Connecting the dots

One of the reasons working stock is so interesting is because you are working with 2 separate species that have dire opposite needs. It’s the combination of these different needs intertwining that allows us (the 3rd part of this “puzzle”) to accomplish our goals. Dogs want to get close enough to the sheep that they can control every movement – while sheep want…

You are the key

Ever watch a group of Border Collies “at play”. They usually “key” off one dog and react to whatever that particular dog is doing. If the “key” dog goes from a high energy play mode to a more relaxing one … the rest of the pack will follow suit. If that dog decides to go lay down…

“Way wide”

I’m working a dog that flanks too wide on one side. It’s not his outruns only his flank and only on one side. So, I’m trying to teach him the difference between a wide flank and a tighter one. Until he understands there is more than one way to flank … I won’t be able…

Bond’s back

He’s progressing well in most areas. He needs work on his hill outwork (hard for this flatlander to find :@) This time of year is the worse time to “trailer out” because of the foxtails … so not sure he’s going to get that until fall. His biggest “flaw” right now is pace. He has a hard time understanding…

Breaking the bubble

I’m working with a dog now that will not push through the bubble. When you are loading stock into a trailer you need enough push and flank to keep the stock going forward. If a dog flanks off and gives too much ground,  the stock start going sideways and it stops the forward movement. Sometimes,…

Buying trained dogs

I import, buy and sell a lot of trained dogs and receive many questions. Complex question … what should you do when you buy a trained dog?  Simple answer: Start over. It  sounds odd but that really is the best way to approach it. Just because a dogs trained doesn’t mean he’s trained “to you”….

The Zamora Challenge

Zamora is one of those trials that makes even seasoned trialers take one look at the course and say “WOW”! The course — either one — as sometimes they have it across from their house and other times it’s held at “Henry’s field”. Both fields are rolling hills needing a dog with scope and listening skills…

Trialing thoughts

Real work is about what is practical and efficient. Trialing attempts to take what is practical and efficient to precise and perfect. That’s why it requires more interaction and entails such mental discipline on the part of a handler/dog team. I have never understood the “thought process” that trialing isn’t practical. The phases of work…