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I own a lab x collie he looks like a Labrador but has the herding instincts of a collie!
i do basic herding with him at the minute he's on chickens but we are hoping to progress soon
i was wandering do you have to have a pure bred collie to compete in trials and if so is they any where you don’t have to have a pure bred?

and if anyone knows any basic rules that would be a big help
 

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When you say collie what do you mean? (the border collie people call their dogs collies a lot of the time). How does he work? Lots of eye?

I do know that USBCHA trials (the only stockdog trials I've been to) allow other breeds but they are really geared towards border collies and their working style. I've seen kelpies run them well, but they're also a dog that works with a lot of eye.
 

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I own a lab x collie he looks like a Labrador but has the herding instincts of a collie!
i do basic herding with him at the minute he's on chickens but we are hoping to progress soon
i was wandering do you have to have a pure bred collie to compete in trials and if so is they any where you don’t have to have a pure bred?

and if anyone knows any basic rules that would be a big help
Stock dog trials means just that, the dog works stock and there are a number of stock dog trials where the dog does not have to be a particular breed. The reason that you see primarily Border Collies, is because they are the most popular breed for the job... have been bred for many, many generations to work stock.... however other dogs also dominate the competitions in other countries. In Australia, where I am from, Kelpies usually dominate the sheep yarding trials... border collies and kelpies both work the sheep trials and mainly border collies compete in the cattle trials, however you see the occasional kelpie/border collie cross, the occasional Koolie (more so in the sheep dog trials) and we even had a 1/2 New Zealand Huntaway 1/4 Kelpie & 1/4 Border Collie who was an awesome ranch dog and she was great at the cattle dog trials too. However, I knew exactly how her parents worked and who bred and owned grandparents, so even though she was a mix, she was a mix of good working bloodlines.... In saying, I usually tend to stick to the proven registered working Border Collies, because the pedigree at least gives you some idea of how the previous dogs in the pedigree worked... and if I don't know about certain dogs in a pedigree and their working ability, I do my best to find out. If you research the NZ Huntaway, many people say that they have labrador in them but that is speculation, there have been a number of breeds that were suggested could have gone to make up the Huntaway, but the history of the breed is fairly vague... they are however very popular working dogs in Australia and in particular New Zealand.. for working sheep farms.

There are trials here that are based on time, which are usually cattle trials. The dogs don't have as much eye as sheep dogs do, and the trial is judged on times... I prefer the traditional working sheep or cattle trial where there is a time limit but the dog is judged on ability to mavouvre the sheep or cattle around a set course... this way you get to see how much eye a dog has (but you don't want them to be sticky eyed either) and how much natural instinct the dog uses and how well they work the cattle. I prefer this type of trial because personally when I am working sheep or cattle, I want everything to run smoothly, you don't just rush in at a herd of cattle and try and get them moved as quickly as possible, it puts too much pressure on the cattle and too much pressure on the dog. And you never want to work livestock that way. In saying that the cattle timed trials are still fun and nice to have a bit of fun at, especially if you have a dog that is loose eyed but has a lot of drive and just wants to get the job done. Australian Cattle Dogs (heelers) are often loose eyed and are generally not as strong eyed as the Collies and Kelpies and hence are usually better for cattle and often more suited as yard dogs because they want to heel. You can get Collies and Kelpies depending on bloodlines that are more loose eyed as well... in other words they use body position more than eye to move the stock. A stong eyed dog is when you see the dog creeping low and staring at the cattle/sheep. It can depend a lot on bloodlines of the particular breed as well... there are strains of collie that are more suited to sheep as they are a little soft on cattle and vice versa... which is why you don't see many Australian cattle Dogs working sheep...

If you have a dog that you just want to have a bit of fun with, check and see if there is a local herding club. You will need to progress to sheep. I start mine on young sheep, or older lambs once they are old enough and once they have their basic commands. Here is a pic of a NZ Huntaway, I personally have always thought that they had lab in them, but of course I am just guessing.

My good 1/2 Huntaway that I trialed was also black & tan and she looked similar to the Huntaway but her ears had a little more lift and she wasn't quite as big, the collie & kelpie refined her a little more. We would be in the hills with a lot of brush (in the Australian bush) and she and her father the pure Huntaway would take off, the collies would stay with us... they could be gone for half and hour or more and then we would hear them barking, continually. We would follow the barking and most of the time, they would be circling a herd of cattle and waiting for us to get there... Chances are they had put them together in a bunch and then kept them together. Then the collies would take over and bring them back to us. They work totally different to the collies and kelpies and bark a lot.

You see a lot of people having fun doing trialing for a hobby with their GSDs, Corgis etc.. non of which are super trial dogs but they have fun and that is what it is all about... if you are wanting to start out, I say give it a try and see how you go... there are going to be the hard core trial people who will tell you not to bother.... and I personally wouldn't myself, because we use our dogs on our ranch as well as trial them... but what these people don't understand is that not everyone wants a hard core trial dog and if you are just interested in going out and having a bit of fun, go for it... eventually you may get hooked and want to start doing some serious trials and you just might eventually get a collie to trial... but it can't hurt for you and your dog just to have some fun.My best advice is to go to some trials and watch, and also watch some of the fun trials people are doing with their corgis, GSDs etc... no disrespect to them at all, but you should be able to notice the difference between the border collies at the bigger trials and the other breeds at the fun trials... but most importantly you will learn to teach your dog to stay somewhat balanced, if the dog lacks natural balance and you can learn control and body language etc if your dog shows enough natural ability.
 

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ASCA (Australian Shepherd Club of America) allows all herding breeds and mixes of herding breeds, so does AHBA (American Herding Breeds Association). I think the Border collie group USBCHA technically allows other breeds but you'll seldom see them there since the courses are so specifically structured to the BC's strong points.
 

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Depending on where you are situated, many states have their own Stock Dog registry... most hold both cattle and sheep trials as far as I know... where I live there are many more cattle trials than sheep ... probably because I dont' live in a big sheep area.

http://www.ahba-herding.org/
 
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