Nihon Ken Forum
Nihon Ken as Sheepdog?
edited September 2018
I've a question: in the past nihon ken was in particular hunting dog, do you have news about ken used in the past as sheepdog?
Maybe not what you are looking for, but here's a thread for you!
I have done it for kicks with some of my Shikoku in the past:
Have come to find that it's more of a Hunting Instinct Test and not so much Herding.
I had Aussies and Mini American Shepherds before I got involved with Hokkaido, and imo a herding instinct test (HI/HIT) doesn't really prove much. I could easily see any of my Hokkaido running around chasing sheep who are very well accustomed to being herded by various dogs. It takes a more skilled eye and a more thorough test (such as an HT) to see if a dog has any true herding potential.
Not saying an NK can't be taught (I know many off breed dogs who have been taught to herd easy livestock), but I doubt there will be much true instinct there other than prey drive.