Eve at the Pen

Thumbnail image for the sheep and cattle dog training tutorial: Eve at the Pen

Getting sheep into a tight spot, and then getting them out again, needs confidence and control. In this tutorial we see Eve, a keen young dog who's basic training is in place, but Eve still shows some tyro weaknesses - she favours "Away" to "Come Bye", for instance, and her stop isn't 100% reliable (yet).

However, a lesson in and around the pen doesn't only teach penning, it gives us the opportunity to work on Eve's stop and flanks, to introduce the "Look Back" (when she fails to bring all her sheep cleanly to the pen) and to help build her confidence to get between the sheep and the fence.

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Close Work 1 Close Work 2 Shedding

Educating Gloria!

Thumbnail image for the sheep and cattle dog training tutorial: Educating Gloria

This tutorial shows nine-month old Gloria, a bright, enthusiastic young dog, and her fourth training session with some well-dogged sheep.

As well as showing a typical dog in training, warts and all, the tutorial demonstrates some of the techniques that we've talked about in other tutorials, such as making use of the training ring; effective use of the training stick; reinforcing the stop, and flank commands; widening the flanks; taking the sheep out of the ring (whoops - the wrong way!) and dealing with gripping.

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Eve at the Pen Close Work 1 Close Work 2

Backwards is the way forward

Thumbnail image for the sheep and cattle dog training tutorial: Backwards is the Way Forward

It's boring - and it might appear pointless to the novice, but walking backwards with the dog bringing the sheep up to you is the single most important exercise you can do once your dog has basic control of the sheep.

It improves pace, working distance, the stop, sheep control, and much more.

As well as clearly demonstrating how to get a strong dog to bring the sheep up quietly - this tutorial provides a valuable tip on how to read your sheep.

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Back to Forwards! Why Your Dog Should Flank Both Ways Sending the Dog the Wrong Way!

Inside Flanks (Circle on Command) (Parts 1 & 2)

Thumbnail image for the sheep and cattle dog training tutorial: Inside Flanks, Circle The Sheep on Command parts 1 and 2

Dramatically improve your sheepdog or cattle dog's work with this important two-part tutorial.

Even if the dog's already competent at driving, teaching inside flanks or circling on command will not necessarily be easy.

Once the dog can do it, the dog's confidence and control over the stock will grow considerably.

In part one of this tutorial, Andy demonstrates how he uses tricks, commands, encouragement and lots of excitement, to teach the dog its inside flanks and to circle the sheep in front of him in the open field, and in part two, he shows how the training ring can make training inside flanks far easier.

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The Training Ring (Parts 1 & 2) Woolly Jumpers Bronwen & Scylla 1

Outrun (Part 2)

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The outrun marks the difference between a dog in training and a dog in work. When you no longer need to walk to your sheep, but can send the dog away to gather and bring them to you, you'll have a real sense of achievement - and a really useful sheepdog.

In The Outrun part 2, Andy demonstrates how positioning yourself, your dog and the sheep, in relation to each other, is the key to success when you're working on lengthening or widening your dog's outrun. To prove the method works we see Carew at an early stage in her career - when she'd "cross over" at the prospect of even quite a short outrun - and, just a few months later, tackling a 500 metre outrun for the first time.

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The Outrun 3 Driving (Parts 1 - 2 - 3)

Sticky Dogs

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"That dog's got too much eye!"  You'll sometimes hear this when a sheepdog, invariably a Border collie, appears mesmerised by the sheep, and reluctant to move. But is 'eye' something you're stuck with?

The "Sticky Dogs!" tutorial demonstrates that you don't have to live with this start-stop style.

In this tutorial Andy works with Mab in an assertive, but kind, and encouraging way, with the emphasis always on keeping the dog moving as much as possible.

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The Dog's Confidence How Often, and for How Long? What Shall I Do Next?

Outrun (Part 1)

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A good outrun is absolutely essential if a sheepdog is to work efficiently.

Fortunately, it's not difficult to train a dog to do an outrun, and the training process itself improves other aspects of the dog's work, such as flanking and the stop, so we use short outruns very early in training to improve the dog's all-round performance.

The Outrun Part 1 features Jed, a large, headstrong male collie with far more enthusiasm than skill. We filmed an actual training session, warts and all, to show how to start teaching the outrun, and how to make the best of it when things go wrong (as things, inevitably, will).

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The Outrun 2 The Outrun 3 Driving 1

Driving (Parts 1 – 3)

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THREE TUTORIALS to help you teach your dog to drive

PART 1.
Some sheepdog trainers dread teaching their dog to drive and it's understandable, because when we ask a dog to take the sheep or cattle away, it's contrary to the dog's instinct. If you understand what's going on though, it becomes much simpler, and more enjoyable for dog and trainer. In this tutorial you'll discover how to ease the dog into driving and reduce the stress involved when we ask the dog to take the stock away.

PART 2.
Following on from the first sheepdog driving tutorial, in this video, you will learn how to use your body position to maintain some control over the dog while it learns to drive. Just as when controlling the direction that the dog flanks around the sheep in the early stages of training, body position and point of balance are also crucial for controlling direction when teaching the drive. In this tutorial, Andy shows that putting himself in the right place at the right time, can make a huge difference to the behaviour of the dog.

PART 3.
Unashamed deception! Calling the dog back onto line when it's determined to hook the sheep back to you can be difficult and frustrating. As it drives the sheep away from the handler, the trainee dog is often so keen to get ahead of them and bring them back that it will ignore conventional flanking commands. In this tutorial, Andy uses what might be deemed an inappropriate command to call the dog back onto line and keep the sheep moving in the right direction.