Saturday, March 24, 2007

Holding sheep

Here's a view of one of Tomokee's massive hind feet, showing the double dewclaw[1]. While we were reading about Beaucerons, there was this odd phrase about how the double dewclaw helps them "hold sheep." Now, if you have a nasty streak (as I do)[2], you're probably wishing there was photographic evidence not blocked by COPA (ding-dong, that witch is dead!).

In yet another description of the breed, there was substantial detail on how herding dogs actually do their "thing." It seems "holding" sheep isn't what I thought (and we're all plenty grateful for that)... it means to maintain a flock in one place without fences. Ohhhhh, I hear you say, of course that's what it meant. How the dewclaw does its thing, they didn't say.

=== footnotes ===

[1] You can see the dog hair on the rug -- 1 week without clogging the vacuum, time to run it again, oh joy (see the 1-down post for details).

[2] My frame of mind can best be indirectly illustrated by the following bit of "humour" (yes, it's based on one's national origin, but I'm part Scots, so please don't whinge about it):

Q: Why do Scotsmen wear kilts?

A: The sound of zippers make sheep nervous.

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