Bobbie Sue was a dog we got as a pound puppy from a shelter in Harrison, Arkansas during our first year here at Wild Ozark. She had probably been abused or severely neglected before she went to the rescue. She wouldn’t come out of her crate for days when we brought her home.
When she did come out, she was very shy and didn’t want to interact much with her new family but she warmed up to us soon enough. While she was still a puppy I wanted her to learn how to guard our chickens to keep them safe from predators. She wasn’t very good at that at first.
She killed a few of them, chased them around with much zeal and fervor. In the meantime, she foraged for grub worms and preferred that to dog food. In time she learned that killing the chickens wasn’t the goal.
In the thirteen years she’s been with us, she’s been an excellent chicken guardian and companion to our other dogs and us. But her favorite role was “driveway escort”.
I didn’t know when I first got her that there are two kinds of cow dogs. I knew she was a cow dog of some sort, most likely Australian Shepherd mixed with something else, maybe Catahoula. When working with the horses, she always got right up in front of them, yapping and taunting them, and she had a propensity for “leading” cars up and down the driveway.
I found out soon enough that there are “header” dogs as well as “healers”. She was a header.
She was a good farm dog and I’m glad she’s no longer suffering. These last weeks have been hard on her.