As a sheep farmer for 50 years, Derek has seen firsthand the damage a loose dog can do when it gives chase to sheep on public footpaths and in fields.
Even when a dog does not outright maim the sheep with its teeth, the sheep can still injure themselves or even die from stress or injuries sustained in their panic.
Public awareness campaigns have done their part to bring to light the seriousness of sheep worrying, and we recognise that there are plenty of dog owners out there who come to the Lakes every year with their companions.
What is "De-Sheeping"?
De-Sheeping is the training and advice we give to help you address the issue of your dog chasing livestock.
A lead helps to stop the physical act of chasing, but does not address the actual desire to chase. All it takes is for a lead to come unclipped or slip out of the owner's hands, and suddenly there is nothing stopping the dog from making a beeline to the livestock.
We always strongly recommend the use of a lead when walking your dogs near livestock. But we also suggest de-sheeping lessons for owners of dogs whose excitement levels make them a potential hazard to livestock.
What is a "De-Sheeping" lesson like?
The first de-sheeping lesson is mostly theory, where you and Derek will discuss:
why a dog would give chase to sheep
how our instinctive reactions can actually exacerbate the situation
how Derek's method of stopping a dog before it leaves your feet can work
He will then show you how to put all this into practise with your dog, and you'll work off of sheep initially to get the hang of it.
Subsequent lessons are further practise of what you've learned in the first lesson, with the added challenge of sheep. We have many fields with sheep that are acclimated to the presence of a dog.
It is the best way to simulate a real-life situation of walking out in fields or fellside and coming across a flock of sheep.
Keep in mind...
WE will not stop your dog chasing sheep. It is YOU!
We can offer our advice and help, but in the end, it is entirely up to you and the work you put into addressing the issue.
We have successfully helped dozens of dogs and their owners. However, our advice to owners of dogs with a high level of chasing instinct is to ALWAYS KEEP THEM ON A LEAD AROUND LIVESTOCK.
To enquire about a de-sheeping lesson with your dog, contact us at:
Or ring us!