In light of the pending evaluations of Michael Vick's pit bulls, here's a link to an informative, well-written article from Bark magazine on temperament tests. Excerpt:
Implicit in the work these researchers and behaviorists are doing and in the worries people inside and outside the shelter system have about temperament testing is their concern for the community and for the dogs. Pete Miller, a shelter supervisor at Santa Barbara County Animal Services and a 20-year veteran of the shelter system who believes temperament tests are a necessary part of good sheltering practice, perhaps puts this best: “When a dog dies in an animal shelter, it almost doesn’t matter whether the dog was an old favorite or a hopeless case of a violent animal that never had a chance; the dog was alive one second, and literally gone the next. Everything it ever was and every possibility for what it would have been and done—gone in a second. It’s the actual fact of the real loss and what it means to kill that needs to weigh most and is the reason there should never be a formula that tries to remove the responsibility from a person or dim the reality of what it means to take away a life.”
Part I: “Dangerous breeds,” dog bite statistics, and the Merritt Clifton report
Part II: Pit bulls, dog bite statistics, and the Merritt Clifton report
Finally: I've said a million times that any responsive dog with sufficient prey drive can be trained to "herd" well enough to earn an AKC "herding championship." Here is a collection of good photos illustrating that everything from a basenji to a... is that a lab mix...? can "herd," given tame sheep, a small arena and an experienced instructor. I'd hate to see my sheep subjected to this sort of thing, but that's just me.
Have a safe and happy Labor Day weekend, fellow Californians, and stay cool out there ;~)