Friday, August 23, 2013

Sheepdog Competition at Soldier Hollow

522775_10150828553138273_1212888242_n(Photo courtesy of the Soldier Hollow Classic Facebook page)


Sheepdog Trial and other Dog-Friendly Events Demonstrate Human-Canine Relationship

HEBER CITY, Utah (Aug. 22, 2013) — The Soldier Hollow Sheepdog Classic, the largest annual sheepdog trial competition in the world, is back this year in Heber City, Utah, from Friday, Aug. 30, through Monday, Sept. 2, with a variety of competitions and performances to celebrate the bond between human and canine.

Highlights of the event include the following: 

Sheepdog Competition

The world’s most highly trained dogs and their handlers will work together to herd Utah wild-range sheep on one of the most challenging courses for herding sheep. Gold, silver and bronze medals will be awarded to the top three scorers during the final round on Labor Day.

This year competitors come from Canada, South Africa, Brazil, the United Kingdom and the United States — including two nationally ranked Utah handlers.  Notable competitors include:

  • Michael Gallagher from Ireland, 2010 Winner of the International Championship in the United Kingdom.
  • Tom Wilson from Scotland, former Soldier Hollow Gold Medalist and repeated guest on The Late Show with David Letterman (where he has herded sheep into NY taxi cabs).
  • Faansie Basson from South Africa, former Soldier Hollow Bronze and Silver Medalist and Current South African Handler of the Year.
  • Fenando Loiola Alves from Brazil, two-time Brazilian National Champion.
  • Scott Glen from Alberta, Canada; the only person to win all North American Major Titles (Soldier Hollow, Meeker, Bluegrass, American and Canadian Nationals).
  • Amanda Milliken, five-time Canadian National Champion, North American Champion and former Soldier Hollow medalist (currently ranked 1 and 2 in North America).

Splash Dog Competition

A nationally recognized dog enthusiast event that promotes dock jumping and dock diving across the United States, Splash Dogs promises to provide a family-oriented competitive atmosphere. Dog owners can apply online at Splash Dogs tracks overall event and individual ranking and offers a multi-level titling program for all participants. 

Soldier Hollow Shootout

New this year is a sheepdog competition on the main field that will take place on Monday, Sept. 2, at the end of the Grand Championship Competition. It will consist of short, compressed runs for the runner-up dogs. Runs will take only four minutes, making this brand-new component a fast-paced delight for spectators.   

Muttallica Dog and Pony Show

Also new to the Soldier Hollow Sheepdog Classic, this performance means attendees will literally be able to enjoy a dog and pony show. The performers include a Mini Horse and 15 rescued and adopted dogs. The dogs do amazing high jumps, tricks and Frisbee catching. They also include dancing, basketball, painting and even musical instruments in the performance.    

Earthwings Raptor Show

Featuring owls, hawks, falcons and other unique birds, this demonstration shows the majesty of birds in flight. 

Additional events include a Wild Wonders show featuring wild and exotic animals, pet first aid and care seminars, Navajo rugs, outdoor cooking demos, bagpipe performances by the Salt Lake Scots, police K-9 demos, arts and crafts. International food, beverages and products from sheepherding cultures will also be available, including Utah Lamb.

For ticket information, schedules and a video about the event, visit Please remember: spectators’ dogs are not allowed at the event.

47751_10151879930243273_1007360815_nAbout the Solider Hollow Sheepdog Competition

The Soldier Hollow Sheepdog Competition began in 2003 and has since become the world’s largest annual sheepdog competition. With sheepdogs and trainers from around the world, this event draws more than 25,000 attendees annually. Located in Heber City, Utah, on one of the most challenging sheepdog courses, this competition requires trained sheepdogs (mostly Border Collies) to gather wild sheep and guide them through a series of gates and to separate designated sheep into a small pen within 12 minutes. For more information and to view a video about the sheepdog competition, visit

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