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Katie the Australian Shepherd, the Dog of the Day
Name: Katie
Age: Seven years old
Gender: Female Breed: Australian Shepherd
Home: Oregon, USA
 
   I never stand alone.

     Ever since I can remember, I've wanted to get myself a dog and be as great as my great-grandma, Lori Nickeson, who had the first German Shepherd to have a breed champion, OTCH and a TDX. In order to get there, I would collect coins and dollars any way I could; whether that be picking up loot from the carpet in my parents room or loose change that fell into the washer and dryer. This included saving birthday money and holiday money- anything I could to save toward my own puppy. In the year of 2009, around October-November, Karen Gray, a breeder and close friend of my great grandmother, Lori Nickeson, sent my mom pictures of a litter one of her dog's had. Everyone approved of the Australian Shepherd being my first dog, and so during my eighth Christmas we went to go see the puppies. Although I had taken a liking to her sister, when I stepped through the front door, my eyes met Katie's and my heart was stolen. It was the day all my hard work of earning one hundred dollars had paid off and our journey began.

     At six months Katie and I started our first obedience training with Christine Carter before we moved to Hermiston, Oregon. There, we started 4H with Kim Long and many others that we could never forget. After a couple years there we moved back to Keizer, Oregon and started training with Sarah Roth. Thanks to her we were introduced to ASCA and AKC. The more shows we hit, the more wonderful people we met.

     When we heard about Most Versatile Junior, from Donna Burdick, at a Rally and Obedience trial we attended we looked more into it and decided to accept the challenge. Along our way, we met Erylon Hines and Hilary Hines, where he helped train us both to work sheep. From day one Erylon could see Katie and I's connection, and although we could only squeeze in four trainings, we were ready for Nationals.

     The ribbons are not what matter to me, because in the end, it's just Katie and me. Everything I've accomplished is because of my friend, Katie. She could do it all, I know she could; from our first five-hour hike in the woods, to our first ASCA Nationals. We took it on together, as we always do. I found myself my heart dog, and she is always right there when I need her. When push comes to shove, we taste what we're made of and every time we get up, we come back, and we keep on the sunny side.

Katie the Australian Shepherd, the Dog of the Day Katie the Australian Shepherd, the Dog of the Day

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