Farm dogs show spirit in first week of national competition

Ridley

The 12 dogs vying for the title of Australia’s hardest working farm dog have put in a tremendous effort in the first week of the 2020 Cobber Challenge.

NSW dog Buddy is leading the pack, having clocked the highest distance and duration of work.

The Kelpie-cross covered an impressive 260km over nearly 32 hours in the first week, to record an average speed of 8.16km/h during the time he was working.

Owner Glenda Rogan expected Buddy to be a strong competitor thanks to his toughness and work ethic.

In the past week, Glenda and Buddy have spent much of that time mustering cows and calves on the family’s “Cinnabar” property in northern NSW. They’ve had to muster the cattle further than they usually would, after the yards closer to the breeder paddocks were burnt down last year.

She says as well as a great worker, two-year-old Buddy is a “great mate”.

It is Glenda’s second time competing in the Cobber Challenge, having been runner up in 2018 with another of her dogs, Jess.

“After seeing Jess out there, I knew the dogs cover big distances and work hard, but Buddy’s performance has still surprised me,” she said.

“I know we’ve still got a long way to go before the end of the competition.”

For the first time, this year’s Cobber Challenge is seeing past competitors like Glenda return as ‘All Stars’, going head to head with fresh-faced ‘Contenders’.

In second place at the end of the first week is new Contender Pip Flower and her dog Hurricane, from Tasmania. The young Border Collie recorded 235.5km over a total time of 25.5 hours in the first week, to achieve an average speed of 9.2km/h.

In third place is West Australian dog Elsie, who has also recorded over 200km at an impressive 12.13km/h average speed.

Since last Monday (17 August), the 12 dogs competing in the 2020 Cobber Challenge have been wearing a GPS collar to record how far, fast and long they work each day.

Their owners upload data from the collars each day. Points are awarded based on how hard they work and published each weekday morning on www.cobberchallenge.com.au

The competition runs for three weeks until Sunday 6 September, with the winner to be announced on Monday 7 September.

Kellie Savage, Cobber’s Marketing Manager, says the impressive work done by all competitors highlighted the importance of working dogs to Australian farms.

Cobber Working Dog Food provides the fuel for the dogs competing in the Cobber Challenge as well as thousands of others working hard every day around the country.

Competitors for the 2020 Cobber Challenge: All Stars Vs Contenders

All Stars

· Glenda Rogan and Buddy, Copmanhurst NSW

· Heidi Mulder and Socks, Prairie QLD

· Matt Scharkie and Mitch, Terowie SA*

· Sam McCarthy and Max, Jamestown SA*

· Damien Clifford and Larry, Woorndoo VIC

· Jack Febey and Monty, Epping Forest TAS

· Bec Martin and Bruce, Moora WA

Contenders

· Jacinta Bradley and Digger, Tumbarumba NSW

· Oliver Armstrong and Roudy, St George QLD

· Skyla Milgate and Cub, Broadwater VIC

· Pip Flower and Hurricane, Greater Launceston, TAS

· Harrison Park and Elsie, Badgingarra WA

*Unfortunately, none of the South Australian Contender nominations were eligible for the Cobber Challenge this year. For this reason, both of the South Australian competitors are All Stars.

/Public Release. This material comes from the originating organization and may be of a point-in-time nature, edited for clarity, style and length.