A VERY GOOD BOY
Cap, a pure-bred Border Collie with excellent bloodlines is also Hank’s favorite dog, one of his competitors, his “Demo Dog”, for herding and obedience demonstrations and is, Gallups says, “real good at workin sheep.”
...even though she’s not working the sheep right now. If there’s sheep to focus on, young MayBelle is there. Gallups said this is a trait of the Border Collie breed when there’s sheep around, it will be all work and no play.
Gallups favorite Border Collie Cap waiting intently for his next turn working the sheep. Training border collies and other herding dogs is a family affair for the Gallups, who have been at it for several years.
CAP AND THE THREE AMIGOS
HANK’S LITTLE GIRL
WAITIN' HIS TURN
Barrow’s Dog Whisperer
By Lorin Sinn-Clark
In addition to being a nationally known Border Collie trainer and breeder, Gallups offers training for herding breeds on sheep and teaches obedience training. He also makes and sells his own sheep herding crooks (two types) and is locally (or maybe nationally) known as a spirited and humorous teller of great stories, some of them tall tales, but most wildly entertaining and true.
Since the Gallups are a humble family, Gallups chimes in that, ”Dixie would never tell you this, but the Georgia Stock Dogs Association created a new Young Handler award because, at the age of 11, she did such a good job they wanted to give her an award, but didn’t have an official one to give.”
“I was the first one and am still the youngest one to get it,” Dixie said. ”The rest of the winners are all quite a bit older than I was.”
The Gallups family, including Hank’s wife/Dixie’s mom, Donna Sue, compete at dog trials around the nation two or three times a year. Hank said they used to go more, but he has more fun working sheep, so has pretty much given up going after championships.
Make no mistake, however, Hank’s dogs come from championship blood lines and he has bred, sold and trained world champs.
When Dixie was little, Gallups had a dog named Jill. The dog was bought for her championship blood lines.
She produced many more champions, including the current World Frisbee Dog Champ, who is one of her great-great-grandsons.
“It’s the relationship you have with
the dog, he said. We’re working together and we both like that.”
HIS PHILOSOPHY ON DOGS
“It’s like training for the Olympics,” he said. ”You have to be serious about it.”
Gallups trains dogs for sheep ranchers who need skilled, dependable working dogs. Two Border Collies he’s working with now, Lily and Buddy, are in training to go work 1,000 sheep on a Colorado sheep ranch.
“They’ve got a job to do and they have to be trained to do it right or somebody’s going to get hurt,” he said. “That’s serious business out there on the range.”
He also works with and trains dogs (and their owners) who will never compete, dogs that are pets or that may dabble in dog trails, but never get serious. Working, he says, just makes them much more balanced dogs, which makes them better pets.
WHAT HIS STUDENTS SAY
In addition to taking on special clients and dogs and training dogs to work for people from all over the country, Gallups has a regular group of students he works with (canine and human) every Tuesday evening, near where he keeps his sheep on the working part of the William Harris Homestead.
Kathy Presley, who works at Emory University, brings her two Blue Lacys (a scent, sight and herding breed developed in Texas), Blue Chip and Pearl, from Atlanta so she can work them under Gallups watchful eye. She competes with them, mostly in blood scent trials, and says since they’ve been working with Gallups, she’s noticed a huge difference in how focused her dogs stay and how well they do in trials and competitions.
“Hank works with me and the dogs,” she said. ”He teaches me as much as he teaches them. He’s amazing.”
Matt Theibert, who brings his Border Collie Duncan from Lawrenceville on Tuesday evenings, said, ”Border Collies are very, very intelligent and they can use their powers for good or evil. They need a mental challenge like a dog Sudoku. For Duncan this is it. Since we’ve been working with Hank, he’s a better pet and a much happier dog. We’ve formed a bond now Duncan and I are on the same page. Before I started working him with Hank, that wasn’t the case. Hank’s awesome. He knows what to teach you, so you can do better with your dog.”
Gallups said most of his students work with their dogs and compete in dog trials as a hobby. Once they start working with him, they begin winning first, second and third place ribbons, which, he said, makes him proud of all of them. (human and dogs.)
NOT JUST WORKING DOGS
Gallups dogs are, of course, great workers, but, when they’re not on the job, most of them have great personalities, too. Cap, Gallups five-year old favorite, is so good at working sheep that he is the demo Dog Gallups takes to festivals, working demonstrations and the two work together at the William Harris Homestead every first and third Saturday of the month, when the farm is open to the public. Gallups also competes with Cap and uses him to work sheep.
”Cap’s a great dog in every way,” Gallups said. ”Except sometimes at night, when it’s rainy and muddy after he comes in for the night, he needs his hug. That dog won’t go to sleep without a big hug from me and sometimes that gets pretty messy.”
Dixie’s current favorite is Shep, also a Border Collie long on personality, so she works and competes with him. Currently, the Gallups have two little Border Collie females, Louisiana and Maybelle, who they are working with, on indefinite owner loan.
“We’re not sure yet if they’ll work as working dogs,” Gallups said. “But, they’re trying. When I leave the house without them, I turn dog trials on T.V. and they sit there and watch them, just like they were in the audience. I’ve never had a dog that stayed as focused on the T.V. as those two do.”
“Louisiana is also, the best new Dodge Ram hood ornament ever introduced,” Gallups will proclaim, as he keeps Louisiana sitting at attention on the hood of his truck. ”I taught her to do that after she kept jumping up there, for no good reason, just to sit.”
Gallups also makes custom herding crooks with a ram’s horn top and an elaborately carved wooden staff. He sells them from his website, www.hankgallups. Com. “I’m one of the few people left who knows how to make these,” he said. ”They take so long to do that I have to charge $500-$600 for them, but if anyone wants one, I’m happy to go through the effort.”
For the more common sheep herding consumer, Gallups designed and now produces a graphite (herding) stick that is so light, he says, he gets orders from all over the United States and the world.
“I couldn’t find a stick I liked, so I started making these,” he says. “They really caught on. People think they’re talking to some big operation when they place an order, but it’s really just me.”
For more information about all things Gallups, go to www.hankgallups.com or give Hank a call at 678-975-1531.