Dogs will assist PET scan drive

A two-day trial of working dogs will be held in memory of local expert Ian Ensby. Dianne Essery
A two-day trial of working dogs will be held in memory of local expert Ian Ensby. Dianne Essery

EVERY dog will have his (or her) day this weekend at Tatham.

A two-day trial of working dogs will honour local expert Ian Ensby, who died in September after a long battle with cancer, and raise money for a new scanning machine for Lismore Base Hospital.

Mr Ensby was widely known and respected in the field.

He had been involved with cattle dog trialling for 30 years and was known as a gentle giant.

“He was quietly spoken, but when he talked about dogs people listened,” said organiser Geoff McLennan.

The Casino man was president of the North Coast Working Cattle Dog Association for many years, and inaugural president of the NSW Working Stock Dog Association which was formed about three years ago.

He had a fair mob of dogs himself, and cattle dog trials were his main interest in life outside hisfamily, according to Sean Copper, another organiser of the event.

“He still had five or six dogs at the time he died, though he hadgiven away half-a-dozen when he learned about how ill he was,” Mr Copper said.

Mr Ensby had also been an excellent stock whip maker, he said.

“Getting a whip balanced properly, to fall right, is quite an art,” Mr Copper said.

The North Coast association held a dog trial last year, to raise money to help with his treatment. It attracted more than 100 people.

Entries for this weekend’s trial have been received from Rockhampton, Warwick and Toowoomba in Queensland, and in the south from Bonville.

About 190 dogs are signed up for today and tomorrow. Admission is free.

All proceeds will go towards the purchase of a PET scanner for the cancer unit at the Base, which the State Government will supplement if the public can raise $100,000.

PET scanners are said to besuperior to CAT or MRI scanning technology, because they can detect secondary cancers.

The Ian Ensby Memorial Dog Trial is at 45 Kings Lane, Tatham.

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