Learning from APTB Dogmen?
So I just came back from a mock trial. It was a scorcher, many dogs including my dog tbh quickly lost their animation and got a tad droopy in the heat. This ofcourse lead to less intensity and preformances that could have been better. I was not happy with the product I put out on the field and would be very unhappy if it were a real trial.
I got to thinking that if my dog were in better physical condition and had better endurance and heat tolerance the performance would have likely been better.
For the record my dog lives inside with AC so is not acclimated to the heat the same as if she lived outside. I assume its the same for a lot of the dogs there.
*I will preface this by saying I am not interested in discussing the morals of these "dogmen". Obviously dog fighting is illegal, cruel and immoral. However, the undeniable truth is that money and pride will push human beings to unique feats of innovation. Innovations we can learn from.
SO I was recently on youtube and began taking in some vids on the sporting dog channel from such APTB luminaries as Don Mayfield and Robert Lemm.
Specifically how they conditioned their animals for "shows" code speak for dog fight.
The study and effort they put into conditioning these dogs was herculean for obvious reasons.
There was much discussion on slat mills, supplements, chaining the dog, flirt pole, Jenny work etc.
These guys were doing everything from volume to resistance training with these dogs on a daily basis.
A few things I would like to touch on:
Treadmills, Robert Lemm talks about essentially volume training the dog on the mill. Dog trots for 2 mins goes flat out for 1 min back to a trot for 2 mins...rinse and repeat for 25-30 mins.
The idea is to decrease the rest period over time as the dogs endurance and VO2 max increases.
They did I believe its called Jenny work (the contraption looks complicated to replicate) have seen something similar for horses. Where the dog runs in a wide circle. Again they trot and run the dog. Also the handler sometime holds on to the Jenny for added resistance. The dog is frequently taken off the Jenny hosed down and walked, allowed to recover then put back on it.
They talked about putting the young dogs on a chain from 6 month onwards to increase overall fitness. This is not the virst time I have heard that chaining the dog out increases overall fitness.
I wont get into supplements it was all beyond my ken, both human and dog stuff..lol. They did feed quality kibble for obvious reasons.
Lemm talked about life sustaining fat vs 0% bodyfat and how you need the fat..
Pulling weight on sleds going for walks and more was discussed.
Anyways this has all made me re think how I keep and exercise my dogs. Needless to say a high level of fitness would result in a better performance on field.
Once again dog fighting is wrong, however I think there is something to learn from all ends of the dog game from hunters to yes..even dogmen when it comes to breeding, conditioning, stock selection and training.
So lets not make this about the illegal immoral aspect of what folks do with gamedogs we all agree its bad.
Thoughts and experience on this subject are what I am shooting for.
Such shy animals are in all circumstances an encumbrance to their owner, who must be ashamed of such a dog, and a disgrace to their race. Under no circumstances whatever must they be used for breeding, however noble and striking they may appear.