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Old 12-21-2012, 05:39 AM   #31 (permalink)
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All Things "Dog": POST 1 - Raising the Ideal K9 Partner and the Perfect Companion -- dog working WITH
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Old 12-21-2012, 07:19 AM   #32 (permalink)
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so the dog wanted to play in the snow. was it his first snow?
did you correct him and then train in the snow?
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Old 12-21-2012, 09:50 AM   #33 (permalink)
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I know OP answered all the questions and has made his decision...but I feel like a lot of the responses were based off of a pet GSD rather than a working GSD. Of course for any one of us the way this dog reacted to the snow would've just been funny and we'd probably join them while they're playing in the snow. But this was a different situation, I know carmen made a bunch of good points and she's probably one of the only people on here that can really make this kind of evaluation but I've been around some service dogs and its true, they either have it or they don't. And usually this is known sometime from 6-12 months. The dog might still be "immature" but it shows signs of wanting to do the work.

The OP had an evaluator tell him this dog wasn't suited for the work, and I'm thinking the evaluator has seen more dogs go through and wash out of programs like this than the rest of us can hope to have in a lifetime.

I'm guessing the dog will find a great home now? Not sure if OP will be keeping him? Would be nice to know what the program plans to do with these types of dogs that just don't cut it but would probably make amazing house pets.
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Old 12-21-2012, 09:52 AM   #34 (permalink)
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I guess I am confused because now it sounds like you already had some prior concerns about the dog but the first post indicates one lapse after three months of near perfect performance. I do understand one lapse is still critical in a working police dog...and yes, the evaluator is going to see more about the dog than we can infer in a post.
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Old 12-21-2012, 11:25 AM   #35 (permalink)
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"We had to physically retrieve him from over 500 ft away as he would not recall." That dog was in a different zone - total disconnect . You could have gone and had a coffee and the dog would not have noticed .
this " Of course for any one of us the way this dog reacted to the snow would've just been funny and we'd probably join them while they're playing in the snow" may very well be the response for pet owners , but for a dog charged with responsibility this would have been very very wrong -- the dog does not lead the agenda . Sets a bad precedent .
"The validator thought it was a little extreme though, he should still have come back even if he was acting like an idiot: that brings the work ethic in to question. Would the dog cack out when it got stressed in a difficult taxing situation?

Stuff like this is important for raising a dog correctly and being critical enough to know when to re-route a dogs future. I am thinking of a new member , who earlier this week announced that he was bringing home a new pup , which he plans to have as his police k9 partner .
Wish I could find that post . So much goes in to the selection. I might look at the pedigree and stop right there. Then there is the selection of "the" pup, and then the development , which is not the same as a pet , which does not mean the dog is isolated, au contraire , bond and the dogs ability to bond and work with you are very important .
The OP "knows" --"I have worked with police narcotics K9s and my first partner was a 1 year old lab for narcotics. " even the mother " My first patrol partner was his mother ironically, and she would have thrown herself in front of a car to protect me, she literally never needed a leash and saved me from certain harm at least twice" .
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Old 12-21-2012, 11:28 AM   #36 (permalink)
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hah - found it " I know it's been beat to death but I still need to ask
I got my first German Shepherd puppy well I will pick him up January 23rd and I have been researching dog food for him. I want to go ahead and get it and take whatever I will be feeding him to the breeder so that he can just start out on it and there will be no transitioning when I get him. I am a Police Officer and when he gets old enough he will be going threw K9 training so of course I want him big, strong and healthy"
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Old 12-21-2012, 12:04 PM   #37 (permalink)
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When I first got my boy I thought it was really weird how some people (breeders, working people) could just get rid of their dogs when they don't pan out the way they wanted. And by get rid I mean usually find them a very good home where they will be happy. For me, a week with my boy and I knew I wouldn't be able to give him up for anything.

But once I realized how the dog isn't a pet, its a tool, and its happy being a tool. It's probably the happiest dog in the world because it gets to go to work every day, for 8+ hours, and do what it was bred to do. You realize these people NEED these dogs and they can't afford to keep a dog that doesn't work out. Money might be the issue, but mostly its a time thing, you just can't afford to spend the time with the first dog if you're moving onto the next dog and trying to train it for what you need it for.

Scares me when a police officer gets a GSD and then wants it to become his K9 partner. What happens when that dog doesn't work out? The family has become bonded, you've bonded, and now this dog isn't going to live up to the expectation you've set for it? I'm completely behind officers trying to do this, I know that in some small towns this is probably the only way a department can get a K9, but always wonder what happens when the dog just doesn't have "it." And unlike the OP, some people just don't have the experience to see when that dog doesn't have "it."

I think carmen is definitely right on the fact that you know very early on, its just like getting evaluated for Schutzhund...which happens as early as 8 weeks.
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Old 12-21-2012, 12:42 PM   #38 (permalink)
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My response was really not from a pet perspective as my dog is an operational and nationally certified working cadaver dog - my second - and I have maintained certs on my first dog since 2008

It was from the perspective of - a dog who had been working "perfectly" (first post) for three months, hit his first snow and acted like a puppy. (the extent of the breach revealed later) and my observation that some of the tests by police organizations here will only test 18 months and older.
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Old 12-21-2012, 01:15 PM   #39 (permalink)
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right - that is the ideal age - in the case of Stark being evaluated that early was because HE was replacing a dog that washed out of training course (so apparently looked alright at the beginning?) . A younger dog Silva was evaluated the same day, he later became a bomb detection dog. But on day of evaluation both passed with flying colours -- and one half of the trainers and handlers present chose one , the other half the younger. Mike and I recommended Stark for the mere fact that he had 8 weeks more age on him so would have that in his favour when it came to man-work.

I should add that no concessions were made for the dog - he had to be on the same page as all the others . Both dogs were tracking fiends - and that was the first test , stranger track 1/4 mile , aged , multi surface .



The thing with the OP's dog is that it did not momentarily lose its thread of thought and get distracted in a instant of fun and surprise - and at 15 months the dog would have seen snow last year ! -- the dog went ape , oblivious to the handler , so much so that he distanced himself by 500 feet and had to be "caught" .

I don't think inexperienced well intentioned people going out to buy a dog for service as a pup works out .
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Old 12-21-2012, 02:02 PM   #40 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by carmspack View Post
so what I am saying is that I would dismiss this dog and not even wait for an official evaluation. There are some things which just need to be there without question , bond , handler interest , reliability , dependability , totally necessary . With this mind set of the dog I would always be anxious for the next goof up .
I thought about this a lot but I agree. Not complying in the snow, which is understandable in cases of pet dogs, shows that he has problems with performing in new, unexpected situations. I understand that as a LE dog, that that is a deal breaker. There are always unforeseen circumstances in that job and you need a rock solid canine partner. So actually the new snow was a good test.
He will probably be a heck of a dog for an active owner. Sorry you lost you K9 partner. It would have been awesome to continue her legacy with her son. Good luck finding your new dog. Thanks for all you guys do for the community. Be safe.
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