Loki & Tilly have new sheep to work!
We have 11 new sheep to work!
The downside is that they are 'C.A.D.E.' lambs ie handreared, who are used to wandering around the field following their owners gundogs, even butting them for milk!!
I did wonder if they would therefore take any notice of a Vallhund, however when Loki 'introduced' himself in Vallhund Style, it became apparent that these 'tame' lambs realised after all that they are SHEEP, & that Loki is a potential little WOLF!
And so begins the sometimes lengthy process of 'dog breaking' these sheep so that they can be useful to us for training.
Lots of following them around, putting them in & out of the barn, getting the dog behind them to 'fetch' them, slowly getting a partnership between the dog & sheep, so the sheep realises there is really no need to panic so long as they cooperate with the dog.
Eventually (from previous experience with my Valls), the sheep will view the 'human' as a better option than the dog, & we can do some useful training.
This is Loki driving them steadily, keeping a nice distance outside their 'flight zone' but keeping them nicely together. Nice example of 'reach & drive' as the 'Breed Standard' says!!
The second photo is Tilly, managing to calm down from her initial excitement @ seeing 11 very 'light' sheep for the first time.
Note the electric fence, which keeps 4 pigs from entering the sheep field, also the many 'obstacles' strewn around the field, knee high thistles & nettles abound!
Incidentally both Vallhunds have come into contact with the fence without apparently feeling it, I checked it out myself & it is most DEFINITELY switched on!
There are also guinea fowl in the field to distract the dogs.
But such is the reality of working your Vallhund in a Smallholding! A far cry away from 'Arena Trials' in the USA, & not akin to 'Moor Gatherings' in Yorkshire!
But the Vallhunds are loving it, tired & content after their first few sessions.
Keeping it 'Real'!