The auction barn

 

 One of the great pleasures of hanging around down at the livestock auction barn each Saturday morning is being able to take your dog along.

Why do we go to the sales barn? We love agriculture, and it's part of living here to see who buys what and rejoice in their good fortune, even if our own grass is stressed to the limit by whatever varmint we're currently feeding. Or, it could be that we figure we've already lived too long, and if the right horse or cow comes through there, and we buy it, our wives will see to it that we don't suffer in agony for untold years.

This weekly auction is a treasure house for our dogs. It's a dog's day out, a chance to scrounge under the bleachers for dropped hot dog portions and the occasional sweet bun crust. It's a chance for them to get reacquainted with dog buddies and to check out any new pickups in the parking lot whose tires have not yet been properly baptized.

My coonhound loves it. She had done her munching, scrounging and socializing and was curled up under my truck, waiting for me, as we were getting ready to leave. Dud's blue heeler was flitting around in the bed of his pickup truck, guarding against anything that might deign to trespass. And Doc had a new dog, of non-obvious parentage, on a leash, which meant he was not yet broken in to sales barn etiquette. Once he got used to it, and had been introduced to the other dogs, he'd fit right in and the leash would be history.

"What kind of dog is that, Doc?" we asked.

"Why, he's an Egyptian shepherd."

"I never heard of an Egyptian shepherd. Does he work cattle?"

"Nope."

"What's he do?"

Doc grinned, "He makes pyramids in the back yard.



Brought to you by Dogsled: A True Tale of the North. Available on Amazon.com.

 

 

 

Newspaper columnist Slim Randles, who writes the weekly Home Country column, took home two New Mexico Book Awards in 2011. His advice book for young people, “A Cowboy’s Guide to Growing Up Right,” took first place in the self-help category, and “Sweetgrass Mornings” won in the biography/memoirs category. Randles lives and works in Albuquerque. Home Country reaches 3 million hometown newspaper readers each week

Slim Randles learned mule packing from Gene Burkhart and Slim Nivens. He learned mustanging and wild burro catching from Hap Pierce. He learned horse shoeing from Rocky Earick. He learned horse training from Dick Johnson and Joe Cabral. He learned humility from the mules of the eastern High Sierra. Randles lives in Albuquerque.

Randles has written newspaper stories, magazine articles and book, both fiction and nonfiction. His column appeared in New Mexico Magazine for many years and was a popular columnist for the Anchorage Daily News and the Albuquerque Journal, and now writes a nationally syndicated column, “Home Country,” which appears in several hundred newspapers across the country.

 

  Huntington Beach News


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