Does your farm dog work harder than the rest? Now is your chance to put it tothe test.
For the first time in its six year history, the Cobber Challenge is goingTrans-Tasman – with farm dogs from New Zealand invited to compete againsttheir Australian counterparts.
The Cobber Challenge is a unique opportunity for Australian and New Zealandfarmers to measure just how hard their dog works. It has become aninternational celebration of the unsung hero of agriculture – working dogs.
“We are thrilled to welcome our New Zealand cousins into the competition thisyear,” says Kellie Savage, Cobber’s Marketing Manager.
“The Cobber Challenge provides hard data to prove what most farmers alreadyknow; a good working dog can do the work of at least two or three people.”
In previous years, dogs have regularly clocked over 50km in a day,highlighting their contribution to the farm team.
Twelve dogs from throughout Australia and New Zealand will be fitted with aGPS collar to track their distance, working duration and speed over a three-week period. Points are awarded, the dogs are ranked, and by the end of thechallenge, a new Cobber Champion is crowned.
Now in its sixth year, the 2021 Cobber Challenge will run from Monday 16August to Sunday 5 September.
Each day of the competition, data is uploaded to the Cobber Challenge websiteso fans can follow the performance of individual dogs, as well as the bestperforming team. Will the Australian or New Zealand dogs have the highestaverage points?
Northern NSW station hand Glenda Rogan and her Kelpie-cross Buddy won theCobber Challenge last year, setting a Cobber Challenge record of 835kilometres over the three-week competition. The competition coincided with abusy period for Buddy and Glenda including weaning calves and moving othercattle. They worked every day over a total of 98 hours.
“I found competing in the 2020 Cobber Challenge with Buddy very rewarding.He’s a big, strong dog who’s always busy, so I thought he’d be a strongcontender,” Glenda said.
“And the Cobber Challenge gave me a better insight into how much our dogs doeach day.
“And I thought entering the competition would be a positive thing for my localtown to watch during COVID.”
Buddy has continued to work hard since the competition and has made a geneticcontribution to Glenda’s working dog team.
“I have one of Buddy’s sons, who I’ve called Mate, and at 12 months old, he’sproving to be a really good dog in the bush – he loves nothing more thanfinding cattle in the bush and bringing them up when we’re mustering cattle.”
As well as the glory of being a Cobber Champion and a year’s supply of CobberWorking Dog feed for the winning dog, this year’s winner will receive $3000*to be spent on a working dog breeding program, training for a working dog orparticipation in working dog trials.
Cobber will provide the fuel for these dogs, as it does for thousands ofworking dogs every day around the country.
Want to throw your hat in the ring? Fill out the nomination form athttps://www.cobberchallenge.com.au/applynow
Nominations close at 11.59pm Sunday 27 June.
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