There’s more to Experience Days than just Supercar Driving, Helicopter Tours and Bungee Jumping! Don’t get us wrong, we love all of these things, but we also love our more alternative experience providers, and with almost 2,000 products available, we thought we’d give you an insight into something a little different.
Last week, we chatted with ‘Nij’ – our friendly Sheep Dog Training expert – who told us a little about his story, and what you can expect from an experience day with him and his canine colleagues.
1) Hi Nij, can you tell us a little about the history of your business?
I had a chance meeting with a Welsh farmer in 1987, who encouraged me to work my dogs with sheep. I thoroughly enjoyed the experience and searched for somewhere to train my own dogs. Gradually, the interest turned into a hobby and now is a way of life.
2) And how did this passion for Sheepdog Training turn into a career?
I have always been a dog trainer first and a shepherd second, and so I was more interested in the psychology of dogs and how their minds work. I knew I wanted to train in a way which was kind and empathetic and gradually my ideas took shape. In 2010 I published a book called “Sheepdog Training and Trials” and decided to become a full time dog trainer. I now work, not only with sheep and Border Collies, but with all breeds of dog in a variety of different settings – both here in the UK and abroad – running training clinics and seminars.
3) Wow, that’s pretty impressive! Do you have any exclusive information that you can share with us?
My dog, Mac, followed up his title of ‘Midshires Champion’ in 2014 by also becoming the ‘Midshires Aggregate’ winner. I have two young dogs – Todd and Mist – who are the subjects of my forthcoming DVD on sheepdog training. So far, only the people who have attended our experience days have had the pleasure of seeing these young dogs work.
4) Other than this, what makes your experiences so unique and special for customers?
Our experience days are personal and totally geared to the individual so you will not be part of a group of people you do not know.
Our experience days take place in one of the most scenic and popular areas for tourists in the country, on the borders of Leicestershire and Rutland. Rutland is the smallest historic English county, offering something for everyone. The market towns of Oakham, Stamford and Rockingham are a short drive away – offering many quaint shops and cafes – whilst Rutland Water, a large artificial reservoir is popular for water sports and cyclists, and also with walkers and bird watchers as it is an open nature reserve for wildfowl and a breeding site for ospreys. Launde Abbey offers tranquillity, lovely landscaped gardens and wonderful, locally sourced food at reasonable prices.
5) What, would you say is your most frequently asked question from customers?
Most people assume that working dogs cannot be pets. However, my dogs are brought up within the household and come in the house as well as living outside. It strengthens our bond and friendship.
6) Thank you for chatting with us. Do you have anything else you’d like to add?
The experience days are becoming very popular both for families and for corporate team building days and run throughout the year.
Click here if you would like to take part in one of Nij’s Sheepdog Training Experiences, and get back to nature.