Each time I’ve traveled with Kathy Brassill of Handcrafted Holidays, we have met someone who raises sheep/produces wool. This time we visited the farm of a couple who raise around 500 sheep and 40 cows. Unfortunately, it’s been long enough I can’t recall their names. They also raise border collies, use them for herding their sheep, and participating in international trials. We were given a presentation of sheep herding by the couple’s border collies. First we watched a year-old dog named Kate. I was surprised to see how far away she would wait and watch the herd while waiting for her next signal and deciding which direction she should come from. Then a four month-old dog Jessie joined in the herding. It was fascinating seeing how the younger dog watched the older one, taking cues and learning how to herd. The couple prefers female dogs for herding, finding they perform better overall.
I asked if they had any puppies and was thrilled to find they had just had puppies eight days before. The little pups’ eyes weren’t even open yet.
The couple have a wool shed. Here we are shown a fleece. They offer classes and items for sale.
On a fiber arts tour, I think it’s fitting to see and understand what goes into producing the fabrics and fibers we use in our artwork. Initially, a thought might be, how interesting could this be? But I really enjoy these visits. This might be my favorite among the three, because I love animals. While I have cats, dogs are equally great.