#1) You have to have good dogs. I've got that. They can do the job.
#2) You have to know what you are doing. Well, I'll give myself a 60% as far as herding goes.
#3) You have to have stamina. I've got that. I'm up at 5 every morning.
#4) You have to work your dogs regularly.....I've changed my routine here.
#5) You have to train consistently. Working on that one all of the time.
#6) You have to make the correction work. Oh gosh, that's a hard one.
#7) You have to train on different sheep. Another hard one.
#8) You need to train in different environments. That's why I have a stock trailer.
#9) You need money to travel and enter trials. I'm still working. Bought a travel trailer.
#10) You have to enjoy it, win, lose, DQ or RT.
I was thinking about the above this morning after working my dogs. All 3 of my dogs worked great. We only did arena work. We had some new sheep. I had to ask myself why they were working so well. It's because instead of only working twice a week, 3 times at the most, I have stepped it up since May to 3 times a week, sometimes 4 times. BIG difference. So you people out there with your own ranches, count yourselves as VERY lucky. I'm rural, but don't have the land to work sheep. I can house them to trailer them to the desert in the winter. That has made a huge difference. I struck a deal with a local ranch (for the best saddle I have ever owned) free works on their stock for a year. Where there's a will, there is a way.
No one ever said sheepdoggin' was easy.