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National Cattledog Association

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As I hinted at in a post in the other thread there are a large number of people who trial on cattle and who host cattle trials who are not USBCHA members and do not go to the cattle finals. I think it's possible that a new organization could get these people's participation. Or more likely than these people joining USBCHA.

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Nicole,

Why is that? Care to speculate (or share direct knowledge)? What would the NCA offer those people that USBCHA doesn't? I'm not trying to start a fight here; I'm just seriously wondering, given that Jeff has claimed that the NCA wouldn't substantially change the way things are done now, why folks would be attracted to the NCA but not the USBCHA. If we knew what it was about USBCHA that repelled them, then USBCHA would have a start on remedying that and perhaps improving participation in the cattle program.

 

J.

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Julie et. al.,

 

Nobody is saying this, but it seems pretty clear that the core group that is leaving is probably intending to attract those cattle dog people that can't or won't participate in a sheepdog-style judged Finals, that is the great mass of cattle people who trial P/T arena and probably found the HA event too elitist and sheep-y. Reading between the lines, the breaking point seems to have been the last Finals and the disputes that arose there. Maybe their intention is to gradually up the ante, so to speak, once they have the participants. Will it work? Who knows? Not our problem. We tried to breathe life into the program under the HA tent and it didn't work, for all the reasons Hub describes. Not just lack of volunteers, but internal conflicts, issues with amending the HA by-laws, cost of putting on the event and moving it around the country, etc. I tend to agree with Elizabeth, though, that there's no need to give up our right to sanction cattle trials and cattledog finals in perpetuity. Let's put it on hold after the next Finals to which we've committed(2012), give this other group a shot at it, and wait and see.

 

A

 

ETA and in reply to your ETA Julie, don't you find it telling that almost no folks that trial primarily on cattle are begging to keep the program? Certainly not a critical mass sufficient to support and run a program that really does showcase the border collie's abilities, and is not just another P/T arena trial on dog-broke cattle? So that's the dilemma. A quality judged trial will not attract enough participants, no matter how many sheep people pitch in--and for how long will they be willing to do that? A P/T arena trial, while it might attract more participants, is not worth the effort put into it. Why should we bang our heads against the wall to support something that you could find in AHBA or ASCA? Historically, things may change, but that's where we are at the moment.

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Nicole,

Why is that? Care to speculate (or share direct knowledge)? What would the NCA offer those people that USBCHA doesn't? I'm not trying to start a fight here; I'm just seriously wondering, given that Jeff has claimed that the NCA wouldn't substantially change the way things are done now, why folks would be attracted to the NCA but not the USBCHA. If we knew what it was about USBCHA that repelled them, then USBCHA would have a start on remedying that and perhaps improving participation in the cattle program.

 

J.

 

Meh, lot of politics. Notice that the majority of the people posting here and Sheepdog-L and other places who want to keep the cattle program are not even people who trial on cattle or even want to. If you wanted I suppose I could poll a lot of the people I know who trial in open cattle trials and ask them why they don't join USBCHA, otherwise I'm mainly just speculating on what I've heard in various conversations over the years. I have always supported the USBCHA cattle program but I disagree with a judged finals. There are too many differences in the way a dog works cattle compared to sheep inherent in the stock itself and an individual dog's strength and presence/working style.

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A judged outrun/lift and a judged finals are two different things entirely. How different cattle work has little bearing on a dog's outrun at least, so I have a hard time understanding the seemingly huge resistance to judging that small part of the work.

 

And FWIW I have run in cattle trials and my dogs work both species, and honestly, they're the same dog no matter what animal is out there in the field...

 

J.

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The purpose to work the livestock in a calm, controlled manner and no rush them, whether it be sheep or cattle.

 

I prefer judged outwork and then time/points......for cattle.

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Guest herbertholmes

"Herbert wants a bid for the 2013 Cattledog Finals with a $20,000 guarantee of sponsorship. Has there been a bid for the Sheepdog Finals in the past five years that came with a guarantee of $20,000 of sponsorship money (not counting ABCA and USBCHA money) prior to the bid being accepted? "

 

Pearse, the people who put in proposals for the sheepdog finals are agreeing to raise $50,000 per year, and yes they are doing this prior to the bid being accepted. When the cattle dog proposal has been proposed the past three years, it has come with the understanding that those people were going to need a minimum of $20,000 generated on their own to host the event.

 

My saying the cattledog program is a failure is based on the facts that show the numbers of people and dogs in the program have declined. h

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"Herbert wants a bid for the 2013 Cattledog Finals with a $20,000 guarantee of sponsorship. Has there been a bid for the Sheepdog Finals in the past five years that came with a guarantee of $20,000 of sponsorship money (not counting ABCA and USBCHA money) prior to the bid being accepted? "

 

Pearse, the people who put in proposals for the sheepdog finals are agreeing to raise $50,000 per year, and yes they are doing this prior to the bid being accepted. When the cattle dog proposal has been proposed the past three years, it has come with the understanding that those people were going to need a minimum of $20,000 generated on their own to host the event.

 

My saying the cattledog program is a failure is based on the facts that show the numbers of people and dogs in the program have declined. h

 

 

Hub, I appreciate the tremendous amount you have done in resurrecting the HA financially after mismanagement of the start of the cattle program almost wrecked it, and that it's been a kick in the teeth that having done so, you didn't get the entire cattle dog community coming together to support those efforts. So, I can completely understand your position, and that you are looking out for the long term health of the HA as a whole.

 

That said:

 

They're agreeing to it because everyone knows that's the minimum it's going to take to put on a Finals. Agreeing to it, and having guaranteed sponsorship in hand are two different things though.

 

It's one thing to say "I believe I can raise 150 dog sponsorships @ $125/dog, $10,000 in admission sales, and $25,000 in other sponsorships, advertising, and merchandise sales", and coming to the table with a written guarantee of $50,000 in funds already raised when submitting the bid. And, to the best of my knowledge, the organizers of the Sheepdog Finals are not being asked to post a bond for that $50,000. It's a "good faith effort" type of thing and if they fell short, the HA would cover the difference. So, just as long we are talking an apples to apples comparison, I have no problem with asking organizers to produce a realist ic budget. It'd be great if Finals committees had the money raised a year or two in advance, but I doubt it's often the case.

 

Why have the numbers declined? Is it the fact that we are slowly coming out of the worst economic slowdown in 80 years, or is it because the HA raised the bar in requiring judged outwork and some handlers took the huff and stayed home, or is it because the Finals have been in one place for a while? Combination of the three?

 

I'm not sure we know the answer to those questions. Until we do, I'm not sure dumping the program and is the way to revive cattle dog trialling. I went back and went through every single post in the Director's forum over the last couple of days, and read the minutes of the Director's meetings posted on the web site. What I was looking for was an instance of a set of ideas submitted by the current leadership of the NCA to the USBCHA BOD that would have improved or expanded cattle dog trailing in the US, but was shot down by the USBCHA Board. I didn't find any. I also have not seen any new ideas put forward by the NCA leadership that leads me to believe they would do anything differently than the USBCHA (other than perhaps doing away with the judged outrun which a majority of them seem to disapprove off). So at this point, I'm at a loss to see how turning over control of future National Cattledog Finals to a group with no money, no new ideas (at least none they have shared) and no evidence of widespread support in the cattle dog community is a step forward.

 

At this point, I am solidly unconvinced and will continue to oppose any attempt to end the sanctioning of cattle dog trials by the USBCHA.

 

Pearse

 

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I would like to add that some times success can not always be equated solely in terms of finances.

 

I do understand the money and support has to be there.

 

One way i would judge the success of the cattledog program is the level of work by the dogs and the handlers.

 

The first finals i attended was in California in 2003, and i attended every finals through 2009.

 

The level of work by dogs and handlers rose exponentially each year. This is good for the breed and the people who need these dogs to make a living. One of the reason i will continue to support the HA over other associations is the fact that i do not believe te other assoc share my beliefs to continue to raise the bar of the work and the handling.

 

I also think the USBCHA and the ABCA were responsible for much of the growing interest by ranchers to use these dogs for ranch work.

 

My belief is that all of these things are good for the Border Collie.

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My understanding is that the original sheepdog finals in the USA was point and time. Over the years, as the USBCHA developed and the sport grew, the shift was made to judging, the bar was raised and the quality of handlers and dogs improved. It sounds like while the USBCHA cattle dog program is in its infancy, it is following slowly down this same path. It would be a shame to give up on it, especially since people are already seeing changes for the better.

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Thanks, Lana, for that opinion.

 

If the NCA wants to raise the quality of cattledog trialing, then I would surely consider giving them my support. There are some very fine handlers (by reputation, as I know none of them) that comprise their officers.

 

I hope the directors of the USBCHA are soliciting and listening to the opinions of their constituents about this matter, and doing the research necessary to make an informed decision. I know a few that are, and I really appreciate their concerns and their efforts.

 

I'm also very grateful for Herbert, who has put in countless hours of hard work (and, I'm sure often enough, diplomacy) to make the USBHCA stronger and a better venue for the working Border Collie over the years of his tenure.

 

Whatever does shake out, I hope it proves to be the best for the future of the dogs.

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