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Any one have any tips on how to build up a dogs confidence? I have a 3yo who will work the sheep out in the open nicely, but when we're doing pen work, she'll circle, but when one will turn and look at her, she'll walk up and lick it or try to continue to circle to move it. She'll push in between the stock and a wall or a fence with no problem, but when it comes to actually having to push or hold stock, she'll back down. I think that I may have contributed to this problem...when we were starting training, she'd fly in for nervous grips on the shoulder and hold on. I let this go for a while, but as she continued to do this I started to get after her a bit. Could I have taken the push out of her? Things seem to be at a stand still only when the sheep actually stop and look directly at her, or are determined to get somewhere (ie, out of the barn during feeding, she'll move out of the door as the sheep push more towards it and the sheep get out.)

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Be willing to take lots of time to let her figure out how to move them.

When it sets itself up-- just leave her be looking at the sheep as long as she wants.

Don't let her flank off pressure- don't beg her to do anything.Keep your attitude very bored and distracted.Don't keep stareing at her.

Just wait-- if nothing happens you move yourself back some or you can shift yourself side to side a few feet-to encourage some motion from her.

If nothing happens for a LONG time you can walk up and goose the lead sheep from behind-- that might trigger her to do something.

Eventually she will get bored and/or frustrated and Do something-- whatever it is accept it and go right back to work with her-- trying real hard to not have it set up again too soon .

Eventually she will learn its her job to move them-and she has the freedom to do it any way she feels she can. The more confidence she builds the better ways she will find to move them.

And more importantly she will approach them with the right atitude so they don't ever stand her off to begin with.


Also you might need to concider that the sheep are the problem-- and you might need different sheep to get the dog going good enough to deal with persistantly defensive sheep.

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The situation isin't that the sheep are stomping and charging at her. It's more that if they turn and lower their head in the "I'm not here and I'm not going to move" then she dosen't even try. How should I go about a "correction" when she tries to flank off pressure (which is what she usually tries to do, her method of moving sheep is through movement, not push)


Any one have any ideas of instilling some power back in her? The odd thing is that she'll take on a cow, head or heel, but I think it's something about the eye level of the sheep that's getting to her. Today, if an older ewe would turn and lower its head without any stomping or threat, the dog would go in and grip a spring lamb who didn't do anything and ignore the problem ewe.

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What your dog is doing is exactly what I am talking about.

When the stock charges or stomps the dog will react and do something. When they just stand there is when the dog can't figure out what to do.

Use your balance work to help reposition her back on the head. And letting her go to the easy target(ie the lamb) is something you need to stop.

I just have to go Ahhhh- when they think about leaving the head and maybe shift my position over some to make them go back to the head.

Then just wait.......it can take a long time

Over and over and over..... but it will click eventually.

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