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Discussion Starter #1
I took Stosh to a herding trainer on Monday for an evaluation and she said he has a great deal of potential and natural ability- she wants to take us on for training! She was doubtful because of his young age but was really surprised he did so well. First of all he recognized the sheep, kept his focus on them, wasn't afraid, didn't bark and didn't try to bite or run after them even when the bolted one time in our direction. One jumped over Stosh and landed on him but he let it go. It was so fascinating to watch him do what he was meant to do, we worked really well together even though we had never done it before- he's never even seen a sheep before. She had us walk behind the sheep at an even pace and move them around the pen in different directions. When I noticed that they were about to bolt, I told Stosh to 'down' and wait until they settled, then we'd continue. After just a few minutes he could anticipate it and would down just as I was about to say it. He was so proud of himself, I was so proud of him! He had this look on his face like "Now I'm a real dog". Can't wait to start training.
 

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It was the most fun we've ever had together! We were in the pen for about an hour but it went by so fast. He wanted to jump ahead a few lessons- when the sheep were directly across the pen from us he wanted to cut across and head them back the other direction, which was so cool to see him figure out by himself, but not what we were supposed to be doing. The funniest part was when he got home- he jumped out of the truck, ran over to a tree and lifted his leg to pee on it. That's the first time he's ever lifted his leg! Guess he decided that he's a dog now, not a puppy anymore.
 

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Congrats! Nice to own a SHEPHERD.
 

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This trainer has only worked with 2 or 3 gsds before- the owners never stuck with it long enough for her to know how they would have done but she thinks Stosh has more aptitude than the others. Hopefully he'll do his breed proud!
 

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Congrats to you and Stosh Zoe would have definitely wanted to bite the sheep or at least initiate play,lol She's a shepherd, but apparently not the herding kind,lol Hope you guys really get into it and excel:)
 

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Congratulations!! That is very exciting! And.....um, we're gonna need to see some pictures of his progress ;)
 

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That's really neat! I would love to give that a try!
 

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It was the most amazing thing to witness- my pup using all the instinct and generations of breeding that were born into him. When we got into the pen the trainer told me to take a minute and absorb that this was Stosh's one and only first time and to try and be a part of it rather than let all the stuff that was happening make me nervous. It was great advice and made all the difference in the experience. I have a new respect him and I think he feels the same
 

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Isn't it great when you find where your dog's strengths are, and you can have a blast along with him?

Good luck. Looks like you have a new past time.

Herding will be an awesome way to exercise body and mind. You can title in it as well.

Happy Herding!
 

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Oh how fun! Keep us updated with reports and video.
 
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