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Jigsaw Julia

The Art of Toy Herding

by Patricia Kimbell, BCI Contributor

Julia's "I'm So Bored" Look.

Julia’s “I’m So Bored” Look.

Julia, my five-year-old, smooth-coated Border Collie, couldn’t play outside or practice her Agility skills very long each day due to the severe Texas heat this summer.  She learned to conquer her boredom by “herding” her toys.

Sometimes she arranges them, always the pink ones, on the floor and most times on her bed.  Apparently, pink is her favorite color, as she always chooses that color from her toy box. The color choice surprises me, because I had always heard that dogs were colorblind.

She may not be able to control anything else in her little world, but she can control the order of her toys!


DSCN1307DSCN1326I could find no information on any other BC exhibiting this behavior, so thought you might like to see pictures of Julia’s toy arrangements.

The intricate way in which she intertwines her toys reminds me of a jigsaw puzzle.

Four years ago, I found her at an abandoned ranch near me when she was approximately a year old.  She was  starving  and heart-worm infected, trying to dig water out of a dried-up pond. That was on the 4th of July, hence the name “Julia.” She’s the best thing that ever happened to me.

5205096764708059358We began Agility training and so far  she has added five titles to her name!

Click to learn more and buy!

Click to learn more and buy!

Editor’s Note: Julia’s artistic arrangements are reminiscent of Dog Works: The Meaning and Magic of Canine Constructions by Vicki Mathison.