Hungry for Herding

The signs were all there…. The ‘Bowkol’ Vallhunds and I were up against it, on that dark October evening in 2010 as we arrived at our Bed & Breakfast in the Lake District…

Firstly, the welcoming comments from the owners: ‘I thought you were going to a sheepdog Trial – but you haven’t got Sheepdogs!’ as Megan wrapped herself around their legs and Loki barked in protest. Then, over breakfast, I was presented with a copy of the Westmoreland Press, in which ‘spot the ball’ has been replaced by a ‘spot the Sheepdog’ competition on a photo of a dozen sheep on the moors!! We had entered serious Border Collie Country where no sensible Vallhund [or their owner] should dare to tread…..Sheep Herding

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Bowkol Working Vallhunds

Since June 2009 our Vallhunds – Loki [Starvon Off the Cuff for Bowkol] and Megan [Castleavery Gold Gaiety for Bowkol] have been working & training to herd sheep and, more recently, cattle.

We visit our „All Breeds‟ herding Trainer Jackie Goulder in North Yorkshire once a month in the Spring and Summer. Additionally we are very fortunate to have access to sheep at a local Agricultural College [currently a flock of 60 Rouges & Gal-ways] allowing us three or four short sessions a week. Sheep Herding

 

The dogs have both made real progress. They will now do good wide 'outruns' to gather the sheep to me, circles of „way‟ & „bye to‟ voice command, steady 'follow ons' [where I walk in front of the sheep& the dog brings up the rear], & will 'wear' from side to side instinctively to catch any 'stragglers'. A good 'stop there' has been probably the most important com-mand! Barking is now very rare & very appropriate. Incidentally we never insisted that they were 'quiet', they stopped when their confidence grew & they realised it was unnecessary. Megan is currently working on keeping 'out' & 'SLOW!' – she has a very strong heeling & driving instinct so likes to get in too close. Loki has an instinctive idea of distance, he needs acceleration while keeping out wide, but under control.

Read more: Bowkol Working Vallhunds

Swedish Vallhunds

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Fit for Purpose

Vasgotespets

Bowkol Swedish Vallhunds

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Tel:  0775 3609120

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