15 month old GSD extremely immature!!!! - Page 2 - German Shepherd Dog Forums
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post #11 of 41 (permalink) Old 12-20-2012, 01:17 PM
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This is an interesting question because for most of us this isn't even an issue. I've never seen a LE dog get trained and I do believe that 15 months old is very young for any type of certification into FULL police work, but if this was just an evaluation of how the dog is doing up to now, it might be a sign of things to come.

These dogs have to be the best of the best. They can't have a moment of lapse like this. Many people have trained their dogs for a BH or a CD before the dog was 1 year old so I can see how this should have been an exercise that the dog should be able to complete. But the bolting wasn't the worst part...its the not listening afterwards that is most alarming.

I don't think any of us can say that this dog doesn't have what it takes, in reality the evaluator has the most experience and the most knowledge to make such a call and he might be right in this case. What if he has seen this happen with 100s of other dogs and those dogs ended up not working out? This isn't a sport or a venue where the worst thing that happens if your dog blows you off is an NQ or a failed trial. This is a real life job and bad things happen if this dog blows off the handler.

I've been to a Schutzhund trial where a dog wouldn't stop biting the sleeve...even after it was called back to heel and the handler/helper were walking together, it went and bit the sleeve again. Well...that's just points but proves a point about the dog having self control and the want to please the handler rather than do what is fun for it.
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post #12 of 41 (permalink) Old 12-20-2012, 04:04 PM
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I have had dogs certified and fully operational at that age - including Stark - dual in Buffalo , and Purina Hall of Famer Keno with Metro Toronto , and several narc dogs etc etc --

it is an indication of the general mindset .

Most dogs get evaluated in the 12 to 18 month age range and generally what you have then , tends to repeat later on if you were to go for a re-evaluation. What may improve is intensity through maturation . Generally dogs have completed the 16 week certification course as close to two years (plus a bit) as possible.



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post #13 of 41 (permalink) Old 12-20-2012, 04:19 PM
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jae-- you know the difference between trained and developed when you have experienced it . You can train a dog to perform something , well, but as time goes by , and difficulty increases it is the dogs inner drive that over comes exhaustion, heat stress, thirst , even fear . Those are over ridden by drive and keen intense focus.

I saw this kind of immaturity that the OP mentioned so many years ago when dogs going through a guide dog training course were taken to Toronto's downtown core , along Yonge Street , which is as busy and hectic as you could imagine - along the newly built mega mall Eaton's Centre. I had dogs that had already qualified and was continuing with a donation program of young animals for guide (which certified) , knew the trainer, new the person in charge of pup acquisitions and the breeding program which they were planning to set up.

You could see dogs which had purpose and a sense of responsibility . They took their charge seriously and soberly. There were dogs which were life-of-the party . Deviated easily when someone ewwed and awwed , sought attention, stopped to sniff the ground and check the sides of buildings , stopped to snatch up some dropped food near the waste bins from office workers grabbing a bite and not finishing it.

Those animals really never developed themselves out of that mind-set .

When a dog is used for practical work , which includes patrol , you have to have confidence in that dog , and that dog has to think and act independantly to get the job done.
What next -- he sees a dog playing ball and he decides to be the monkey-in-the-middle.



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post #14 of 41 (permalink) Old 12-20-2012, 04:22 PM
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What about lines. Don't some of the Czech lines common in police service work mature a little more slowly? Just curious.


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post #15 of 41 (permalink) Old 12-20-2012, 04:37 PM
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So if your dog for some reason cannot do patrol work, can you still keep him a working dog for scent detection?

All my dog wants to do at training is play on the agility equipment. She's been like that as a pup and now she's 2.5, so I don't know if your dog will change. Last training session we practiced a recall from a long distance, my dog ran to the fun, curvy tunnel about 20' to my left instead of me, went through and then came to me.

Our dog did not start behaving in a more mature way until she was just over 18 months, so maybe your dog is still too young, see if you can re-evaluate in 3-4 months. Sorry you felt embarrassed, can't help but think your dog must have looked kind of cute playing in the snow though.
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post #16 of 41 (permalink) Old 12-20-2012, 05:44 PM
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Males tend to mature later - 2 years or even older. My male didn't really mature mentally until almost 3 years of age.
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post #17 of 41 (permalink) Old 12-20-2012, 06:23 PM
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no expert here, but I wouldn't be to quick to wash him out..I'd give him another 10 months and re-evaluate.

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post #18 of 41 (permalink) Old 12-20-2012, 06:27 PM
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in 10 months he would be too old - 25 months -- the OP should have a frank talk with the evaluator , give him one or two months and then "appeal" and have him run through again .
Detection - same thing the dog has to have focus and not be distracted by things in the environment -- nor can he give false indications -- some lines do mature more slowly but they still have the basics there - just they keep getting better and better .



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post #19 of 41 (permalink) Old 12-21-2012, 02:20 AM
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Originally Posted by WorkingK9 View Post
So my work has me brushing up training on a 15 month old GSD for patrol work. He is great on agility, bite work, scent detection, and obedience. Here's the problem: this dog performs near perfect obedience for me for the last 3 months, we think he is ready to go through his validation so we go ahead and book him.
The day of his test we have a big snowfall. The test is outside and the dogs are required to sit and lie down in the wet snow as part of their obedience evaluation. The moment I unhook his leash for an off-leash heel, he bolts and runs off to play in the snow. Calling him did no good, telling him to "down" was ignored.
The tester said this dog is completely immature and has no respect for me. I dont understand how a dog that performs almost perfectly for me for several months can do a 180 just because of a little enviornmental hicup. The tester hinted that this dog is unbalanced and unsuitable for patrol work as he cannot be completely trusted, I feel he may be right.
I felt like he embrassed me on purpose and has no respect for me at all even though he has been part of my family for 5 months. I have been through 5 validation tests with 4 different dogs and never had an issue until now. Should I just call it quits with this dog?
Where were you doing OB that the dog was "nearly perfect"?

Was it in brand new environments and with heavy distractions around? That can make a HUGE difference in their behavior.

So could be the dog genetically is really not suitable OR it might be the training and esp. the "Proofing" that the dog has undergone.
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post #20 of 41 (permalink) Old 12-21-2012, 02:43 AM Thread Starter
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I give this dog daily play time off leash where he can run and play for about an hour with me, he has never run off then and is always the first back to my car where he waits for me to open his kennel. I know that dogs don't have human traits and don't plan to embarass their handlers but as the validator said "this dog basically told you to F off today, he has no respect". I have been told that I was not firm enough with him. I feel I was though and he doesn't respond well to other trainers. He certainly wasn't spoiled though, he has one toy that I keep and is kennel kept when home, and is not allowed to play with the other dogs, as instructed.
Originally Posted by APBTLove View Post
This might seem like a totally weird question. BUT, how often does he get to cut loose completely and just be a dog and PLAY? And have you ever worked in him snow?

He's still a young dog, and it sounds like he's a very busy dog too. He has a mind and life of his own, you cannot expect him to be your robot - meaning he's going to do what he wants sometimes, not what you want. He didn't do this to hurt your feelings. It drives me nuts when people try to blame the dogs behavior on revenge, dogs don't do that! I can't tell you how many times I've told people their dog didn't poop in the house because you went on a date and he was jealous, the dog didn't go sniff your BFFs crotch to embarrass you, the dog didn't ignore you at a park and go pick a fight because you hurt his feelings earlier. Dogs don't plan out things to hurt you.
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