Duke was born April 16th, 2013. I was sleeping out in the barn waiting for Theda to kid, and knew Riika was really close too. I put Riika in the barn too-Theda hated her, and Riika wasn't a dog to let another animal get the best of her, so I had to make sure Riika slept close to my cot to keep both parties safe. Theda won, kidding on the 14th, and Riika had her pups two days later.
Duke was the firstborn, born in a narrow hay crack, and dragged out by his cord when I called Riika to me, worried that I wouldn't be able to reach the puppies. After his cord was severed, I made a quick hay fort for Riika, in which she proceeded to have four more puppies-a total of three boys, and two girls. I named them Duke, Hank, Drover, Amelia Bedilia (Mom's doing, actually), and Runty. I kept Duke, because he appeared to be the only pure Border Collie in the litter. Turns out he wasn't pure, but that's what I thought at the time.
Below, Riika, with her newborn litter, is touching Duke with her nose.
At a couple weeks old, eyes are just beginning to open.
Six or seven weeks.
Eight weeks, and talking to Sadie for the first time-she wasn't so sure about him...
Same day as above...
Sadie finally playing with him, and he got trounced, looks like!
Around ten weeks, when Kaia and I went to the Uecker place on a picnic. (Kaia, where is that blog post of your's on this event? I wanted to share it, but can't even find your blog...)
At six months, he realized that tennis balls are fun to play with.
When he was about 16 months old, I shaved him for the summer. Everybody's reactions were priceless, but he was horribly ugly.
Up at Kaia's farm in the late summer of 2014. His hair was beginning to come back in.
Spring 2015-his hair came back in fine, as you can see.
At the community days event in 2015, on Independence day, I won a silent auction and got a basket of goodies.
In the fall of 2015, I went to the Hillpiece to try and get some nature photographs for a calendar photo contest-I mostly got pictures of the dogs, LOL.
Late fall, 2015
A cold winter morning in December 2015, found Bonny and Duke waiting for me to come do chores.
A bandana theme picture for a dog trick forum.
Annual dog and wildflowers pictures last spring. His coat is full once more.
June 2016-he wasn't impressed with Kate.
Sometime in May (should have been before the last one), with Bonny and foster dog Barry.
July 2016. Kate looking as cute as possible-Duke still not impressed. (He warmed up very soon after this, and loved playing and wrestling with Kate.)
Probably the last picture of him, taken on November 8th. They were helping me watch the election results. (He still doesn't look pleased with Kate, but that was just his why'd-you-stop-petting-me face.)
The end of the trail...
I probably won't post anymore pictures of Duke on my blog, but I still have lots of footage of videos that are not uploaded. Stay tuned on my YouTube channel to see those.