Erick Conard's Lucky Hit Ranch: Anatolian Shepherd Page

EBELING'S Kasif - Casy
My First Anatolian and
2003 Recipient of
the ASDCA Livestock Guardian Award

Case and Simmental Cattle at Conard Farms in Elgin, Texas

Case and Simmental Cattle at Conard Farms in Elgin, Texas

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Casy's Sire - PINARBASI'S King PINARBASI'S King - Casy's Sire
In 1984, with the help of Marilyn Harned, I purchased my first Anatolian, Ebeling's Kasif (Casy) from Jean Ebeling. I had just lost eight ewes in two weeks to coyotes and needed serious livestock protection 24/7. Jean took me to a back pasture on her large ranch to show me Casy's sire, Pinarbasi's King, an aloof male guarding her large flock of Angora goats without supervision. I also met Casy's beautiful dam, Hanedan's Basbakan Bambi, a large-boned working female.

Casy was seven weeks old when I brought him home and I knew next to nothing about the breed. I kept the sheep and goats locked up in the barn with Casy and then turned them all out together when Casy was only four months old (and way too young to have the responsibility of guarding a herd alone). Casy seemed to enjoy this new world and followed the herd as they grazed. His bark sounded deep and scary, so I crossed my fingers and wished for the best. I'm certain things turned out so well only because I'd purchased good working genetics!

Being raised with goats from birth, Casy was strongly bonded to my flock. He taught me that Anatolians with good working genetics who are raised in the proper environment outgrow the play stage over time, even if they aren't corrected every time they make a mistake.

Casy never lost an animal to a predator! Besides my sheep and goat herd (which ranged between 50 and 200 animals over the years), Casy was responsible for protecting my cats, chickens, ducks, geese, horses, llamas, and Simmental cattle. On his own, Casy decided to protect my neighbor's newborn calves as well. Although Casy was an intact male, he never left the property to visit nearby females in heat. An Anatolian with an aloof and suspicious nature, like Casy, tends to stay on territory and on the job.

A branch of Brushy Creek I called "The Coyote Highway" meandered along one side of my property. Each night we could hear numerous coyote packs howling from all directions - very scary. The cries of my kids and lambs were coyote magnets, luring in coyotes day and night. Casy performed his rounds at least twice a day - once in the morning and once in the evening - marking the pasture boundaries carefully. Casy rarely returned with cuts and bite marks and blood on Casy was generally from the predator.

Casy's Dam - HANEDAN'S Basbakan BambiHanedan's Basbakan Bambi - Casy's Dam

Erick and Casy when 4 months old at Conard Farms Coyotes were not the only predators in the area. Wild hogs roamed our area and frequently killed calves. Casy kept the wild hogs off my property year after year, not only protecting my goats but all my other animals from their vicious attacks.

The bobcats were perhaps my sneakiest predators. My neighbors kept their poultry behind heavy fencing with tops and still had occasional bobcat losses. However, with Casy on guard, my poultry were free roaming. My ducks and geese enjoyed wandering around the pasture grazing on grass and swimming around the pond freely. The chickens roosted in the barn without restraint. Skunks and raccoons were also plentiful, but Casy never allowed them on the property to steal eggs.

Casy with Heather as a toddler With no livestock predation, I almost forgot I lived in an area filled with predators. Being able to forget that predators exist is the greatest reward of owning a superior working Anatolian. With the perfect aloof attitude and working demeanor of a great guardian, Casy protected my ranch, freeing me from the daily battle to protect my animals.

Through Casy, I developed the idea that the quality of an Anatolian Shepherd Guardian Dog is measured by the quality of his working temperament and flock guardian ability. Without working temperament and flock guarding ability, an Anatolian is just a plain dog. Casy showed me that, in all cases, working traits must be selected over traits helpful in the show ring but destructive in a working environment.

To this day Casy continues to guard my ranch through his daughter, granddaughters, and great granddaughters and grandsons.

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