Archive for October, 2010

Mühlviertelmeisterschaft and World trial qualification

The third Mühlviertelmeisterschaft in Northern Austria was at the same time the last qualification weekend for the Austrian team for the World Trial in Scotland 2011, and a qualification trial for the Austrian and Czech Continental team for 2011.

With 35 competitors in open class this was Austria’s biggest open trial up to date.

This was the trialfield. The outrun proved to be a bit difficult, as the dogs had to run out of sight of the sheep.

As my little Julie got a bit lost in the woods on her outruns, i have to remember to fit in some directed outrun training!!

The winner of this big and interesting trial was Luca Fini’s Irish import Cap:

Wolfgang’s Lightspeed Darjeeling came second with two very nice runs. Here is her Sunday run:

Luca Fini’s Dan was third.

Our sincere thanks to the Lettner family who organized this high-class event. Below Schafscheucher Byron

According to Willi Klaffl these six Austrian competitors will get to go to the World trial 2011 now:

Kerstin with Pace

Willi with Canda

Wolfgang with Darla

Kathi with Aimee

Barbara with Tom

Synve with Julie


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Zicksee trial


We had lovely Autumn weather for our Zicksee trial training day and trial: fog in the morning, but sun and warmth for the rest of the weekend!

Thanks to all the competitors for making this very nice weekend a full success!

Kl.1: (9 competitors)

1. Rang: Magdalena and Meg

2. Rang: Synve and Aslan

3. Rang: Evelin and Dev

4. Rang: Kerstin and Wally

Kl.2: (3 competitors)

1. Rang: Christina and Baris

2. Rang: Beatrix and Chaplin

3. Rang: Magdalena and Dee

Kl. 3: (3 comppetitors)

1. Rang: Caro and Sky

2. Rang: Angie and Xela

3. Kerstin and Fay

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Austrian National Championship: Flyte Vice-Ch., Darla 3rd, Julie 4th in open class



  The Austrian National Sheepdog Championships by the Austrian FCI club ÖCBH was held on the last September weekend 2010 on a huge field in front of the spectacular back-drop of the Tyrolean mountains!


  The tought mountain sheep were quite unused to being handled by dogs in small groups, so some of them could only be moved across the field inch by inch. I must say that was rather frustrating for the competitors and the spectators! So without being able to finish the pen and the single Julie finished in fourth place and her daughter Lightspeed Darjeeling was third.

 Lightspeed Fire Flyte acchieved the title Vice-National-Champion class 1

  Little Freni also ran in open class, finished her round but was disqualified for nipping a sheep that wouldnt move! She also gave a practical working demonstration on Sunday noon that was watched with great interest by the many sheep farmers who had come to see their first working Border Collies demonstrate their skills!

All in all Freni liked Tyrol so much that she decided to move to a hill sheep farm with 800 mountain sheep!!!



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Autumn is coming

Scheinbar macht der Herbst jetzt ernst: So manche Blätter können es schon nicht mehr erwarten, sich so schnell wie möglich in ihr buntes Kleid zu werfen für ihren letzen spektakulären Auftritt!


 Autumn is coming fast now: Here is the little hill, where Wolfgang’s sheep are allowed to graze between the vinyards, carefully watched by our team of Border Collies, of course, because the wine has not yet been harvested!

My little Lightspeed Guinevere (Julie X Sup.Ch. Joe) will soon be 8 months old 


Below: Wolfgang’s favorite: Lightspeed Darjeeling (Darla) 

 And a very little video-clip of Darla working her sheep in the strong Autumn wind


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Clever Dog Lab Vienna: Flyte has got it!!!

Touch screen work at the Clever Dog Lab Vienna:
Flyte has solved his excercise as the fastest dog in this very difficult dog intelligence touch screen study!!!
In Birgit Trawöger’s study (Matching to Sample – Matching to Opposite) the dogs have to touch the symbols with their noses. If they chose the right symbol they get a click and and a treat, if they chose the wrong one they get a  blurp-sound, a black screen and no treat, and then they get another go at the same exercise. 
Both Julie and Flyte are shown a symbol at the bottom of the screen first. Then they see two symbols and have to chose one of them: Julie has to click on the symbol she has just seen and Flyte on the new one.
This seems easy enough for humans but is very very difficult for dogs, because symbols on a computer screen mean so little to them intrinsically!!!

here are two clips from Julie’ s and Flyte’s training:  
The problem is also that you cannot explain to the dogs what they have to click on. They have to make up their own theories and test them through trial and error. They tend to compare the left and right pictures and to try to remember pictures they were rewarded for earlier on. As there are 350 different pictures this takes some time! We have been at this for nearly a year now (once a week).
What is it good for?? This is pure sience. It does not help me or my dogs. But it is a good thing that there is finally a lot of studies on dog intelligence going on all over Europe at the moment. .
Of course, they find out only things long-time-dog-trainers have known all their lives, but now they can put a scientific seal under their findings and people have to believe them.
When I studied comparative ethology many years ago, they were still teaching that dogs (and other animal) had no feelings except maybe a primal fear for their lives which was thought to be instinctive and without any insight!
So beside dog intelligence they are also studying and cataloguing emotions.
So one of the most recent scientific papers they came out with was about jealosy!
They found out that if you let a dog watch another dog getting rewarded for a job, and then you ask the watching dog to do the same job, he expects a reward, too, and will sulk if you ask him to work for nothing! 😉
It does not matter if the first dogs gets sausage and the second one has to work for bread crumbs. They dont mind that, but they want to get something, too!
Any owner of more than one dog has found out that if you give something to one dog you have to give the other one something, too. He will be content with the tiniest bread crumb. 
Here is the link to the Clever Dog homepage:
You will find Julie in the logo and on the main page! 🙂

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