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Found 8 results

  1. https://www.theguardian.com/environment/gallery/2018/nov/21/solitary-life-alpine-shepherd-in-pictures
  2. Hello, I currently live with my border collie and have been considering the possibility of raising livestock. We live on 9 acres that we own, and live in the UK. We use part of it for training and agility, and what we aren't using is let out for grazing to a farmer nearby. I was thinking of perhaps purchasing a small number of sheep or goats to get started. Being new to livestock owning, I was wondering what people thought of this idea. I have heard goats are much easier to care for than sheep as they need less maintance in terms of coat, such as dipping. We currently have ducks, but they are different than sheep and goats in terms of management. Also, I was wondering what you thought of training my border collie to herd? I have heard goats are difficult to herd because they have less flocking instinct and can be more stubborn. Though are there some that are easier to herd with than others? And that certain sheep are easier to use for herding with a beginner dog than others. She comes from a farm, and both her parents worked livestock. She has instinct, though I am not sure how much talent as she has not been trained to herd. We don't have anyone nearby who can help teach us however. We have someone we can visit irregularly who could perhaps give us some pointers, but no one we can visit weekly. Do you think this is a good idea? If so, what do you recommend for a first time owner of livestock? Or for training a dog to herd? Any breeds you think would suit best? Is it possible to find dog broken adults, and would that be a good idea? Any resources for what is needed to own and care for sheep or goats? TLDR; I was thinking of getting a small number of sheep or goats, and perhaps even teach my border collie to herd, And was wondering what you thought of this idea and if its a good idea, if so what do you recommend in terms of goat vs sheep, or even breed?
  3. So an update and another question for the masses this morning!: I realized that my dog had not fully grasped the concept of me telling her to watch her sheep and I had not understood the importance of her knowing it, so we went all the way back to zero and I just walked around telling her to watch her sheep and walked away from her and them ( in a safe way) I did this enough times that when we would walk up to the fence she was already looking for them. After doing this I noticed a huge increase in her speed and when I would release her to watch her sheep I would name flanks as she took them just by redirecting her with my body, and this seemed to work.. My conclusion is that while she is sensitive to pressure I had made a training error and let it go unnoticed for too long, my question is how would one go about pushing a more sensitive dog off stock? I love posting the day before training, I get such wonderful feed back from y'all!
  4. Hi there as this is my first post please forgive any grammatical or other forms of error when it comes to terminology. So I have a 16 month old mix of the three most regularly recognized "herding breeds" Aussie, Heeler, and Border collie but the border collie comes through the strongest. With her JHD I was told she was rather keen had a medium strength in her eye and was nice to her stock. Now the problem that Iam finding myself faced with when we go for a lesson is that she holds back, like shes concerned with making an error, she doesnt do this every time but it takes a gratuitous amount of praise to get her to speed up and cover correctly, now she had a bad experience with another trainer before hand but her Tentativness stems more from her intelligence. I have let her back myself and the flock into an arena corner and encouraged her to watch em/get em and then gone back in the field and was able to see how much more focused and turned on she was. Iam going to go back into a smaller area today and see if squaring her flanks up better will maybe help her, she also thinks that when I tell her to get out that she is in trouble. Any help would be great Thank you!
  5. So even though my trainer offers to rent sheep for us to work between lessons I keep asking myself how I can get more time on sheep, we live in San Diego county California and there are plenty of people with sheep in the area but would it be rude to just ask them? I have also thought about just talking to ad posters on craigslist of people looking to sell sheep in hopes of networking out some possible work for us to go do, the experience for my girl would be payment enough. Thoughts or advice?
  6. Well my right hand man(daughter) went and got herself into university. This meant some changes as to how we had been doing things. I bought a Marweld sheep handling unit(crowding tub ect.) and sorter. When it arrived there were no instructions for assembly. so we dragged everything off the skids it had arrived on and proceeded to try and figure out the way it should go together 1 hour and a can of deep woods off later we had it together we then realised we had set it up the wrong way. The next morning dis assembled and reassembled the unit in proper location. It works very well but there is a learning curve. It did make worming and sorting sheep much faster we had all the ewes and lambs done in less then 2 hours and stress for all concerned was much less I was wondering what others use and there experience with them Dan and Tilly
  7. On Wednesday I had the chance to have a big hat come to my farm from Grass Creek to work my sheep. They wanted to practice driving and I wanted to see what my sheep would do with an experienced dog. Until now the only times have been pup gets lose or neighbors dog trying to move them and being chased back to us. I called the sheep down to a large open hay field and he asked how many he could work I said all them if you want. So away went the dog with in a couple of minutes they were moving around the field in an orderly fashion. It was unbelievable for sheep that had been attacked all summer by coyotes and never moved with a dog. It was exactly what I had pictured a flock moving with a dog should be. He was explaining whistle types and theory He was attempting to show me if the whistle he gave was quicker the dog would speed up slower dog slowed down. He gave the whistle to speed up dog didn’t change speed he did again no change. He gave the dog a hard down which he said he used as his correction then gave command again. As soon as the dog attempted to speed sheep up ewes began to spin and face him. One ewe which is the daughter of my most protective ewe. Actual made contact with dog her lamb which is about 4 months old joined in and went after the dog as well he backed off and everybody was driving around the field as per instruction as soon as there was an attempt to move them quicker ewes took exception. I truly believe the dog sensed that the speed he was moving them at was the right speed and that is why he was ignoring speed up command. This experience left with a few questions Is it the confidence of the dog that allows the sheep to trust him/her enough to move them instead of head long flight which is what I get when they see my pup. Is it common for experienced dogs to be able to read sheep and know what there comfort/flight zone or bubble is Did the sheep handle better because it was a large group with dog or would a smaller group move just as well Dan & Tilly
  8. I am not sure just where this should be posted but will post it here I have approx 140 ewes varying breeds age ect I have some Suffolk cross, Cheviot cross, South down cross, Kathdins, Dorper cross and some that I don’t know Most of my original ewes came from a flock that was attacked by coyotes on a regular basis I can tell as soon as I see them if there is one around by the way they act. It seems to be a learned behavior as the ewe lambs I am keeping this year are acting the same. When a coyote, dog ect is around they head for the barn. My collie pup has gotten on them a few times by wiggling threw fence. Now as soon as they hear me whistling a recall they head for the barn. I tested it last night I tried a couple of different whistle sounds but as soon as they hear what I use for my recall the field cleared at a run. When and if they get dog broke will they still keep themselves safe from the coyotes or will they lose that. Now that being said when in the barn yard the older ewes will charge. I have seen them run friends dogs and coyote. Last spring had a coyote trying to get a lamb in the barn yard and an old Suffolk ewe I had kept it away from lamb it was after till I could get the gun loaded. Just wondering if anyone has seen there sheep become more susceptible to coyote or dog attacks after they started working them with dogs Thanks in advance for input Dan
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