Norman Close

Norman was raised on a mixed farm in Lancashire England and has been working with livestock all his life. In 1980 he immigrated to Alberta Canada to work as a herdsman and now resides in Coeur d'Alene with his wife Vickie. Norm has two grown children, Sarah & Steven, and three grandchildren,  Ryan, Max and Clara.
​Norman was always keen to train sheepdogs, but his trialing career did not start until 1997 when he was fortunate enough to purchase CV Joe at 6 months old from Glen McNair in Alberta. Joe was a strong challenge right from the start. Training Joe helped Norm mature as a trainer. He took Norm to the Canadian Finals in 2005 and left with the title of Champion. He also provided Norm and others with excellent young dogs for the future.
Norman’s commitment is to run and breed strong dogs that work well on farms, ranches and also make successful trial dogs.
His training style is Win- Win. He believes if you show the dog how to do it right, they never learn how to do it wrong. Helping the dog to succeed rather than fail eliminates confusion and creates good habits!



Vickie Close

​Vickie lives in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho, where she has lived most of her life. She moved from Anchorage, Alaska to a farm in Coeur d'Alene as a child. Vickie her husband, Norman, and their border collies live on that same farm today.
​​Her journey into art started behind a brush as a successful makeup artist. She became an award winning photographer with her painterly images. Now she does traditional painting along with photographic art.​
​Whether she is painting with a traditional brush or a camera, it is no surprise that animals grace her work. Vickie’s life has always centered around animals, she finds friendship with them easy and rewarding. They have also always played a role in her recreation -- from team roping to dog agility -- and escalated to a new level when she discovered herding with her ​border collies. "It is amazing to watch a dog use its God-given instinct. From the moment I saw a good dog work I knew I had to be a part of it." Her husband Norman owns Handhills Border Collies, he raises and trains border collies and he and Vickie compete together in sheep herding trials across the United States and Canada. "The talent of these animals amazes me, their work ethic is unbelievable. I want to show the whole world what they do".
​Vickie’s work can be viewed in person at The Painters Chair Gallery in Coeur d’ Alene, Idaho.