We are Eric Verstappen and Louise Liebenberg and our two children Jess and Roy. We have always had a great love for all animals and especially working dogs. We started sheep farming together in 1992 in the Netherlands but decided in 2008 to move to Alberta, Canada to start up a new sheep farm. We have bought 480 acres in northern Alberta to develop into a commercial sheep flock farm. On some of the other pages you can read about the sheep, our working dogs and other activities on our farm.
I was born and raised in South Africa, my love and interest in all animals and nature was nurtured there. I had my first dog to train, a German Shepherd Dog when I was sixteen, soon a border collie; Ace was added to my menagerie of birds, reptiles, horses and other animals. I was fanatical about training my dogs in various dog sports starting with obedience, tracking, companion dog, some showing, and agility and with the Border collie, sheepdog trials. After my university study (BSc), majoring in psychology and I traveled to Europe with my border collie Ace. In the Netherlands I met Eric and we continued on together. We were active in training and raising border collies and went trialing all over Europe. My kennel name TRELOSS is registered with the International Sheepdog Society. My best trialing achievements were twice 4 th on the Continental Sheepdog Championships and was Dutch Practical Sheepdog champion. In 1992 we started a grazing company and where hired with our flock of sheep, at times comprising of 1200 ewes, to graze nature areas, dykes, military grounds, parks, golf courses, heather regions and grass lands. We built up an extensive organic grazing company and advised in many other projects of this kind. We were also raising American quarter horses. Despite the fact that our company was doing very well, Eric and I did not want to live in the Netherlands much longer. We wanted a new challenge and wanted to live in a less populated country with lots of nature, our choice was Alberta, Canada. When I visa was finalized we moved to Alberta at the end of august 2008.
We have bought our farm of 480 acres, bordering crown land and National Forest. On this farm we will now concentrate on establishing a good commercial sheep farm, raising and training our border collies and Sarplaninac livestock guardian dogs and of course raising our two wonderful children to love and respect nature and animals in general.
I started out as a farmhand at 16 years of age, I knew my future would be in farming. My parents did not have a farm so I would have to find a way to do it. My first step was to go to Agricultural College in ‘s-Hertogenbosch in the Netherlands. I graduated in 1987. After that I worked in Belgium for 1 year in sheep farming, grazing sheep in the harbors’ of Antwerp. . Then I got a job on a research station in pig farming. After 6 month Provimi asked me to work for them as a nutritionist for Ruminants. I took that job and started a course at Wageningen University on Nutrition of animals. For Provimi I worked as trouble shooter in different countries to help out the sales teams of feed companies. In 1993 I started the Grazerie together with my wife Louise. I then also stopped my job at Provimi and started working as a free lance consultant in farm management and sales support to feed companies. Our sheep farm did very well after about 5 years and we built up our own small farm. We had about 500 sheep and I was still working full time as consultant. In 2002 I started taking on less consultancy work and got more involved in the sheep farm as it was growing bigger and bigger. Between 2006 and 2008 we were concentrating on selling the farm because we new we were going to move to Alberta, Canada. I have always raised and trained border collies, I breed ISDS registered border collies is my prefix or kennel name is ROCKSTEADY.