Kelpie vs Koolie vs BC vs English Shepherd??

Discussion in 'The Dog Breeds' started by FG167, Apr 18, 2012.

  1. FG167

    FG167 New Member

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    I was aware of Kelpies and Border Collies before I joined this forum. Now I'm intrigued by Koolies and English Shepherds and would love to hear more information about them. I am not adding one anytime soon I am just really curious and would like to hear the similarities and differences.
     
  2. SaraB

    SaraB New Member

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    Linds will be able to answer better than I can but I put the koolie temperament somewhere between Border Collies and Kelpies. Border Collies are very intense, have insane focus but with that can come some crazy issues that I'm not a huge fan of. They also herd with their eyes and have that famous border collie crouch. They are also very dependent and responsive to their handlers. Kelpies are independent because they were bred to gather stock out of sight of the handler, they also tend to be pushier than border collies and they do not herd with their eyes. They are more likely to nip stock and are used a lot on cattle. Koolies are somewhere in between, not as dependent on handlers as border collies but not nearly as independent as kelpies. That is what I want in agility, I want a dog to be responsive to me but without the obsessiveness of a border collie. I was looking at kelpies for a while but the independent tendencies made me look elsewhere. The way I see it, a good koolie should be the best of both worlds without the extremes. We'll see what I say after I get my girl ;)
     
  3. Laurelin

    Laurelin I'm All Ears

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    Actually all the kelpies I have seen work are strong eyed dogs, much like a typical border collie. The USBCHA trials I've gone to have had kelpies run and they all do the crouch, stare, and stalking that BCs are so famous for. I get the feel (could be totally wrong) that English shepherds are very loose eyed and that koolies don't use as much eye as kelpies.

    To make it even more confusing, check out Welsh sheepdogs. There's a few of them around here and they are pretty well settled between the BC and ES temperaments. They're loose eyed dogs though.

    For the record, I have never been around kelpies outside of watching them at stockdog trials.
     
    Last edited: Apr 18, 2012
  4. release the hounds

    release the hounds Active Member

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    Too bad nobody around here has any Koolies and even if they did, they probably wouldnt' have loads of crazy stories with pictures as proof anyway. :)
     
  5. Shai

    Shai & the Muttly Crew

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    Well this forum has umpteen million border collies, soon-to-be three Koolies plus an honorary one (owned by family members of members), an English Shepherd and some honorary ones...

    Where the heck are our Kelpies? We clearly have a Kelpie shortage...



    Oh and for what it's worth, I wouldn't necessarily even put English Shepherds in the same group with Koolies, Kelpies, and BCs. The later seem to be herding specialists on the working side of things, whereas English Shepherds seem to be meant more as all-in-one, jack-of-all-trades generalists. Herding generalists (drive or gather, loose eyed heeler), some livestock guardian tendencies, some gun dog and treeing work...basically a bit of all the sorts of work one might expect to find on a small working farm.
     
  6. AdrianneIsabel

    AdrianneIsabel Glutton for Crazy

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    Aren't kelpies similiar to but less, erm, assholish as cattle dogs?
     
  7. PWCorgi

    PWCorgi Priscilla Winifred Corgi

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    I agree, we need more Kelpie around here.
     
  8. Laurelin

    Laurelin I'm All Ears

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    I have to say they seem to work a lot more like a border collie than an ACD from what I've seen (which is not all that much). The kelpies at the trials I went to did work a little bit more aggressively than the BCs in my newbie eyes. They would go in for a heel or a nip more often, but they relied primarily on eye. I can't think of another breed other than BCs and kelpies that are really typically strong eyed. I'm assuming that's why USBCHA trials (that I've been to) are mostly border collie with a few kelpies thrown in. You never see any other breeds running them.

    I do agree that English shepherds in my mind belong more with Aussies and other 'all purpose' kinds of herding dogs.

    I really wish Welshies were more common over here. I'm not sure how they compare to living with a BC or if they're too similar but the ones I know of are running low 4's and 3.9's in flyball. They're really neat dogs.
     
  9. *blackrose

    *blackrose "I'm kupo for kupo nuts!"

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    This was going to be my input.

    For example, I would be crazy enough to own an Australian Shepherd or an English Shepherd...I think a working bred Border Collie, Kelpie, or Koolie would be a little bit too much for me. LOL
     
  10. vandog

    vandog Merlie Girlie!

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    I've been fortunate to see examples of all work, and here is what I noted:

    Koolies: Independent, nutty personality, typically smooth coat, high incidence of double merle/merle. They are loose and upright workers, and heel more than head. I've also watched two Coolies at a Flyball tourney and was not particularly impressed by their personalities. They have a lot of engine but lacked the power.

    English Shepherds: These are all-around, farm dogs very popular in the Midwest where I grew up. I don't consider them anywhere close to these other two breeds - in fact, I put their personality closer to a Golden Retriever. The dogs I knew moved ducks but I don't think they would know what to do in a cattle situation. They are physically striking and my favorite of the three breeds here.

    Kelpie: These dogs are closest to the Border Collie and really hold their own against them. The ones I saw were extremely comparable to an ACD and had a very tough, no-nonsense temperament and were not exactly receptive to strangers. They had a lot of energy but focused well on the trial field and seemed to be well. I definitely see why they excel at working cattle - they are "hard" dogs.
     
  11. Linds

    Linds Twin 2

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    :rofl1: Nope, no crazy stories and no Koolies!

    Koolies to me seem more light hearted and happy. Life is fun. Work is fun. Things are FUN. They tend to be very people friendly, especially when younger. Traveler still loves strangers but he's become much more focused on me rather than strangers as he's aged.

    They tend to be late bloomers. Drive doesn't fully turn on till they're older and I had to really work on a retrieve, did not come naturally.

    Very vocal when excited and things are HAPPENING and known for making all sorts of noises short of outright talking.

    Not known for any animal aggression but they are a herding breed that plays rough and can easily overwhelm some other dogs.

    Strong, in your face personality. Aren't shy of slamming into you, jumping on you.

    Enjoy not touching the ground :D They like to be on things, very cat like in mannerisms but not behavior. Traveler goes around the house trying his best not to touch the ground.

    Not known for nerve issues, sound sensitivity and none for a stable temperament. Traveler slept through 4th of July while outside with people setting off fireworks left and right and a major show going on close. From the day he got off the plan he was ready for anything, I never had to worry about him getting nervous or shy with anything I took him to no matter how crowded, loud or busy it was.

    Tireless and energetic with a incredibly nice off switch built in (Still need exercise and for that off switch to be encouraged) but will spring up at any hint of things happening.

    I like how Sara said it
    . Traveler had amazing focus as a puppy and that's only grown but he's doesn't require me to give him constant feed back, he can work independently from me while taking direction easily.

    They can be overstimulated easily and need to work on being able to handle stimulating environments.
     
  12. AdrianneIsabel

    AdrianneIsabel Glutton for Crazy

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    I'll be interested to see if the ease of overstimulation is a young boy thing, I'm fascinated to see how the girls differ.
     
  13. Linds

    Linds Twin 2

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    Me too! A lot of the people I talk to have boys while most of the people with females I didn't know when they were younger. I do know most people seem to like the females for working dogs, that they tend to focus better (and I would imagine turn on and become more serious at a younger age)
     
  14. Sit Stay

    Sit Stay Not a Border Collie

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    A true to character English Shepherd shouldn't be anywhere near a Golden type of personality. I'm not sure if that's referring to attitude while working (they can definitely be quite sunny while working!) or greeting a stranger or something else. I have an attention ***** of an ES (who isn't the norm), who when introduced to a normal stranger believes it's the most exciting 30 seconds of her life, and then is happy to settle and go back to normal. Despite this, she went absolutely insane barking and sounded downright mean the other day when a man she didn't know tried to open the front door without us welcoming him in. She never would, but she sounded like she would have taken off any body part that came through that door first! After we let him in she was absolutely fine with him. Other ESs I've met have accepted me willingly in a very calm, subtle way and have been happy for pets and love, but were always more aware and interested in their people. I can only describe it as they shouldn't be wary or nervous of strangers, but just might not have a lot of interest in them. This has been more common in my experience.

    As far as the cattle comment, while I'm sure this is true for many ESs (there is a variety in the breed - one of the reasons why it's taking me so long to find a breeder for my next dog, some ESs I look at and "ehhhh" is my first reaction), there are absolutely dogs who can handle cattle. Rimrock English Shepherds/Greet Ranch in WY comes to mind - their dogs definitely work cattle in all kinds of conditions and are more than capable.

    Not feeling like writing out a big ESy novel tonight (sooo tired!) but I will try tomorrow! In the mean time Mary Peaslee of Shepherd's Way has recently updated her site and it's wonderful - I've spent a lot of time on it just tonight actually! She is a wealth of knowledge and writes very well. I love her "English Shepherds Are..." and "Working Traits In English Shepherds" pages - perhaps because she describes my dog in better words than I can! She also works her dogs on ducks, cattle, sheep and goats - trials them too.
    http://www.englishshepherds.net/

    Edited for comprehension! I can't put my thoughts into words tonight.
     
  15. Linds

    Linds Twin 2

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    Yeah, from everything you've said Sit Stay, all that I've read and the one I've met I never got the Golden feeling from them. Seemed like a more serious jack of all trade, shadow dogs from what I can tell. Very involved with their people and a good all around dog.

    Though I know they have quite a variety.
     
  16. Lizmo

    Lizmo Water Junkie

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    I'm very interested in meeting a Koolie. Because by the way Lindsey describes Traveler, Blaze and Traveler seem almost identical in terms of personality, with the exception I would be willing to say (without ever laying eyes on her dog personally :p) is Traveler might be less serious than Blaze. But even that is very up in the air to me, because Blaze has a blast while playing, being silly, etc.

    Oh, and the talking thing. Blaze will aroorooroo at you, but definitely not in the category of non-stop-talking like I *think* Koolies are.

    The main difference I read about between a Koolie and a Border Collie would be working style.I hope someday to meet a Koolie, sometimes it's very hard to see differences when just writing/reading about them.
     
  17. Shai

    Shai & the Muttly Crew

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    Out of curiosity...what exactly do you think a Golden Retriever personality is? Because every time I see someone make a comment comparing a breed to a Golden Retriever, they often haven't any idea what a Golden Retriever should be.
     
  18. RD

    RD Are you dead yet?

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    I see a HUGE variety in Kelpie temperament, as is the same with border collies. I don't know where people are finding loose-eyed, barky Kelpies because every one I've encountered has worked quite a bit like a border collie, but with more size and grip to back themselves up. Both border collies and kelpies are bred to work out of sight of the handler at times, and I consider both breeds extremely "honest" dogs.

    I don't know much about English Shepherds and Koolies. I'd consider English Shepherds more like a GSD - more of an all-around farm dog and not so much a precise herding dog. Koolies are much more vocal and in-your-face than Kelpies and BCs, and they seem friendlier with strangers as well.
     
  19. vandog

    vandog Merlie Girlie!

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    The word "happy" comes to mind, focused and intelligent. Thinkers. Protective of their family but not overly so - vocal alert over aggression. Oh, and big wiggle butts!
    BTW, I grew up hunting Goldens and my family still owns one - the field variety, not show.
     
  20. vandog

    vandog Merlie Girlie!

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    This! Exactly what I saw.
     

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