The Twistin’ Time Cryopreservation Litter

Hangin' Tree Black Bear x Deja Vu Deep Pockets

For the people that have been in the Australian Shepherd breed for a while, there are a few dogs that need no introduction. Hangin’ Tree Black Bear is one of those pivotal Aussies that cemented his legacy in the later part of the last century. I personally did not see Bear, but for many, many years I have studied him and would talk to anyone that had any connection to him or Gary Ericsson (Bear's breeder) of the Hangin’ Tree Ranch (Gary webpage).  

Being a cattle rancher, Gary had Australian Shepherds for over 25 years. He said Bear was the most powerful Aussie he had ever watched work cattle. Gary started training him at 4 months old and before long, Bear was working and breaking cattle around the ranch. Gary started trialing him at a young age earning titles and season long buckle awards. Gary thought so much of Bear (Black Bear webpage), he is the only Australian Shepherd to contribute DNA to the development of his new cattle dog breed.  

When the opportunity to breed to Hangin’ Tree Black Bear (via frozen semen), presented itself, it was an easy decision. I feel privileged and honored to carry forward his genetics. Being born in January 1988, Bear has ancestors who have been long been forgotten. First, by all accounts he was a healthy dog up until the very end. He was out heeling sheep just a couple days before he passed.  His hips were evaluated by OFA excellent and eyes cleared at 11 years old.  Make no mistake about it, Bear was bred to work cattle. "Bear was unique and different.  He was head-and-shoulders above the other dogs." said Con Ericsson.  "He would calmly work the cattle, head and heel when necessary to get them moving in the direction he wanted, then stop and let them move." This is what Gary needed on his ranch - dogs that were tough enough to work ornery cattle in an efficient manner. With that said, he was easy to live with in the house and good with other dogs, people, and children. 

The ‘chosen one’ is my spectacular girl - Déjà Vu Deep Pockets (Pocket Webpage). Pocket is bred by Jean Ponstingle and Diane Sobel-Meyer. Her pedigree is star studded with some of the finest working Aussies.  Pocket is conformationally correct and fits the breed standard in every way.  She is a shining example of form follows function and she proves that every single time she works livestock.  She has an easy and flowing movement that has maximum efficiency.  She has proven herself in the arena, fields, chutes, and pens. Her work is not done yet, but it does get a little more difficult when she is having babies. She is an ASCA Working Trial Champion, has earned titles in AKC and AHBA, is the 2023 USASA National Specialty Reserve HIT Cattle & Sheep.  She is a tenacious worker, hits heads and heels, and does not backdown from deserving cattle.  The cattle that challenge her, lose.  She is the real deal and a worthy partner for Black Bear.  These will be incredible puppies that will carry forward the blood of two outstanding Australian Shepherds.

 The Goal:  This is similar to a rising phoenix.  The rebirth of a legendary dog who made an profound impact on the breed, mostly, in the last century.  The noble goal, through cryopreservation, is to resurrect Hangin' Tree Black Bear. To incorporate his stockdog virtues and DNA into future litters and the Australian Shepherd gene pool. The combination of Bear x Pocket promises to yield outstanding Australian Shepherds that will be an asset to the breed.  Above all that, is to produce healthy dogs that have good temperaments.

 This is a co-breeding between Déjà Vu & Laconia

Pocket working Cattle, Sheep, and Goats

(Click any picture to enlarge it)

4-Generation Pedigree