Training my Koolie

Training Koolies



Here we hope to offer you some advise on training your koolie dogs. Be aware that koolies are extremely active (physically and mentally) dogs which are a working or herding breed. They have been bred over more than 150 years to work stock.  It takes an extremely active and intelligent dog to be able to work long hours sometimes for days at a time, in all kinds of conditions, not stopping for rest or relaxation until the job at hand is done. These dogs are mentally capable of working out for themselves what job needs to be done, then going on and doing it before needing to be commanded, things like finding fly blown sheep in a mob and cutting them out  and holding them for treatment or collecting a working horse when told which one by name, proves that their mental needs are a lot more than basic sit stay commands and they need regular interaction (more than once a day pat with the feed bowl).

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Companion Koolie Training


First thing if you have decided you would like a Koolie, - if you have ideas it will be some in-ornate object to help decorate your back yard forget it, they need plenty of mental stimulation as well as physical, they like to have plenty to occupy there brain, or they will finish up yard crazy, then off to the pound or worse still the collar is removed and they are shown the gate.

We still want a koolie, o.k. before we go on I would like to say when I refer to the dog it is referring to either sex unless otherwise stated, the best age to purchase your pup is 7 to 8 weeks, no younger, enquire around for a reputable breeder, not the local pet shop, if possible have a look at the litter, their parents too if you can or a photo is better than nothing, when you  look at the litter, if you have kids leave them home, it is best to leave your heart home as well. This pup is going to be a family member for the next 12 or 14 years may be more so it needs a lot of thought, I might add that if you don't take to the pup don't buy it, look to other breeders.

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Koolies compared to Kelpies

Although a Koolie owner for the last 24 years Michelle has only been involved in stockdog training of both her Koolie and Kelpie for the last 6 years, so offers a unique and fresh perspective without expectations of any results or outcomes. Her ambition was to train her working dogs in the practical application of working stock and for yard, three sheep and utility trials, along the way she discovered what is involved in training working dogs with natural talent for the work they were bred for.

Currently I own and work Chance a red merle male Koolie on sheep and cattle.

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Koolies As Companions

Koolies were bred to be working dogs but that does not rule them out as companion dogs. I was going to say 'mere' companion dogs but there is nothing in anyway mere about a dog that is a true companion as thousands of dog lovers worldwide can testify.

In a recent survey of dog breeds and their overall relative intelligence it was not the German Shepherd or the smart little Poodle that came out on top but the Border Collie. For Border Collie read Koolie for Koolies were developed predominantly from collies from the border region in Britain to do the same work. They are sometimes called German Koolies because much of the work in developing the breed was done by German farming settlers here in Australia.

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The Koolie Temperament

Australian Koolies have been worked on stock in Australia since the early 1800's.

In order to keep up with the demands of the grazier and stockman the Koolie needed to have stamina for 14 hour days, ability to move from one type of job to another, be it droving cattle on the long mile, or backing sheep in the race, the Koolie had to do it all.

Their ability allowed them to be gentle and calm around the ewes and lambs yet still know when to use their bite on mongrel bulls and steers. The Koolie needed to be agile and quick, able to jump, dodge, chase, hold and drive and do it well and the Koolie has.

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