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Sheepdog Trials on RFDTV


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I was super excited to see Sheepdog Trials back on the list on my channel guide, so I promptly set to DVR the series.

 

Now that I've DVR'd a couple episodes, I can't help but wonder... what the heck is this?? This is not the ISDS sheepdog trials over in England/Scotland/Ireland like they were airing last year. These trials are in New Zealand, and is called the "Tux Yarding Dog Challenge".

 

The first one I watched had these bigger dogs that it seems like all they did is BARK BARK BARK BARK. What kind of dogs are those? I am watching the second episode I recorded, and these dogs work similarly to a Border Collie, only a little more upright and a little looser-eyed. They kind of look like Border Collies too. Maybe I've missed it, but I haven't heard them say anything about what kinds of dogs they are.

 

I think this 'yarding' course looks like a lot of fun with all the different obstacles (a lot like and arena trial), kind of makes me want to set up some of these new obstacles myself!

 

Can anyone share anything about this type of trial or these dogs?

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The first type of dogs are Huntaway dogs:

 

Huntaways

 

I don't really see the point of having a dog trial like that - they seem more designed for moving large groups of sheep instead of a handful. Personally, I thought that was more of a test of the human- some of those guys had some great livestock handling skills but the dog seemed like an afterthought.

 

I was more impressed with the second group which are likely border collies or heading dogs:

 

http://woolshed1.blogspot.com/2010/01/new-zealand-farm-working-dogs-heading.html

 

Heading dogs are a type - I think (and I may be wrong) that even a purebred working border collie could be referred to as a heading dog. It's a dog that moves sheep with eye.

 

Of course, neither groups course was anything near what most Open USBCHA trials expect from their dogs. I wondered how they got such big money sponsors such as Purina and Merial.

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My channel guide says tomorrow at 5:30 (and repeats on 5/28 at 3:30 AM and 5/29 at 6:30 PM) and the next new episode is next Friday, June 3 also at 5:30... that's central time anyway

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