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Both of these trainers appear to be all-breed, AKC/AHBA oriented. The first person states that she specializes in loose-eyed upright breeds.


Personally I think you'd be better served to find someone who is experienced with border collies. I don't know what your goals are, but you would probably be better served by someone who trains border collies for USBCHA type trials.


How far are you from Pine City? The NEBCA Fall Foilage trial is there in October. In fact, here is the NEBCA home page. I see that they no longer list addresses for the directors, but you could certainly contact one of them and ask about people more local to you. Warren and Maria Mick are in Altamont, NY, but I don't know how close to you. Barb Armata is in Esperance. Joyce Geier is in Mendon. I'm sure there are others, and depending on your location you might be able to access PA people as well. You can get in touch with some of these folks, and even if they're not taking students they can probably point you to someone who is. There are a lot of good experienced handlers/trainers out there, so you shouldn't need to go to an all-breed AKC type trainer.



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^^^What Julie said! I would avoid *anyone* who is involved with AKC or is all-breed.


Find yourself a good, successful USBCHA Open-level handler with experience with a number of dogs (their own and client dogs), whose relationship with their dogs you admire and respect. If you can, see them work their dogs and, even better, see their students work their dogs.


A sheepdog trial (you can volunteer and make some connections) can be an excellent place to look for a trainer.


Warren and Maria Mick are very nice people. I think Warren likes to work with new handlers and their dogs. Joyce Geier is also very nice, and very accomplished.

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I googled trainers maybe an 1hour to 1&1/2 hours from me. This is what came up.


I was wondering what loose eyed met. And I certainly wasn't looking for AKC.


Pine City is almost 3 and 1/2 hours for me.


But I will try to contact the names you have suggested.


;)What I want to do? I would like to learn to handle Keeva and teach her properly with sheep.

I don't know if I should wait till I purchase the sheep this fall, but that seems like winging it to me, and if I have learned anything here on the boards that the last thing you want to do is instill incorrect behavior.


My big question really is, are the local farmers who use border collies too work their sheep helpful enough (I have a few offers/bartering) or do I really need a trainer?

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I would say that you would be so much better off getting some *good* training, even if it's at a distance and limited, than to try and do this without training or with poor training. You can try clinics, or maybe an overnight (if the distance is too far) so you can train for a couple of days or more. You can try offering help in exchange for training or at least for part of the cost of training.


Trust me that, without a good mentor, the combination of a green handler and a young/green dog can be a recipe for disastrous results. If you can do nothing else, a good solid start with a good trainer (like in a clinic) can set you on the right path.


As for the local farmers, that really depends on how experienced and how good they are. At least for those that compete in trials, you have some sort of marker to compare them against others in terms of being successful at training their dogs to a high standard. On the farm, that's a harder thing to judge because many dogs are competent enough on instinct with minimal handling/training to look pretty good on the home farm in familiar surroundings with their own stock and everyday chores.

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