Education paves the way for talented working dogs at Henty

WORKING dogs were put through their paces at an educational event in southern NSW.

Ten participants gathered at the Henty Machinery Field Day site on Friday to work their dogs on some first-cross lambs.

Stephen Condell of Downside was at Henty to share his knowledge and to explain the importance of putting valuable foundations on young working dog pups.

He spoke to the participants about pup selection and then worked with them during one-on-one sessions so they could improve their skills while moving lambs. Obedience and respect, along with some useful commands, were outlined.

Event organiser Rick Clancy of Pleasant Hills said the educational day was being held at Henty after the interest and success which flowed from the event last year.

He said it was hoped the working dog educational day would become an annual fixture.

Mr Clancy said landholders certainly appreciated the skills of a handy working dog. He said auction prices for trained Kelpies were increasing and plenty of people wanted to learn the skills to train their own pups.

Meanwhile, Roy Hamilton of Rand participated in the event and said he was hoping what he learned would make a positive difference with his young pup Dusty.

Dusty, aged 15-months is set to play a role on the Rand property which grows crops and runs sheep.

Mr Hamilton explained the operation was 80 per cent cropping and 20 per cent sheep. This meant there wasn't continuous sheep work, yet a skilled dog would still make a big difference.

"I love sheep work," Mr Hamilton said.

However, he joked that young Dusty had been in the bad books on Friday morning after ending up heading to the creek with another dog. He was hoping the Kelpie would redeem himself during the practical sessions at Henty.

Participants worked their dogs on first-cross lambs in the yards at the Henty site.

Each year in September, during the popular Henty Machinery Field Days, it is these exact same yards where some of the best dogs and their handlers participate in the yard dog trials.