Sophie is mostly yellow Lab, but I swear she has some Shepherd in her. She was born on a farm and came to us after her first family had to give her up, so I don't know her whole story, but she does have some Shepherd-esque qualities!
When I got her, I was told she could herd chickens. I never really put her to the test, but the other day, I had to round up three wayward duck -girls and get them back to the barn. They've been going AWOL lately over the fence or through the barn, bent on investigating the garden. Fortunately we haven't had any predators about lately.
Sophie was with me when I found the girls behind the barn, so I asked her to help me shepherd the ducks home. And she did!
"Come on ladies, let's move it along!"
Waddle, waddle, waddle... there go Bianca (bottom), Danger Duck (middle) and Karène (top)!
"Smartly now, ladies, before the raccoons and foxes and coyotes come out!"
A little deke to the left...
...a little deke to the right...
...and soon the girls were back at the barn!
Sophie blew it just before the barn, though. She got a little excited and one of the ducks started to fly. Now, the dogs are very good about not chasing the chickens and ducks, but if somebody starts flying, it's a whole new ball game. They love to run after the flying creature, with me yelling at them to stop (which they always do.) They aren't malicious about it. I think the dogs want to fly too! Plus those girl-ducks are strong aviators and could fly up onto the barn roof if they really wanted to. (The drakes are too heavy for that. It would be like flying Butterball turkeys.)
I called Sophie off, and Karène (the one being chased) landed and waddled into the barn.
Anyone else got a duck herder out there??
If you're not Canadian and have never heard of a "deke", enlighten yourself here!