St. Louis Herding Club

St. Louis Herding Club - 3 Days + 4 Trials = Great Herding!

The St. Louis Herding Club took on the task of providing a holiday weekend of herding events for the local herding enthusiasts in south east Missouri. At Away2Me farm, owned by Debbie and Jack George, the club was the showplace of some superb feats of herding.

With four trials, I can only hit the highlights but those were exciting enough. One of the most memorable for me was in B Course Advanced Ducks. I watched J. Wade Campbell and his Border Collie, HC Wildfire's MacCallum More, put on a spectacular display of herding on some difficult call ducks. The ducks had begun to play hide and seek with the dogs around the hold pen and many dogs couldn't get them out of the pen area to perform the shed. Wade and Mac took their time. Wade showed incredible patience. And Mac showed how to find the right mix of pressure and balance to keep the ducks moving without causing them to bolt for the safety of the pen. It was a joy to see a handler and dog work so well together. It is a run I will remember for a long time and will use as a standard of performance when watching duck classes. Wade and Mac earned a First in B course Advanced Ducks with their run, as well as High In Trial on Sunday. On Saturday he earned Reserve High In Trial from A course Advanced Sheep. He lost High In Trial to his kennel mate, Wade's , HC Roy XI, also from the A course Advanced Sheep class.

Reserve High In Trial on Sunday was Bird, a Border Collie owned and handled by Mark Buckmaster. They also came from B course Advanced Ducks for their RHIT and on Saturday they also earned Reserve High In Trial. Their RHIT on Saturday was from B course Advanced Sheep. Bird is a consistent, versatile dog with a handler well tuned to him and it shows in their performances together.

Farm owner, Debbie George, had a lot of work to do making sure the stock was ready and the farm was in beautiful shape. But she also found time to handle her Border Collies, Shelby Rae and Meg to placements in the B course Advanced Sheep classes. Meg earned seconds on Saturday and Sunday. Shelby Rae earned third on Saturday and fourth on Sunday. These are two consistent working bitches that also earn their keep on the farm.

While Janice Miller's little Shetland Sheepdog, Prelude's Kitten On The Keys, UD, RAE2, HSAsd, HSBd, AX, AXJ, MXP, MJP didn't qualify in her classes, she put on a run in the B course Intermediate Duck class that was impressive. There are more and more excellent working Shetland Sheepdogs but I haven't seen any with more grit and desire than this little girl. She kept working and working. Following every command Janice asked of her until their time was up. She is a very hard working little dog and Janice should be proud of her.

Another beautiful run in the Duck classes on Monday came from Joyce Norris' Border Collie, WNT Norwood Liza, HXAscd, HIBsd and that run earned her HIT. RHIT on Monday was Jim Degen's Border Collie, BTO Masquerade, HXAs, HIBs, NA handled by Julie Degen in the A course Advanced Sheep class.

I could go on and on about the marvelous work I saw between many handlers and their dogs at this series of events but this article would become a book. It was such a joy to attend a series of events that were so well run; with a plenitude of workers; excellent judges; stock in superb condition and wonderful dogs and exhibitors. Be sure not to miss the next St. Louis Herding Club trial.

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For more information on the St. Louis Herding Club, please visit their website .