Skijor is a Nordic sport in which a person on skis is pulled by a motorized vehicle, horse, or dog in order to increase their speed cross country. Canine Skijor is frequently thought of as a sport specifically for Arctic sled pulling dogs like Huskies, Samoyeds, and Malamutes, however, any breed of dog over thirty-five pounds can enjoy and benefit from this sport. The Lapponian Herder has a thick coat of fur well suited to the cold environment of the reindeer that they herd, and enough speed and stamina to keep up with them, qualities that also translate into an efficient skijor partner. This moderately priced activity can be enjoyed on a regular basis during the colder months of the year and will provide an excellent workout for your Lapponian Herder.
Lapponian Herders have been herding reindeer alongside the Sami for thousands of years. If you have one of these intelligent and athletic animals, but no reindeer for them to herd, you may find that some have such as strong herding instinct that they start herding other things, such as other pets, stuffed animals, and even neighborhood children on occasion. Specialty farms and ranches have recently started teaching companion animals with herding instincts how to herd, as well as providing them with both livestock and room to do so, although these facilities mostly have sheep and cows to herd rather than reindeer. Although this may be an expensive undertaking, the benefits to your dog will be returned tenfold.
Instead of assisting in the physical or emotional well-being of primarily one person, therapy dogs make visits to schools, hospitals, and nursing homes in order to provide comfort and unconditional love to those who are in need of them. Therapy dogs have even been known to help and comfort those people at the site of tragedies. The Lapponian Herder is generally a friendly breed that responds well to handling, even when the handling is a little rough or clumsy. While a little reserved with strangers they are also docile and patient, making them well-suited to the job of a therapy dog, a title they can often earn within just a few months of training. Training and certification to become a therapy dog can range anywhere from fifty dollars to a few hundred dollars.