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Old 02-04-2008, 07:33 AM
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Lilavati Lilavati is offline
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Most dogs will protect you naturally when the chips are down. Sarama, though several incidents, has made it clear that if there was a threat to me, she'd defend me.

Another problem with protection training, if this matters to you, if that a dog with protection training is barred from therapy work.

IF he just needs a job, I'd say do agility . . . or therapy!
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Old 02-04-2008, 09:33 AM
boxerdog44 boxerdog44 is offline
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Default mrose s

Buster may also enjoy flyball
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Old 02-04-2008, 09:49 AM
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This is very important.

NEVER EVER be mistaken that a dog who postures and growls will rise to the occasion if it is a REAL confrontation. I can name 2 women right off the top of my head who were assaulted while their dogs (one a GSD one a Rottweiler) cowered in the next room or ran.

The VAST majority of dogs, while they may posture and present a front, if they are seriously confronted with a physically aggressive adult will break and run. If your dog has not been carefully trained on the protection field to fight with an aggressor, DO NOT mistakenly think the dog will defend you if the **** ever really gets deep.

Most people would be really surprised to see what their dog does when actually threatened close up by a real aggressor.
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Old 02-04-2008, 11:57 AM
Sch3Dana Sch3Dana is offline
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Most people would be really surprised to see what their dog does when actually threatened close up by a real aggressor.
Thanks for your post, RedyreRottweilers. A lot of people believe their dog will protect them, but very few actually will. I have seen it with my own eyes and experienced it first hand. This is one of the reasons the working dog breeders (GSD, Rottie, Dobie, malinois, etc) in Europe continue to test all of their breeding stock in Schutzhund or other protection tests. Two courageous parents will still produce many offspring that do not have this courage, so each generation requires testing. I think it's because courage to fight a man is not a natural behavior for a dog. It takes strong breeding selection and then the proper training to produce dogs that are useful for real protection. Just compare an American show line GSD to a European working line GSD and you will see how different two dogs can be in this regard.

If you want a dog that really protects you, you have to start off with the right puppy and then raise and train him to understand and feel comfortable with his protection duties. Most people who say, "my dog will protect me" aren't doing any harm. But, if they put themselves into dangerous situations bc they really believe this, it could end really badly.
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Old 02-04-2008, 02:43 PM
DanL DanL is offline
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At our dog club we recently washed out a white GSD. He was not making any progress after 6 months. He would engage a decoy with a sleeve but wouldn't commit to the bite unless the decoy immediately slipped the sleeve. He never got any better than that. He was just as Red said in her post- posturing, barking, growling, but he wouldn't go after the decoy if the decoy put any defense on the dog. The trainers equated it to a 15 year old kid talking trash, and when it came time to put up or shut up, he ran. This dog would take a cheap bite, not because he wanted to engage/fight, but because he wanted you to go away. The owner didn't believe his dog didn't have what it took and was always trying to get the decoys to do things the dog wasn't even close to ready for, like putting on a full bite suit, wearing a "Jason" mask, stuff like that. The day they told him they weren't going to spend any more time on the dog, the owner got all irate and said how he knew his dog would proteact him. After a heated discussion, one of the trainers said go get him. I'm so confident he WON'T engage me, I'll stand here with no protection on, and you send him on me. The owner sent him, the trainer started yelling at the dog and acting menacing, ran at the dog, and chased it away. The dog never got within 20 yards of him. Then he took the owner, put him in a headlock and used a whip to kick up all kinds of dirt, simulating a fight. The dog didn't move. Instead, he started looking at the other trainer who was away from the conflict, and began to go towards him because he was less of a threat, until that trainer picked up a whip and sleeve and started cracking the whip. The dog ran away.

Chanda wrote "if ever you want to train your dog always keep in mind to get a qualified and reputable person you can find. you can also ask some friends if they know someone who can train your dog."

There is WAY more to it than that. Protection training isn't something you take a 2 or 3 month course on. It's an ongoing process that takes years. It's more of a lifestyle for you and your dog, something you are always working on. Your dog is never finished with this kind of training. There is always something new to learn and work on.

I'm learning there are so many things to work through with a dog in this type of training, mainly, that if your dog has the genetics to reach only a certain level, he'll never go past that point. Some dogs have it, some dogs don't, and there are varying degrees in between. Some dogs might never get past a sleeve. Some dogs might get on the bite suit and not be comfortable. Some dogs might be great on leg bites but not want to target higher frontal bites because of more eye contact and conflict with the decoy. Some might be fine on the suit as long as the decoy doesn't have a whip or clatter stick. I was told of a Sch3 dog that wouldn't engage a decoy in a suit, because all he knew was the sleeve. Every dog is different and all have their limits, even the best dog has a threshold for how far he'll go.
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Old 02-05-2008, 01:19 AM
boxerdog44 boxerdog44 is offline
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Default sch3dana

yes I agree , alot of owners are under that misconception that there dog will protect them , alot of dogs esp with weak nerves will not , they have beeb raised as a pet and do not wabnt to hurt any one a sch dog bites for the sleeve it probably would not out side of the trial ring
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Old 02-05-2008, 03:49 AM
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mrose_s mrose_s is offline
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I wouldn't be surprised if Buster did protect me, but I won't say he definetly will.
I do believe Sophie would, she's defended us in dangerous situations before.

Buster would be great at agility, but his DA makes it almost impossible for him to focus, hopefully this will be the year I can get down to a behaviourist to atleast get a proffessional assessment of him.
Flyball I thought about but wouldn't trust him with close crossovers in high drive.

Therapy he wouldn't enjoy, he has 0 interest in anyone other than the 3 people he lives with.
Agility is the aim, (he weaved 6 poles in a row for the first time ever yesterday.) and we'll continue training at home until his DA is under control enough to attend classes and hopefully compete one day.

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Old 02-05-2008, 03:57 AM
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Dan, Red, Sch3dana... how do you *tell* if your dog has the courage to confront and deal with an aggressor without actually testing them?

My fear is that Zaphod does have that courage, and I don't want him to hurt a person or another dog if he's mistaken about what is a threat and what is not - I want to be able to call him off, even if all he'll do to a person is what Dan describes - a cheap shot and a retreat. Even a cheap shot from a dog like him is not going to be harmless...

He's a mutt and will probably be a useless Schutzhund dog, but I want to have as much control over him as I can, no matter what drive is causing him to act in a protective manner. Do you think a protection trainer would work with me simply to help gain control of his responses? I know he's still his own being and will respond as such, but I would feel so much more comfortable letting him go places with me and letting him be present when I have visitors if I knew there was a chance I could call him off, should he decide to confront a supposed "threat"..

Boxer, I have a 40 pound Border Collie that saved me from a very dangerous situation when I was alone. I never thought he'd really protect - I knew he could possibly nip, posture and threaten, but didn't expect the bravery that he showed. He hasn't shown it since. While I think it's foolish to *expect* any dog to protect you, sometimes they'll surprise you. Were he larger and stronger, I'd trust Dakota with my life.
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Old 02-05-2008, 06:12 AM
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SisMorphine SisMorphine is offline
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Originally Posted by DanL View Post
At our dog club we recently washed out a white GSD. He was not making any progress after 6 months. He would engage a decoy with a sleeve but wouldn't commit to the bite unless the decoy immediately slipped the sleeve. He never got any better than that. He was just as Red said in her post- posturing, barking, growling, but he wouldn't go after the decoy if the decoy put any defense on the dog. etc
I despise the term "washed out". At the place I used to train I have seen more than my fair share of dogs who were "washed out" by some of the country's most notable Sch trainers become some of the best police dogs out there when someone decided to apply more than a whip and an e-collar to their training.

If the dog wasn't cut out for bitework, then say it wasn't cut out for bitework. But frankly from what you described I bet that dog could easily be taught how to play the game (we are talking Sch here and not PP right?) and do so successfully. You don't have to apply defense to a dog who isn't ready for it. Build the dog first, then apply defense. Some dogs can be built for a week, others may need a year or two.

Sorry, there's just something about the term "washed out" that I find offensive and lazy. Many bitework people just seem to think that if the dog doesn't come out of the box perfect then it's useless. It ticks me off.

PS: Having trained mostly PP, but done some dabbling in FR and PSA (and having sat in on more than 11 Sch or Sch-style trainers while trying to find someone to train with) I can say that Personal Protection training is a great deal different than sport training.

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Old 02-05-2008, 06:56 AM
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CharlieDog CharlieDog is offline
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I have a Sch titledable dog, but I never took it any further than that. I lost the time and the drive to finish him off, mostly because of the practices at the Sch club I went to. It took 'Pol a LOOONG time to turn onto the sleeve (two I think?) and right about the time that he did Id had enough, so we quit. He has the perfect temperment to do either Sch or PP, but I dont really feel the need to train him. He is confidant, assertive when he needs to be, aloof and drivey. He doesnt feel the need to start conflicts, but he is more than willing to finish them.

That being said, he has protected me once when I didnt even know I was in danger, and ignored me completely when I thought I was. He is eighty pounds of solid muscle with teeth as big around as my pinky, and almost as long as my thumb. People do cross the street to avoid having to walk next to them, even though all he'd do is sniff them, if that. Apollo loves who he loves, if youre one of his friends, he is more than happy to bring you his ball or stick, if not, he ignores you, or politely allows to you pet him. He isnt a fawning dog.

In my opinion, he really has one of the perfect temperments to use as a Personal Protection dog, but I think that he is perfectly capable, and more than willing to do anything required of him should someone threaten me. He is also a big lap dog with me and my SO. Just a big mush ball if you know him.
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