Farm Dog Stories…

Bruce, our sheepdog, really earned his keep today!

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I was checking the fields where the lambs are currently grazing, Higher and Lower Cleave, and the whole flock seemed to be happily munching away in the lower field. However, since lambs are notoriously good at getting their heads stuck through the gaps in the wire fencing because they are trying to eat the hedge, it is always worth walking around all their pasture to check that there is no white bum sticking out from a fence somewhere, with the front end giving out some pretty annoyed baaing.

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Higher Cleave seemed completely empty, and I was on my way to another small field the lambs had access to, when I saw Bruce lying down watching a bit of hedge in the far corner, a good 200 yards away. Under the hedge it was pretty dark and there was no sign of a white bum, or any bleating, so I called Bruce several times, which he completely ignored, causing me to stomp across to him followed by several of the spaniels who started to get quite excited as they thought they were going to see Bruce told off. Only when I got to within a few yards of him could I make out the shape of a lamb well and truly stuck in the blackthorn on the hedge side of the fence. Not satisfied with that it had also shoved its head back through the fence and got that stuck.

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Half an hour later, after hacking through several branches of blackthorn with a blunt penknife, I managed to get into the hedge and drag the lamb out, at which point Bruce took over and had great fun in driving it all the way back to its mates in Lower Cleave.

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Given that lamb’s predicament it is very unlikely it would have survived the night, so in an unprecedented fit of generosity, Brucey was given an extra biscuit for his supper!


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