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Long career...Peter Boys has enjoyed a long career with sheep dogs as a breeder and a competitor in trials. He shows a few of the trophies he has won over the years. PHOTO:CHRIUS TOBIN

by Chris Tobin

Retired farmer Peter Boys, of Timaru, bowed out on a high note as a sheepdog breeder last week.

His 2 1/2 year old heading dog Jack fetched a record price of $10,000 at the annual Ashburton sheep and cattle dog sale at the Mayfield A&P showgrounds, the highest price paid for a working dog in the 63-year history of the sale.

“That was my last dog. My very last dog,” Mr Boys who is now living at Strathallan Retirement Village said.

Mr Boys started dog trialling at Ngapara, near Oamaru, in 1959 and has owned dogs, and bred them since those days.

“I was thrilled to get that price but I have topped sales on quite a number of occasions. I think I might have got a sympathy vote this time.”

Mr Boys said he had been extremely grateful for the support he had received from his wife Ann and family over his years of breeding and trialling dogs.

“It’s sad that it is my last dog but I’m lucky I can still appreciate the company of good friends and watch their dogs.”

The dog was bought by Joe Catherwood, of Charing Cross, in Canterbury.

A total of 43 dogs were sold at the sale for an average price of $3900.