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When Sheep Gang Up on Sheepdog

Born to herd a flock, this pooch goes AWOL

An army of sheep prepare to face down the reluctant sheepdog

Like so many of his ancestors, Border collie Ci was born and bred to herd sheep. So how come, when confronted with a herd of sheep, he simply takes off in the opposite direction?

Four-year-old Ci, whose name is Welsh for “dog”, is trained to help move the flock of 100 sheep on his family’s farm in Somerset, England.

“Collies are very instinctive, and Ci wants to do it but he is terrified of them,” said his mom, Jane Lippington, who runs the farm with her husband, Donald.

“If they run away from him he will go after them like a proper sheepdog. But the moment they turn and face him he runs away. Sheep can be quite aggressive if they think they have the upper hand – they stamp their feet and gang up and act like an army.”

As soon as Ci sees the army of wooly bullies heading toward him, he heads off in the opposite direction.

“The only way to make it work is for me to get behind them first and shoo them so they run away from you and then Ci joins in,” Lippington said. “It just means a lot more work for us.”

Still, she isn’t about to exchange Ci for a better dog.

“He might be the worst sheepdog, but there’s no way we would be without Ci. He’s part of the family.”

Watch the showdown as the sheep gang up on Ci: