Belgium's first working kelpies stud

    Breeding for quality kelpies of traditional Australian lines

  • The type of Working Kelpies I breed for

    Traditional paddock lines for minimal stress on stock

    Paddock lines are back

    the traditional stockdog for grazing work

    Working Kelpies have evolved with the needs of the (Australian) market. The original Kelpies were very versatile working dogs doing the work in the open as well as at home. Changing working needs have been in favor of yarddogs, assisting stockbreeders on the station to handle stock in yards, handling races, shearing sheds, selecting, loading and unloading stock in and out the trailer, aso aso. Special aspects of the versatile old lines were selected for the modern jobs: very alert dogs with lots of forcing power, race skills like backing/ topknotting/ turning back underneat the sheep, blocking stock in holding pens, heel bite, etc etc. These dogs should also be very responsive to the commands of their handlers. The use of bikes and helicopters for mustering work, was in its turn detrimental to the lines of dogs that had so long served in the vast open lands, often working for hours out of sight to bring stock back to a specific place.
    With the rise and growing succes of yard trialling in the second half of the 20th century, this kind of yard skills turned out to be (part of the) basic skills for a Working Kelpie. Some good breeders and handlers tended to combine both yard skills and the traditional mustering skills into so called 'utility lines'.

    Tony Parsons describes in his books how hard it was to preserve the old lines of paddock dogs, especially from the mid of the 20iest century on. He has promoted these lines, herited from some great top old handlers such as Frank Scanlon, Jack Goodfellow, Athol Butler, aso.


    With the growing interest for a low stress approach to stock, came back the interest for these old lines that have been preserved though studs like Glenville, Karrawarra, Riana, Rockybar, and a few others that often used breeding material form these lines.
    Top breeders/handlers of utility lines also used these old lines to restore good outruns and intelligent approach in their top competition (utility) dogs.

    Young dog in training . Assisted by older dog.

    Dogs for grazing projects in Europe

    Looking for dogs that do the job for modern European graziers

    Since a couple of decennia there has grown a need for dogs that do the old grazing job. With the rise of ecological grazing in support if more biodiversity came the need for dogs that can handle such herds of sheep/cattle/other stock very well.

    Depending on the local regions there still are traditional breeds for local shepherds. But Border Collies have been the major choice in the first large grazing projects.
    Kelpies came to Europe, maybe first as an exotic new breed, especially the lines of Australian Kelpies, known in the stockworld as ShowKelpies. But this interest for just "an unknown breed of special and highly talented dog" turned quickly into the use of these genuine stockdogs for the real work ! Now more than 25 years later, Working Kelpies have found their place in most European countries as working companions on many a farm and/or ecological grazing flock.

    Here in Europe, there is very few farms that really need the pure yard lines. And to spend well the big money for importing a genuine Working dog from DownUnder, one is better off to look for a dog that really fills your needs ! This has led us to introduce different top lines of Working Kelpies. Many of these imports went back to top utility lines in Australia, such as Milburn, Karana, Avenpart, Capree ... Only little by little, with the growing knowledge about working lines, growed the interest for the 'old lines' as preserved by studs such as Karrawarra, Riana, ...

    Flank work by Karmala Bindi as a younger dog.

    Traditional paddock lines with a splash of modern utility dogs

    Low stress workers that can handle stubborn stock

    The problem with these 'old lines' was that they often were bred for handling very flighty sheep, on large paddocks only. So the risk that you go for a smart dog that is a tad too soft for our European breeds of sheep, was a real one. In my years I have had such dogs, as well as more yard oriented dogs that were rather hard on my kind of sheep.
    That made me decide to go for the old lines with a splash of modern utility in them. Or just find out one that was bred old style but has all the guts to handle stubborn stock correctly in difficult situations. Through my contacts with breeders/handlers that promote stressless stockhandling I have given up my interest for backing and other pure yardwork, as it is a kind of skills I very seldom use. On the other hand, my dogs that assist me most of the time with grazing work, also have to (un-)load stock as well as they have to fill a pen, a race aso aso ...

    My actual dogs mainly go back to Riana and Karrawarra, complemented by a bit of Boanong Buster or Capree Poppy or Pud's Signature or Nacooma Jack aso., further in their background. There is just Bamba Clyde who goes back to 100% Riana lines.

  • What We Do

    My dogs are my companions in all kinds of stockwork

    Gathering sheep

    the basic work

    The most evident work for my dogs is to find and gather all sheep that run in a specific area. This can be a simple outrun in a small grassland, as well as searching for stock in heather, moorland or the steeps of a sandhill, filled with wood and difficult undergrowth. The dogs seem to know very well each of these grazing projects and where to find the sheep.
    Gathering jobs can vary from very small (10 -15 sheep) to large flocks (over 250 ewe/lambs)


    See Karmala Bindi & Kessels Does on YouTube, gathering a flock out of a difficult steep. <https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_ngBbdyKuIc>

    To hold sheep grazing on unfenced land

    for more advanced dogs

    Part of the time, I have the sheep grazing on small lands, to clear unfenced grassland, or herbs and scrub. The dogs have learned, out of experience and my support, to guide the flock with almost no commands. They allow sheep to graze, just keeping them within non-marked borders. This can take for hours !
    Each year, we do a lot of grazing around fruit- and wineyards. The dogs have learned to keep the sheep out of the orchards and very seldom need any command for this. Karmala Charlie is a crack in this !


    See my dogs on YouTube in a grazing job: <https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tbG6ROfNxC4>



    Replacing stock

    short and long distance walks with stock

    The sheep normally stay for 3 weeks on one place. Then we bring them to new paddocks. Somtimes this is just the adjacent land. But often this is long distance walking. We try to avoid traffic, but that often is just impossible. If we have longer distances to do with risks of traffic, I often ask a second partner to walk with me and the dogs.
    For each walk I use several dogs. Most often I have Karmala Bindi as my lead dog, and Kessels(BM) Does and Karmala Charlie on flanks and the rear of the flock. When I have young dogs, I allow one at a time to join in. I try to not command them, except for avoiding problems. So, the young dogs have working experiences aside their more specific training-work situations I organise for them.

    Yard jobs

    dogs helping during controll and other sheephandling

    My dogs often help to pen sheep, hold them in the corner of a corral, guide them through smaller pens and into a drenching race, load or unload sheep in/out of a trailer, in or out of a barn .... This is all part of the job, but some of this is more occasional, surely not day after day.
    I have dogs that use backing and other that dont. Some use barking easily, nose- and/or heelbite, bouncing forwards, ... and then others just don't use some of these skills. Some dogs are better for yardwork than others, but all my dogs can handle sheep in the yards or are helpfull over there.
    When I am in a hurry, I use the kind of dogs that are best for a specific job. When I have more time, I introduce dogs to jobs they are less experienced in. That's my way of "learning on the job" ...

    See Karmala Charlie on YouTube, bringing and loading a small mob of lambs that are recently weaned: <https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hdZHDkJEUkI>

    See young Kessels(BM) Suki on YouTube in a training situation handling lambs in a stable. Suki is a strong dog but lacks a bit direct impact. <https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0mpudyD05kA>

  • The males

    sires to KesselKelpie pups

    Karmala Charlie

    Import B/t, born 06/01/2011 WKC reg. Hips: normal, good stability. Ellbows ok

    Tracker the Chief X Riana DeltaDown
    A dog who goes back to 75% Riana, with several top workers in his pedigree. Via his father, he brings in some Puds Signature genetics.

    Charlie is my dog for all jobs. He is smart and displays alot of strenght/presence over his stock. He has never been beaten by stock ! Has a good feel for to go to the heads or not and great work on the rear and flanks. He works upright on his feet and rather seldom he uses eye. This upright work makes him faster on the right spot to handle sheep. He positions very well and is happy to have direct impact on stock. During grazing work, he allows the sheep to graze within what he knows as the borders of that piece of land.
    He can be a bit overly keen and when he fires up, he might lack a bit of a natural stop. But, he replies very well on commands in stressy situations. Over the years he has learned to build up pressure very well, and then give relief. If necessary he uses bark. He showed some backing as a young dog but I never trained that.
    He is my main dog for grazing, walking, loading trailers, penning, holding stock during shearing, etc. etc.
    He has a strong mind and surely decides for himself how to work out a problem, but over the years he has turned into a great working mate. Even if he behaves a bit macho, he is quite a sensitive dog !
    As he turned a bit older, he became a very good dog to drive flocks by walking up and back the flanks and controlling the rear of that flock. When we come back after months he just knows all the difficult places where sheep might tend to break out. He is just much faster and stands there allready before anything might happen !

    Charlie is my sire to enhance strength over bitches with good working skills but who might need some extra direct impact on stock (f.ex.: due to a bit too much eye)

    Bamba Clyde

    Import R/t, born 2013 WKC reg. Hips B/B Ellbows normal

    Riana Leo X Falcon Ash.
    Clyde arrived sept. 2016 in Belgium, aged 3.5 yrs. He is very much a heading dog in the Riana tradition. He goes back to 100% Riana dogs, when you look 4 generations back.
    He is a very cautious worker, who reads the sheep minds very well. He has a little less strength than Charlie but with growing confidence he manages very well to handle thoug sheep. He solves the problem rather with smart perseverence.

    He delivers his sheep perfectly at your feet. Great at rolling sheep into a pen or a smaller doorway or a trailer. He uses eye but also heelbite and little nosebite (in self-defence situations). He showed natural backing in the draft race or to get behind sheep in a filled trailer. But we might need to make that more functional.
    As he arrived, he was not ready to handle some of our tough European sheep breeds, but he has learned well to bounce back often with some bark. After 8 mths at my place, he showed quite more direct impact on stock. On the other side he shows dedication and nerve controll in tough situations and is always searching for to solve the problems he is confronted with. Clyde can handle extreme flighty sheep without problems very well.
    Clyde has a great personality. Cool around other dogs and humans, very compliant and happy to be around. As all my Kelpies, he likes to find out for himself how to approach a task.

    Clyde is a sire that adds skill and sweet character in a mating with strong working bitches.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OayqGH9myhM  This shows Clyde as a young adult with his breeder in Australia. 

    Devonairs(UK) Torka

    Import UK, R/t, born 2007 WKC reg. Hips B/B Ellbows normal

    Okara Max X Boanong Trixie
    We purchased this strikingly beautiful dog, for his interesting pedigree.
    He is (was) a highly skilled paddock dog and brings in old Karrawarra genetics together with modern and top utility blood from his grandfather Boanong Buster. But in spite of his genetics, he lacked the guts to handle the major part of my sheep. He avoided any confrontation, even with very light sheep.

    He was sold to live a great life as a family dog, after he sired Noonbarra Betje who was an overstrong bitch at that time. Out of that litter came some fantastic dogs: Ura & Lura in the Basque provinces of Spain, Nero in France. Does stayed here to become a major worker and breeding bitch for me.

    Karmala Switch

    Import for Erika Visser, Cream/t, born 1/06/2011 WKC reg. Hips A/B Ellbows normal

    Riana Glide X Campbell's Scout
    Switch is a main working dog at Shepherds Kelpies, with Erika Visser in Doldersum, The Netherlands.
    I used Switch in 2016 as sire for my thirth litter with Does. Even if I personally am not in favour for cream dogs, I found Switch worth a try as a sire, for he displays great dedication to fullfill his jobs and despite his color he proves to handle difficult stock or a mob of over 200 sheep very well. He has enough heading instinct and drives a flock very well. Great holding qualities too.
    He brings in some extra direct impact on stock and thus a bit different approach than the dam he has sired for me.

    I hope his father's genetics (Riana Glide) will be well present in his offspring with Does. Most of these pups started well between 4 and 6 months of age.

    Boanong Keli

    Import for Sietse Marinus, B/t, born 14/09/2010 WKC reg.

    Boanong Buster X Karrawarra Ding
    I used Keli based on his pedigree, for my 2012 litter with Kessels Does. This was an attempt to enhance both the Buster and the Karrawarra blood that is in the background of my dam, Kessels Does.
    This mating gave me 4 nice bitches. They all went finally to nice working homes. I kept breeding rights on two of them and Kessels(BM) Tinke works in Switzerland.
    Boanong Keli is the sire of a few other litters in The Netherlands. Recently he was sold to work for a friend of Sietse in Belgium.

  • The bitches

    I think that bitches are the cornerstone of a breeding plan! Aside their 50% of chromosomes, they add mitrochondrial DNA and all their first care before and even more after birthing while caring for the young pups.

    Karmala Bindi

    Import B/t Born 25/10/2006 WKC reg.

    One hip hurt, other ok. Ellbows ok

    Karmala Spike X Karrawarra Gift IV
    A medium large bitch. Gentle to any human. Determined towards any stock. Works more upright but can use eye on a small mob. Absolute calm approach to stock. Great 'guiding dog'.

    My first working kelpie that works in a "fairdinkum way" ! Has been (and still is as an old one) a great dog for me. Can perform in any job I have. In the yards, she backs if necessary but prefers to work on the ground. Although she is far from weak, she is not my strongest dog (presence), but she has a determination and the smartness to move any mob or just a stubborn single. I use her often as a leading dog when we do long distance walks.
    At the age of 3 years, she hurted one of her hips due to being butted by a ram. It seems to have disturbed her motivation to allow any sire to mount her. So in the end I used some extra help to get her pregnant.
    A litter with Karmala Charlie gave some great little dogs and bitches. Kessels(BM) Gem is making her name in The Netherlands at Erika Visser's place. Another litter with Tracker Storm gave all medium large bitches and just one dog. I remained two bitches that are growing out very strong and great youngsters. Good reports from all pups sold. Her last litter with Bamba Clyde gave 5 pups. Most of them started early and showed exceptional class at the age of 6 months.

    Kessels(BM) Does

    B/t Born 29/10/2009 WKC reg. hips A/A and ellbows ok

    Devonairs Torka X Noonbarra Betje

    Does is another special dog. Medium large and of a more robust build, she is a sweet silent and absolutely calm worker. Via her grandmother (Boanong Tracy) she brings in old Karrawarra genes, well expressed in her approach on stock : wide outrun and distant controll to bring sheep. Leads a mob with as minimal impact as necessary. She adapts her rate of strenght all the time to what is needed in a given situation. Good heading instinct. During grazing jobs, she allows the sheep to eat for hours, as far as they stay within the chosen area. She seems to know perfectly what is the ultimate border and turns the sheep when they graze near that point. She has absolutely no problem to concentrate on such a flock for the whole afternoon.

    Great holding dog in yards. She is my dog to get sheep out of a well filled trailer or barn. She can be very strong on tough sheep, using a functional heel bite, but essentially she gives all sheep enough chances to reply without any physical contact. She has plenty of eye but is not sticky. She can move any number, any type of sheep with ease. I also love her calm approach towards any job. She is a great bitch to allow young dogs to do the job, while she just observes and intervenes when really necessary !


    See two young pups out of a Karmala Charlie X Kessels(BM) Does litter on YouTube in its early meetings with stock: Kessels(BM) Boj:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AxfI4doHPbw 

    and Kessels(BM) Flebbke: <https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-Mm3atZ0jE4>
    Here is Does (red collar) with one of her daughters, Kessels Suki: <https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CBt03t8GzvI> Suki is a very good dog, but lacks a bit of direct impact. With this kind of tough sheep especially with lambs at their feet, dogs with lots of eye have a hard job to do !

  • Offspring

    The next generation !

    Kessels(BM) Suske

    30/9/2015 Tracker Storm X Karmala Bindi

    Very strong and determined no nonsense worker. Has heading instinct but works rear and flanks very well. Very dominant over her sheep. Works merely upright and has eye/style on a few. Works the yards very well, without backing as yet.
    At the age of 14 mths she is very ok to find out the difference between making the sheep walk and then to allow them grazing.

    The most compliant dog I ever had to luck to own. That makes her a real working partner even at such a young age of 14mths.

    See young Suske on YouTube: <https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yFpAcyrNMuM>

    During the 2017 clinic with David Hart, Suske showed up to be a top young bitch, learning to drive a larger flock with ease, using flank work and controll of the rear.

    Kessels(BM) Vonne

    30/9/2015 Tracker Storm X Karmala Bindi

    Same strength as her sister, but prefers to work with more distance and more eye. She has a rather sophisticated approach, in comparison to her sister. She has loads of heading instinct but knows when she has to work the rear side and drive a flock. She concentrates very hard on her job and can be hard to command at these moments.

    In the pens and races she is just as great as her sister. She shows great ability to join in the "grazing team" as she is very ok to let sheep graze and to shift them on my command. She is very good to slow down sheep so they start eating and then to not bother them while grazing and concentrate on those that wander too far off.
    She shows to be very open to learn and become a full working team member.


    See young Vonne on YouTube: <https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tDijPJx_2mk>

  • New litter(s)

    Born 13/12/2016 Karmala Switch X Kessels(BM) Does

    nine sound pups different colors

    Two cream: boy and girl
    Four red/tan: one boy, three girls

    three black/tan: one boy, two girls

    We expect strong paddock dogs that are quite functional in the yards.
    Both parents are used to gather, drive, controll during grazing, hold and assist in handling sheep in yards, ...

    Almostg all pups sold and one retained in the stud. So, only 1 males ( R/t) available.
    If you are interested, send email or PM via facebook.

    New images as soon as the pups begin to grow and show more life than just drink and sleep.

    Older or other pups for sale

    From every litter we keep a few pups. Even if we don't need them for work at our place. But one never knows there is a terrific dog coming out of those pups. Or there is another dog from my working team that has to be replaced for whatever odd reason.
    As these pups grow older, they might need more work than ever I can give. I remember Kessels(BM) Flebbke and Boj being two top youngsters out of the Charlie X Does litter. See photo Flebbke at 5 months, first meeting with sheep. See him on YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-Mm3atZ0jE4) He finally went to Austria to replace another KesselsKelpie. And Boj went to a starting handler that would work as a shepherd in environmental grazing.

    Another story was about Kessels Iris who came back at 17mths, due to her first owner feeling unable to handle her. It took me another 18 months to get her working at a good level. Then she was sold to work for a full time grazing project.

    So there might happen an occasional youngster that is ok to go to a working home. Just ask if you are looking for something like that.

  • Where I come from

    Living with stockdogs is a lifelong learning experience !

    Noonbarra Keppe  1999 - 2007

    Short history

    I did it my way !

    1993. I buy a small number of Hebridean sheep to clean up the back yard.

    1995. I start environmental grazing, my first stock dog, a decent Border Collie.

    1999. Noonbarra Keppe. I had discussions with Steven Bilson for two years until he found me this great dog. The pain-in-the-ass-pup turned out to be a marvellous working partner that converted me definitely to Working Kelpies.

    New imports came from Noonbarra I breed my first litters from Noonbarra Crom and Noonbarra Betje.

    2003 & 2004. I attended clinics with Michael Johnson. These clinics made me aware I still have a terrible lot to learn before I can call myself a decent handler! Michael tell me I need a big sticker on my mouth, just shut it, so the dog can learn and decide for itself! (a life long lesson for me! )


    2007. Karmala Bindi came and amazed me with her natural working skills as a heading dog that appears to work on the sheep’s minds rather than just forcing them to move. This opens a completely different approach in handling stock and dogs becoming more working partners. Mary McCrabb explains to me later during another clinic that Bindi is a very “classy” bitch.

    2011. Through emailing Jan Lowing I came into contact with David Hart. David and Sean Barrett come to Europe in 2013 & 2015 to conduct clinics that I attend. I once again feel like I am starting from zero and understand I have so much to learn. Karmala Charlie is another special dog I have from Jan Lowing. It will take a couple of years yet for us two, to finally find a tremendous positive partnership.

    2012. Bill & Marg Scott come to visit us and Bill confirms a lot of the knowledge I have gained from the Aussie clinics.

    2015. I fully retire as a trainer of school teachers and can now finally invest all my time in my environmental grazing projects. I run 180 ewes and followers on very different projects with several dogs to help me.


















  • The Blog

    Sorry this page is for later. I plan to write some stories about earlier times and dogs and how I learned by falling and getting up more than once.

    There are no published blog posts yet.
  • Contact

    Patrick Stubbe

    I was a professional teachers trainer, educational researcher and worked all my professional life in support of schools that teach socially depriviated children and youngsters. I was an active member of an international New Schools movement (Freinet's Modern School Movement).
    I retired in 2015 for to invest all my free time in grazing projects and to care about my 200 sheep and 6 dogs. This is a work I started as a hobby and a contribution to environmental projects in my regio. I don't have much land myself, but I graze many hectares for different environment care projects in my regio (around Louvain-Aarschot in Belgium).
    I earn a little money via selling sheep. But no subventions untill now. All I can strive for is to cover most of my costs. This grazing work doesn't make someone financially rich, but for me it adds a worthfull social dimension to my interest in working with animals.
    I am open to support enthousiasts who start in the same kind of work.
    I breed dogs for the stock working market. I don't want to be a commercial breeder for I strive for quality above quantity. I decided to bring down my selling prices In the hope the professional shepherds are able to invest in a genuine working dog for their own projects.

    Find me

    Email: patrick.stubbe@pandora.be
    GSM: 0032 499 369 424

    Home: 0032 (0)16 25 99 20


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