Judah herds, but only works the livestock when needed. He is not trained in herding, but does some herding by instinct only. Judah sometimes uses dominance behaviors to control livestock (ie. quiet growling, shouldering, dominant style with upright posture) He herds independently when he sees the need.Judah can recognize when stock is “out of place”. for example- one day I caught him “running the sheep” in the pasture. I was about to correct him when my children informed me that they had watched him herd several lambs who had gotten out of the fence back into the pasture. He then proceeded to herd all the sheep away from the hole in the fence and up to the barnyard.
Judah has great protective interest in baby livestock. We had more than our share of bummer lambs/kids born this year many of which were raised for several days in the house. Judah always exhibited great gentleness with them (washing them, nuzzling them, etc.) and attempted to protect them from the other dogs.
Judah shows gentle protective behavior toward children. He loves my children. They range in age from newborn to fourteen years. Just recently our two year old wandered away from his brothers and made it about 1/4 mile up our road and into a neighbor’s cornfield before we discovered he was missing. We were frantic as we have a creek on the property that was quite deep with recent flooding. When we found our son, he was sitting in the field as happy as can be with Judah by his side!
Judah knows the limits of his territory and stays there. He regularly patrols his territory, especially at night. He does not show agression toward human strangers unless they pose a threat. He will bark and act distrustful of strangers. Once he knows someone he is friendly. He will settle down and stop barking if he knows it is someone we approve of.
Judah barks when he has treed prey and remains there for a period of time, barking periodically until someone goes to him. He stands on the side of the tree periodically while barking. This occurs quite a bit with raccoons on our property.
Judah routinely hunts rodents and other pests and eliminates them. He will hunt and kill pests even when not hungry. Judah hunts mice in the barn and rabbits. If he is in tall grass he will bound and jump as if he is trying to see where the rabbit went. Also we have been letting him run loose with our Great Pyranees Nita at night to patrol our farm. Soon after we started this we found a dead raccoon left in our driveway, obviously killed by the dogs (Judah?) This goes along with the info on treeing prey.
Judah is moderately “soft”. He is very independent minded, but trainable. He is somewhere in the middle as far as”Dominant” and “Submissive” are concerned. He seems to have an independent attitude, but will show submissiveness upon correction.
Judah generally gets along with other dogs. He is very tolerant of humans, especially young ones. Although we teach our children to be kind and gentle with the animals, a little child’s idea of gentle is sometimes not the same as an adult’s. The young ones can lean on , lay on, hug, and pet this dog with no more than a lick in the face.