Rules of the Victorian Sheep Dog Association for trials judges
The Victorian Working Sheep Dog
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COMMAND:- The dogs should obey the commands of his master. Points shall be deducted if the dog is led to the starting point.
A perfect cast on the open is a semi-circle on stationary sheep.
A dog taking up a commanding position behind the sheep a little to the opposite side from which he was cast is preferable.
A dog stopping, and commencing the approach, before completing the semi-circle, (sheep not having travelled since cast was commenced), should have points deducted.
If sheep show inclinations of moving, or do move towards the side on which the dog was cast, the dog should stop and take command before getting behind, and steady the sheep back to the line of the straight pull.
When sheep are against a fence or in an awkward position, and the worker has to stop his dog in the cast, no points should be deducted.
When cast on the blind, and the dog is diverting from the true course, and he stops, or is stopped, and is re-directed, sheep unsighted, and he then makes a good cast from that direction, no points should be deducted.
On completion of cast, the dogs should steady, or stop, and approach his sheep very steadily, deliberate in his actions, and take command of the sheep.
The dogs when he completes his approach should lift or move his sheep in a quiet, steady, commanding way.
The sheep should be brought to the worker at a steady pace.
If the sheep are diverting from the straight course, the dog should be on the wing to steady the sheep back to the true course.
If the sheep gallop down the course, and the dog lifted steadily, no points to be deducted.
Special attention should be paid to the temperament of the sheep.
When negotiating obstacles, points may be deducted if the sheep are allowed to circle the obstacle.
If they pass the wing and are brought back in the same way, no points to be deducted.
When proceeding from one obstacle to another, the worker should proceed in a straight line from one position to the other without stopping.
The sheep should be taken by the dog in as straight a line as the temperament of the sheep will allow.
If a dog is doing good work with difficult sheep between the obstacles, no points to be deducted.
A dog crossing his cast, biting or injuring the sheep should be rung off.
When the sheep are stuck in an obstacle, and the dog snaps at it, or nips the sheep without pulling wool, or injuring the sheep, points may be deducted but the dog should not be disqualified, a bark being much preferred.
The dog should maintain an active interest in his work.
Deliberately looking away from his charge, is lacking in style, a glance to the right or left is permissible.
Turning tail to the sheep is generally a fault, but there are occasions when in quick movements ground may be gained instead of lost, and allowances should be made for such occasions.
No decision should be given on time, a stated time being given to complete the course, and if the full time be taken no points can be deducted.
Points shall be deducted if the worker fails to move briskly, in a straight line from position to position, without stopping or if he should, in any way block the sheep, or assist his dog to do the work.
Strict attention should be paid to this.
When competing, no worker shall carry a stick or other instrument more than two foot in length.
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