Muster Dogs by Aticia Grey


An outback story of kelpies, red dirt and the future of a family farm.

A farmer's best friend and arguably one of their most reliable workers is a good dog. Aticia Grey - Teesh as she is known to friends and family - picked up her first team of kelpies in 2013 and has never looked back. In her area of rugged rangeland in West Australia's Pilbara region, mustering with aircraft, buggies and motorbikes has become the norm, alongside horses. But stepping into the world of working dogs, Teesh found herself on a rollercoaster ride of laughter, love, heartbreak - and revelation - as the economic and animal-welfare benefits of handling cattle with skilled herding dogs became clear. In 2020 Teesh got the chance to showcase the potential of working dogs more widely. Joining the ABC TV series Muster Dogs, Teesh and four other farming families took on the challenge of training new kelpie pups and testing their worth on the properties they run. Through this experience they showed the bonds that are formed between human and dog, and vividly demonstrated the economic, environmental and emotional impact of the renaissance of muster dogs in herding and farming in rural Australia.

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