For hundreds of years, people have used dogs to help them move and manage livestock. Herding competition is one of the most difficult, yet satisfying things you can do in partnership with your Boxer.

A dog needs no specific training to participate in an instinct test. The judge is looking for the dog’s natural ability to move and control livestock. As you train your dog and enter into competition in the various trial programs, you then will demonstrate more advanced skills that allow you to showcase what a very intelligent and willing partner a Boxer can be. A herding Boxer must be a thinking partner in this sport.

The courses, like Agility trial courses, are usually known in advance and you are supplied with a map or description of where you must move the stock. A judge then scores your “run” according to how well you and your dog moved the stock through the obstacles the course presents.

There are several competition herding trial programs. The American Kennel Club, The American Herding Breed Association, The Canadian Kennel Club and the United States Border Collie Handlers Association. All offer ranch and arena courses to challenge you and your Boxer!


Can Boxers Herd Sheep? Ewe Bet!

Dogumentary TV
April 20, 2019

Reegan Ray is totally committed to herding with her boxers. Her Boxer named, “Pip” became the first titled herding boxer in America. Boxers are working dogs but not typically thought of as a shepherd. They were used on farms as a utility dog and likely did a little hunting as well.

For the past 15 years, Boxer fanciers from the USA, Canada and England have been collaborating to promote their dogs’ working abilities, including herding skills. Dedicated Boxer owners have trained their dogs and earned herding titles through other herding organizations, including AHBA and CKC, to demonstrate to the AKC the innate herding instinct that Boxers can possess. In 2008, the Boxer Club of San Fernando Valley sponsored the first Herding Instinct Test in the USA solely for Boxers drawing an entry of 15, and all but two passed the test. In 2010, one Boxer was shown non-competitively in a novice class at a USBCHA Border Collie trial in Vista, CA, surprising bemused Border Collie handlers with her calm, focused attention on the stock!

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