"The border collie world was so good to us," she said. "That's why he's persevering here today."
Sheepdog competition is the kind of hobby that can consume as much time as an enthusiast allows. Handlers often spend five to seven hours each week training their dogs, and much more time on the road traveling to competitions.
Tesdahl said she attends about 20 competitions a year - an average number among handlers - and she has driven as far as Oregon to compete. Some compete in as many as 50 trials per year.
The love the handlers have for border collies often transcends the sport. Sarah Nicholson of Chestertown is the founder and director of Mid-Atlantic Border Collie Rescue, a volunteer organization that spans seven states and rescues and rehabilitates unwanted border collies.
Nicholson's organization is at the festival to educate the public and raise money.
Nicholson, who also has a small sheep farm, has three dogs participating in the trials. It all began when she adopted a border collie, Nicholson said.
"I was immediately smitten," she said of competing with her first dog. "It's addicting - like peanuts."