Stories from the Stringam Family Ranches of Southern Alberta

From the 50s and 60s to today . . .



All of My Friends

Monday, April 23, 2012

Ruby. Not Your Ordinary Sheepdog.

Our usual Camping buddies
Panda and Chiefy
The Interloper
Okay, I admit it. She's cute.












We raised Old English Sheepdogs.
A wonderful breed.
Shaggy.
Smart.
Protective.
Affectionate.
Did I mention shaggy?
We had raised them for years.
Long enough that anyone remotely connected to us had one of our pups.
Old English Sheepdogs wherever you looked.
A good thing.
Then our close friends bought, in addition to their resident sheepdog, a *gasp* Miniature Schnauzer.
Heathens.
They called her Ruby.
We stared at the wee little mite suspiciously.
Snapping black eyes.
Little black nose.
Little ‘folded-over’ ears.
Okay, we had to admit it, she was cute.
Really cute.
She was accepted.
And immediately took over the household.
Now, I should probably mention here that our dogs went with us camping.
All of our dogs.
And our friends brought their dogs as well.
We usually got campsites adjacent or directly across from each other.
And put down roots.
Now we were accustomed to camping with Sheepdogs.
Who stayed in the campsite.
Even when their family went to the beach without them.
And were seldom/never heard from.
We discovered that a Miniature Schnauzer was . . . different.
For one thing, she had a habit of speaking up when there were strangers walking past.
Or thinking of walking past.
Or breathing . . . somewhere.
And she didn’t like to stay in the campsite.
If chained, she was vociferous in her opinion of families who treated their doggies so.
And, if left unchained, she would disappear.
For the first day, dealing with her was a puzzle.
Not that I pointed out that she was definitely not an OES.
Several times.
Her family soon devised a solution.
They wrapped her leash around a small log.
Which slowed her down.
Notice I didn’t say ‘stopped her’.
No, it just slowed her down.
Enough that her family could keep her in sight.
Now, when they strolled across into our campsite, Ruby would appear a few minutes later, manfully (can I say that about a female dog?) pulling her little log.
“Oh, here’s Ruby,” they would say. “With her log of shame!”
But Ruby learned.
And found her place in our family.
Amongst the sheepdogs.
I don’t know what life would be like without her.

10 comments:

  1. Replies
    1. Heart she definitely has! And a whole lot of 'moxie'!

      Delete
  2. Another fun story that I enjoyed. I love the pictures of the dogs. When we have a family reunion every two years everyone brings their dogs and it can be a pain; but mostly fun to see how they interact with each other.
    Looks like you have another book coming; I will look forward to that.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanka, LeAnn! We do love our dogs! Family reunions wouldn't be the same without almost as many dogs as there are people!!! If you run out of things to visit about, there are always the dogs . . . :)

      Delete
  3. Your dogs are beautiful, I especially love the little one... so cute:)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks, Launna! Cute was what saved her life!!! :)

      Delete
  4. I LOVE dogs but I'm with you--big dogs are generally my preference for the very reasons of their general attitude towards quiet. However, I can see that my heart might--I say might--soften to the right sort of small dog.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It took us a while. We're big dog people!

      Delete
  5. Those are smart little dogs
    Poor Ruby and her log of shame.lol

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. She is way too smart! Little monkey!

      Delete

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