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‘Spot’ Light On Herding Dogs

April 15, 2022

Do you have a herding dog? Whether you’ve adopted one to help with livestock, or just as a family pet, it’s probably safe to say that your canine buddy is smart, active, and quite a character. A local Lake Echo, NS vet offers some tips on herding dog care below.

Basics

Herding dogs were developed to help corral, move, and control livestock. Today, the AKC includes 30 pups, all of whom are Very Good Boys. The Herding Group includes the Australian Cattle Dog, Border Collie, Corgi, Australian Shepherd, and German Shepherd. It may interest you to know that, prior to 1983, these pooches were all included in the Working Group. 

Training

Herding dogs are extremely smart. In fact, many of the world’s most intelligent breeds are in this category. This is definitely something to be aware of. In addition to teaching your canine companion some basic obedience commands, like Sit, Stay, Heel, Lay Down, and Come, you may be able to show him more advanced commands. Fido will also enjoy learning new tricks! 

Offer Lots Of Activity

This is one of the most important things to consider. Fido’s energy levels are pretty much set to 11 at all times. He’ll need plenty of physical activity to burn off those zoomies. A home with a fenced yard that offers lots of room to run is ideal. However, your furry buddy will still need lots (and lots) of walks and playtime. Of course, you’ll need to do some breed-specific research. A Corgi won’t have the same care or activity needs as a Border Collie.

Expect Herding

One thing that is quite common in herding dogs? They often try to ‘herd’ their humans. Fido may do this by nipping at your legs or ankles. Your canine pal may also poke you or run in circles around you. While you definitely want to discourage these behaviors, it’s important to realize that they aren’t necessarily acts of aggression. 

Provide Mental Stimulation

Because herding dogs are so intelligent, boredom is a pretty common problem with them. Fido will need lots of mental stimulation. Puzzle toys, games, and regular adventures can all help with this. Keep your pooch occupied! If your furry friend gets restless, he may channel his extra zoomies into mischief.

Do you have questions about your dog’s health or care? Contact us, your Lake Echo, NS animal clinic, today!

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