hopefully his work will find its way to a bigger audience. But who is he and how did he get into these dogs for his operation? About me, I…

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An interview with Sarah Martin – Part 1, Starting to Use Dogs in a Cattle Operation

  Sarah Martin, of G-S Ranch, runs purebred red Angus with her husband and his family in northern Alberta, Canada. She is available for clinics. WAS: How did you get your first dogs? What did you look for? How did you know what to look for? Did you get what you wanted? SM: As stated above I got into my first working dog with a friend. I wanted a dog and his only stipulation was that I needed to find a working Australian…

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Historic Photos

THE AUSTRALIAN SHEPHERD’S ORIGIN AND HISTORY: Photo Gallery, Part One of Four by Gwen Stevenson Working Aussie Source editor’s note: Gwen Stevenson was a founding member of ASCA, who lived in Oak Run, California. She made a collection of her own and other people’s articles, photos, stories and correspondence, some of which was first published in the newsletter of the Animal Research Foundation, one of the earliest organizations to recognize the Aussie. This collection was eventually assembled into a small…

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Real World Working Aussies

REAL WORLD WORKING AUSSIES by Kay Spencer Almost any homestead, farm, or ranch can use a good dog. Used to be, every farm had an Old Shep who brought in the cows, guarded the children, and did hundred small and large jobs, often ones he had taught himself to do. This kind of dog still exists, if you know where to look. The working-bred Aussie is an all-purpose stockdog who will move ducks, chickens, hogs, sheep, goats, and cattle, and…

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Most Versatile: Nick Davis and Apache Trails

FIRST SUPREME VERSATILITY CHAMPION: NICK DAVIS AND APACHE TRAILS interview by Kay Spencer Nick Davis is a person who should need no introduction to Australian Shepherd lovers, but whose name and whose dogs have, like many deserving others, moved out of the passing public spotlight. Nick’s career in Aussies is among the longest. He started competing in ASCA shows and trials in the 1970’s, and became well-known through his most famous dog, HOF SVCH WTCH CH Apache Tears of Timberline…

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Jay Sisler, an interview with his wife and daughter

JAY SISLER, THE MAN BEHIND THOSE FAMOUS BLUE DOGS An interview with his wife Joy and daughter Maggie by Andrea Scott Anyone who is acquainted with Australian Shepherds knows the name Jay Sisler. Sisler, who passed away in 1995, made the breed famous with his dogs by performing at rodeos and appearing in movies. Although many people are familiar with his dogs, less is known about Sisler. Jay Sisler first met Joy, his wife, through family in 1978 in Emmett,…

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Mutt the Ranch Hand Dog

MUTT THE RANCH HAND DOG by Tony Rohne I have looked for good ranch hand dogs for about 12 years now. A good hand in cow country is hard to beat. A good one fixes a water gap while the creek is still up, ties a cow off to a shed pole and dehorns her with a hand saw, and tends a downer cow until she gets up or dies. He may not need to rope or even ride a…

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Cee Hambo, A Tradition of Working Dogs

CEE HAMBO: A TRADITION OF WORKING DOGS by Peggy Potter Three generations ago, the area of California around San Francisco was much different than it is today. Basque shepherds moved their flocks over thousands of acres each year using dogs to herd and guard them from both four-legged and two-legged predators. California cowboys herded tough cattle through the misty oceanside canyons and into the hot, dry inland hills. Colorful characters were easy to find. One woman bought and sold stock…

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Interview with the Hartnagles

A STUDY IN BREEDING WORKING DOGS: LAS ROCOSA AUSTRALIAN SHEPHERDS by Peggy Potter Ask ranch dog trainers what the most important thing is in a working dog and 99% of them will tell you a dog with working bloodlines. Breeding better dogs, stockdogs in particular, is not only a science, but also an art. Masters of this science and art are Ernest and Elaine Hartnagle who, along with their family, are the founders of the Las Rocosa line of Australian…

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Sherry Baker Interview

INTERVIEW WITH SHERRY BAKER, THIRD GENERATION STOCKDOG HANDLER by Peggy Potter Many of us have the fantasy of being born and raised on a ranch with horses to ride, cattle to work and a couple good stockdogs handy to help make chores easier. Not all of us can be as lucky as Sherry Baker. She comes from a long line of ranchers. Her mother, Audrey Klarer and Audrey’s twin sister, Muriel Hayes, were adventuresome horsewomen when they were in their…

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Memories of Working Aussies of Yesteryear

MEMORIES OF WORKING AUSSIES OF YESTERYEAR A pastiche of several discussions which have taken place on the internet board Aussie-Herders. Because of the nature of yahoo boards, there has been much editing to fit an article format. Dogs mentioned include Zephyr’s Crimson King, Angel Fire’s Hoo Doober, Slash V Slide Me Sweet, foundation Slash V dogs, Mini Acres Peppermint Patty, Oliver’s Romulus Five. Video added from the Aussie Archives – TheAustralianShepherd.net May 23, 2002 Dana MacKenzie– . . . Jumbuc’s…

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Everyday Heroes

EVERYDAY HEROES by Mari Taggart Morrison Every once in awhile something will happen that makes you sort of stop and take notice of how remarkable our working stockdogs are. Those of us fortunate enough to own working Australian Shepherds tend to perhaps take the things our dogs do for us every day for granted. Recently, thanks to El Nino, we had massive flooding on our place–the water was so deep it began to creep under the walls of the barn,…

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For Love of Cody

FOR LOVE OF CODY by Mari Taggart Morrison When I got the call about an Aussie that needed rescuing I really didn’t want to pay attention. I’d recently purchased a wonderful, well-bred Aussie pup and had another on order — I needed another dog like a hole in the head. But something about this dog’s story tugged at my heart. A wealthy family had got an Aussie because they wanted a beautiful, intelligent dog but they hadn’t bargained on the…

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My Buddy Buzz

MY BUDDY BUZZ by Roger Moore This is a story that has been shared with others, but I always enjoy the opportunity to “talk dogs”. I hope RDT readers will enjoy and appreciate this story as much as I have enjoyed working stockdogs the past few years. Each dog that I have worked has their own individual thinking and working abilities. The longer I work with dogs the more I am reassured that a working dog is more than a…

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Jones’ Reddy Teddy

JONES’ REDDY TEDDY by Terry Martin Since time is short, I decided to do a piece on a controversial dog from the 1970’s. This dog is CH Jones’ Reddy Teddy CDX OTDdsc SCH HA. This is taken from my own experiences with this dog. I think Ted’s first public appearance was at the first ASCA sanctioned trial in Phoenix. It seems hard to believe now, but red dogs were a rarity then, and a lot of people had never seen…

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Slash V

SLASH V AUSTRALIAN SHEPHERDS by Terry Martin How long does it take to establish a “line” of dogs? A bloodline should be established for a purpose and definite characteristics prioritized, but this can only develop over time. The more years of experience with the dogs, the more a person becomes aware of the hereditary nature of the traits they are striving for. Some traits become more important and others less as more and more is learned. Personal preferences and occasionally…

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“That’s How It’s Done”

“THAT’S HOW IT’’S DONE” by Dana Mackenzie A friend of mine, Kaye Harris of Crown Point Australian Shepherds, related this story to me some time ago. Names have been changed to protect the guilty! My neighbor Jim called me up wanting some fresh sheep to use in training his dogs. We decided the best way to go about it was to use the sheep he already owned and cross them to my Barbado ram. Hopefully, the resulting lambs would be…

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Rowe’s Commanche Warrior, an interview with Jerry Rowe

ROWE’S COMMANCHE WARRIOR an interview with Jerry Rowe by Terry Martin One of the early successful trial dogs in A.S.C.A.’s trial history was Jerry Rowe’s Commanche. Jerry and his dog were at the first A.S.C.A. sanctioned trial, and Commanche was one of the first dogs trialing with any training at all. That was back in the days when trials were pretty wild and western, and most of us had hardly figured out how to “down” the dog much less think…

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Slip and Red

SLIP AND RED by Dana Mackenzie Sometimes we are lucky enough to be witness to an age-old ballet played out in perfect harmony between man and animal. It leaves us with a sense of awe and makes us somehow reluctant to turn loose of the moment. This is a chapter in the saga of a man and a dog, and the result of the accumulation of a lifetime together. Neither needs an introduction to anyone who has ever known or…

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The Measure of a Puppy’s Heart

THE MEASURE OF A PUPPY’S HEART by Dana Mackenzie Betty Williams, an attractive ranch-bred-and-raised woman from Central Montana, told me the following story: In 1986, my husband fractured his ankle in a freak horseback riding accident, John almost bled to death. With him at the time was a young Australian Shepherd/Australian Cattle Dog cross that was his constant shadow. Tippy wouldn’t leave the spot where John was injured. Days passed. I took food out to the pup but nothing could…

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Winter Work

WINTER WORK by Joan Holmes I have to say I was very pleased with my little blue dog tonight! In southern Alberta, February evenings are pretty cold. This night it was about twenty degrees below zero, centigrade–that’s about zero farenheit. Just before five p.m., we happened to look out our kitchen window, which looks directly east across our hay fields towards our neighbors Craig and Lori’s place. We noticed their cows all heading with great purpose towards the north boundary,…

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Three Stories About Rory

THREE STORIES ABOUT RORY by Mark Hodges WTCH Bear’s Aurora of Windsor RTDcs JS-E RS-O GS-N DNA-VP Urban Cowdog: I was always hearing that trialing dogs that belong to “hobby herders” such as myself probably would not cut it in a real life-working situation. Well, an accidental encounter changed my personal thoughts on that opinion. One early February morning, just past dawn, the dogs and I were driving out to the property (at this point it could not be called…

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Wild Bison, the Ultimate Challenge

WILD BISON: THE ULTIMATE CHALLENGE by Jeanne Joy Hartnagle-Taylor Bison management problems had developed during the late 1970’s and 80’s in various national parks throughout the western United States. Part of the problem was tourist liability. Tourists don’t think of this huge, nonchalant creature as a wild animal. Lone bison bulls wander into campsites or along roadsides, drop their heads and graze. They aren’t easily spooked, which makes them appear docile and easy-going. Despite many warning signs along roadsides and…

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The Walt Lamar Story

THE WALT LAMAR STORY One of ASCA’s Heaviest Heavyweights by Jeanne Joy Hartnagle-Taylor and Ernie Hartnagle If you mention Walt Lamar’s name to a team roper or a steer wrestler, more than likely you ‘ll get a nod of recognition, because Walter is known for his rugged, athletic, foundation bred Quarter Horses. Lamar is also the historian for the Hancock Breeders Association. “I had always had a horse or two or three, but wasn’t serious about raising them until September…

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Tayor Ranch Tradition

CARRYING ON THE TRADITION — THE TAYLOR FAMILIES OF LIVESTOCK story and photos by Jeanne Joy Hartnagle-Taylor On a high mountain range in Utah, Joe Taylor grinned at me and offered this sage advice: “The time to gather wild horses is when you see them” –and then galloped off after a small remuda. If that sounds like a scene in a movie, it could be. Joe Taylor’s Ranch is one of the Moab area locations where Hollywood has filmed many…

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Lois George, Copper Canyon, and a Dog Named Red

LOIS GEORGE, COPPER CANYON, AND A DOG NAMED RED by Ernie Hartnagle and Jeanne Joy Hartnagle-Taylor Lois and Norm George developed their love for the breed in 1956. They were living on a ranch in Cuyama, California when they got Cricket, a pretty little blue female from a friend of theirs who had gotten her from the Basque sheep herders. In the fall, the Basques would bring several thousand sheep into Cuyama to winter on the stubble of the alfalfa…

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The Carrillos

ROBERT CARRILLO AND CASA DE CARRILLO: A Long Established Name by Jeanne Joy Hartnagle-Taylor and Ernest Hartnagle After Bob Carrillo passed away in 2007, we were asked to write an article about him for the Aussie community. I called my parents and we started talking about the past thirty-five years that we knew him. Most people know that Robert Carrillo was associated with the ASCA Stockdog Program and at one time, he was the Stock Dog Committee chairman. This is…

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The Cow From Hell

THE COW FROM HELL by Rhonda Falk Falkland Aussies Star Rt. A, Box 736-A Atmore, AL 36502 My first Aussies were Falk’s Falkland Banjo and Sheba. Banjo (Joe) is a National Stockdog Second Step although he had several generations registered with the Animal Research Foundation. Sheba is a small (16″, 24 pound), Aussie mix, with a natural bob tail, that we rescued from the pound. I got Banjo at twelve or fourteen weeks of age, and he still had a…

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Lending a Paw in Indiana

LENDING A PAW IN INDIANA by Michelle Durkin I live in a semi-rural area of south central Indiana, where small hobby farms and livestock operations are mixed into the ever-pressing onslaught of vinyl tract homes. Our local county 4-H Fair has many a competitor that keeps pigs, sheep, goats and steers on friends’ farms because they don’t have the opportunity to live out in the country. Since so many places are small by most standards, there is not often a…

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The Story of Dan

THE STORY OF DAN, AN AMAZING AUSSIE by Ann B. DeChant I have been meaning to write this one for a long time. We lost Dan three years ago, to being hit by a car. I always intended to tell this story while he was still alive, but it is still just as good as a tribute to him. This is the story of a working Aussie who created his own daily work as my assistant. Don’t worry. You already…

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Jack, the Handiest Dog I Ever Trained

JACK, THE HANDIEST DOG I EVER TRAINED by Cyn-Dee Cooper This year I had the honor of training a really good Australian Shepherd named Jack for sixty days. Jack was bred by Elree Horton, of Buena Vista, Tennessee who has Flapper Hill Kennels. Jack is out of Flapper Hill Blossom and by Flapper Hill Sandy River. Both of these dogs go back to Lookaway Luke who is by Judd’s Chickasaw Dan. He was about 14 months old when he came…

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Old Dogs Never Die Young

OLD DOGS NEVER DIE YOUNG by Dr. Leroy Boyd (editor’s note: although this data was elicited from Border Collies, Aussies might very possibly come up with similar responses.) We have no detailed records of the trials and tribulations experienced by those responsible for domesticating the dog. For centuries we have credited the human with making all the final decisions. For several thousand years humans have spoken and written often and at length, and even filmed their interpretation of what was…

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The Crooked H Ranch

THE CROOKED H RANCH by Charlie Berthout Working Aussie Source editor’s note: this is a letter sent to Terry Martin, which appeared in her Aussie Times column, ‘Stockdog Corner’. Crooked H Ranch has winter range in the Cottonwood Basin southeast of Camp Verde, Arizona, and summer range around Clint’s Well, southeast of Flagstaff, Arizona. The homestead base is in the Long Valley at Clint’s Well. The balance of the range is cross-fenced Forest Service permit range of about 100,000 acres.…

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Sit, Stay, Heal: Diana Decker

SIT, STAY, HEAL : DIANA DECKER interview by Jen Barol It is Diana Decker’s hard-working bond with Gus and Shine and the other herding dogs she trains that keeps her fighting the illness that consumes her. Decker and her fifteen herding dogs are throwbacks to another time and place. In a society where working breeds like Australian Shepherds and Border Collies are more accustomed to car drives than cattle drives, visiting Decker on her Edgewood, New Mexico ranch feels more…

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The Story of Allen’s Ebony Joe

THE STORY OF ALLEN’S EBONY JOE by Lilian Allen I first became interested in Australian Shepherds in the early 1970’s, watching them help with show cattle at the livestock shows. This was before the rule of “No Dogs Allowed”, and almost every show string had an Aussie. These wonderful little dogs would follow the show cattle to the wash racks, the night tie-outs, or wherever the handlers needed to take them. If the cattle became lazy and refused to go,…

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Dog Tales from a Cattleman

DOG TALES FROM A CATTLEMAN by Norm Andrews Working Aussie Source editor’s note: this photo essay originally appeared in Terry Martin’s Stockdog Corner column in The Aussie Times, with the following introduction: “I received a letter from Norm Andrews, a farmer in Nebraska who runs 150 cow/calf pairs. He has a dog of my breeding, Slash V Andrew’s Red Chickaspike OTDc. This letter is a cattleman talking to other cattlemen, really … about a dog that he loves and that…

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