A working dog school in Lucindale later this month hopes to help rural people suffering from the black dog – depression.
Rex and Kay Hocking, Avenue Range, are among experienced trainers who will host about a dozen schools across Australia, under an initiative, Working Dog Schools 4 Mental Health Awareness.
It is the brainchild of Australian Working Stock Dog Magazine editor Wayne Flintham from Charters Towers, Qld, who recently lost a friend to suicide.
Working Dog Schools 4 Mental Health Awareness aims to get the conversation started about mental health but also raise more than $30,000 for Beyondblue, with participants paying $300 each to attend a school with their dog.
Places are filling fast for the school at the South East Field Days site on April 22- 23.
The Hockings have donated their time and see it as a great initiative.
“It is really difficult for people to understand about what those with mental health issues are going through when there are no broken bones or bandages,” Mrs Hocking said.
“It is so important that we bring it out in the open and talk about it more,” Mr Hocking said.
The long-time kelpie breeders have held schools across Australia and overseas, for well over a decade.
The school is suitable for all levels of dogs and handlers, with the training covering the basics from an eight-week-old pup to more advanced commands for adult dogs.
It also covers stockmanship, dog health and nutrition, and the new Working Dog Code of Practice.
Members of the public are invited to give a donation to come and watch and it is hoped Beyondblue will provide a guest speaker for the dinner on the Saturday night.
The Lucindale Lions Club has also given a $1000 donation.
- To book contact Kay Hocking 0427 660 032 or Rex Hocking 0428 660 008 or email@example.com