Alvina Butti, President
I was first introduced to the McNab dog by my cousin Bob Dolcini, I had always been around these dogs growing up at the Dolcini Ranch in Chileno Valley of Petaluma, California. These dogs were used for working the cows plus they deer hunted, and pig hunted with them. It was amazing to see them in action.
In my late 20’s I received my first McNab, Maggie. She came from the Dolcini lines and the Benedetti Turkey Ranch lines in Petaluma. They were using there McNabs to herd Turkeys.
So began my love for the McNab. My Maggie was brilliant, she could herd, hunt and knew more commands then any dog I had ever had. She was protective, loving, funny, athletic and just over all amazing.
I moved to the Redding California area and was contacted by Donna Seigmund. Donna had had McNabs for many years, we became fast friends and my world of the McNab expanded. Donna and I researched these dogs and interviewed Mrytle Brown, what a gracious lady with so much character and knowledge.
We began raising McNabs always staying in our own lines so that we could sell breed able pairs. I was fortunate enough to meet Lev Beebe so I was using his dogs as my male side. When he no longer had dogs the hunt was on. I found local dogs, and then found a Sagehorn dog to bred to.
We shipped puppies all around the United States. Dogs were brought to us to be looked at and evaluated as to being a McNab, some had histories some did not, the ones with no History were put thru working tests and personality tests to verify that they were indeed the wonderful dog, the McNab.
Upon moving to Oregon, my life changed, my dream of being part of a working ranch came true. I brought my dogs with me, McNabs and Border Collies. I only ever had female McNabs so after moving here was at a loss to find a male. Good things happen and a good friend of ours had connections with the Lone Pine Ranch and he shipped us two McNabs a male and a female, so we bred McNabs for a while until my females got too old.
So now the MSR got in touch with me and I have jumped in to help with this great venture the DNA of the great McNab breed of dog. It is proving to be the answer in preserving this wonderful dog as we know it.
Sandi Hall, Secretary/Founding Secretary
I was first introduced to the wonderful world of McNabs when my husband came home 12 years ago and asked “honey have you ever heard of a breed of dog called McNab?” With 45 years involvement as a veterinarian technician, with animal shelters, as a trainer/breeder and with rescue groups I had to confess . . . “Nope!”
Kevin worked with a fella that came from CA with his “McNabs” and so our journey began. He gifted an awesome male pup (Cap) to us when he was just over a year old and his owner no longer worked in the bucking bull business, but Kevin did.
It was pure love and loyalty from that moment on as he was Kevin’s constant companion, work partner, best friend and soulmate! From there I was on a quest to find a female and was fortunate to find Ron Prentice and my sweet girl Juice — we have been so blessed.
We have never looked back and after having or working with every imaginable type of “livestock/herding” dog in the past we are hooked. We truly thank God for our line of McNabs as we strive to remain true to what the breed is so desired to be: a real working machine, an honest loyal friend, sure enough good looking, great on-off switch and of course a true life partner. Here at KbarS we sincerely hope you will join us in supporting our efforts through the McNab Shepherd Registry to keep our breed strong and true into the future.
Jody Camilletti, Treasurer/Registrations
As a farm/ranch kid I’ve never been without my animals, I bred and raised Australian Shepherds for 20 plus years. I was not aware of the McNab until we inherited one from the neighbors…to much dog for their operation. Rory I’m sure could have worked the yearlings without any assistance from us. As our Aussies began to age, my husband said let’s see if we can find another McNab and that began our search 9 years ago.
And as any of you that have one of these amazing dogs knows that having just one is almost impossible, there are currently 6 at our house, working the yearlings on the ranch. In an age where the farming and ranch heritage is becoming smaller and more about how fast can we get done and on to the next thing a great working dog has become a thing of the past.
I was asked last year if I might be interested in helping to get the McNab Shepherd Registry up and running, I certainly don’t have the long history with this breed as some others however as a certified dog trainer, rancher, grandma and animal lover I don’t want to see this breed go the way of so many other working breeds that have been bred for looks not brains. And thus begins my journey to help preserve this breed for generations to come.
Ingrid Olson, Membership
I have been a small farm girl from birth, my brothers and father hunted so we always had hunting dogs. To a non hunter, instead into horses and cows, hunting dogs seemed “dumb”. I was given an ACD and learned about cattle dogs, at 15 I was given a short haired Border collie looking pup that I fell in love with. However I only had her for a few months before she was killed by coyotes. Over the years raising ACD’s I always missed that little black and white’s loving nature, work ethic and upright way of working.
Fast forward more years than I care to admit, the ACD’s were not cutting it, if I had great dispositions, I didn’t have the work ethic. So I was on the hunt for a work partner. I stopped by Big R in Bend Oregon one beautiful day and here was a truck with puppies for sale. I walked by and into the store. Inside I overheard a conversation about these cross bred puppies out in the parking lot and their parent’s work ethic. I went to talk to the owner, learned they were Kelpie/McNab cross. I tried to walk away because I didn’t like cross breeding, However one little male pup so reminded me of the little pup I had at 15 years old.
Zeek came home with me that day and I can honestly say he changed my life. Over the years I figured out what traits came from which breed. Sweet, loyal family dog with a stubborn never ending work ethic was the McNab traits. Stubborn, look at you like you’re an idiot then do it his own way, and to rough on my show cows was the Kelpie. Again on the hunt I went looking for a female to work with Zeek.
I found Ron and Karen at Rockin KR McNabs and went to look at his new litter of pups and was hooked, I found what I know believe I had as a 15 year old kid, the McNab Stock Dog.
One word of warning, you can never have just one McNab. I have 5 and sweet old Zeek who prompted this amazing journey!
Clark Carlton, Founding President
Over the last 10 years I’ve had the privilege of being a part of the McNab community. So many of you have far more time with these dogs then myself. I often wonder how I ended up in this position, or how I ended up with such a great line of dogs. Yet it has become a very large part of my wife Stacy’s and my life. Our McNabs are much more to us then our dogs, they are truly our kids.
We first acquired a McNab to help with our modest cow/calf operation up here in the high country. Of course, right away we knew they were much more than the other dogs we saw working stock. Five years ago, I got very sick and my riding and working every day came to a fast end. It was then that I truly understood just how smart these dogs are, as Jet’s job changed from stock dog to caretaker. I am, because of that, much more than a fan of this breed. I knew that this breed had to be protected. After a poor attempt, mostly on my part, four years ago to start a club/foundation it was clear another approach was needed. It was then that a plan was started to enter these dogs into a DNA profiling test group.
It was the stubbornness of Sandi Williams-Hall that really was the driving force behind the curtain that made this happen. The last place I wanted to be was the president of this registry, but I was recruited. A few months ago the testing was done and we had a breed profile. While everyone said it would never happened, and the McNab was a mutt without a grouping, science proved them wrong.
So I believe very much in this registry. I know that for a short time I will be a part of something that will protect and preserve this amazing dog. I hope very much that the factions, egos and clichés can be set aside to accomplish two things. First is to give the McNab community a registry that is open to all McNab owners. Second, that in this registry we are somehow able to preserve this now definable breed for many decades to come.
Ron Prentice, Founding Vice President
My first encounter with the McNab Shepherd occurred in Northern California, on Ridgewood ranch in the early 70’s. I was freshly married with a new family moving from a ranch in Wyoming where I was a cow boss. The move to Mendocino county was an eye opener as the cattle I had been around in Wyoming were easy to handle and dogs were usually not a requirement.
Upon arriving in California, I realized that the cattle and country would take a bit of getting used to. The people on the ranch were far from horsemen or cattle people and on this big expanse of Manzanita and Chemise brush covered hills, the cattle were wild and hard to gather.
When I first arrived, the ranch hired someone to help me gather the cattle, and we could sort off the older cattle and sell what we could. We tried for days and were only able to gather 15 or twenty out of about 100 head. Then we hauled the cattle to livestock auction in Ukiah just down the road from the ranch.
I was fortunate enough to meet the owner of the auction Rudy Mora and his partner Melvin Rodriquez. In our initial conversation, I was telling Rudy and Melvin how hard the cattle were to gather. Rudy told me he leased the place next to our ranch and that he would come by with his son and dogs and help us gather he rest of our cattle.
That next week started my love affair — if you will — with the McNab Shepherd. I had never seen dogs that were were so athletic and could maneuver around in rough country and stop and hold wild cattle.
I was sold on how smart and easy to handle the dogs were. They could almost read Rudy’s mind before he gave a command. The dogs were fearless, Rudy told me the dog’s history and about the McNab Ranch.
That was all it took. My first dog came from the McNab Ranch. Then I followed up with a female from the Hunt Ranch at Laytonville. All told, I have had a relationship with the McNab Shepherd for 47 years and I made a promise to an old rancher that I got my first dog from that I would never ever crossbreed these awesome dogs.
I have worked on ranches in Wyoming, Washington State, Oklahoma, and New Mexico and no matter where I go these dogs still do their job no matter what it is. They are always willing to please and to accomplish the mission.
My dogs and I have a relationship; they understand me and are always ready to go do their job. When I raise a litter, I only breed the best to the best. My whole mission in my life time has been to raise the most awesome dog breed on the planet.