Gale, let’s start with your story. We’d love to hear how you got started and how the journey has been so far.
I had my first Border Collie in college in 1980, I have been hooked ever since. Back in those days very few people had heard of Border Collies. My first border collie was Joby. She went to College classes with me at Sam Houston State University. Back then times were different and I could take Joby off leash and she would sit outside my classroom by the door and wait on me. Lots of people knew her and would come visit. She would sit in the bleachers during baseball and football games. She became a big hit with everyone when she jumped off the bleachers onto the playing field during a baseball game, caught the ball and brought it back to the catcher. She got a standing ovation. That’s when I knew there was something very special about the breed. Of course, now border Collie’s are known for being the smartest breed in the world. In 1980, I was miss Huntsville and my Border Collie Joby rode on floats and graded people. I was later in the mist Texas Universe Pageant. She gave me so much confidence because she was always by my side. I felt so loved and protected.
In 1980, the prisons were over occupied. They let some prisoners reside in Huntsville. I lived in a residence near the woods. There was a prisoner living next door to me. To make a long story short he cut off my lights but not my telephone and broke into my residence. My Border Collie Joby attacked him and protected me. She gave me time to call my boyfriend to come to my rescue. I was young and naïve I didn’t think to call the police. She took a bad baiting to save me. She would have given her life for me. I can see these dogs were very special. Most of the things I had heard about border collie or not true. By my experience, they could understand as much as a three-year-old. I would line up tennis balls of different colors and she would pick out the color tennis ball I would tell her to. Amazing!
I would hear terrible stories about how ranchers would shoot them if they didn’t herd. I decided to make these dogs my mission. I wanted to educate people on the breed and the beautiful gift of these loyal and loving creatures from God. I have been dedicated to the breed ever since. As the years have passed this breed has become very popular. They exceed in flyball, agility and rescue dogs. A lot of my Border Collies are trained for people that have disabilities like hearing and vision problems. But most of all as great family members and companions. I am so proud that my Border Collie’s are such a big part of helping others. They not only help people with disabilities, but help children with anxiety and give them confidence. They give them companionship and let them know they are loved.
One of the things I am most proud of is teaching people in other parts of the world how important these beautiful animals are. I am very passionate about teaching people about the breed.
Years ago I had a lady by the name of Linda contact me about adopting a puppy. Linda was in the United States working, making money to send to the Philippines to build a convent with a school in orphanage. I had a puppy that looked like her first Border Collie “Christie” but with reverse markings. She adopted the puppy and named him “Adam”. She told me they were going to live in the Philippines to teach the people and children about the beauty and the dogs over there. Of course, they were a big hit because Adam could play basketball so the kids took up with him right away. For the border collie’s safety, they built a fence around the convent. Then the tsunami of 2004 destroyed a lot of the convent. Adam and Christie were washed away. By god’s grace they were found days later in the top at a palm tree. The convent was restored and Adam and Christie still live there teaching the people of the Philippines about the beauty of God’s wonderful creatures.
Nun Linda keeps in touch with me until this day calling me from the Philippines to tell me the progress after work.
I love the breed so much that I decided to keep the bloodline pure and true to the Border Collie. I started breeding 37 years ago. I have the same bloodline until this day. This bloodline has been featured on the “Meaty Bone” box dog treats sold in stores as well as limited addition artwork. A lot of the Border Collies you see on TV are from this bloodline. I have my bloodline in most states in the U.S. as well as Africa, the Philippines and Costa Rica. I have been so blessed to have the privilege and honor to work with this beautiful breed and share my love of them with others.
We’re always bombarded by how great it is to pursue your passion, etc. – but we’ve spoken with enough people to know that it’s not always easy. Overall, would you say things have been easy for you?
People not being educated on the Border Collie. People thinking that border collies are not a good pet for children and don’t get along with other animals. Also, ranchers thinking that the Border Collie needs to be put down if it doesn’t herd. Border Collies are great with children and other animals. They are great family members and excel in sports as well as helping others.
Years ago, my two children both won ducks from the chamber of commerce Easter festival. I made it very clear to my Border Collies that these ducks were to be part of our family. The next thing I knew my Border Collies were piled up sleeping with the ducks. They taught the ducks to play ball. I would throw the ball to my Border Collie’s and they would catch it. I would roll the ball to “Quackie” and “Waddles” and they would peck it back. When we would go on bicycle rides, my Border Collies would run behind our bicycles while the ducks flew behind us. The ducks started watching T.V. along with my Border Collies. I had heard that ducks imprinted. Wow. I had to have cloths made for the ducks with diapers so they could stay in the house. They made the Friendswood newspaper. The ducks walked on leash just like my dogs. We were invited to ride on floats as well as educate people about animals during the Easter festivals.
So, let’s switch gears a bit and go into The Border Collie Lady story. Tell us more about the business.
Border Collies were developed by sheepherders in England and Scotland over 200 years ago. After researching bloodlines, it is believed that my bloodline came from the fox. I only breed to bloodlines that are great and proven. I produce only the best Border Collies. I want to be sure and preserve the Border Collie the way sheepherders intended it. They are so smart that they excel in sports as well as helping people with disabilities. When people would come and purchase puppies from me, they could not believe how smart they were. They are so highly bred. They sing happy birthday, open and shut doors, as well as turn on and off the lights in the house. I did not teach them this. They observe me doing stuff and copy me. I have to watch everything I do. They pick up on things so fast. People ask me all the time how did you train your Border Collies to do that. I always say I didn’t. They are very observant. My bloodline is in the “Key Dogs To The Border Collie Family” book. I think keeping the bloodline true and pure has been a great part of my success. After they are born they are kept in the living room next to the television set. They are raised around all kinds of noises and stimulation. They are handled and played with on a daily basis. They are very people acclimated. It’s so funny a lot of my Border Collie’s love to watch TV.
Has luck played a meaningful role in your life and business?
I think I have been blessed to have this bloodline. I’ve been so lucky that my Border Collies have sold their selves. I have been in business for over 37 years. I have constant referrals. I sell them in most parts of the U.S. and abroad. This bloodline has been fortunate to have been featured on the “Meaty Bone” box dog treats sold in stores as well as limited addition artwork. We have also toured hospitals and convalescent homes to bring up people’s spirits. Border Collies are so beautiful in spirit and soul. A lot of the Border Collies you see on TV are from this bloodline. They just want to make you happy. These dogs are my passion. I love and believe in them dearly. I think anything that you truly love and believe in, you will definitely be successful.
If you pick the puppy up they start at $950.00.
Address: 2905 Autumn Cove Court
Friendswood, TX. 77546
This is an article From Voyage Houston Magazine
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The Border Collie Lady