Aug 28, 2010

A Day of Herding!

Bandit tried his hand at sheep herding today!  His breeder, Jamie, had set up this fun outing several months ago for a group of about eight mini Aussies and one English Shepherd.  The sheep farm is in Battle Ground, Washington which was a three and a half hour drive south for us.  Brigand's Hideout is a real sheep farm which specifically trains dogs of all breeds to herd sheep.  Our instructor/handler for the day was Trudy who gave us an overview of basic herding including terms, calls, and maneuvers.  After each dog went through the first time, Trudy handed out a report card to each canine participant regarding the testing of their herding instinct.

Bandit definitely has the instinct and the drive to be a natural at herding!  It was great fun to watch him work the sheep and take instruction from Trudy.  He was tested and scored on such things as interest (high), approach (runs moderately close), emotional level (very excited), eye (loose), bark (sustained barking), responsiveness to direction (responsive), temperament (readily adjusts), balance/distance to control stock (adjusts position and/or distance), and movement of stock (keeps stock grouped).  Overall, he was deemed qualified as herding instinct test certified.  We're so proud of him!  It most likely won't be something we continue with, but it was definitely fun, and we'll definitely do it again should the opportunity arise.  There should be some closer-to-home sheep farms we could try in the future, too.
Bandit at work with the sheep and Trudy
He definitely had the Aussie instinct from the get-go
We love this picture!  His look is priceless! 

Bandit was a vocal sheep herder
Keeping an eye on his work
He was very confident in his dealings with the sheep
I want to do this again!!


Khyra And Sometimes Her Mom said...

We enjoyed the pikhtorial progression and



That last pikh!!!


Southbaygirl said...

woof!!! Yeah bandit!! herding is so much fun!!!



Anonymous said...

That is wonderful! Sounds like Trudy will be a good instructer for Bandit. I love the idea of the report card... your scores are amazing! Especially if Bandit hasn't had much other training. He is a natural! I am very proud of him, too! :-)

His coat looks fabulous. Shiny, healthy, and he looks like a great overall dog. You guys are lucky to have him.

PS- My word verification was "Sambi" if only the I and the A would be Simba! LOL

Priscilla said...

Oh Bandit!
You're a natural sheep herder!
Congrats on passing the test :) It sounds as though you were born to do this!
And I do love the priceless look on your face when you are herding!!!

Noah said...

Look like he took his job seriously in the pics. Great job Bandit!

RYKER said...

WhaWhoo Bandit! You were in your element Bro. Wish we could herd those sheep together. I was told I have good natural herding instinct as well. It's in our genes.
Your mom took awesome pictures of you out there. I am so proud of you...I miss you.

The Thundering Herd said...

Way to go, Bandit, a natural.

Wyatt said...

Good job Bandit. Now your mom is going to have to get you your own sheep, so you can practice at home! Tell her that they can mow the lawn too! Win Win!


Kerry said...

Oh this looks so fun! We were out of town for this, but it turns out that it was a good thing- With Kirby being sick and all. It would have been great!

Way to go on the scores! It's so fun to see these guys doing what they're made to do. I'm glad you were able to do this. :)

Angela said...

He loves it, you will have to take it up...or agility!!!???

Mama Dash said...

so super cool!!! we've missed your blogs :( but hopefully work is going well...

K9friend said...

I love it! And the pictures were spectacular...some of the best action shots I've seen. What a great little sheep-herder boy!

Pat said...

I just love your Bandet:) How adorable that he learned this. From the photos it looks like he took his job very serious too;)
Blog: Capers of the vintage vixens

Emma Rose said...

We thought about going up to Brigands, but it is a long ways for us too. You did a great job. I hope you get to do it again sometime. I think there are other places close to you that you and your Mom can take lessons if you want :)

Emma Rose

George the Lad said...

Lovely set of photos, you can tell he had a good day by the smile on his face in that last photo.
See Yea George xxx

Noah said...

You have received a new award (created by Miley) from me for your wonderful and enjoyable blogs. Thank you for sharing with us.

road-dog-tales said...

Bandit - You look like a natural! Some of us are supposed to herd stuff, but we've never really been around anything that needed herding - except tennis balls!
The Road Dogs

Sharper said...

Wow! Go Bandit, Go! Great job! Looks like he had a blast! These are wonderful pics!

Teddy Bear said...

Hi Bandit, we saw you on Wyatt's blog and wanted to come say hi. We just love all the herding pictures.:)

Teddy Bear

Reena said...

I love it!! How much fun. Will you be taking Bandit back for more herding? I think Bluebelle might like it, not sure.

oh and in reference to your other posts about 10 things, boomer does that tic on the leg too :)

Great new banner! LOVE IT!

Coralie Cederna Johnson said...

Bandit!!! You are amazing! Wow! Would my shelties Bonnie and Betsy every love to be with you for some herding exercise with real sheep (instead of me and their dad Jim)! You did a great job and your mom took some awesome photos!
Love that Bandit!