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Discussion Starter #1
Abby gets so excited when we go herding that she wants to take off at a full gallop around the sheep pen and after the sheep while we are herding.

I don't mean this as taking off and not listening to me - she directs just fine: sit, down, turn around (ie, go the other way), etc. all function. The problem is that she gallops rather than trots.

Any suggestions on how to get her to slow it down to a trot and not take off hopping like a gazelle after the sheep? She pulled a muscle in her right rear leg today from being overzealous in her running, and I don't want that to happen again if we're going to continue herding.
 

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Chris

Do you have a Slow Command?
Something to work on, you guys did work on OB, before (normal, fast & slow heeling).
Work on fast to slow off leash heeling, and use the Command Slow.
Then when back in the pen, give her the slow command when she goes galloping at full speed.
 

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I don't do herding, but what about taking her for a brisk 30 minute run/walk before you leave for class? That could help her burn off some energy (physical and mental) before she starts classes.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Deejays_Owner - that is an excellent idea. We do in fact have a slow command, but I guess it just wasn't registering in my head to use it. I will try that next time out!


Sarah - that's a great idea for obedience class but not so great for herding because she needs to have that energy, both physical and mental, to focus on the work and move the sheep around the pen. She just needs to do it a little slower.
 

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Chris

It does work, also work on a Stand from a fast heel, will also come in handy.
Remember the GSD is an upright breed, you don't need to down the dog like a BC.
Use the Stand command & the slow, and she will be on track!!

Good Luck
 

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Discussion Starter #7
I usually have her sit rather than stand, but she has a "stop" command (same as "stand") as well. She tends to sneak up on me from the stop if I turn my back toward the sheep. *roll eyes* We need to work on stop really meaning stop....
 

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Originally Posted By: LuvsDieterI don't do herding, but what about taking her for a brisk 30 minute run/walk before you leave for class? That could help her burn off some energy (physical and mental) before she starts classes.
I tried this with KC before her HCT test. We tugged, and tugged and tugged. Tossed sticks into the woods for her to find and tossed sticks into the woods for her to find and tossed sticks into the woods for her to find. We tugged some more. Walked the property. Basically for over an hour. Watered and crated her for maybe 15 minutes..... She STILL worked fast (almost too fast since I got stuck in the mud and could not get moving- litterally) but she passed. All of that physical and mental exercises didn't even phase KC.


I have been working on my girls with "back off" which also works to slow them down. If they do not listen to "back off" I head for a corner and make them do the hold (where they have to STOP). When they do back off we keep moving and I will pick up the pace a little bit as a reward for them. Then gradually slow down so they understand that *I* dictate the pace not them.
 

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Roxi has a "Walk Up" command used when in a direct line with her between the sheep and me. Also an "Easy" command to go gently-quietly at whatever other command I have directed. (Away, easyyyyy)

As to slowing Abby down, you might consider directing her to a "Down" whenever she goes faster than she should be.

Also going back into the round pen with a long line, so you physically slow Abby down, and teaching your (slow down) command.

Where is your voice pitch? high and excited or low and slow dragging the words out.

Does Abby react to a bottle being shaken? just enough to break her drive and look at you for a second.

Just some thoughts. Good luck
 

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Originally Posted By: TrackingPuppyRoxi has a "Walk Up" command used when in a direct line with her between the sheep and me. Also an "Easy" command to go gently-quietly at whatever other command I have directed. (Away, easyyyyy)

As to slowing Abby down, you might consider directing her to a "Down" whenever she goes faster than she should be.
We also use the walk up command, but haven't used "Easy." But, we have used the down/sit with one of our dogs with success.
 

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A lot of dogs don't generalize commands form one venue to another. They will need to be retrained to get what you want. Remember that you don't want to take all the speed out of her. You will need the speed later on in the higher levels. Also working in smaller areas work great.
 
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