New Buyers/Cowdog Value
June 30th, 2010
Possibly the most difficult part about buying a good cowdog that is trained and ready to go to work is finding one that is for sale. It has often been said that you can wear out a new pick up driving around trying to find a good cowdog to buy. One of the goals of Cowdog World is to improve this.
Currently the demand for good cowdogs far outweighs the supply and there are several reasons for this.
For starters,even with selective breeding it is still difficult to raise a top notch cowdog. All puppies simply don't turn into good cowdogs. Although good bloodlines certainly increase the odds, there is still no guarantee.
Another reason it is so difficult to buy a good cowdog is because the price has not yet caught up with the value of the dog. A good cowdog might simply be more valuable to the owner than what he will bring. A good cowdog is capable of earning money by stud fees, selling pups out of the dog or if the dog competes in cowdog trials he can win money that way too. It is not unheard of for a good cowdog to have earned 40 or 50 thousand dollars in it's lifetime. With that being said, you can see why someone could have a hard time selling his best cowdog for a few thousand dollars. This does not even take in account the time the dog has saved the owner and enjoyment of owning such a dog.
When you do locate a good prospect that is for sale, be sure to ask the owner questions to make sure the dog will work for your operation.
Not all cowdogs will work all types of stock. Some of them will, but not all of them. A reputable breeder does not want to sell you a dog that can't handle the cattle on your operation anyway. Be sure to tell the breeder what you expect the dog to do. Will he be gathering stockers out of a wheat pasture, driving roping steers up an alley, working pairs in the pasture or driving show steers around in pens? Again, the breeder will be able to tell you if the dog that is for sale is capable of doing what you need done. Of course a lot of your new dogs ability to handle your cattle is up to you. More on this in other articles throughout this site.
If you are working big bunches of cattle or really tough cattle and you can't seem to find a good cowdog to buy, you might consider using more than one dog. A lot of medium quality dogs are pretty tough when they are worked with another dog. Certainly we would all like to have one dog do it all. But if you just need help with your cattle and can't find the perfect dog, you certainly might consider this.