9 June

Tina’s Work

by Jon Katz

I’ve fallen in love with Tina, the Miller’s farm dog; she has a great back story. She got part of her left front leg sawed off in a  buzz saw.

Moise carried her into a barn, cut off her dangling paw, bandaged her up, and kept her quiet for a day or two. She runs hard and often.

Two days after the accident, she was out working around his farm. What, I wondered, is Tina’s work, and this week I have figured it out.

It is the children. Whenever I see Tina, she is out with the children. Watching them plow, watching them plant, watching them pick rocks up off of the tilled ground, watching them back and forth to re-supply the wooden shed where they sell their baked goods and vegetables.

She is always with them. When she sees me, she runs up, jumps into my arms, licks my face, jumps off, and goes out to find the children wherever they are.

She gets in front of them when cars or trucks arrive when they wander into the field when they walk towards the woods. She is a working dog through and through, and that is her work.

When the girls go into the pasture to water the seeds and crops, Tina climbs to the top of the hill and watches them until they come back. Luck, all great working dogs, she can neither be distracted nor deterred.

What a great heart she is. This week, I have to go and pick up some more dog food for her; she is thriving on the new Purina premium brand. I’ve chosen for her, with the family’s blessing.

I love working dogs, and she is one of the greatest working dogs I have seen. The other day, the small children went out into the field to help pick up rocks. Whenever they picked up a big one, one too big for them, Tina would run over to one of the older boys or girls, and they would come and help carry the rock to a pile.

When the kids started to head to the barn for lunch, Tina followed behind them and lay down on the floor to nap while they had their lunch. I love this dog and am happy to see how contented she is with this work.


  1. Jon – so interesting! Tina sounds like an incredible dog. I wonder if she was trained to watch the kids or it is just instinctual, like herding sheep. And I wonder if she is as affectionate to the family as she is to you. She must sense a kindred soul! Thank you the great stories about the Amish – you are educating a lot of people. Just as good as your political blogs (loved!) – are you going to do anymore reporting on Trump?

  2. I do think that You are letting Romanticized view of the Amish Influence your thinking and writing . Think about what you wrote above –he took her to the barn and Cut Off her dangling paw. Would you condone that way of treating an injury from anyone other than the Relatively backwards Amish? No anesthesia — he just hacked off her leg! If you think this is acceptable treatment for an injury of that magnitude, you have let this Amish bromance get really out of hand in your own head. I just don’t get it.

    1. I’m grateful he didn’t let the dog bleed to death, as would have surely happened if he tried to get to a vet. If you think that is acceptable treatment, then you really don’t get it, Dorothy. You don’t have the answers for everyone else, take good care of yourself.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Email SignupFree Email Signup