Sunday, May 27, 2012

I wish every day was a Herding day....

I had a great day at Louanne's (Phantomridge) today- I had not one, but two great herding lessons- and came home with more things to think about and try and remember.

I swear the hardest part about herding is remembering all the stuff!!

So here is a list of things, that I need to remember the next time I go out and train.

  1. Hey! Is a crutch. Stop it. Use my there, and follow up with a  block if I need to. 
  2. On the Settle (which we completely blew each time today), I can block the sheep too! If at all possible be in front of the sheep on the way there and be in control. Don't push them off though- a sudden movement and then plant my feet will get them to stop. My dog should stay lying down until I tell her differently.
  3. In big, open areas use my there, not my lie down. It's time to not be so afraid of my dogs motion and let her open up and work. I tend to use my lie downs when I need to think, or reposition, or am not sure what else to do. I need to use them when I need to- not all the time.  But in close, tight areas use the lie down and mean it. Her downs were kinda sucky today- especially her second lesson as she was pretty amped up. 
  4. Watch my sheep better. I try, I really do. But I also need to watch that my baddog is doing what I've told her (flank, lie down, etc). If they are following me, and calm keep moving. Don't stop and admire them. lol
  5. Before I Lie her Down she needs to have moved the sheep- even just one step. This will help to build some confidence. 
  6. There. I need to practice my words. It seems strange. Apparently I need more of an accent or a drawl or something. It should be short, not drawn out. There. I feel ridiculous. lol
And I think that is the most of it. We ran a few different courses, and broke down some trouble spots. Redid some sections (the settle. lol). My dog can do all the stuff, but I need to think faster and be more confident. I found today that the actual obstacles were not the trouble at all- we could do all of them with little problems. But it was the inbetween. Getting from the L to the fence, or to the Y. Choosing the best path and keeping said dog and sheep on that path.

Louanne of course makes it looks easy. She actually did the whole course with her dog from the post. Just telling him where to go. One day we'll do that!

It was an awesome day- a little rain but not to bad at all! I am certainly not made of sugar so no chance of melting. ;) I wish every day could be a herding day!  Thanks again for the great day Louanne!

1 comment:

Red Dog Mom said...

What my herding instructors always told me was to watch my sheep, not my dog. The sheep will let you know when the dog is being bad :)