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alligande

My boys are becoming sheepdogs

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I have had a border collie for over 20 years now but it took moving to an island in the Mediterranean before I was able to discover the joys of your dogs working sheep. I always felt it was wrong to just let them play with sheep, and now we have a found a shepherd who we can work with on a regular basis. Over the last 5 weeks I have watched my dogs go from insecure and not having a clue to being confident and start to move sheep in an open field. The transformation in my young dog is striking, his first couple of visits to the farm he was completely useless! There were glimmers of interest but nothing that stood out, looked like my working bred ISDS dog was a washout ..... but knowing what he was like in agility I kept taking him, despite Miquel thinking I was wasting my money. 5 lessons in and he got to work sheep in an open field and a kiss from a farmer! My older rescue dog took to sheep straight away. They both have lots to learn and maybe one day I will get to handle them as at the moment it is better if the shepherd works them as they are both very handler focused as their primary job is agility, and they are both mamas boys. The most striking thing is how they are able to handle more pressure, both are very soft dogs and don't handle any sort of correction, the older one would whimp out and look for me initially now he just wants to get back the sheep, the youngest needed cheerleading and slowly has been able handle more pressure. To be honest I am hoping it helps make him more resilient. 

I have always loved watching collies work but when they are your own it makes it very special.

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I'm glad the herding stuff is going well with your dogs. It sounds fun! I also love watching them work. I love the crouchy walk they do and how they stare at stuff.

My only experience with herding probably doesn't even count, but it was fun no less. I took my Corgi to an instinct test just to see what she'd do if she got put with sheep. There was me, her, a judge, and three sheep in a decent-sized pen. Well, after my Corgi followed them around for awhile one got separated from the others. The judge told me to send my dog after it. I pointed at it and my dog went and got it! She did a wide circle to get around behind it and then chased it back.

I thought it was the coolest thing ever haha

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