I was worried Mady would just plonk down or be afraid. When it was her turn, I took her in on leash, she sat down, waited for a couple minutes for the tester to prepare. Then she was ready, leash off, and BAM!! All signals are go, she flew! These were sheep, she's a sheepdog, this was her job to do! She took to it like a fish to water. Centuries of breeding in her DNA just turned on! She passed the test with flying colours. It was some of the best 10 minutes of my life, Mady was doing what she was *born* to do, this was her purpose. The tester said she did extremely well, and it looks like we'll be starting her with regular herding training in the Fall!
I'm so proud of my little girl!
Here's 90 seconds worth we got on video I posted to Youtube:
We went home, gave Mady a bone and many hugs, opened a big bottle of win in celebration, and watched the movie Babe, which my wife had never seen (a perfect movie!). Such a wonderful day with our sheepdog.
|Did she watch the previous dogs? Imagine what she'd do watching trained dogs?? Yes, this girl needs to get training! She's discovered herself!!|
|Oh we will be getting her trained! The trainer said she should be at least 10 months, so around September. We know nothing about herding, does anyone know any good books/resources to help us get prepared?|
|We had herding lessons at our farm many (more than several, so need to say many!) years ago. We used our sheep and we had an instructor come in. He moved to Iowa - sad day for us!|
This was our 1st homework - vocabulary.
I actually printed this out and taped it on the arena wall!
Here is a list from James:
come bye (or go bye)------------clockwise
away to me-------------counter clockwise
down -----is down
there--------stop and turn in to stock
walk up-----------walk straight on to the stock
out---------turn to the outside of the pen away from the stock
hit---------bite the nose
push (heel)---------bite the heels
stop------------- stop where you are
get through---------go between the stock and the fence
look back----------when the dog leaves one behind
stay------------don't move from that spot
watch gate---------don't let stock out of that pen
This should get you a good start.
Good luck, it is a whole lot of fun!
|Thank you, that is very helpful!!! Do you know if it is usually only one person who works with the dog? We have been having many discussions in our house as to who would get to be the one to work with Mady. I think that I am losing that battle, as my husband has his own puppy dog face that he uses rarely, but is a powerful weapon. |
So, we bought brushes, a crate, water bottles, food, leashes, obedience classes, toys (my husband posted my picture at local pet stores with the caption 'Do not sell any more toys to this woman') and the odd vet bill. We are now signing up for sheep herding lessons (we live in downtown Ottawa, no sheep here except on Parliament Hill), so we had to buy a car to get her there (I still can't believe that we bought Mady a car). Is there anything else that you wise sheepie people can tell me I will need to get?
This forum is very helpful, but also very dangerous. We keep looking at all of your adorable dogs and wondering if there is room for another one in our home...
|I smiled the whole time watching. She was excited to be there!|
|That video is awesome! Mady did a great job! I am proud of all of you.|
Big hugs to Mady!
|Congrats! The video is so cute and Mady looks like she is having a lot of fun. Patch failed miserably, but she was around 6 years old and had never seen a sheep before - the poor sheep were shaking in the corner while Patch stood there looking around with a look of, "I'll do what you want, but I don't know what I'm to do here."|
|Did you register the car in Mady's name? Starting early and good training, she could do very, very well. This is exciting!|
|wow how much fun thanks for sharing|
|re: Sheepie2 I wonder if age had something to do with it, with the other dogs we saw while we were there, the 2 that did well were young a 9 month old Berger Picard and a 6 month old Schapendoes. There were 2 older Schapendoes who tried it as well, one of them the mother of the 6 month pup. These 2 older one wanted nothing to do with it and wouldn't even approach the sheep.|
re: Got Sheep, your own sheep! I'm jealous! I've been telling my wife we need to become sheep farmers now! Buying a car for Mady isn't enough, I have to buy her a sheep farm too!
We'll have to wait until September before we can start training her, but this is definitely something we'll pursue. She just radiated joy and it was infectious. Since she was a young pup, I've played this game with her, basically I stand mostly still and she runs round me keeping me in place, even doing some wearing back and forth. I call this game "sheep and sheepdog", and since Saturday, this is all she wants to do when I take her outside.
Amber, have we mentioned how much we love our puppy and thanked you?
|Not bad for a puppy. She showed sustained interest. When you start training her odds are the instructor will start working with her first since it's really hard to start with both novice dog and novice handler. If one of you needs to go in with her (I'd fight my husband on that one! ) follow immediately behind the person working her. Her natural instinct should be to go around the sheep and bring them to the handler. If there are two people in there and you're not in the same spot, more or less, it can be confusing for her to figure out whom she is supposed to balance to. It didn't seem to bother her during the test, but then she really wasn't trying to bring the sheep, but rather keep them away from the handler Too, the stock may have been a bit heavy for a baby, but I'd love sheep that calm for a change of pace! |
Dawn - what's your best guess on breed<s>?
Very cute, bouncy little girl. Good luck with her and keep us posted.
|Mady did awesome! If I watch your video again, I will have to turn the sound down. Daphne was going crazy listening to Mady bark. She wanted to be there w/her helping her herd!|
|It is the same with us! I wonder if there is a certain kind of bark when sheep are involved that they understand.|
|Very fun video... she did awesome|
|She did a great job. It was fun to watch.|
Did your Dh really put a picture of you in the pet store? That made me laugh.
|He has started following me around stores, taking things out of my cart and putting them back!! How many toys ARE too many, anyway?|
|Oh My Goodness!!! Mady is so precious .|
|Hey, has Mady started her official herding lessons yet? How old does she need? And which one of you gets to be in the pen with Mady?|
Love the video...now my husband wants to give this event a try...thanks a lot!
peg & pup howie
|Good job Mady! |
Looks like she's having a time of her life there!
Aska does the same game! -herding me
In Iceland there is no such as thing that Aska can test her herding skills
I think Aska would love to herd!
- Good luck Mady !
|We were told to wait until she was ten months old, so this September we will be starting the official training. From what I understand, the trainer works with her first, then David or I can start. This has been the cause of MUCH MUCH discussion in our house-who would get to train with Mady. Unfortunately, David has eyes much like a sheepie and has been using the sheepie stare that Mady taught him. He is using the stare for evil purposes, so guess which one of us will be training with Mady...|
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