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Storm Center: Leaping Leo a Disc Dog hit

Weingarten resident Nickie Nowak and her Australian shepherd, Leo, have formed a dynamic duo in the distance division of disc dog. The pair recently put on a performance during halftime of a Valle Catholic football game. (SUBMITTED PHOTO/Special to the Herald)

A column written by sports editor Eric Viccaro

This was not your typical haltime performance, and the fans were dazzled.

Weingarten resident Nickie Nowak tossed discs to her five-year-old Australian shepherd, Leo, during halftime of the Sept. 24 game between Valle Catholic and St. Francis Borgia.

It was like watching Valle Catholic quarterback Grant Fallert throwing a long bomb to wide receiver Aiden Heberlie for a Warrior TD.

“I got Leo in December in 2016,” Nowak explained. “I didn’t mean to get a disc dog.”

Nowak proceeded to enroll Leo in an agility lesson, but that didn’t stimulate this athletic pup.

“Then I tried disc, and a light bulb went off in Leo’s head,” Nowak said.

According to the American Kennel Club, Australian shepherds as a breed are smart, work-oriented and exuberant. 

These dogs are considered herding animals. AKC considered Australian shepherds to be very good with young children and playful.

The breed needs a high degree of mental stimulation, the kennel club reports on its website: 

These dogs have are energetic and have the highest level of trainability possible, so there’s a lot to like about Australian shepherds.

Editor’s Note: This column doesn’t necessarily reflect the views of the Ste. Genevieve Herald or Better Newspapers.

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