Everyone has their talent(s). It can take a while to discover them.
The “Grand-dog”, Hobbit, was here for a visit. I called her in from the yard so I could remove her electric fence collar, affix a leash and go for an off-campus walk. Mira! a cattle dog mix, was ready to go. But Hobbit ignored the call, so she didn’t get to go on the walk. She watched as Mira! and I walked up the road, with one of the cats following us.
The next day, the same routine: I called to Hobbit, she did not come, so she was left. But this time, she was not going to be left behind. She bolted through the electric fence, still wearing the fence collar. Not even a yip out of her. Straight down the road, past us, towards the creek.
Almost to the creek, Hobbit saw the pigs. No hesitation, no looking back to check if this was okay, straight under their electric fence to the pigs. The pigs were startled but did not seem overly concerned.
Within two minutes, Hobbit had rounded up the six pigs and herded them into their shed. Hobbit stood outside the shed and barked. And barked. And barked. The pigs were quiet. I was on the ‘phone, somewhat frantic, to the neighbor whose pigs they are.
The neighbor got a leash and went towards the pig shed, while Mira! and I went to the area between the pigs’ yard and the creek. Hobbit escaped the neighbor and headed towards a space near me, running under the electric fence again, just brushing it with her back. About twenty feet from the fence, she paused. I grabbed her collars.
The neighbor caught up with the leash and we all made our ways home.
The rescue had told us that Hobbit was probably a corgie/chow mix, based on her build and black tongue. But a knowledgeable vet tech spotted her immediately as a Swedish Vallhund and Hobbit fits the profile perfectly. I call her a Dirt Hund because of her love of lying in a dirt bed of her own creation.
We now know Hobbit’s talent: herding. She came home happy. She had had possibly her only adventure using her inborn talent. This headstrong dog knew what she wanted and came home having touched on some kind of nirvana for her.
The adventure was inconvenient for me, not what I wanted, but it was a symphony of dog-dom, magnificently orchestrated, beautiful to watch, and no harm done.