December 27, 2002 – November 8, 2015
Coke was the first Kelpie we purchased from the Gilcrist family. We watched Coke’s mother, Spider, work on a mob of 9,000 lambs that were being mustered out of the paddocks on a station in western Victoria for vaccination and drenching. By his own admission, Spider is one of the best dogs Tom Gilcrist has ever owned in his almost 50 years of working stock dogs on large stations in Australia. Spider excelled in backing sheep and working the yards for hours on end. Coke, her pup, was sold to us as a started 1.5-year old dog.
Tom kept her litter mate, Cane, who Tom says is also an outstanding working dog. We have watched all three dogs work large mobs of sheep in a tireless manner, no matter whether the temperatures were in the 90’s or close to freezing. Coke’s personality was very calm around the house and when she was just along for the ride, but watch out when it comes to work time. As has been stated on our other dogs, we import only adult working dogs with pedigrees that match our needs on our ranch in Montana. In addition, each of the dogs we import has to pass the truth test of working cattle and sheep in large numbers under “real” Australian station situations before we take them to the airport in Sydney. Coke worked from horseback side by side with Becker and Lilly in the Beartooth Mountains of Montana. She also worked well from a 4-wheeler or in the corrals.
The cross of Coke bred to Burkelodge Becker consistently produced outstanding pups. We kept a male pup from the first litter, Burradoo Muster, and a female from her second litter, Burradoo She’s a Ripper. Both Muster and Ripper work very well on cattle with little correction needed.
Coke is dearly missed on the Burradoo Ranch.