Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Junior Herding Dog

Way back at the end of October, Kodiak entered his first sheep herding trial. Turns out he's pretty darn awesome! He ran the Junior Herding Dog course each day, qualified both times, and earned his JHD title. So proud of my little pup!

Renee took the video for me, but those darn trees were in the way of so much of the action. They had a photographer out there, and thankfully she had a good vantage point.

Kodiak had been having trouble focusing during our practices runs - too many distractions - uness we were moving quickly, so thats what I did Saturday. I didn't actually run, but I was moving at nearly a jog, which turned out to be not such a great idea on really wet ground. You can't see it well in the video, but I do a lovely fly-and-slide near the far panels. Kodiak was great - he didn't panic at all like I was afraid he would. He just waited til I got up and then kept on moving the sheep (he did have to stop and check the tree that had been watered by a dog a couple of runs before him). Kodiak even had a nice stop at the pen.

You can actually tell that I was moving fast in the photos.

Right before I launch...

Thanks goodness the ground was soft. I even managed to slide a bit. In my defense, I was not the only person to hit the ground that day.

And then we calmly strolled off to the pen.

Sunday went better in that I stayed upright, but the sheep were a little more reactive to Kodiak. I didn't set him up quite close enough to the fence, so one sheep decided to bolt. Kodiak did a pretty decent job of getting the sheep back to the flock, but he did take a bit to have fun chasing it first. Our repen wasn't quite as nice as Saturday's but that was due to the sheep being spazzy and the fact that I hadn't worked Kodiak very much on holding sheep calmly. But thats okay - he qualified!

I love this shot of his take-off.

No sheep, but a gorgeous photo.

Once we had the flock together, Kodiak did a great job of staying back so they wouldn't bolt. I was still moving briskly, but certainly not jogging.

The photographer also got some great candid shots of Kodiak over the weekend.

Overall, I was really pleased with the weekend. Kodiak even handled the environment pretty well. He had a bit of a fright when the wind blew a chair over at one point, and he certainly wasn't keen on people coming up to pet him, but thats okay. His tail was up most of the weekend and he was very rarely truly stressed. And he did a great job with the sheep! I can't wait til I have time and money again and can get him back to practicing. It'll be fun to see how he handles a regular course.


Anonymous said...

Great pics and Great runs for Kodiak!!!! Sorry you fall down and go boom :(
:)Love, Mom

Anonymous said...

I think Kodiak likes having a job to do. He looks so proud however in one of the candid shots he's watching the photographer out of the corner of his eye...tee, hee. You both did great! Mary B.

ForPetsSake said...

What fun! I think Nyxie would love this! It's nice to see dogs doing what they were meant to do :)