Herding dogs generally are divided into a couple different categories. One includes those canines that actually herd the flocks back into groups while keeping the animals within the sight of a human. These are the gatherers. The other category would be the herding dogs known as drivers. Their responsibility is to drive the flock from one area to another with little help from humans. The gatherer dogs are able to easily accept training to be both a gatherer and a driver while the natural driver herding dogs are more difficult to train as a gatherer.
The German Shepherd is a great herding dog because they have a high IQ and can be cross trained to do either type of herding or both. The dogs have to accept training specific to herding other animals and the German Shepherds excel at this. The handler has to have the respect of his dog so they can work as a team and this takes time and training, but when trained correctly these dogs can be counted on to protect many different groups of animals.
I know if I had a need for a herding dog I could trust and rely on it would be this breed because the German Shepherd is a great herding dog.
Do you own a German Shepherd? Please tell us about your dog.