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Old 05-03-2012, 06:13 PM
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Default When it's not a border collie... (Welsh sheepdogs!)

Okay so funny/slightly embarrassing story. My agility trainer usually brings two of her dogs to class with her. One is a small, petite, smooth black and white BC girl. The other is a dog that looks like a larger sized rough coated tricolor split face border collie. I just realized TODAY (after 9 weeks) that he's actually not a border collie at all. (That's the good thing about reading your trainer's website I guess.) Embarrassing: 1) BCs are one of my favorite breeds. You'd think I'd recognize when a dog is or isn't a BC. 2) I've met 4 of this dog's relatives, including it's dam and two littermates. It never ever occurred to me that he was a Welshie. Ah well...

Anyways, I've been doing some research because I've loved all 5 I've met. They seem so great and fun and athletic. From my reading they are supposed to be more independent and vocal than BCs. They also are loose eyed dogs, unlike BCs, used to herd pretty much anything. Some Welsh sheepdogs back sheep like koolies and kelpies do. They come in smooth and rough and pretty much any color. The breed almost went extinct and was absorbed into BCs as they gained more popularity but they have recently made a Welsh sheepdog club and are working on keeping the Welsh dogs a separate strain.

Good references:
http://www.lasrocosa.com/aussiehistory1.html
http://www.gis.net/~shepdog/BC_Museu...hSheepDog.html
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Welsh_Sheepdog
http://www.herdingontheweb.com/welsh.htm
http://www.welshsheepdogsociety.com/

I thought the herding breed enthusiasts might find them interesting. Unfortunately it seems like it is almost impossible to get one unless you live in Wales and have a farm. It seems like a lot of the breed people are against them becoming pet and sports dogs. It's a shame, the ones I'm around are just fabulous sports dogs and very even tempered.
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Old 05-03-2012, 06:15 PM
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So where did your trainer get the one she has then? Someone breeding them near you?
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Old 05-03-2012, 06:17 PM
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There is speculation that Aussies have quite a bit of Welsh to them, particularly Welsh Bab-Tails.
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Old 05-03-2012, 06:18 PM
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Yep, there's a lady that brought hers here when they moved to the US. I don't know if they really breed often or just the one litter but all their puppies ended up going to flyball and dog sports people. I met the first 3 years ago at my old sports club. 4 are on the local flyball team I tried out a few times. And now my agility trainer has one. Very cool dogs.

ETA: Of course since all the ones I have met are closely related no telling if it's the breed or if it's the family of dogs around here that I like.
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Old 05-03-2012, 06:21 PM
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They do look quite similar though! I've only met one Welsh Sheepdog, and he was in Wales, so a true Welshman! He was lovely.
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Old 05-03-2012, 06:22 PM
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Well..... duh, course they're amazeballs... they're Welsh

They're also very uncommon... hardly a breed, more a type.

As someone who is soon to move to rural mid-Wales, I can say I have never met one (knowingly). When I see one, I'll make sure to let you know.

eta, my partner knows a lot of the old farmers, I'll ask him to ask. I really do have my doubt as a "breed". Wales is friggin tiny, and as a girl who grew up watching one man and his dog, they look like you're bog standard working collie to me (i know people will not agree with this).
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Old 05-03-2012, 06:30 PM
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I know there are some people that think of them as a strain of working BC native to Wales but from what I can tell they don't work very similarly. I've never seen it in person of course but they don't do the crouching and eye of a BC.

In sports I can't really tell a difference at all between the two.

I do think they're more of a type but I think BCs are also a type too. I was wondering if you guys in the UK see them more often.
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Old 05-03-2012, 06:35 PM
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I've been doing research on extinct dog breeds, and of course there are a lot of collie types that have ceased to be their own breeds but make up the breeds we have. Anyway, through that I've heard a lot mention about Welsh Sheepdogs. I find them fascinating, and whether like Dizzy said, they are a type, or a breed, I've been wanting to meet one!
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Old 05-03-2012, 06:39 PM
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In Wales on farms, there's likely a lot. Tavvy, the only Welshy I have ever met, was a working dog although when I met him he was 16 and long retired! He was 'replaced' by a BC and she was much smaller and finer than him.

I think most of the farmers in the UK, even the Welsh ones, will use collies these days. I'm in a rural farming area in Scotland, and I've never seen anything but collies working the sheep.
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Old 05-03-2012, 07:28 PM
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I can give you the name of a breeder in OK than moved from Wales to the US - she brought a few along with her.
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