Muster Dogs

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Available: HD 4 x 60'

Muster Dogs




The process of mustering – gathering and moving livestock from place to place - is a long, difficult and often dangerous job; sometimes done on foot, or with animals, vehicles or even aircraft, the techniques used can depend on region, culture, distances and the type of terrain involved, and the type of animal that is being mustered. In the vast and challenging terrains across Australia, muster dogs hold a special place in farming life.

This engaging factual entertainment series explores the unique role of the muster dog in Australian agriculture and the impact this has on the environment, the farmers and the industry.

Spanning the red earth of the Top End to the green pastures of regional Victoria, it is an action-packed yet intimate character journey through the lives of five very different Australian farmers/trainers as they participate in an experiment: in an accelerated program, they train a new pup attempting to transform it from a greenhorn to an efficient working member of the mustering pack.

The diverse and engaging cast of characters is drawn from across the country. Thirty-eight-year-old Joni travels alone with her pack of dogs across the Top End mustering cattle; Joni was injured, almost killed, in a quad bike accident while mustering and is now a staunch supporter of using dogs. Stockbroker turned sheep grazier Rob Tuncks relishes a challenge, but will find his own methods of dog training tested in the series. The Finger family have been farmers in Clermont, Queensland for three generations and keen to see if a new pup can teach and old dog new tricks. Indigenous station owner CJ is an award-winning horse trainer keen to test her skills alongside renowned working dog trainers. Unbreakable Aticia is battling severe drought, taking on a new pup to train while her property is destocked is going to be a challenge.

Avid dog lovers will connect with the distinctive bond the farmers and trainers have with their best friend – their muster dog – and witness how this ancient herding art form is having a renaissance in Australian farming whilst revealing the underlying emotional, economic and environmental benefits of using this form of mustering.

The series features multiple recognised experts (including Joe Spicer, Peter Barr and Neil McDonald), who take audiences through the bond between farmer and animal, the natural interrelationship between dog and livestock, the facts and science behind muster dog behaviour and how this mustering method affects overall livestock animal welfare and the lives of farmers. They also set challenges, tasks and milestones designed specifically to test the development and growth from pup to muster dog and to gauge the individual owners’ abilities.

Muster Dogs uncovers a resurgence of the proper handling of these working dogs, and shows how this practice is actually spear-heading an entire industry movement – one which helps farmers transform their business and survive droughts, as well as assisting with the reduction of suicide rates and bringing enjoyment back into an industry that has been the backbone of the country since colonisation. The themes explored are increasingly relevant: drought, fires and climate change remain a growing social and economic agenda, alongside the enormous battle regional communities face for survival.

Funny, dramatic, and heart-warming, Muster Dogs is a series rooted in an industry that underpins a significant aspect of Australian identity – but whose universal themes will also appeal to audiences globally.


Ambience Entertainment