Your dog won't play fetch or tug or anything? That's strange. Ha! And weird that they don't allow for food rewards, especially when nothing else seems to be working. I know in my previous K9 SAR group, you basically had to act silly and go crazy to hype up the dog to let it know it's doing the right thing and you're super happy for him because of it. It took a while for us newbies to be able to jump around like an ape and use a squeaky happy voice to praise the dog. We were all adults acting like children, but it did have a positive effect on our dogs, and once we got passed our own embarrassment, we saw better results. But we all also used toys and tugs and played fetch and/or used special food rewards. Whatever the reward was, they only got it to reinforce the positive results in training, and were never allowed to do the same reward at home for general obedience/play. I'm sure there are leaders and highly experienced trainers in your unit that you could ask for some one on one training, guidance and advice. Our unit leader was a well known SAR dog trainer, and the first ever certified in the state of Oregon. There were members in the group that would pay him on the side for additional training to help their dogs get over certain obstacles. What would take many hours to overcome, this particular trainer could analyze and assist your dog in 5 minutes. He was amazing! His part-time job outside of SAR and his regular day job was as a dog trainer, which is why they paid him as compensation for all the amazing things he was able to do for these dogs. So that's always an option too, and one that I never thought of in that previous unit for my own dog. Wish I would've thought of that, to get the additional training on off days, as my dog could've really used it, as could I!!! Good luck. SAR is amazing, and I think I'll stick with the K9 SAR community until my body can no longer handle it.
Last edited by counter; 06-24-2014 at 05:34 PM.