Many sports enthusiasts are choosing the multi-talented collie, or sheepdog, to partner them in a variety of activities. From Agility to Freestyle, from Obedience to Tracking, the collies will do their best to enjoy and fully participate in the training and competition.
We employ their inherited talents; such as supreme concentration, athleticism, mental and physical stamina and enthusiasm to learn and tailor these skills to our sport's requirements. In the same package other talents can interfere with the very skills we are trying to develop, such as over arousal, response to uncontrolled activity, using prey behaviours.
This workshop weekend focuses on teaching you about the "whole package" and learning to use ALL their talents to create a balanced partner. A critical part of developing a healthy collie is to teach relaxation and find the "off" switch.
We shall work with all the dogs to explore their particular talents and look at rehabilitation strategies. Whatever breed we select we can never dismiss or ignore the selective breeding that has captured the characteristics we desire. The inherited behaviours have been fixed, multiplied in strengthened over many hundreds of generations in Border Collies and cannot be tossed away as "inconvenient" just because you do not personally need them..
Breeds that have roots going back of hundreds of years are specialists and you can no more stop a Setter or Spaniel enjoying the air, than stop a collie wanting to control movement. Suppression of these inherited behaviours can lead to a distortion of their personalities, immeasurable frustration and a lifetime of conflict between you and the dog.
Learning about Border Collies, and the associated working sheepdogs or heading dogs, can help you understand how they are designed, why you have specific behaviours that seem contrary to popular understanding, and why many of the regular training solutions seem ineffective. Using their inherited skills is probably the most reinforcing opportunity they can have. This passion, that often needs no external reinforcer, needs to be channelled towards your chosen activities, not pushed aside. You can use their skills to enhance existing behaviours, remove frustration, and as the perfect reinforcer. No sheep will be needed, balls make wonderful substitutes.
Once you let your Border Collie BE a Border Collie, they enjoy life much more, seem more balanced and content within themselves.
Two whole days of doing sheepdog-stuff: play, training, building the joy, building the partnership of these wonderful dogs.
Dogs welcome from 16 weeks old, no upper age limit. Barns opens at 9.30 for 10am start, finishing by 4.30pm.
Limited to 10 working spots.
© 2017 Learning About Dogs Ltd. PO Box 13, Chipping Campden, Glos GL55 6WX