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How long for pup to turn on?

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I have a question how long did it take your dogs to turn on to sheep and start working? Was it immediate or did it take a while? Just wondering because I have heard people have puppy's both ways.

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Every experienced person I have talked to, says it's different for every dog. Of course, it is nice when it is immediate, but some dogs, have their own clocks. Sometimes the pup turns on, but can't really be expected to do real work- head not on straight (too young), or not able to take correction. Lots of folks, myself included put the pup on sheep at a young age, and then, decide from there, what to do. Sometimes you put them up, sometimes, you start work right away. When I first put Lucy on sheep she was immediately interested, and did her best ground hog impression (standing on both legs) to watch, and was keen as mustard when we went in. It was all involuntary at that point :rolleyes: When I brought her to a very experienced trainer, this was at 8 months, he declared her ready to start. But, we didn't ask a whole lot of her. The main thing, is that when you put your pup to sheep, it is a good experience with the right sheep, and surroundings, and let it unfold. I have seen people start dogs younger, and older- it just depends on the dog :D

 

I have a question how long did it take your dogs to turn on to sheep and start working? Was it immediate or did it take a while? Just wondering because I have heard people have puppy's both ways.

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Yeah, this pup has definetly been completely different than the last. My other bc turned on immediately she has been gun ho since she saw sheep, my new puppy (who came from a comepletely different home life before us) is not thinking these sheep things are that interesting. But yeah everyone says it just depends on the dog, that it can be when they are a little puppy to when they are a year old or older. It takes time.

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I have video of my Lucy as a young pup, still with breeder. The whole litter went up to some pigs- who were oinkin, and generally loud- they all, pretty much wanted to go in there- Lucy sort of watched- she wasn't going first :rolleyes: Then, at 13 weeks, they were introduced to some ducks, geese, you name it. It was very loud. Several of Lucy's littermates were quite interested, and one in particular did this beautiful outrun around the geese. Lucy was just overwhelmed by everything- too many things - so she would focus on one thing, and then the other. One thing I remember, the breeder's husband was wheeling a dolly, and Lucy was the one trying to bite the tires...

She never really stood out as a youngster on other animals, but she is sure a stand out now (of course, I am not biased in the least :D.

 

 

Yeah, this pup has definetly been completely different than the last. My other bc turned on immediately she has been gun ho since she saw sheep, my new puppy (who came from a comepletely different home life before us) is not thinking these sheep things are that interesting. But yeah everyone says it just depends on the dog, that it can be when they are a little puppy to when they are a year old or older. It takes time.

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What's the oldest anyone knows of a dog turning on?

 

Well, when Violet first saw sheep at around three or four years of age, she showed zero interest. Then about six months later when Julie took her into the round pen she turned right on and was even willing to go between the sheep and the fence.

 

However, her first exposure was just a few months after I got her, and it was during our first road trip together, and she was a little afraid of the man who first showed her sheep. She was abandoned as a young adult and had some separation issues for awhile after I got her. I suspect she'd have turned on much earlier had circumstances been different.

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What's the oldest anyone knows of a dog turning on?

 

I can only speak to my experiences.

 

Brass's son Jack is about 9 or 10 I believe, and showed a remarkable interest and some skill on stock when he was introduced to them. We don't know if he was introduced to sheep before we got him though. The hoarder he was seized from had German Shepherds primarily. About 20 of them, who were seized at the same time.

 

Lars was introduced to sheep when RDF first got him and showed no interest whatsoever. However, a year or so later when we tried him again, Lars has a lot of push and natural square flanks, and lots of eye. He moved the sheep very nicely for us around the field. Lars is 7ish. It's a tribute to the confidence RDF has given Lars that his reintroduction to sheep allowed him to be comfortable enough to work.

 

Red Dog was about 4 years old when he first met sheep and was interested right away. "Interested" does not equal "talented" however :rolleyes:

 

Cheryl's Ru, also adopted from us, was anywhere between 2 and 5 when he first met sheep and he is an incredibly talented stockdog. And we know he never met sheep before, as he spent his life chained to a stake in the ground previous to us. He is a loose eyed and upright dog though and some people misinterpret that as not being "interested." But as his owner says - her 'real' stockdog Ric (bred and bought for it) earns no respect from the goats, who stand their ground, but they move off the moment Ru approaches them. He's been admired by a few Big Hats over the years, loose eyed or not. He has a lot of power and is serious about his work.

 

One day, I hope to have a dog that can WORK. *sigh* Mr. Woo sneaking under gates and chasing sheep simply does not count!

 

RDM

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I have a question how long did it take your dogs to turn on to sheep and start working? Was it immediate or did it take a while?

 

I find they turn on immediately if I have on am ready to leave with high heels on, have left a crucial gate open to a pen with wild sheep and knee deep mud.

 

Regarding age, the latest I've seen a well raised stockdog turn on was 2.5 years. I've seen dogs that got their first chance at it much later (over 10 years) turn on too -but no way to know if they would have earlier.

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I find they turn on immediately if I have on am ready to leave with high heels on, have left a crucial gate open to a pen with wild sheep and knee deep mud.

 

:rolleyes:

 

Anyway, Alex has seen sheep twice, briefly, and the first time (June) he was a bit interested, but put off by the trainer. The second time (July, different trainer) he showed no interest. I'm going to try again sometime later, just to see.

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I think Wick must hold the record for "most times on sheep without showing any interest whatsoever". I used to try her every time we went out (so she's been out over 100 times easily) but she hasn't been out for a while. Perhaps it's time to try again. Hope springs eternal, dontcha know!

 

Oh, and Bear was keenly interested the first time he was put on sheep, at about 5 years of age. I know that's not the question, but just throwing it out there as I feel bad about comparing his gait to that of a drunken camel.

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Oh, and Bear was keenly interested the first time he was put on sheep, at about 5 years of age. I know that's not the question, but just throwing it out there as I feel bad about comparing his gait to that of a drunken camel.

 

:rolleyes: Poor Bear.

 

There is still dispute about Alex's parentage, so if he's a mix, maybe he just doesn't have enough in him. Hope springs eternal for me, too, so I'll try again.

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Oh, and Bear was keenly interested the first time he was put on sheep, at about 5 years of age. I know that's not the question, but just throwing it out there as I feel bad about comparing his gait to that of a drunken camel.

 

Still hilarious :rolleyes: :D :D

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