It’s time to get moving if your dog has too much “eye”.
To a greater or lesser degree, border collies use “eye” (a particularly intense and assertive stare) to move stock. In some dogs the look is very exaggerated while other dogs work with their heads up, and don’t appear to be using eye at all. Sticky dogs – dogs that “stick” while they’re working – are often described as having too much eye.
Either type of dog is perfectly capable of getting the job done.
But when a handler finds, or more often is told, that their dog has too much eye it can sound like a big problem. The dog works in a stop-start fashion, frequently “sticking” on the point of balance. But too much eye can be improved, and it isn’t difficult if you understand what’s happening.
Does my sticky dog have too much eye?
If your dog has an excellent stop, but stays there, the problem is likely to be eye. This was exactly the problem we had with Mab, the subject of our Sticky Dogs! tutorial. Mab works with that typical stop-start action, sometimes seemingly rooted to the spot.
In “Sticky Dogs” you’ll see that with a kind, encouraging but assertive approach, the dog learns that it needs to keep moving to get the job done.
The emphasis in this tutorial is on movement, and often it’s the handler who needs to move.
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