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...I feel like my dog and I are getting the hang of herding sheep.


After many crazy attempts at herding, a few success? and many, many times of wanting to cry, laugh, or kick myself, I found a trainer I could take lessons from. Well, actually it was just one lesson last fall, then lack of time and a Michigan winter got in the way. But I was able to get the basics, some great pointers and a general feel of how things should work. And then it was practice in the barnyard all winter. A few weeks ago I turned a few sheep out into the pasture to work and things really started to click. I am amazed at how much I am learning about both my sheep and dog.


Last night I turned some sheep out in the pasture. I had three ewes with three different personalities. First there was the smart, wary one. She saw the dog and ran to me. Then there was the nervous, flighty one. She saw the dog and ran. And lastly, the independent one. She saw the dog and waited until she had to move. But as soon as Miss would stop, she would stop and give a look as if to say ?I don?t like it, but I?ll do it if I have to?. And, lo and behold, Missy handled them differently.


When just working the 3rd ewe, Missy got right in her face to bring her to me. But as Miss backed the ewe along she would move her head slightly to let up the pressure as the sheep moved.

But when the other two were added to make a group of three, Miss, without any direction from me, just hung back as long as the sheep weren?t trying to escape. It was neat to see the way she had them all figured out.


We?ve probably worked sheep in the pasture 6 or 8 times so far this spring. In that amount of time I have seen a drastic reduction in Missy wanting to grip them. It is as if she knows more and more that she has control.


I guess that?s enough rambling for now. I just wanted to share this with someone who could understand both my pride in my dog, and my feeling of satisfaction in this small accomplishment!

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