How old is Bruce?
Bruce is about four or five.
Have you had him since he was a puppy?
Yes. We had an older dog and the idea was to teach Bruce to be a working dog. But our other dog was a bit old so he never really got too much training.
What is your other dog’s name?
His name is Sel, as in Joel Selwood the football player. The vet had a good joke with us once because Sel tore his ACL once. I’ve had him for two years.
How do Sel and Bruce get along?
They’re best friends really and they always have a good play together.
What is he like as a working dog?
He’s pretty much hopeless. He likes to push the cows in the wrong direction. He does come with me on the bike sometimes or sometimes he’ll stay in the dairy. I reckon he’s a good-looking dog, he just needs some training. He’s great company though and he’s really handy just to push around the yard.
What sort of personality does he have?
He’s pretty quiet and timid. He’s friendly enough and he’ll come up to you and go between your legs but that’s about it. He’s not a bad dog ... he’s just not very useful.
Do you have any funny stories about Bruce?
Yeah, we had just bought a new farm over the back, but the bathroom had to be painted before anyone could move in and the dog decided to go in and he went to the toilet in the loungeroom, which was not ideal.
What animals does he work with?
We have about 200 cattle. I don’t know whether he likes them or not, he just tries to bite them or bark at them. Sometimes he likes to push them away from the gate. We don’t really use dogs much these days though because we have motorbikes, but they’re great as pets.
Words: Jodie Symonds
Pictures: Emma Carinci