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Old 10-18-2012, 04:35 PM
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monkeys23 monkeys23 is offline
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Yes, I've met many butthead Aussies LOL.

One came out to bitework for a few sessions a couple years back. He was a really serious boy! He had issues from being left in a yard during his formative first year of life in a previous home and his owner was wanting to do control work with him so he was less of a liability to manage. Eh, I have mixed feelings about his owners ideas of management/"rehab". Incidentally the only ES I've ever met was owned by the same person. Really nice girl that dog!

Always lived with BC's. Everyone in my family has BC's or Aussie/BC ranch dog mixes, or cattle dogs. Mostly BC's though.

I think they are pretty easy dogs, but they certainly are much more than you describe wanting.

The ranch bred (we're talking cattle herding on the rangeland here) BC I grew up with named Buddy was nuts until he started getting really arthritic at about 12. He was the best though, its not his fault I was the only one who ever really did anything with him. If I ever get a BC of my own I hope its as awesome as he was.

Their current BC is out of sheep trialing lines. I've not seen his paperwork so I don't know exactly. Anywho he was raised by a kid for 4H... he adores children and is very gentle with them. Some guy who trials BC on sheep bought him from that family but never trialed him, I suspect because Will isn't very confident... he'll run if one of our ewes tries to take him on and forget herding cows! He a lot more laid back than my girls and pretty tolerant and mellow with other dogs (which the one I grew up with was DA but did learn to live with a spayed ACD bitch late in life) and is mostly okay with the cats. BUT that said I would still consider him way too much dog for a home like yours. He's a "working" ranch dog that puts the sheep out every morning and brings them in at night, is my stepdad's buddy for irrgating and other stuff and he's still developed CCD about the ATV because his little BC brain isn't being worked enough. He is 8yrs old and still all go, go, go! He's always up for a hike with us despite the other stuff he does. His endurance for running isn't anywhere near what my girls' is though and usually he sticks near me during our hikes.
Long story short, most BC's need full time jobs. They can be dog reactive and/or dog agressive too. Especially same sex aggressive.

They can be guardy too. Will alerts if someone we don't know comes up the drive and he will backup our cats agains the ferals that come beat up on them. Buddy was an outside dog (as is Will), but he was NOT okay with my little bro and I wrestling with one of our baby sitters in the house because we were HIS kids. Other than that he only alerted on one person in his whole 14yrs. They aren't aggressive in the same way GSD's are, but they certainly are aware of what is "theirs" like most herding breeds are.
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Old 10-18-2012, 05:06 PM
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Aleron Aleron is offline
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Originally Posted by frostfell View Post
Now this is an interesting answer-- as Iv been told that ESs are more of a working dog (still) than Aussies and BCs, even working line AS and BC. What is everyones experience with those breeds and their temperament and particulars?
English Shepherds are more of a "general farm collie" type dog than the more specialized herding breeds like BCs or even Aussies. They are known for being great farm hands as much as they are known for being great family dogs. The ones I have been around don't have near the intense drive that a working BC or Aussie has. And I don't think they are guardy, which Aussies definitely can be. To me ESs tend to be one of the less complicated herding breeds, while still retaining their traditional temperament.

I think you could potentially find the right Aussie too, as there really is a wide range in the breed. However, narrowing your choices to breeders who don't dock greatly reduces the breeders that could be considered and would make it much harder to find what you want. And I think what you want is fairly common in ES.
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