"Extreme" Drives -- Good or Bad? - Page 6 - German Shepherd Dog Forums

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Old 11-30-2012, 03:20 PM   #51 (permalink)
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I agree with you What I am trying to get at, is that to me saying a dog has "extreme" drive and a high threshold for drive is kind of an oxymoron. It just doesn't fit. Wheras you COULD have a dog with "extreme" aggression and a high threshold. Sometimes the reality of dogs just doesn't fit into our defininitions
I don't see it as an oxymoron at all. I'll make a little graphic... brb
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Old 11-30-2012, 03:25 PM   #52 (permalink)
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As an example of thresholds... if I have Jäger and katya outside and the wind blows a leaf across the front of them. Katya will snag it until she realizes its just a boring leaf. The amount of stimulus needed to trigger her prey response is low... just a little prey-like movement with any object will do it. Jäger would look at it like "what dude.. its a leaf". However, should a rabbit burst out of the garden and run by both of them, they will be in nearly equal levels of prey drive, and both will give chase with all their heart, catch and thrash it like mad if they can. Jäger has a much higher threshold... he has to have his prey drive stimulated more before it "activates" and he comes into drive. To elaborate further. I could get Jäger to chase a leaf, but its going to take more stimulus.. i.e. me making it look like prey infront of him for a few seconds before he is sufficiently stimulated to reach his threshold.
Yes I get that, but like I said saying a dog is high drive and has a high threshold to get into drive to me is an oxymoron. I'm not talking so much about chasing prey or bite work I'm talking more along the lines of getting nice, drivey obedience. A dog that is high threshold (for drive) will NOT show much drive because lets face it, obedience is boring. Now can that dog really be considred extremely high drive?
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Old 11-30-2012, 03:34 PM   #53 (permalink)
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Lol glad my dog isn't the only one who chases leaves past puppyhood
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Old 11-30-2012, 04:05 PM   #54 (permalink)
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In theory, perhaps. But reality is that it just doesn't work that way.

Balance is very easily and quickly lost when trying to add more and more and more drive. Drive is easy to add to breedings. Finding the nerve to properly control and contain that drive is not. Things very easily and quickly get out of whack and the drive takes control, overriding the thinking part of the brain. Happens all the time, and is happening quite frequently with this breed unfortunately.

There is a maximum amount of "current" that a dog's brain can handle. Even a dog of the strongest nerves. Go over that amount, and things short circuit.
Yeah I know its an oversimplification of the whole thing, but in theory
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Old 11-30-2012, 04:06 PM   #55 (permalink)
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Yes I get that, but like I said saying a dog is high drive and has a high threshold to get into drive to me is an oxymoron. I'm not talking so much about chasing prey or bite work I'm talking more along the lines of getting nice, drivey obedience. A dog that is high threshold (for drive) will NOT show much drive because lets face it, obedience is boring. Now can that dog really be considred extremely high drive?
Review my **DRAFT** graphic on prey drive.. the part about moving thresholds needs to say capture that you can only slightly move thresholds... that you can't fundamentally and dramatically change any of the dogs genetically based behaviors

Also, not to scale. Don't beat me up about "a nice high drive dog won't activate for a ball thrown??? You sir, are stupid". I rushed

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Beschützer des Jägers v. Sportwaffen, HOT, IPO1, AD, CGC
Katya v. Hügelblick, HOT, IPO2, CGC
SG Aska v. Ketscher Wald, 2 x SchH3, Kkl 1

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Old 11-30-2012, 04:20 PM   #56 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by hunterisgreat View Post
Review my **DRAFT** graphic on prey drive.. the part about moving thresholds needs to say capture that you can only slightly move thresholds... that you can't fundamentally and dramatically change any of the dogs genetically based behaviors

Also, not to scale. Don't beat me up about "a nice high drive dog won't activate for a ball thrown??? You sir, are stupid". I rushed


While that chart is nice...and it really is. none of it fits any of my dogs because there are a lot of grey areas. Or maybe I'm not understanding it correctly?

Last edited by Mrs.K; 11-30-2012 at 04:25 PM.
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Old 11-30-2012, 04:22 PM   #57 (permalink)
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That is NOT AT ALL what I am talking about. I'm talking about the level of stimulus it takes to get a dog into protection mode....one that can calmly walk out onto the field and sit there waiting his turn without having a mental breakdown while the helper takes a water break and chooses what sleeve to use....and will not react with agression until he has a reason to. I'm sorry, I don't want my dog acting like a moron and having my arm pulled off just trying to make it to the field and I want to be able to have a discussion with the helper about what the game plan is for the session without losing my ear drums from the screaming and whining.
I quite agree with you here but I also think that like everything, it depends on the dog. Lately I have been getting Nikon out for protection before his turn and I have him sit/down right there where he can clearly see and hear what is going on. He watches the dog before him do protection like he would sit at my feet while I'm watching HGTV. When it's his turn I tell him to fuss and we heel onto the field (sometimes around a little bit) and he must feel and be quiet until I say "pass auf". For me though it's not a demonstration of drive or balance or on/off switch or trying to get compliance under high distraction, but I'm actually doing it to cap him so that his drive level is higher. I'm doing it to bring him up rather than bring him down and having him maintain the obedience and control has actually helped bring him into a higher state of drive (and stay more in drive throughout his sessions) rather than squash drive for the sake of obedience and control (he has very good obedience during protection naturally, probably why this works so well for me). For some dogs though, I've seen the obedience overdone by the handler and the dog needs a chance to loosen up and in some cases will intentionally be allowed to drag the handler on the field. The thing is, I'm pretty sure all the dogs know the helper is there and know it's time for protection. They are already waiting to react and unless the dog is a total dud in protection it takes very little if anything to get a reaction. In fact some of the more "meh" dogs I've seen often come out screaming and dragging the handler around but then fizzle once there's any real confrontation involved.
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Old 11-30-2012, 04:23 PM   #58 (permalink)
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Wow hunter that is awesome! I'm just running out the door to work my dogs I will take a closer look when I get back.
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Old 11-30-2012, 04:39 PM   #59 (permalink)
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While that chart is nice...and it really is. none of it fits any of my dogs because there are a lot of grey areas. Or maybe I'm not understanding it correctly?
Explain the grey areas and I shall improve my chart
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Beschützer des Jägers v. Sportwaffen, HOT, IPO1, AD, CGC
Katya v. Hügelblick, HOT, IPO2, CGC
SG Aska v. Ketscher Wald, 2 x SchH3, Kkl 1
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Old 11-30-2012, 04:45 PM   #60 (permalink)
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I quite agree with you here but I also think that like everything, it depends on the dog. Lately I have been getting Nikon out for protection before his turn and I have him sit/down right there where he can clearly see and hear what is going on. He watches the dog before him do protection like he would sit at my feet while I'm watching HGTV. When it's his turn I tell him to fuss and we heel onto the field (sometimes around a little bit) and he must feel and be quiet until I say "pass auf". For me though it's not a demonstration of drive or balance or on/off switch or trying to get compliance under high distraction, but I'm actually doing it to cap him so that his drive level is higher. I'm doing it to bring him up rather than bring him down and having him maintain the obedience and control has actually helped bring him into a higher state of drive (and stay more in drive throughout his sessions) rather than squash drive for the sake of obedience and control (he has very good obedience during protection naturally, probably why this works so well for me). For some dogs though, I've seen the obedience overdone by the handler and the dog needs a chance to loosen up and in some cases will intentionally be allowed to drag the handler on the field. The thing is, I'm pretty sure all the dogs know the helper is there and know it's time for protection. They are already waiting to react and unless the dog is a total dud in protection it takes very little if anything to get a reaction. In fact some of the more "meh" dogs I've seen often come out screaming and dragging the handler around but then fizzle once there's any real confrontation involved.
Thats not uncommon. I'm the only one that has "figured out" one club dog... and with this dog I have the handler bring her out, not really under any control, but just as efficiently as possible. Then I have her down the dog, and the dog and I mildly posture... locked eyes and such, I methodically and slowly pace about a bit. She sits and loads for 30 seconds or so. Then, when the handler turns her on, I have a firecracker to work. Before the dog would sniff about and show some avoidance (the sniffing, eating grass), until finally she decided it was time to work and then she'd get going... weird dog. The odd thing is once shes going, she's good drive and takes frontal pressure, drives, stick hits, challenges, like a normal solid working dog would. No insecurity once she is working. Its like she's insecure or reluctant to work until the devil on her shoulder (I mean her drives) compels her to work lol
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Beschützer des Jägers v. Sportwaffen, HOT, IPO1, AD, CGC
Katya v. Hügelblick, HOT, IPO2, CGC
SG Aska v. Ketscher Wald, 2 x SchH3, Kkl 1
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