Sires past and present
The foundation sire of “Campaspe”, Tomie was bred by the late Jack Hiscock, who was a renowned breeder, handler, trial competitor and stockman. I did not own Tomie, but he was an exceptional dog by whom I bred many litters, and have frozen semen stored.
Jack rated Tom’s father, Esjay, as the best all-round dog he had owned.
Tomie, like the best dogs of this blood, had exceptional cover and casting ability, natural mustering ability and great holding ability. He worked and drove a mob naturally, was a natural pulling dog, and had strong force. He had no eye at all on a mob (and was the brainest, most thinking worker I have ever come across), but had plenty of eye and style on one sheep when required.
Campaspse Bounce (Moorlands Tomie x Cullens Kiara)
Bounce was an exceptional dog by Moorlands Tomie, with 19 crosses of Yulong Russ. An extremely natural worker, he was capable of doing nearly any job with sheep or cattle on a 5,000 acre property when he was ten months old, and would handle big mobs of sheep on his own at that age. At nine or ten months old he would cast at least half a kilometre, wide and deep, and work the sheep back to me without any commanding.
He was a natural, big casting and pulling dog with strong force, and good distance on a mob. Very keen, and a bit of a handful at times. He lacked a touch of the right sort of eye to be a top dog on a few wild sheep, but even without eye would still usually handle them with cover and balance and brains.
A very brainy worker like his father, in fact the brainiest dog I have ever worked on a mob along with Tomie, he drives a mob naturally and has great purpose. Not as good an outright mustering dog as Moorlands Georgie was, but very few are. Bounce is included in the DVD’s “A Few Good Dogs”, and “Natural Ability”.
Campaspe Ring (Campaspe Bounce x Campaspe Chloe)
Ring is almost the spitting image of his sire, Bounce, in type, temperament, and work. A big, strong, upstanding worker. Could do with a bit more ‘tact’ in touchy situations, just wants to get on with the job, but an extremely brainy dog like his sire, natural driving natural heading natural pulling dog with plenty of footwork and cover and force.
A good leggy type, strong head, with very good stamina. Calm and keen.Very loyal, biddable and friendly, always at my side, a dog I have a lot of time for.
Out of Campaspe Chloe, both his parents are by Moorlands Tomie. He is linebred to Tomie 2:2 (grandfather on both sides) and so is more closely bred than Bounce.
Unfortunately, I was a bit slack and never got much video of Ring. I stumbled across the bit of video below, so better than nothing.
King is a stronger eyed paddock type with four crosses of Moorlands Tomie. A fantastic holding dog with plenty of break, he is great to watch on a single wild breakaway amongst timber or scrub. He kicks out and goes flat out to out-distance it, before turning in to block and turn it from well infront of it. This is a quality he is passing on to most of his pups. A nice natured, very natural worker, with loads of stamina.
I had some amazing video of King when he first started working, holding some very touchy shorn merinos amongst some scrub when about 4 months old, but somehow it got deleted and lost. King has proven a very good sire, breeding some very high-quality offspring.
An outcross dog by Adam James’s high-quality Kelpie Tundabardi Buster. The Kelpie outcross has been used to try to improve the natural backing ability of the Campaspe line, hopefully without sacrificing too much else.
In Carbon this has largely been successful as he retains most of the best qualities of the Campaspe line, while also being an extremely natural backing dog.
A very friendly natured dog a lot like Ring or Bounce in nature, and from what I have seen his sire Buster was also a very similarly natured dog. Although having said that, he is a bit on the softer side in temperament (from the Kelpie outcross) than the Campaspe dogs usually are.
Not as much cover as Ring or Bounce or Tomie etc., but a very brainy dog, easy to handle, big cast, plenty of distance, and ready to come in and force strongly at a moments notice without being a pushy dog. Heads drives and balances nicely. Will hopefully prove a useful addition to the Campaspe bloodline.
Sam was a big black dog starting to prove his abilities as a sire (shown here in action with Campaspe Biddy, click to enlarge), when I made the mistake of selling him. I had a younger brother of his, Bruno, who was even better, and someone keen on buying Sam, so I let him go. However, as it turned out Bruno didn’t breed anywhere near as well as Sam had.
It just goes to show that the most important test of a breeding animal is their progeny. The pedigree is a rough guide, the individual is a better guide, but the progeny is the only thing that really matters.
He was a friendly, loyal dog, a steady sensible worker with plenty of distance, balance and short cover, didn’t do any more running around than he needed to. One additional thing I liked about Sam as a sire was that he only bred short haired pups no matter which bitch he was joined to.
Doige (Moorlands Blazing x Holly (Imp NZ))
Doige was Les Hall’s exceptional hill country mustering dog. Very similar in looks to his sire Blaze. Extremely brainy and intelligent, huge searching/mustering cast, lovely cover, balance, and break. Fantastic stamina, he has proven his mettle in years of hard work in very steep hill country working merinos, crossbreds and cattle. Great natural ability.
Doige has had an influence on the Campaspe dogs through four main bitches – Campaspe Maggie particularly (out of Campaspe Kelly), but also her sister Campaspe Ebby, and Campaspe Bella (out of Campaspe Queen), and Campaspe Holly (out of Campaspe China with a double cross of Doige).
Glendaloch Craig (Cymru Coon x Campaspe Meg)
Bred from an outcross mating. Craig’s father was a pure UK (Welsh) blood collie. This UK blood was used in an attempt to bring in some more ‘minimal activity’ and ‘distance’, and to ‘square’ the cover up a bit, and for their incredible speed and ease of training.
I am not a bit fan of UK blood dogs in general (I have seen a few “handy” ones, but I am yet to see one that I thought anything special), as they tend to lack the real, clean heading instinct I consider essential, and lack breakaway break, and are often pretty short on cover, but they certainly have some strong points. They are generally bred for success in their types of trials and to be turned into impressive robots with a high level of training.
After I injured my back, I gave the mother, Campaspe Meg (who was by Moorlands Tomie), to Les Hall to breed from (Les manages the 5,000 acre hill-country grazing property ‘Glendaloch’), and we travelled down and joined her to Coon. Les kept two pups and gave the other five to me.
As it turned out, one pup (who I call Craig) was retained for breeding. Craig was a very natural worker, highly intelligent and easy to control. Does most things naturally with very little training at all. Learns like lightning. Not exactly the style of work I prefer, Craig has had an influence in the breeding of the Campaspe dogs, but I ever intended to bring in a trickle of this imported blood.
In my view it takes at least three generations to stablise the breeding after a wide outcross. This has proven the case here. Campaspe King is one of the third generation. He was out of Monmore Gina, who was by Craig, who was by the UK blood dog Cymru Coon. King is breeding extremely well. The fourth generation are even better. It is a long, painstaking process introducing an outcross and shouldn’t be attempted without a definite aim in mind, and the patience to follow it through.