Kelpie vs Huntaway for working sheep

unlacedgecko

Member
Livestock Farmer
We’ve currently only got one working collie and one in retirement. I could do with another dog for working in pens predominately. The collies we’ve had and have now struggle with pushing sheep in the pens. They end up backing off in that situation. So I was thinking a kelpie or huntaway would be stronger for working in pens. Or is it luck of the draw and it’s the individual dog rather than the breed. Just interested to hear peoples thoughts.

Get better collies

 

Fellstoflats

Member
Livestock Farmer
Depends on the individual more than the breed. My Huntaway is more nervous and timid than my Collie by some margin but hopefully as she gets older this will change. Would be a huntaway over a Kelpie for me anyday, a much more relaxed breed with the bonus of a deep bark.

Huntaway everytime here too- BIL has two kelpies. The bark drives me up the bloody wall..
 

unlacedgecko

Member
Livestock Farmer
I don’t know how you folks go on with dogs in pens. I chain mine up the moment I’ve got the sheep in. These horned rats pile up and smother enough when left alone in the pen, never mind when a dogs in there too! 🤦🏻‍♂️🤦🏻‍♂️
You must have an excellent fixed set up, or be there all day. Or have a lot of human labour.

My dogs mean I can pretty much work single handed.
 

sherg

Member
Location
shropshire
I don’t know how you folks go on with dogs in pens. I chain mine up the moment I’ve got the sheep in. These horned rats pile up and smother enough when left alone in the pen, never mind when a dogs in there too! 🤦🏻‍♂️🤦🏻‍♂️
They're a different breed altogether I've seen blackie lambs in the market being mouthed in the spring and they're piling on top of each other, even cheviots aren't that bad
 

Anymulewilldo

Member
Livestock Farmer
Location
Cheshire
You must have an excellent fixed set up, or be there all day. Or have a lot of human labour.

My dogs mean I can pretty much work single handed.
Mostly through the handling trailer, it’s very rough and ready. Get 500 blackies in a bunch and I can pretty much guarantee one death in the pens 🤦🏻‍♂️ They just keep piling up!
Now, that’s true. There is nearly always 2 of us most of the time. Can shed 500 in 2 hours pretty easy. Pens would be trashed and broken legs everywhere if the dogs went in though
 
For big jobs, we have the black and tan weapon.

I have seen! Smart dog.

But to be fair as I said, as time goes on, I am less a fan of dogs in the pens. The are odd occasions where they are very handy but generally if the pen is set up right and the sheep arent stressed then they tend to flow well. A beaters flag is also a handy tool.

I think ‘sometimes’ we are all a bit keen to use dogs for jobs because we have them, and it looks / feels cool.

I know a lad who was very proud of his big huntaway which would back sheep, it looked very very cool and we all stood and marvled. Unfortunately it did cause a number of ewes to abort!

As I said, sometimes they are a vital tool in a pen.
 

neilo

Member
Mixed Farmer
Location
Montgomeryshire
Two of my collies are great in the pens, even worked from my spot on the CombiClamp, the third less so. Every dog is different.

Someone brought his young Huntaway for shearing a couple of times and the way the sheep moved to his deep bark was incredible to see. He’d do my head in if he was here all the time though.

Kelpies are great yard dogs from what I’ve seen, but way behind a decent collie for gathering ‘normal’ fields (maybe different on hills though?), when collies are a joy to see working. Kelpies need an off switch though, or I’d end up doing an @unlacedgecko !🤐
 

Anymulewilldo

Member
Livestock Farmer
Location
Cheshire
Two of my collies are great in the pens, even worked from my spot on the CombiClamp, the third less so. Every dog is different.

Someone brought his young Huntaway for shearing a couple of times and the way the sheep moved to his deep bark was incredible to see. He’d do my head in if he was here all the time though.

Kelpies are great yard dogs from what I’ve seen, but way behind a decent collie for gathering ‘normal’ fields (maybe different on hills though?), when collies are a joy to see working. Kelpies need an off switch though, or I’d end up doing an @unlacedgecko !🤐
Someone gave Grandad a Kelpie bitch pup 6/7 years ago, be 5/6 months old. I said at the time, get that sold. We don’t want the noisy swine. Sure enough after a month Grandad couldn’t stand the noise any longer. Mate of mine came up, saw the little kelpie and offered to buy her. Grandad gave it him on the proviso he kept her for life. She’s turned into a right little sheep and cattle bitch. Very nice to watch, but Jesus she needs a mute switch!! 😳😳😳
 

Al R

Member
Livestock Farmer
Location
West Wales
Get better collies

You need a Shepherd! Rams wouldn’t dare even face mine! @CopperBeech has seen videos of her 🤣 Still training her. On the fixed setup if you let the sheep fill themselves I can get 20 big ewes in the dosing pen, with human encouragement/shakers up to 28 ewes. With the huntaway behind probably 34 ewes. With the shepherd, around 40 ewes! Work rate like a kelpie, size of a big huntaway and agility of a collie.
E4D4F0F6-AD2B-42D7-889A-0D9CE5AFBEC7.jpeg
 

Celt83

Member
Livestock Farmer
You need a Shepherd! Rams wouldn’t dare even face mine! @CopperBeech has seen videos of her 🤣 Still training her. On the fixed setup if you let the sheep fill themselves I can get 20 big ewes in the dosing pen, with human encouragement/shakers up to 28 ewes. With the huntaway behind probably 34 ewes. With the shepherd, around 40 ewes! Work rate like a kelpie, size of a big huntaway and agility of a collie. View attachment 1045710
Would they be good cattle dogs Al?
 

Mc115reed

Member
Livestock Farmer
Someone gave Grandad a Kelpie bitch pup 6/7 years ago, be 5/6 months old. I said at the time, get that sold. We don’t want the noisy swine. Sure enough after a month Grandad couldn’t stand the noise any longer. Mate of mine came up, saw the little kelpie and offered to buy her. Grandad gave it him on the proviso he kept her for life. She’s turned into a right little sheep and cattle bitch. Very nice to watch, but Jesus she needs a mute switch!! 😳😳😳
Took about an hour too teach my dog to stop barking on the “quiet” command … kelpies are unreal the speed they learn at and the things they can learn compared too a collie
 

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HSENI names new farm safety champions

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Written by William Kellett from Agriland

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The Health and Safety Executive for Northern Ireland (HSENI) alongside the Farm Safety Partnership (FSP), has named new farm safety champions and commended the outstanding work on farm safety that has been carried out in the farming community in the last 20 years.

Two of these champions are Malcom Downey, retired principal inspector for the Agri/Food team in HSENI and Harry Sinclair, current chair of the Farm Safety Partnership and former president of the Ulster Farmers’ Union (UFU).

Improving farm safety is the key aim of HSENI’s and the FSP’s work and...
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