Aims and Objectives
The aims of the Association are:
- To promote amongst the sheep breeders and general public a wide human
interest in the working Sheep Dog and it’s work.
- To encourage and develop the standard of our working Sheep Dogs
- To promote, encourage and assist working Sheep Dog trials, including field
- To establish and maintain Sheep Dog Register
Membership of the association is offered to individuals at two
levels. Full membership allows the member; to compete at affiliated
trials, to register dogs, to receive all newsletters and to enjoy full
voting rights at General meetings. Associate members receive newsletters
informing them of trials and results keeping them in touch with the
Organisations wishing to run trials by paying an affiliation fee
become members and are then open for working members to compete at their
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The various trials recognised by the Association shall be:
- Encourage Trial- for workers that have never won a recognised trial. Two Encourage wins are now
permitted, the status of the dog is not considered.
- Novice Trial- for registered dogs that have not won a trial other than an Encourage trial.
- Improver Trial- for registered dogs that have never won a trial other than an Encourage or Novice trial.
- Open trial- for all registered dogs owned by financial members of a recognised Working Sheepdog trial.
Encourage classes are usually run over a modified course. With some
relaxing of the rules to assist worker to experience time on the
competition arena. Other classes are generally run on a standard South
Australian course detailed below. Time allowed for each run can vary
according to the size of course and number of entries but is usually 12
to 15 mins.
The Course: (refer to sketch below)
The course begins at a Casting Peg from which the dog is sent to
gather and bring the three sheep to the handler. Once around the peg in
an anticlockwise direction the worker may move to the first obstacle,
the Gap; consisting of 2 .7metre panels with a .9 metre gap between
them. After negotiating this workers can move on to the Race which is
2.7metres long .9 metre at entrance and .76 metre at outlet to which 2.7
metre wings are added to provide a 1.8 metre mouth. Next comes the
Bridge again 2.7 metres long .9 metre wide with 2.7 metre wings and 1.8
metre mouth. A 1.35 metre ramp gives sheep access to the platform .6
metre above the ground. From the Bridge competitors move to the final
obstacle a 2.7 metre by 1.8 metre pen with a 1.8 metre gate set square
to the mouth. The trial ends when the gate is shut on the sheep or time
elapses. Workers stand in a ring set 2.4 metres from the edge of each
obstacle. A corridor of 9 metres runs between each section of the trial,
with points lost for straying outside. Other deductions are made by the
Judge for errors like lack of progress, the dog not stopping on end of
cast, hunting sheep off course and the dog turning tail. Dogs are
disqualified for Crossing (coming between worker and the sheep), Biting
and Inferior Work.