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Old 12-30-2012, 03:04 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Doing 2 sports?

Can a dog do both IPO and French Ring? Or would this be too confusing?
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Old 12-30-2012, 03:20 PM   #2 (permalink)
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I wouldn't do both, FR is very intense on both handler and dog and the exercises are different than IPO.
This article details FR pretty well! Is Dog Sport for You?
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Old 12-30-2012, 03:33 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Linda Shaw and I both did French Ring first , then Schutzhund after -- with each there was a trialing opportunity problem -- I did title in Ring and did the Campagne , then joined a Schutzhund club which folded - got an AD and a BH ready for 1 with a then senior dog. Linda stayed on with Ring as long as she could with hints and hopes of it being revitalized , and then joined a SchH club which and titled Timmy to a SchH 3 - with a then senior dog.

I would not do both at the same time . I think I would do Ring first , then the IPO
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Old 12-30-2012, 04:11 PM   #4 (permalink)
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I do it.

I see different things in my dog with the different sports and use that input to advance my generalized training abilities to maximize the dog's overall working potential. She likes it, I like it, so it works. She's my first working dog so I definitely have had to choose a serious primary sport (SchH) for personal foundation and direction; and then a fun, secondary sport (FR) to dabble around in. I certainly can't say I would recommend it, mostly because its a huge committment and I don't know that most people have the time, finances, or accessibility to that amount of dog sport. I will certainly be working towards maximizing the attainable points for my IPO1-2-3 titles in the next few years and if I can casually fit in my Brevet somewhere in the mix of all that, I'll be happy. I have the foundation for most of the exercises with my club FR decoy but finding the time to travel and put her on other people in the suit definitely takes a back seat to traveling for other people with an arm.
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Old 12-30-2012, 04:21 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Is the reason for not doing both that it would be too hard on the dog... or too confusing for the dog? I thought about working on IPO first, then maybe adding in another sport. Not sure what other sport... but something. I have to admit, I'm blown away watching vids of dogs doing French Ring. (Not that I'm unimpressed with IPO) I'd like to get his first IPO title before adding in another sport, though.
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Old 12-30-2012, 05:37 PM   #6 (permalink)
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So like I said, this is my first attempt to title a working dog and whatever information I throw out there is only my personal opinion, keep in mind that this is not to be taken as fact.

Is the reason for not doing both that it would be too hard on the dog... or too confusing for the dog?
I personally don't think so, at least not with my dog. When you say this, I'm interpreting this as biting/ targeting. My dog knows when the sleeve is in the picture on a helper, we bite the sleeve. When the suit is in the picture with the helper, we aim to target the lower legs. Doesn't mean if you have a sleeve on and throw her a kick, she wont tag your bare leg, it just means she tends to zero-in on what the target-object is. I can't say i've done a whole lot of reinforcement with this, because it just comes naturally for this particular dog. I will say that i've seen a really nice malinois started in ringsport only to later be transitioned to IPO and his entry on a long bite was low and center-mass (which was obviously extremely dangerous for any schutzhund helper on a hard-hitting, fast dog). His handler spent a lot of time trying to undo his default targeting and approach by trying to get him to target the sleeve appropriately. This is something that will likely always need to be addressed for safety concerns.

I have to admit, I'm blown away watching vids of dogs doing French Ring. (Not that I'm unimpressed with IPO) I'd like to get his first IPO title before adding in another sport, though.
I also find ringsport to be a much more impressive sport to succeed in or even watch, but thats because I believe FR is a sport that tests the raw material of the dog, whereas IPO is a sport that tests the training of the handler. I think that as a first time working dog handler, you will learn a lot more foundation in good-training techniques from people with an IPO background because the exercises for that sport are so intricate and piece-y. You learn to break down an exercise into different parts that allow you to ultimately build your dog back up through repetition/ pattern training into showing off the cookie-cutter picture we all strive to see on the field. Ringsport, on the other hand, I feel allows you to use your variety of training skills to showcase a dog's natural style and ability for completing a task in an effective way.

I personally recommend doing IPO as a primary, because you'll get a lot more input on how to become a better trainer by learning a strong foundation in technique. I also feel that ringsport, being dominated by the dutch/ mal people, tend to have different levels of expectations from their dogs at different time frames than GSD people. I've had my fair share of setbacks in trying to train my girl like a malinios when she is in fact a german shepherd. I will confidently say that they do NOT work the same and you cannot treat them the same when training, expecting similar results... But, I learn as I go and I grow from it. My approach is all about the experience, not the end result. I've learned more by making mistakes and fixing them than by succeeding at some kind of slow, structured pace. My dog is forgiving and I think the experiences we've had in the past two years that we've worked together has made us a stronger, more well rounded team.
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Old 12-30-2012, 05:52 PM   #7 (permalink)
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I agree, the FR is geared more to the Mal/Dutchies and GSD's aren't always as easily accepted.
Whenever I've had my dog doing suit or sleeve with a Mal decoy, they aren't really keen on working my larger structured dog. He has power and size so fighting him is a workout and seldom do they lift him off his feet as they would a smaller Mal/Dutch.
If I had my way, I'd train w/a KNPV club...I think it blends everything and the end result goal is a dog that could be put on the street as a successful LEO K9.
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Old 12-30-2012, 07:02 PM   #8 (permalink)
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I am doing FR with my GSD. I love it!! But she is a very small shepherd, mal structure. And two of our members do both IPO and FR no problem. Two different languages also. Dogs don't seem to have any issues understanding the differences between the two.


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Old 12-30-2012, 07:12 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by abakerrr View Post
So like I said, this is my first attempt to title a working dog and whatever information I throw out there is only my personal opinion, keep in mind that this is not to be taken as fact.

Is the reason for not doing both that it would be too hard on the dog... or too confusing for the dog?
I personally don't think so, at least not with my dog. When you say this, I'm interpreting this as biting/ targeting. My dog knows when the sleeve is in the picture on a helper, we bite the sleeve. When the suit is in the picture with the helper, we aim to target the lower legs. Doesn't mean if you have a sleeve on and throw her a kick, she wont tag your bare leg, it just means she tends to zero-in on what the target-object is. I can't say i've done a whole lot of reinforcement with this, because it just comes naturally for this particular dog. I will say that i've seen a really nice malinois started in ringsport only to later be transitioned to IPO and his entry on a long bite was low and center-mass (which was obviously extremely dangerous for any schutzhund helper on a hard-hitting, fast dog). His handler spent a lot of time trying to undo his default targeting and approach by trying to get him to target the sleeve appropriately. This is something that will likely always need to be addressed for safety concerns.

I have to admit, I'm blown away watching vids of dogs doing French Ring. (Not that I'm unimpressed with IPO) I'd like to get his first IPO title before adding in another sport, though.
I also find ringsport to be a much more impressive sport to succeed in or even watch, but thats because I believe FR is a sport that tests the raw material of the dog, whereas IPO is a sport that tests the training of the handler. I think that as a first time working dog handler, you will learn a lot more foundation in good-training techniques from people with an IPO background because the exercises for that sport are so intricate and piece-y. You learn to break down an exercise into different parts that allow you to ultimately build your dog back up through repetition/ pattern training into showing off the cookie-cutter picture we all strive to see on the field. Ringsport, on the other hand, I feel allows you to use your variety of training skills to showcase a dog's natural style and ability for completing a task in an effective way.

I personally recommend doing IPO as a primary, because you'll get a lot more input on how to become a better trainer by learning a strong foundation in technique. I also feel that ringsport, being dominated by the dutch/ mal people, tend to have different levels of expectations from their dogs at different time frames than GSD people. I've had my fair share of setbacks in trying to train my girl like a malinios when she is in fact a german shepherd. I will confidently say that they do NOT work the same and you cannot treat them the same when training, expecting similar results... But, I learn as I go and I grow from it. My approach is all about the experience, not the end result. I've learned more by making mistakes and fixing them than by succeeding at some kind of slow, structured pace. My dog is forgiving and I think the experiences we've had in the past two years that we've worked together has made us a stronger, more well rounded team.
Good post! It's very true about working different breeds differently. We have two local clubs that accept all breeds. One has several corsos and American bulldogs. You need decoys and the training directors to understand how to work different dogs. Luckily one of our members who does both IPO and FR used to work and breed GSD so she is super helpful for me. In the end, really every dog is different. Get out to a few clubs and see if there are other breeds besides just mals and take note on how many are actually titling these dogs. The American bull dogs I saw were FR I working on getting their FR II soon. That shows me that the training director and decoy are obviously doing something right. If you can find a club with other GSD in it, or someone who used to work GSD before their mals, that would be helpful for you.

But you can absolutely do both if you have the time and money. Good luck! I'm having a blast with it!


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Old 12-30-2012, 08:06 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Capone22 View Post
I am doing FR with my GSD. I love it!! But she is a very small shepherd, mal structure. And two of our members do both IPO and FR no problem. Two different languages also. Dogs don't seem to have any issues understanding the differences between the two.


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Always interested in seeing what german shepherd bloodlines are out there doing FR. What's the pedigree on your girl? My female is also on the small end of the standard (about 52lbs) but has a super athletic and moderate build.
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