Working off balance – Sending the dog the ‘wrong way’

Young sheepdog working off balance

Our “Sending the dog the wrong way” tutorial introduces a great exercise for widening the dog’s flanks and outrun.

Just as when we teach shedding we ask the dog to ignore a basic lesson (NOT to run through the sheep) this time we want the dog to work off balance. We’re asking the dog to forget the rule of stopping at the back of the sheep (often thought of as “stopping at 12 o’clock”) and to ignore its earliest, most basic lesson of balancing the sheep to us.

As with so many other aspects of sheepdog training, once you understand why the dog is reluctant to go “the wrong way” it becomes much easier to train it to do just that. As a result, the dog’s flanks will widen and your dog will become easier to position just where you need it.

Teaching your dog to ignore the point of balance will result in a more versatile and useful dog. Willingness to work off balance is essential for driving, and for yard and pen work.

If you need more help please leave a comment or question on the tutorial page. Don’t be shy of asking questions – if you have a particular problem, you can bet other trainers have it too

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