It’s been a tough week for old Boss. All of a sudden he seems to have gotten really old and slow, and would prefer to snuggle up on my lap than play chasies in the paddock. We always know that dogs don’t live forever, but it’s not until they start struggling that it really hits you how short a time we really get to keep them for. So for this weeks black and white theme, I thought it was important to spend a bit of time one on one with Boss, just capturing all his little details that make him who he is.
Boss was bred by our old farm manager out of his top Heading Dog bitch and his mainstay, Mate, who happens to be the father of Patch and Flight too. At 8 weeks old he came home to us. I was 8 years old at the time and thought he was the cutest thing in the world. As a puppy he had a little kennel which came with the name “Boss” on the front in little letters, so that became his name. We also have a Huntaway named Boss who works out on our Naike farm and at one stage had two dogs named Meg at the same time – farmers are really creative with naming their dogs!
Boss took a long time to figure out what he was meant to do with the bulls, but once he worked it out he became our top Heading Dog on the farm and he has helped me out of tricky situations with stock on multiple occasions! He worked on the farm until he was 10 years old, and for whoever needed a hand that day. He’s a staff favourite and had a knack for pulling a puppy dog face and getting part of peoples’ lunch before cruising around tucked under their arm on the motorbike for the rest of the day so he wouldn’t have to run.
Boss’s teeth aren’t great these days. When he was out moving stock, he used to love jumping up, swinging off their tails and doing flips across the paddock – I call it his Tarzan move! He was pretty quick in his younger years, but still ended up on the receiving end of a few kicks from the bulls because of it. He’s pretty tough though and had barely been lame a day in his life before he retired to be a pet full time.
In 2013 Boss was attacked by a dog and ended up sleeping in my room for a month – a bit of a treat for a working dog! He repaid me by sleeping in the exact center of the bed and causing thousands of dollars worth of damage to my ranch slider when I left the room – thanks for that Boss. Can’t be mad at that face though. 😉
Even though he probably doesn’t have a lot of time left, Boss still knows how to get what he wants. While I was grabbing my camera tonight, he snuck indoors and stole half a bag of Smackos treats before I caught him. He’s like a cheeky Grandad for my young dogs – I’ve caught him showing my little Border Collie, Flick, how to do the same thing on multiple occasions. Can’t help but laugh when they’re this special!
Project 52 is a global blog circle of professional pet photographers from the Beautiful Beasties group, creating images to suit a set theme each week. Next up, go check out what Poughkeepsie NY Pet Photographer, Khanya Photography has created for this weeks theme! Keep clicking your way through the links at the bottom of each post to visit all the other photographers until you get back here.