Tuesday, 16 June 2009

The Last Block Week and Gianni's Herding Day

Well I’m back from College and the Herding Day and back working on the centre

College was great and good to catch up with other students. We had lectures on Separation related disorders, training plans and using stooge dogs. There was lots of opportunity for training and Dinky is really coming on I’m very pleased with our progress, especially as we haven’t done much over the past weeks.
I had my Behaviour Counselling assessment at 9am on Wednesday morning, the first one, that’s what happens when your Surname begins with A!
I was quite nervous as this was my first practical assessment at Level 5, but I sailed through getting a total of 91%. What a swat!!!

On Thursday me and another student has some free time as assessments where taking place so we took the dogs on the Westwood for a run. This is a large grassed area near Beverley Racecourse where cows graze. Denise’s dog had got spooked the other day and she thinks it was the Cows and he did not want to go out onto the Westwood so we left him in the car and took Dinky. When we headed back and got over the hill toward the cars, poor Brody was sat in the car surrounded by about 70 Cows!! We had to wait till they had moved so we could get to the cars.

Saturday was Gianni Canopoli's herding Clinic, what an experience. It was great. The place was lovely and so were all the people. Lynda and Pauline were there who are tutors at Bishop Burton. Lynda has already done some herding with her working line bearded collies and her young dog was amazing to watch work. Gianni asked if she was for sale! It was really interesting watching the dogs and seeing the natural instinct kick in and if it didn’t seeing how Gianni help to encourage it. There were mainly beardies, but also Pauline’s Spanish Water Dog, a Spitz, Border collie and Canaan dog and of course Dinky and Snoopy.
Snoopy was scared of the Sheep as I expected and ran away trying to get out of the field much to the rest of groups amusement. You can always guarantee wherever I take him he shows me up and makes people laugh! That’s why I love him, so I officially have a sheepdog that is scared of sheep.

Dinky however was really liking the sheep. What was good was when the sheep were out of the pen and she chased I was able to stop her and call her back. After 2 sessions I decided not to take it further as Dinky seemed to want to just chase or play with the sheep and Gianni said she may, but probably would not want to herd them as she is more of a flock guardian than a herder. As she has a strong drive to chase and have worked hard to control it I was pleased that even on full flight I could stop her. Gianni said he works a lot on the continent with dogs like leos training them not to chase and commented on the good control I have with her.
I’m planning to take my trainers on one of the summer ones as it is really educational just watching.

Now I’m back working on the centre and the classes are booking up fast!

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