Thursday, August 10, 2017


Crisp autumn day at the farm Sept 2010

Note the border collie with head down, looking at sheep's head

Blue heeler herding

Sheep discussing where to go to eat after work

Border collie

The universal herding sign (really) for telling the dog to lie down

And how is that working for ya?

If I remember correctly, this dog won certification shortly after this training
Those of you who did not know me when Gracie was younger, I drove to a farm about 30 miles to the north every weekend to herd sheep. Live sheep. Me. I paid for herding lessons, and the lessons were for me to learn how to train Gracie to be a good little herder. We did this until the spring of 2016. I had been knocked down 38 times over the years, and yes, I did keep count.  But I did this to bond with my dog, and to give her an activity that challenged her thinking. Aussies are smart, and need to work when young.

The best herding breed is a border collie. It has something to do with their eyesight. Next in line is a good Australian Shepherd. Gracie became very competent at herding. I think age slowed her down so she stopped finding it funny to split the herd so she could bring them back together again. Like I said, smart dogs. We probably would have retired from this activity by now anyway due to her aging. Aussies can have hip problems, it runs in the breed. We quit because I had major surgery and did not want to fall in the field, miles from a hospital. I kind of miss it. Not sure if Gracie does. She will, on occasion, try to separate dogs of different sizes or colors at Puppy Playground.

Probably bored. My girl does like to entertain the staff at the Playground.

No comments:

Post a Comment