Here is a little clip I put together today showing :
-arcing out to gather the sheep as opposed to straight in.
- Finding that perfect spot behind the sheep, causing them to come directly to me.
After she reached the balance point, I told her to go right to push the sheep over to the fence. Otherwise she would have brought them to me.
- natural ability to square off from the sheep instead of directly into them during a direction change.
-moving the sheep in a direction other than to the handler
-willingness to listen to the handler.
These Natural talents are bred into the dog, complemented, and refined through training. Not all dogs are capable of this kind of work.
In this video I have Greta do a short gather, then ask her to flank to the right pushing the sheep over to the fence.
Next I have her manipulate the sheep a little so they string out along the fence. Next she walks in to put pressure on a few sheep to leave the group(shed). She then leaves the other group, and continues pressuring the 3 to move them to the trailer. As you can see the sheep are not going in if the dog isn't right The first approach one sheep went around because she pushed a little too much at the wrong time.
Usually I would be helping at the trailer(holding the door) and during shedding, but my job was the camera.
Same dog earlier this summer fetching sheep from out in the field(apx 270 yards). This shows where the natural cast, gather, stock read, and balance come in handy as she brings the sheep to me.