Shetland Sheepdog Training For Obedience And Herding

Shetland Sheepdog Training For Obedience and Herding


Camille Goldin

Shetland sheep dogs, or miniature collies, were bred for herding sheep in the Shetland Islands, and consequently have a natural instinct for chasing and herding things. Their Spitz ancestors, also bred for herding and for hunting, bred with collies, also gave them lots of energy. They are the 5th most intelligent of 132 breeds, and can learn and obey orders rapidly. Their herding temperament makes them anxious to run and play, and they can become neurotic if they are untrained with no work or exercise, so

Shetland sheepdog training

is a must.


If your dog s career is going to be herding sheep, start dog training with one sheep in a pen. Go into the pen with your Shetland sheepdog and let him or her go between you and the sheep. Corner the sheep in one end of the pen. Continue to keep the sheep in its corner by heading it off as it tries to run away. Your puppy will soon follow your lead. When your pup becomes adept at herding in the pen, continue dog training outside in an open area with a small herd of sheep. As your Shetland sheepdog learns to herd small numbers of sheep, continue Shetland sheepdog training with ever-larger herds until your dog can herd all your sheep. Whistles can be used as signals. When your dog herds the sheep, use a certain whistle, perhaps one long whistle. If your puppy hears that sound every time he or she herds, the whistle be understood as the basic command to herd. When a sheep gets loose from the flock, use another whistle, such as two short whistles, to signal what has happened. Soon your Shetland sheepdog will

learn to look for a renegade sheep at hearing two short whistles.

If you live in the suburbs and are not allowed to keep sheep, Shetland sheepdog training is still necessary to keep your Shetland sheepdog active, healthy and happy. Shetland sheepdogs like wide-open spaces, so if your taste in homes runs more to a small garden in Los Angeles than a large spread in Montana, the next best thing for Shetland sheepdog training is a dog park. Dog parks are designed for dogs and their families to run freely and have fences so that you can take your friend off leash. Let your puppy run around until he or she slows down (take a book), and then call his or her name. When your Shetland sheepdog comes to you, reward him or her with a treat and click a clicker. Repeat dog training with the treat and clicker a few times, and after enough repetitions your Shetland sheepdog will come to your call with only a click for a reward, so you will not have to carry a box of treats everywhere you go.

Dog training classes are also a fun way to train your dog and get him or her socialized with other dogs and humans. After basic training you and your dog will be ready for Shetland sheepdog training in agility. Classes are available, or you can build a training ground in your own yard for Shetland sheepdog training with tunnels, poles, and a teeter-totter. Either way you and your dog are bound to have fun and good physical activity, and you just might find a fun new hobby.

Camille Goldin, a dog lover, has conveyed her thoughts about

Shetland Sheepdog Training

for Obedience and Herding. Visit to learn more about

Dog Training


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