pembroke welsh corgi club of the garden state

The Pembroke Welsh Corgi Club of the Garden State

pembroke welsh corgi club of the garden state

pembroke welsh corgi club of the garden state

The Pembroke Welsh Corgi Club
of the Garden State

 

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pembroke welsh corgi club of the garden state

herding instinct test

 

March 29, 2014


25 Stokes Rd.
Shamong, NJ

Stock: Well dog-broke mixed breed sheep
Tester: Katherine Spence

Well the weatherman didn't cooperate but our 2014 Herding Instinct Test day was a rousing success anyhow! Eighteen dogs showed up with their owners and handlers and 15 passed. That's an 83% "pass" rate, one of our highest! Our corgis truly are a hardy bunch; they seem to work even better in harsh conditions of mud and rain!

And speaking of a hardy bunch, corgi owners are right up there. They worked side by side with their dogs to get the job done. But the hardiest of all just may be our Herding Instinct chair, Peg Forte, and our tester, Katherine Spence. They both worked tirelessly throughout the day despite the rain and raw weather. A great big THANK YOU to both for sticking it out and giving our dogs a chance to show what they can do.

The following dogs passed in 2014:

DOG OWNER
Maddie
Richard Burd
Maya
Jacqui Wyatt
Eppy
Carol Wyatt
Mara
Melody Kist
Wally
Mark Dalangen
Connor
Cynthia & Vince Savioli
Lucy
Bobby Lord
Liam
Bobby Lord
Katie
William Wright
Kobe
Carolyn Montgomery
Leeloo
Alexander Michelson
Pickles
Taylor Swim
Bryce
Kellie Wright
Jay
Dorothy Ostella
Paddy
Ed Sheppard

For those of you who like to keep track of how we do, our history is shown below:

Event Ran Pass % Pass
3/29/14
18
15
83%
4/06/13
20
13
65%
11/05/11
10
6
60%
11/06/10
23
13
57%
11/09/09
22
15
68%
10/28/08
20
16
80%
10/27/07
19
15
79%
10/28/06
19
15
79%
10/29/05
28
21
75%
10/23/04
27
20
74%
11/1/03
26
20
77%
11/2/02
28
19
68%
11/3/01
27
19
70%
11/4/00
28
15
54%
11/6/99
27
20
74%
10/31/98
26
18
69%
11/1/97
25
17
68%
11/2/96
24
15
63%
4/1/95
20
17
85%
11/4/95
25
17
68%

Commonly Used Herding Terms

Style

Gathering: a style of bring animals to the handler, sometimes called “fetching”, or, in Australian usage, “heading”.
Driving: taking the livestock away from the handler, or from one side to another at right angles to the handler, either naturally or upon direction from the handler to do so.

Approach

Approach: the manner in which the dog comes in to the stock, a “smooth” approach being most highly prized, that is, the dog moves very steadily and surely without bounding around, weaving or jumping in aggressively.
Wide Running: a dog that makes wide passes around the stock, naturally keeping a good distant off the stock.
Close Running: a dog that runs in very close to the stock, trying to get as close as possible as it passes off the stock.

Wearing

Wearing: the side-to-side movement of the dog, in a pendulum motion or half-circle pattern, to keep the herd or flock grouped.

Bark

Force Barking: the dog generally works quietly, but in situations where the stock challenges the dog, the dog barks as a pre-curser to a nip.

Eye

Eye: an intense gaze used by the dog to control the stock, often accompanied by a creeping or crouching approach to the animals.
Strong-Eyed: shows the above qualities to a marked degree.
Medium-Eyed: showing the “eye” but without the crouching approach.
Loose-Eyed: a dog does not show an intense gaze at all times in the stock; such dogs may glance around or at the handler from time to time.

Power

Power: strong self-confidence; a dog with power can move stubborn or fighting animals, often without nipping.
Weak: lacking confidence to stand up to stubborn stock; such dogs often turn tail to run away when confronted with a challenge from the stock.

Heading: nipping at the heads of livestock to turn them.

Heeling: nipping at the lower part of the hind legs of livestock to move them forward.

Wool-pulling: nipping or gripping at the bodies of sheep, marking the flesh by tearing out hunks of wool (called “body biting” on cattle); biting at the body of any type of stock is a fault.

Outrun: the dog leaves the handler’s side and move around to the other side of stock located some distance away.

Lift: the approach to the stock to start it moving after completion of the initial outrun.

Fetch: the dog moves the stock toward the handles.

Gather: the entire outrun/lift/fetch.

Balance: the position taken by the dog, well back from the stock, which enables the dog to control the direction of the stock and cover any attempts by the stock to break away.

“Go By”: the traditional Scottish command to direct the dog to move clockwise around the stock.

“Way To Me”: the traditional Scottish command to direct the dog to move counter-clockwise around the stock.

Adapted from the Pembroke Welsh Corgi Club of America
“Herding Instinct Certification Program” (May 15, 1998)

PWCCGS Herding Instinct Test Frequently Asked Questions

Q: What training or experience does my dog need? It has never seen sheep.

A: No prior experience or training is required. However, your dog must be able to run for 5 minutes.

Q: Do I need to participate?

A: Yes, you will be in the ring with the dog.

Q: What training or experience do I need? We do not own sheep.

A: No prior experience or training is required.

Q: Why is the test conducted?

A: Many Corgis have a natural herding instinct. Corgis were originally bred to herd cattle. This test is a way to determine the strength of the inborn instinct in your Corgi or other herding breed of dog.

Q: How is the test conducted?

A: You and your dog (on a leash) are placed in a pen at least 50 feet in diameter with 3 sheep, the Tester, and a stockdog (frequently a Border Collie) which helps the Tester manage the sheep between dogs, and during if necessary, for a maximum of 15 minutes. Your dog must herd the sheep for a total of 5 minutes. If your dog does not show interest, you will be encouraged to 'herd' or chase the sheep to show the dog how.

Q: Is the test strenuous for the dog?

A: The dog must be able run for 5 minutes. If your dog is overweight or out of shape, this can be difficult.

Q: Is the test strenuous for the handler?

A: You will be in the ring, working alonside your dog. You will need to be able to keep up with your dog and with the sheep and, at times, to help your dog work the stock.

Q: Is the test cancelled if it rains?

A: No, the test is held rain or shine.

Q: Can I receive a refund if I can not attend?

A: No refunds are provided.

Q: How often do you hold the test?

A: The PWCCGS sponsors a Herding Instinct Test once a year, usually in the spring. Other breed or performance clubs may hold herding instinct tests at other times of the year.

Q: Can I enter again next year if my dog does NOT pass?

A: Yes, you may enter as often as you like.

Q: Can I enter again next year if my dog does pass?

A: Yes, you may enter as often as you like.

Q: Do I have to be a member of your club to participate in the test?

A: No, the test is open to all Pembroke Welsh Corgis, 6 months or older, and to all other herding breeds, 6 months or older, after the specified preference date for Pembroke Welsh Corgis.

Q: I am the dog's owner, can my son or daughter handle the dog?

A: Yes, anyone over the age of 12 may act as a handler.

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