October 12, 2010

Contact: Betsy Hodge, Livestock Educator, 315-379-9192; Barbara Armata, 518-875-6471

Professional Sheep Dog Trainer to Hold Northern NY Workshop Oct 30-31

Canton, NY – Spots are filling up fast to work with professional sheep dog trainer and competitor Barbara Armata who will hold a workshop for dog owners and their canines October 30-31 in Canton. The two-day workshop will provide dog owners with two lessons each day at Brackett’s Horse Farm arena.

Barbara Armata has been trialing sheep herding dogs since 1991 and now competes in trials throughout the Northeastern US and in Canada. Her Border Collie “Kelly” earned Reserve Champion at the North East Border Collie Championship in 1994. Armata raises Border Collies at her Esperance, NY, Taravale Farm kennel, and has been giving lessons and holding workshops for 15 years.

“I bought my first Border Collie in 1974 to work cattle on my cutting horse and cattle ranch. ‘Tara’ was invaluable in assisting with the livestock. I later began trialing the dogs and now use them to herd my flock of Scottish Blackface and Montadale sheep,” Armata says.

Workshop organizer Betsy Hodge, a sheepdog owner and Livestock Educator with Cornell Cooperative Extension of St. Lawrence County says, “Working with a professional trainer can help you learn more about your dog and improve your dog’s herding skills. I have attended Barb’s clinics and always feel it is time well spent.”

The workshop cost is $85 per person per dog. Class size is limited. All herding breeds are welcome to participate. Observers may attend for a fee to cover lunch. Hodge says, “Those attending without dogs can learn a lot by watching and the lunchhour discussion will be about different breeds, their style of working sheep and how to work with the different dogs.”

Contact Cornell Cooperative Extension of St. Lawrence County Livestock Educator Betsy Hodge at 315-379-9192 or bmf9@cornell.edu for more details and to register.