You never can be sure how adding a new animal to your livestock operation is going to work out. We pushed this reality to a new limit this year by adding a donkey, a cow, and a new guard dog, all within a couple months of each other. There wasn’t any real reason for making all of these additions at nearly the same time. It just worked out that way because when a good opportunity arises, sometimes you just have to go with it and do your best to make things work.
Thankfully our new dog, Rusty, is working out very well. For a pup he is already showing signs of being a good sheep dog. Every evening we take the sheep off of their pasture and put them up in barns for the night. Little Rusty has already figured out the routine and does a good job of making sure the sheep not only know where to go, but that they get there. He’ll herd them right into the barn and then sit at the door to make sure they stay put. It really is a big help.
He has sneaked into the pasture with the donkeys and quickly learned they aren’t interested in his presence. I haven’t seen him there again. He has also sneaked into the pasture with our new cow, Ada, but he kept his distance and I think he just wanted to make sure that big animal was no threat to the sheep.
Best of all is that he gets along very well with our existing guard dog. In fact, those two get along far better than the relationship between Daisy and the guard dog we eventually had to part ways with. Rusty is still pretty small, but if his paws are any indication of his future size, we may be able to saddle him up some day in the not too distant future!
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