Red Bank Shooter 2 PRGN, an English Shepherd bred by Mary Peaslee and owned by Dan and Erin Hischke of Dad's Farms Inc

American Working Farmcollies -Herding

The farmcollie has been bred for centuries to herd his own stock in his own territory. He is a bossy dog- enforcing his owner's will and rules on the lesser pack members. His herding style is dominant and authoritative. He is unsurpassed among herding breeds in rating his stock, he applies just as much force as necessary, a style that is not flashy in the herding trials- but much easier on the stock and more economical to the farmer in the long run.

Here are Farmcollie pups being introduced to the routines of the farm which they will later be expected to enforce:

And here a pup is not quite sure how to react to this big "bully".

But they soon learn who is the boss and how to react when challenged:

Will the calf rule?

Turning the calf

Getting the calf to move

Working gently

Illustrating the gentle dominance of the Farmcollie herding and guarding combination are
Sheryl Chesney's Lilly and Kala.

As in the Hunting And Guardian aspects of the farmcollie working character, the dog's sense of his own territory plays a huge part. He knows the boundary of his home and keeps the livestock in their own separate pens.

Sheryl Chesney says of her farmcollie, Lilly:

"I truly couldn't see Lilly working off our farm. She may watch and be interested but would not leave my side if the work wasn't "hers" to do. Also the way people perceive the stock dog, as a "hard eyed" herder that has to be put away from the livestock in between work. If a persons idea of a dog and the dog itself don't match then we would have done the AWF a great disservice."

Red Bank Shooter 2 PRGN
Three times before he was ten months old the heifers managed to escape into the yard and Shooter drove them back in- all without any direction from anyone- it was his strong sense of territory and will to enforce the rules on his lesser pack members that instinctively told him what to do. Other AWFA dogs that have exhibited this territorial herding are Jacob, Judah, and Lilly


Shooter had no other dog to learn from when working the cattle, and Dan slaps the cows to get them into the milking stalls, so Shooter sometimes stands on his hind legs and slaps them too! If a cow kicks at him he is all business and quickly bites her back and puts her in her place!

Series of photos showing a farmcollie pup developing the herding instinct of the all purpose farm dog.

Other aspects of the farmcollie working character:


American Working Farmcollie Association

Erin Hischke, Registrar