Bunnies Can Herd, Really!

Champis, the Swedish herding rabbit.

Move over Barbie Collies, there’s a new herder in town that is adorably small, has perfect ear set and has a decidedly fluffy butt.  And he’s not a show Border Collie from Australia, he’s a rabbit from Sweden.

Nils-Eric and Greta employ their granddaughter Hanna’s rabbit named “Champis” on their farm in Käl, Sweden to help herd their sheep. It appears that Champis learned to herd sheep–complete with heading, heeling, eye, and clapping behaviors–from their Border Collie, but this video shows that Champis gets along just fine all by himself and the sheep respect his authority.

"With a rabbit like Champis, who needs a dog?"

Frankly, I’m amazed that the rabbit seems to know what the shepherd wants, just like the Border Collies do; for example, he runs to cut the sheep off from re-entering the barn and he even makes a valiant effort to bring back a sheep that has gone stray, and he’s perfectly willing to stare down a bull headed woolly.


Read the continuing adventures of Champis the herding rabbit (named after a Swedish soft drink) and his Border Collie friends “Gimmie” and “Fame” on the Gårdsbackens blogg.

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About Christopher

Christopher Landauer is a fifth generation Colorado native and second generation Border Collie enthusiast. Border Collies have been the Landauer family dogs since the 1960s and Christopher got his first one as a toddler. He began his own modest breeding program with the purchase of Dublin and Celeste in 2006 and currently shares his home with their children Mercury and Gemma as well. His interest in genetics began in AP Chemistry and AP Biology and was honed at Stanford University.