LGD priorities

Being or having good LGDs involves many factors. For example:  health, genetics, environment, (responsible) ownership, monitoring, guidance, etc. Each situation requires a specific approach. Features like tourist activity, fenced or free range livestock farming, shepherd presence and predator presence & density are important facets for how to run and manage your LGDs.

Important traits for LGDs are; self-control, intelligence, low prey drive and high vigilance to secure LGDs being trustworthy with all kinds of livestock, yet extremely vigilant to keep various threats away from livestock or property. The aim should be, to do this in a non lethal way and with few to no physical damage for both LGD and opposing threat. It isn’t always possible to achieve the desired results, but we should set the standards high.

Expecting high standards requires LGDs with high potential. There are many vigilant dogs and it is easy to create dogs that charge everything. I have the privilege to be among many different LGDs from many different shepherds. I see numerous examples of working LGDs, good & bad and quite some different breeds or crosses. There are LGDs who aggressively charge everything that enters their domain, without descent estimation of the potential threat. These kind of LGDs are not good for the general LGD reputation and in addition; quite some of these LGDs don’t deter predators. They lack serious skills and/or they are badly managed. Good (intelligent) LGDs show their presence and vigilance, claim their territory, but know the difference between good and bad intentions. LGDs as such are very efficient in many situations and tend to approach most events in the right way.

Canine Efficiency aims for the best results and sets high standards. It all begins with the right LGDs, meaning they must possess high potentials. Mentally & physically healthy and stable. Athletic and well adapted to the climate and terrain. Intelligent and well developed natural canine skills to obtain efficient pack collaboration, which is needed to deter large predators, and well developed additional skills to accurately react to numerous (potential) threats.

The Romanian Carpathian Shepherd dog (Ciobanesc Romanesc Carpatin) is the LGD breed Canine Efficiency works with.  Carpatins meet our requirements very well. When the factor, LGDs with high potential, is covered; the foundations for the desired results are met. Responsible rearing and guiding young LGDs for their specific work situation, preferably together with experienced & adult LGDs, are the next required steps in the process. Bonding with livestock, socializing with adult people and children, socializing with other (farm) animals and growing up in a pack will lead to a stable starting position for LGD utilization. Responsible and knowledgeable ownership are required continuously to maintain high LGD standards. The dynamic environment asks for a constant keen demeanor of the shepherd/rancher. Being prepared and aware of what could occur in the surroundings is extremely important.

Making sure that LGDs reach their full potential is beneficial for the LGDs, the owner, the environment and overall reputation. Working with the right LGDs is of vital importance. Breeding selection plays a vital role in this. I personally enjoy it very much when high potential and high standards lead to the desired result. It’s a win-win situation. Our focus must be on high standards to ensure a positive future for good LGDs.