Working dogs lapping it up

Working dogs lapping it up


Steven Elliott, Winton, has been on the working dog trial circuit for the past 12 months. <i> - Picture: MATT SHERRINGTON.</i>

Steven Elliott, Winton, has been on the working dog trial circuit for the past 12 months. - Picture: MATT SHERRINGTON.

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A TRAGIC series of events led Steven Elliott to become one of the most well-known competitors on the dog trial circuit.

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A TRAGIC series of events led Steven Elliott to become one of the most well-known competitors on the dog trial circuit.

Based in Winton, Steven is the proud owner of nine Border Collie working dogs and has been training them since his accident 11 years ago.

"I was in the wheelchair, I wasn't able to get around as well, so I got the dogs to help me out with the mustering," Mr Elliott said.

"My old man had a good dog when he was a shearing contractor in the sheds growing up and then, when I had the accident, my uncle showed me what to do with training them and really inspired me to get involved in the trialling and see what they could actually do."

Mr Elliott said he loves the Border Collie breed as they have a keen instinct when moving herds.

"It's nice not to have to deal with the trivial stuff when you're mustering and what you put into them, you get so much back out."

Shady Acres Jimmy claimed first place in the Open Trial for handler Robert Johnston, Casino, at Ag-Grow in Emerald. Click on the image to view a gallery from the event.

Running a few head of Charbray and Brahman-cross cattle, Mr Elliot works his dogs each morning.

"They're great to have around and they'll help you in any way they can.

"They try and please you all the time and it's good when you can put some cattle around an obstacle, shut the gate and he's wagging his tail real hard.

"You have to have a lot of time and patience if you want to become a trainer but the result is well worth it."

Mr Elliott has already been to several trials this year and said it would be hard to put a price on a good working dog.

"If you offered me $5000, I still wouldn't give my best dog away."

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