Cattledogs to compete
Cattledog enthusiasts from across the country will be traveling to the Phillips County Fairgrounds on Saturday and Sunday, Sept. 15-16, for a National Cattledog Association-sponsored cattledog trial in the new pavilion.
The first round of the V- Cattledog Trials will include four classes of competition, and owners will have the chance to earn prizes and NCA qualifying points.
A sufficient number of NCA qualifying points will allow dogs to participate in NCA regional and national finals. Nationals are held in Cheyenne, Wyoming, in June, making the Holyoke trials one of the first events since the 2018 finals.
Organizer Brian Biesemeier, whose dog Quinn placed third in the intermediate class at the 2018 nationals, said cattledog trials got their start from ranchers coming up with challenges to compare their dogs’ herding abilities. Most of the competing animals are border collies that are actively used in cattle herding operations.
During a trial, dogs must herd calves through a series of obstacles, while receiving minimal direction from their handlers. The handlers stand in a small, marked area and can only communicate with their dog by giving visual and auditory cues. Scores are based on the number of calves run through the course in a given time.
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