Saturday, May 9, 2009

Herding

To me there is nothing more thrilling than to see a dog do the job his breed was meant to do. I'm no fan of the sporting dogs (sorry all you Lab folks), but when I watch a field trial on TV, I get goosebumps watching that dog and handler work to find the "duck." If there's herding on TV, I'm glued, mesmorized by the intelligence and skill of both man and dog.

My all time favorite YouTube video is "Extreme Herding". If you haven't seen it, click here to check it out.

Brisco and I actually went herding back in 2002. Well, if you call three sheep and a totally green handler "herding"! =:O)

Kathy arranged to have a herding instinct test on a Saturday, and then on Sunday we'd have a small trial. Brisco, to my knowledge, had never seen sheep in his three years. Here's a picture of the trio of sheep we were to herd. I call it, Brownie & His Posse.

We entered the field together, and the instructor--with the staff--gave Brisco direction. I, like an idiot, just stood there. Here's Brisco working to bring back a stray:

Here's Brisco keeping the gang together. Notice how he's facing off with that sheep!


When we left the field, I remember Kathy saying, "Who knew the little guy had so much eye!" It was a wonderful experience I'll always remember.

My next goal is get Mike and/or Cosi on sheep. I think Mike will have a lot of instinct. Cosi, on the other hand, may be a gripper.

1 comment:

Rohan Shelties said...

Thank you so much for sharing not only your agility adventures, but now your herding ones too! I too got bit by the herding bug last year and wanted DESPERATELY to get really into it, but...my girls werent that interested =0( I know what you mean about getting the goose bumps when you see a working dog work. I waited for them to see my girls on stock, but, I waited too long with them. The instructor said they were too well trained and handler focused. Oh well. Live and learn. My next sheltie will be started early...and we'll see how that goes. Thanks for letting me live vicariously through you though!! ;0)
Take care,
Sheltie Hugs,
Sheltie Mom Jenn, Heidi and Shelby