dakotas first herding lesson


New Member
Dakota had his first herding lesson yesterday. He had so much fun, but according to the trainer he is to well trained, and has a permission problem. It started when I first let him loose on them. The other first timers ran to the sheep and didn’t stop chasing them until some one caught them. Not Dakota, I though he would because he his whole body was shaking with anticipation watching the sheep but when I unclipped the leash and walked to the trainer I turned around and he asked me if I had told him to stay because he was still sitting in the spot that I hade left him just staring at the sheep. So I hade to call him to us and what he would do is run up to the sheep but when they would try to run away he would lie down the trainer had to bring in his dog to coax coda into chasing them. In the end he explained to me that Dakota hade a problem with permission he didn’t think that he was allowed to that is why he didn’t and once we got him going he would try to keep them in the corner, he said that Dakota was also a dog that liked order so when he got control he didn’t want to cause them to become un orderly so he wouldn’t move them. But by the end as long as we kept the sheep out of the corners started to let loose and become a “real†border collie. But what is most important is he had a great time and that is why we went:dogbiggrin:.


Experienced Member
Wow. I bet it was a great experience for both of you. The permission issue makes sense doesn't it. Will we be getting pics of any future sessions? Really pleased for both of you!

luna may

New Member
Good proggress, especially for one lesson. Keep up the good work! While you're at it, I too would like to see Dakota flourish and bloom in his honorable collie herding duties :dogsmile:.
Now that you think of it, how do you let your dog understand that he's sucessed with their trick? I'm asking because Kesem has exactly the same problem- she doesn't really understand when she's can stop sitting or staying, and is free to go and roam the vast unexplored landscape of our house :doglaugh:. This is usually sorted out with a little prod, though :doghappy:.
What do you think?


New Member
sounds like you are off to a great start on a new activity!! By the way was this a "herding instinct test" or did Dakota take any such test prior to the lesson?


Honored Member
Staff member
Congratulations on getting into this fun activity!!! I've found a reputable trainer in my area finally, and I'm hoping I can get Zeke into herding. I know very little about the subject, and he wants to work so bad. He loves agility, but he's a true stock dog at heart. So, hopefully someday soon we'll be in your shoes. ^^ Have fun and good luck!!! =D


New Member
dakota didnt have an instinct test before this it was kind of part of the lesson the trainer who has been training and judging herding dogs of all breeds for 20 yrs basically said the dog will tell us if he dosent have the instinct to do this, and after his lesson he said that he should get over the premission issue in his next lesson or two, and that it is just because he is generalizing between my horses which is a no no to chase and the sheep. And the next time i go i will try to get my mom to come to take pictures. Because in the lessons he also is training me how to help coda so i cant take pictures and avoid getting run over by ten sheep at the same time, but i wish i could i really wanted pictues from his first time.i will try to keep you posted on his progress:dogbiggrin:


Well-Known Member
Try actively teaching a "Go Play" command. My dogs know that when off leash they have to stay within 15 feet unless otherwise told to "heel", etc. They get the "Go Play" command and they are free to run to their hearts content. It's like giving them permission without a curfew (until I call them back of course).


New Member
Woo hoo!! It's exciting isn't it!! I am totally addicted to herding and I had never done it prior to my BC pup. It's a lot of fun and builds a nice bond between you and your dog. I agree, nothing better than watching your BC do what they are breed to do. How fun!! Do post pictures/ video if you get some!! :) Sounds like you have a good instructor also.
I posted a video in the blog section of my BC pup at a clinic we did awhile back. It is amazing to see their progres each week also.
Good work! Have fun! Dakota is a handsome boy!


New Member
Hey cool, I will be taking my BC tomorrow to see what he thinks of sheep. Quick question for you, where did you go? You are close to me, I'm in Moreno Valley.



New Member
Sometimes you have to let your hair down, so to speak and get in there and chase and clap and use a high picth voice to excite your dog if he/she is slow to turn on, that usually will do the trick. You may have to do this several times, but eventually your dog will loosen up and then you can go from there.


New Member
Dakota has been improving in leaps and bounds. We have not gone back to the trainer but are intending to soon. Right after I took him to his first lesson I found out that he had a mild case of (OCD) which is basically a tear in the cartilage of the shoulder. So he hade to be crated for about 6 weeks with the only exercise being walks to go potty. Everyone that has a border collie will know how hard this was for me and him but it worked and he no longer has a limp even after he plays which is when it would be the worst.

So now since he is better I have been working him on my 3 Suffolk breeding ewes. They were not to happy about this and it took a couple of nips and a tooth scraped butt but they are now "dog broke" although it is said that it is not good to let a young untrained dog out with sheep that are not dog broke I think this is what Dakota needed to get him moving because if he didn’t herd them they would chase him. So he had to keep moving. He now is moving and even getting between them and the wall and actually moving them off of the fence where as before he would just lie down when they would run. He then started just chaseing them up and down the fence. He is also starting to learn the directional commands of come by and away to me and has a good easy command and lie down (to give the girls a little break).

For any one that has a puppy that is considering herding I would suggest that you use a command other than come when teaching your puppy to come. Because when I first started teaching the come by command Dakota would stop and try to come to me. We are getting over this but it would have been a lot less confusing for him if I had started out by teaching come with a different command such as here. Which I am now changing him over to, to try to lesson the confusion. Over all Dakota is doing great I cant wait to go back to the trainers. He loves it so much and is having so much fun working, it amazes me that 15 min. with the girls wears him out more than 30 minutes of playing ball.:doglaugh:


Experienced Member
It's always wonderful to see a dog herding! :)

I guess I'd try herding, if Pami wasn't afraid of animals other than dogs... :(