As the day progressed, I glanced at my cell phone too many times to count. I was anxiously waiting for news from my sister, waiting to see if "she" had arrived. I knew my sister's collie had gone into labor, and we had been promised a puppy from the litter. If there was a little girl, and if she was show quality, she would be ours. As a child, I had fallen in love with collies by watching the old Lassie movies which were broadcast on Sunday afternoons, and by the fictional stories written by Albert Payson Terhune. I shared this love with my Uncle, who raised and bred collies and who had given my sister her first collie. And now a special collie was about to enter my life, at least that was my hope, as I waited for a text from my sister.
With the arrival of her first collie puppy, my sister fell in love with this remarkable breed, and caught the dog show bug. As she began entering shows, she found a mentor, and learned as much as she could about collies, their standard and their history. And when she was ready, she began a breeding program of her own. She experienced a great deal of success and with her encouragement my daughter began competing at dog shows as well. Before long, a collie we named Lad, finally joined our family. We raised him, loved him, trained him, and finally started entering him at dog shows. We were mentored by a few experienced collie breeders, and I read every book and article about collies that I could find. We were hooked, and now we were waiting for the arrival of our new collie pup, a little female this time.
As I sat listening to the different speakers at the conference, my mind kept wandering back to the puppy. Would there be a female in the litter? What color would she be? Would she be a rough or a smooth coated collie? Would she be as beautiful as we hoped? It was very hard to focus on the speakers as they discussed various healthcare topics and how to code for different diseases. And then it happened, a text from my sister!