An energetic puppy runs through the dewy grass of Eastern Christian High School’s soccer field as he chases the pesky geese away from his turf. His brown and grey spotted fur blows in the wind as he pounces around. He then circles back and gets a belly rub and the satisfaction of a job well done. Life sure is tough when you’re a dog.
Named for the former color of his eyes, Blue is a tri-color Border Collie who belongs to Eastern Christian teacher Mr. Max Harvell. This enthusiastic puppy has become Eastern Christian’s first “Geese Chaser”. This title means that it is his duty to guard the athletic fields from the messy geese that plague the soccer field year round. This job is physically taxing, but Blue is up to the challenge. He is a puppy after all.
Blue’s typical day is full of new and exciting things as he constantly meets new people and explores the soccer field. Though he spends only mornings on campus, Blue has become a part of EC's daily life and has been described as a “welcomed addition to class” by Eastern Christian students.
Training is required for a dog in order to be on a school campus, and Blue is in the process of working through licensed classes. Mr. Harvell commented, "Blue has had professional obedience training, but there's always more for him to learn." Dog training is a hard process to master but Mr. Harvell has no worry that Blue will be off-leash-trained by the end of his classes, given his progress already.
The geese that Blue is in charge of chasing off the fields are a major problem for the sports teams and gym classes. When geese visit the fields, they leave droppings behind that are hard to clean up and almost impossible to avoid.
Another solution for this problem could have been spray-on geese repellent but, after looking into the cost of spraying geese repellent, having a geese chaser was a great option”. The geese repellent could also affect the grass growth with harmful chemicals in the solution. Having Blue to get rid of the geese is a cost effective and sustainable way to keep the fields clean. Blue enjoys coming to Eastern Christian and, as Mr. Harvell put it, “Every time we pull up, he just gets so excited. He loves his job.”