The more time you devote to your dog, the stronger the bond between you.
We strongly advise owners to spend as much time as possible with their dogs. The more the dog knows and trusts you, the more it will bond, and the better it’ll work for you – for instance if your dog’s used to being told to ‘stay there’ he’ll know just what you mean when you finally get him to stop behind his sheep and then say ‘stay there’.
It probably won’t happen immediately. When you first take your dog to sheep (if it’s a keen dog) most of the obedience training you’ve given it will be temporarily be totally obliterated by the “red mist” which seems to descend when a dog first encounters sheep. But as you continue to train the dog and begin to gain some control over it, the dog will gradually relax and gain confidence. It’s at this point that early training (away from sheep) can pay off.
Spend as much time as possible with the dog – but don’t “spoil” it. Be the boss – FIRM, FAIR and CONSISTENT.