Saturday, April 3, 2010

16th Annual Sonoma Wine Country Sheepdog Trial

The 16th Annual Sonoma Wine Country Sheepdog Trial
Oak Springs Ranch
Judged by Don Helsley of Idaho, and Denis Birchall of Ireland

Sheepdog trials are a quintessentially British event- Border Collies having originated in the border country between England and Scotland- but there are several important trialing events in Northern California and the ION (Idaho, Oregon, and Nevada) where ranches with large sheep herds are found.
The handler's task, with the help of his or her Border Collie, is to move a flock of sheep through the course in the shortest time, and with the least amount of fuss. The handler stands at the post and directs the dog with whistled signals. A well-trained Border Collie will respond to upwards of 15 distinct commands. Bonus points for style, points deducted if the dog nips at the sheep.
I went looking for leads on a puppy- we lost our red-and-white Border Collie Britta 3 years ago, and it's time to get another.
No litter leads, but it is always a joy to watch these dogs work...