There are many times on our farm that we have to repeat, “Work smarter, not harder.” In the case of moving sheep throughout two property pastures, this is definitely something to consider!
Our sheep dog, named Nike (pronounce like “Mike” but named for the Nike swoosh [like the tennis shoe] on his neck), makes our job easier. But more importantly, Nike helps our sheep smoothly transition to new surroundings. He doesn’t push too far or too fast, but gently guides sheep as a group to a new location.
Sheep are animals that like company. If one front leader moves in one direction, the rest will likely follow. And if the group is separated, animals get anxious. Border collies like Nike have been trained for years to have instinct to herd animals. In fact, this weekend in Utah, the Soldier Hollow Classic is a world-class sheepdog championship trial.
We’re very thankful to have a dog to work alongside our farm animals and he’s thankful to be well cared for in the wide open spaces of the country.