The Herding Dog Breed Group was created in 1983 by the AKC to pay homage to the oldest of canine professions: herding and protecting of livestock. The AKC wanted to distinguish between those breeds that simply stand guard and herding dogs that actively round up cattle and sheep with frenzied running, eye contact and vigorous barking. Some of the most intelligent dog breeds belong to this group, including the popular German Shepherd Dog, perhaps most famous for its police work, and what is arguably the most intelligent of all breeds, the Border Collies.
Although most of these are now simple companion dogs that have never even seen a sheep, the instinct to Herd in some of them can be strong. Where no livestock exists, children and adults alike may be rounded up into corners or even tight circles by these serious, tireless workers. They require owners who are skilled at training and willing to give them "work" that rewards their instincts.