Stock dog breeders and misc. q's...

Discussion in 'Cattle' started by farmy, Nov 30, 2004.

  1. farmy

    farmy Well-Known Member

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    Can anyone recommend a good stock dog breeder in the northeast? We live in Northern New York, very close to Vermont, an hour south of the Canadian border. We're looking for a pup with good working bloodlines, Border collie, ACD, or a mix. I've done web searches but am not coming up with much.

    Does anyone have an opinion on retraining older rescued dogs for farm work?

    This will be our first foray into working dogs, so any advice on picking a pup (or a breeder) would be appreciated. We have a small dairy herd (4), a scottish highland beef herd (15 and growing), and will add sheep in the next year or two. We practice rotational grazing so move stock every day, but not very far. Also, we have 20 pastured pigs. Can stock dogs help move pigs??

    Finally, can anyone recommend the best books or videos on training stock dogs? Is green dog/green trainer as bad a combination with dogs as it is with horses? I don't think we can afford to buy a started dog, even if we could find one around here, after looking at prices.

    TIA, cattle folks, for your input!

    -Kristin
     
  2. Wilbur

    Wilbur Well-Known Member

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    Don't know about true working dogs such as border collies etc but what about a German Shepherd? They certainly have the background for it and you may find one cheaper (there tend to be more breeders of them around) and closer than a Border Collie. Just a thought! Good luck.
     

  3. timberweed

    timberweed Active Member

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    Check out http://www.englishshepherd.org/index.htm. These are great all around farm dogs, and the site has some breeder listings. There are breeders in the following NY towns: Alden, Medina, Hagaman, East Bethany and Cassadaga. Let me know if you want email addresses for any of these breeders.
     
  4. timberweed

    timberweed Active Member

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    The book I like is [/U]The Farmer's Dog by John Holmes.
     
  5. Hank - Narita

    Hank - Narita Well-Known Member

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    Join the Aussie herding group on Yahoo. They can help you.
     
  6. Valmai

    Valmai Well-Known Member

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    Do you know of anyone who has working dogs? Often there are trained dogs that are getting a bit too old and slow, and owners like to see them go to small farms where they dont have to work as hard. They can keep their paws in and not get bored, the alternative is usually that big paddock in the sky.
     
  7. dcs13

    dcs13 Member

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    I have German Shepherds...They work nicely when trained properly...
    [​IMG]
     
  8. farmy

    farmy Well-Known Member

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    Wow, you guys are good.

    Timeberweed, I PM'ed you asking for the breeders' emails. I'm intrigued by the english shepherd, since it seems less intense than the border collie and maybe better suited for our farm.

    I'd love to find an older working dog, Valmai. We wouldn't be asking for olympic performances on our place. There aren't any big cattle/sheep operations in our area, but maybe I'll try a search over in Vermont and see what I can turn up. I wonder if ranchers further afield would consider shipping a dog?

    I sure wouldn't have thought of GSDs, but they're something to consider.


    Thanks again for the input and keep the ideas comin'!

    -Kristin
     
  9. TedH71

    TedH71 Well-Known Member Supporter

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    If you didn't have sheep I would've recommended the catahoula but since you have sheep, I would recommend a Texas Lacy. I decided to get a Lacy since catahoulas tend to develop slowly and be rough with stock that aren't bigger than theirselves and alot of catahoula people are breeding out the working instincts and keeping the glass eyed beautiful dogs around. Lacys are the Texas state dog and are used as stock dogs, hog dogs, and bloodtrailing dogs. Mine is the smartest dog and seems to be more intelligent than my catahoulas..that's saying alot for a guy who has raised and trained catahoulas for 7 years! On the minus side, lacys are hard to get in your neck of the woods. Lacys are excellent on goats, cattle, chicken, geese, and apparently sheep too. If you want to check them out then go to www.lacydog.com/ worth a look and some of those breeders will ship.

    Ted
     
  10. Valmai

    Valmai Well-Known Member

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    If you do get a semi-retired working dog the most important question to ask is "What are the commands"!!!!! Lots of sheep farmers over here use the most obscure commands such as 'Get away' means bring the sheep here. Dont know if its true but someone told me that it is because other people wont know if the dog is disobeying a command at trials. :D :D
     
  11. vtfarma

    vtfarma Well-Known Member

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    Our ACDs are great with pigs. two had a dog fight with a pig that was out. No actually connection of teeth except a nip but they handle the animals well. I am in Vermont. We were given our breeding pair by a woman who breeds them here in Georgia. They do not have papers and neither do hers. Ours came from her without any training ... they had to leave their initial owner due to her illness and ended up in a city home tied to a porch - they ran away and were beaten somewhere along the way in their lives. THey have come along way. The male is excellent, as is one of their sons, the mom and other son are a work in progress. They both love to chase just for fun but are quickly learning to not do that - unless it is one of our cats!!! ;) She may not be breeding anymore. If you are interested I can pm her name and number to you. SHe may have some. Ours have had only one litter and a false or lost pregnancy.

    We move our cows across the road to different fields every few days so they do their job.

    Laurie
     
  12. Trisha-MN

    Trisha-MN www.BilriteFarms.com

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    We have black Angus, dairy & dual purpose goats and poultry. The dogs we use on our farm are:

    A Farmcollie (ES X BC - an excellent all around farm dog. She amazes us every day with what she is able to help us with)

    An English Shepherd (he's about 1.5 years so still a pup but coming along nicely, very good with stubborn stock and for general use. Needs to work on his finesse but hey - he's just a baby yet) and

    An Aussie (we've had her for just over a year and we are finally communicating with her and she with us. She is great for detail work and for delicate situations that don't call for a lot of power. She came with some training on her but wasn't used to open farm work.

    Each dog is different and we use them for different situations. But for an all around dog right now our Farmcollie is wonderful.

    Trisha-MN