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Eriksdale dog takes top prize at Calgary Stampede

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Kaelene Forsyth (right) and Gypsy accept their prizes at the Calgary Stampede.

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Kaelene Forsyth (right) and Gypsy accept their prizes at the Calgary Stampede.

A Manitoba dog is the top stock dog in the world.

Kaelene Forsyth of Eriksdale and her dog Gypsy won the top prize at the 2013 World Stock Dog Championship at the Calgary Stampede this week. After falling short in the competition in 2012, the duo beat out 52 entries to earn the $10,000 first-place cheque.

"The nerves got the best of me last year," the 24-year-old student and dog handler said in a statement. "My dogs ran well, but I was nervous. This was my first time in the final round.

"Even just being in the finals was good enough for me. That’s what I told my family."

In stock-dog championship competition, a dog is required to collect three sheep, guide them around a demanding obstacle course and down a chute into a pen. It’s a timed event (a four-minute maximum), so if a sheep proved difficult, the dog and handler had to figure out a way to manage the situation quickly.

Forsyth and Gypsy, a four-year-old border collie, completed the task in 1:17 to win the event.

"This is the first big trial I’ve won with her," Forsyth said. "She’s really bonded to me. I’ve bonded to her, too. She gets my groove, I guess. We understand each other. She really wants to please me. She listens really well."

Eriksdale is approximately 150-kilometres northwest of Winnipeg.

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