Here Sheepie, Sheepie, Sheepie — PLUS

September 5, 2010

Susan put Chase on some of her mama sheep who’ve not been herded in months. She reports that he slowed when asked, stopped when asked, fetched to her (an acknowledgment FINALLY that he and she are a team). When he put too much pressure on the flock and one bolted he was prompt to cover and bring it back. He drove them at a walk. Wonderful progress for a boy that has now been herding for a week. I’m having trouble believing he’s been gone only a week because it seems like months. Susan says he works pretty well with the ducks, but understands what herding sheep is about — the Chaseman is definitely a sheepman.

Photos tomorrow.

adding Cheryl’s comments received this morning:

I was incredibly impressed with how Chase worked. He IS yielding to Susan, but occasionally reluctantly. Completely understandable and expected. What amazed me is how much he was willing to yield after just a week’s worth of being together. I think it was fortuitous that Treasure came into heat upon meeting Chase so that Chase went to Susan’s house–or else we would NOT have seen this much progress this quickly. I love Chase’s enthusiasm and drive toward the sheep. Wonderful! AND you can easily see how having the obedience work and title make him much more respectful to the handler. Really, really nice work.


  1. Tony says:

    Well done Chase. Sounds like he’s very instinctive at herding. Is he going to try herding cattle???

    • Susan says:

      There is no cattle herding in Chase’s future – at least while he is with me. I could not bring myself to risk his getting hurt. I distinctly remember seeing my GSD being mashed into the ground by a cow. I simply haven’t been able to think of risking my Cardigans. Just consider me a wimpy handler – smile –

  2. C-Myste says:

    Grandma says “no cattle, please.”

    While talking to Penni last night, I was reminded of years ago (back when we had Aussies) how certain trainers swore that one should never, ever do obedience work with a dog you were going to use on stock.

    Didn’t make sense to me then, and still doesn’t.

    • Susan says:

      I think when you do obedience with a dog, you get them to focus on you rather than on the stock. So while obedience helps, it also hurts. In the advanced work, you need the dog to focus on the stock. I still do obedience with my herding dogs. I will take the hit for some off contact work if I can have them responsive to me.

  3. Julie says:

    WONDERFUL!! I am so glad Chase is having such an awesome time and Bug is terribly jealous.