HEAR MY VOICE is one of the few herding books available today that focuses on the training and use of sheep dogs working in the traditional European style. This style, often called "tending" to distinguish it from the "gathering" style of Border Collies, Kelpies, Australian Shepherds and other similar breeds, is still found in rural European communities, from France, to Sardinia, to mainland Italy, to Switzerland, and to the countries of the old Soviet bloc. This book, reveals the tending style developed in relation to the limiting conditions of the special European environments, both natural and political/social.
This book describes much more than the development of tending in its environmental and political/social contexts. It is much more than a "how to" book on training tending dogs (although the "training" chapters themselves make the book invaluable to those interested in training their dogs in the tending style). It also focuses on topics rarely found in herding books - topics particularly useful to all who work dogs for fun and/or profit, regardless of their natural working styles.
This book covers a wide range of topics. The chapter on learning theory includes the ideas and insights of psychologists working in the field of operant conditioning; the chapter on wild canines discusses the evolutionary foundation of the herding instinct; the chapter on sheep breeds discusses the behavioral characteristics of different breeds of sheep. There are chapters on plants poisonous to sheep, puppy instinct tests, real world tending applications, and more. Finally, the book has an exhaustive bibliography useful to those interested in pursuing topics further. Regardless of your favorite herding breed and your style of herding, this book will hold an invaluable place in your herding library.