Sometimes you go to the market, not knowing what to expect. Sometimes you sell a lot of stuff, sometimes, you take a bunch of stuff home. But sometimes you are compelled to go just to mingle with the farmers and get a morale boost. All the farmers at the market are usually going through the same things. We talk about the weather, we talk about what we are planting, and what we are hoping for this season. About three weekends ago we set up our tent on the street to sell what little potatoes and onions we had left, and talk up our new CSA box.
There are some new farmers at the market this year, and it is really starting to feel like a great regular crowd. One of the small organic farmers with a meat and egg operation mentioned that they had a puppy who was looking for a home. But not just any home, they really wanted this dog to go to a farm. Their border collie (with Australian shepherd) had eight puppies, a few more than they were planning on, and they found homes for most of them. The last little pup was just waiting for the right people to come along and meet her.
We thought it over for a week, then went to meet the puppy. She was the last of the little ones to find a home, which made me apprehensive and not able to decide until I saw her with my own eyes. This was not the case at all. She has a fabulous temperament, somewhat submissive, and good with little kids. She had been living outside at her home farm, with her brother and mother. We are not ready to have a 100% outside dog, so we were unsure about how a taste of indoor life would work.
It has been three days, and we are so happy to have been given this gift. She already knows how to sit, and has been great at house training. We are going to be teaching her down, stay, fetch, and crate this week. If you met this dog, you would understand how happy we are to have found her. She is very interested in the sheep, but hasn’t been aggressive at all. Her instincts are there, just waiting for the right time to use her skills. She does need some work with chickens, but I think we can master that in no time.
We have been waiting for a long time for this dog, for as long as we have been dreaming of a farm. We know that every farm needs a dog, a special dog that knows how to greet new people, keep the livestock in line, protect the home, play with kids, learn commands (and not eat the cat.) We weren’t really ready last year, with the stress of moving and starting the farm business, to go through all of that with a new pet. But just about a month or two ago, we started talking about a dog, and opened our hearts and minds to the idea of a good working farm dog.
I’m sure I am not the only one that these things happen too: the perfect dog, just the right time, the right season. I’m sure anyone who knows puppies might think we are crazy with all the work there is to do on the farm this month, but imagine the most well behaved puppy there ever was. She has arrived, and we hope she is here to stay for a very long time. Welcome home Sweet Pepper!