The Koolie is a medium-sized herding dog out of Australia that has been bred for their intelligence, train-ability, and endurance - the majority of the Koolie population still lives in their homeland where they spend their time herding livestock. These dogs have a great deal of energy and a drive to work that they just cannot seem to ignore, and without an outlet for all that intensity, herding dogs like the Koolie can develop anxiety, inappropriate responses, and even destructive behaviors. It's important that activities for this particular breed exercise the mind as well as the body as these athletic dogs have very quick and agile minds as well as bodies.
Parkour is a training discipline that utilizes objects in the everyday world around us as a complex and ever-changing obstacle course, a great fit for an adventurous and active breed like the Koolie. The Parkour method was originally developed in France in the 1980s and has since spread throughout the globe as a training technique that is effective, inexpensive, and never boring. This exercise technique has even encompassed the canine world as its a more challenging and exciting way to improve fitness that people and their pets can do together.
Working herding dogs often have to be able to recognize certain sheep and single them out of the herd on their master's command. While you may not have any sheep to identify, you can help your Koolie to exercise this part of their mind by teaching them to pick out a specific toy by name to return to you. Dogs with a herding background are often very successful at this particular game, and it was a component of the method used to teach Chaser the Border Collier her extensive vocabulary, which included the names of 1022 different items. It’s a simple concept that can really get your dog’s mental muscles working.
Treibball is a relatively new activity that was originally developed in Germany as an outlet for herding dogs with no access to livestock. The goal of the game is to use voice and hand commands to instruct your dog to guide or push several balls to a specified goal. It is an activity that not only tires your dog out physically but works their very active minds, as well as satisfying an innate desire that has been a part of the Koolie breed since its inception. If your herding hotshot has been keeping themselves busy by rounding up the neighborhood pets and kids, this might be just the activity to satisfy the intense work drive of the Koolie, at least for a little while. While this sport is often played competitively, it can be just as much fun in your own backyard.
A basic daily walk is rarely enough activity or mental stimulation for an athletic and high-energy canine like the Australian Koolie and in order to keep them occupied and exercised, they may require longer exercise sessions. Fortunately, they are also generally well-suited for certain higher-impact activities such as Parkour than many other breeds might be. This is an athletic, intelligent, and rugged dog breed that can on any adventure that you can dish out and then some. Try and keep up!