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Derek Scrimgeour - great instructor


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Derek is in my neck of the woods this weekend, and Northern California Working Sheepdog Assoc. put on a couple clinics. I was able to attend for a few hours Friday morning.

 

Very good teacher, soft spoken and blunt at the same time. He also spoke very simply - a few basic concepts that even I understood.

 

I hope to start doing some work with Gibbs if I can work out timing with my friend and her sheep. She was at the clinic, too. I took a very few lessons a couple years ago, but I wasn't ready, then I hurt my back - that took about 14 months to take care of. Now I'm dreaming about border collies and sheep again.

 

I can't quite put in my own words what he said and demonstrated, still letting it settle in. But if you ever get the chance, go see Derek!

 

And much thanks to NCWSA.

 

Ruth and Gibbs

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He is a great teacher. Not all great handlers make a great teacher for every type of student! But in my and my dog's case, he's been absolutely wonderful. I'm glad you enjoyed the clinic.

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Hello everyone,

 

Derek is a very good clinician, and if he is in your area, do try to attend his clinics (either participate or audit). He has a very sensible training regimen, and he conveys his methods clearly and concisely. I have found that Derek has something to offer everyone no matter their level of experience.
Regards,
nancy
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I went to a clinic with Derek last spring, and I really enjoyed it. I especially liked how he spent time teaching about sheep behavior. However, I did wish that the clinic sheep had not been my dog's very favorite ever. I would have preferred to have the kind of sheep that bring out our problems. Like big Rambouillets! :lol:

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Four years ago, I invited Derek to Poland (a person from these boards actually suggested that I do), and it was the best decision ever made. In addition to everything said here, Derek not only helps the here-and-now, but also give advice that one may need months later. So it is really good to take notes at some point during the clinic and try to remember everything he says.

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I have been to several clinic with Derek, it has been several years ago when he would come to WI. I enjoyed his clinics. He is able to break things down into steps for the people and dogs to help them understand the big picture. So often we just see the end result but do not quite know how to get there, he is able to help with that. He also uses people to demonstrate his method/ point of certain exercises which helps. It takes the actually dog and sheep out of the equation and slows things down, again step by step, so everyone can understand.

 

Dogs respond well to him and many really appreciate his approach that does not put pressure on them like so many are used to. This makes them less concerned and nervous and they are able to think and figure things out. Many dogs that are having problems are handler caused by timing or pressure and these dogs you see an immediate change.

 

He adds some different ways of thinking about things and approaches to training that are helpful and great tools to have in your tool box.

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Dear Aspiring Sheepdoggers,

 

Some years ago I attended a Wisconsin clinic with ten novices, 7 "prenovices" and two other open handlers where Derek took an afternoon explaining the International shed. Apart from farm work (where it is quite valuable) the International shed isn't encountered in sport trialing until one has won through qualifying at a few big important trials or the Final day at the Finals.

 

I asked Derek why he was teaching such advanced work to novices, years away from needing it.

 

He said, "Don't train for where you are; train for where you hope to get to."

 

Donald McCaig

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^^^ This. Though I'm a ways away from taking up lessons again, it was great to see people/dogs several steps ahead of me. And hear about those more advanced situations. It also gave me some modest hope that it might be me out there some day, working with dog and sheep.

 

Derek introduced himself to me, as I was standing around, listening to the chat before the clinic started. I told him I was just auditing, and he said 'Thanks for coming, I hope you get something out of it.'

 

I've been to a few seminars, trainings, clinics for all sorts of endeavors - business, personal growth, etc. Derek was one of the few instructors I felt was totally sincere in his brief interaction with me.

 

Ruth and Gibbs

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A total aside to the original topic - most of the dogs, (10) were smallish, under 35 lbs, I'd say. One 9 month old was big and lanky, but all the other dogs I got a good look at were on the smaller side. Just a fluke, or are Northern CA sheepdog people looking for and working smaller dogs?

 

I've seen some of these faces around at the few trials I've attended over the last several years, and don't remember this majority of smaller dogs.

 

Ruth and Gibbs

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  • 2 weeks later...

Just HD a call from Derek about my pup's IGS but we ended up having a long chat about all sorts.

Lovely man with a wry sense of humour.

 

Told him about the appreciative comments here and his response was that he'll keep on doing it ntil people get fed up of him.

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Just had a call from Derek about my pup's IGS but we ended up having a long chat about all sorts.

Lovely man with a wry sense of humour.

 

Told him about the appreciative comments here and his response was that he'll keep on doing it ntil people get fed up of him.

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