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Old 02-16-2013, 09:39 AM   #11 (permalink)
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Karlo began protection too early. I started him young(4 mos) on the pillow, and by 7 months he was biting an intermediate sleeve. His size made him seem older and the helper where I started training when K was 6 mos was very intimidating in posture/facial expressions so there was pressure on Karlo early(no in the blind work however!).
I wish we'd have waited, it didn't hurt him, but wasn't necessary.
As far as obedience, I 'just bonded' with him, tugging and asking very little. But he wasn't naughty and was pretty biddable. Again, I wish I'd asked for more and worked on rear end awareness while his body was smaller!
We tracked from the age of 10 weeks.

If I started another pup, I would ask for more eye contact and work the body so the pup would know there is a rear end behind the nose.

I would have started article indication, blind searches, and retrieves much earlier than I did. Once the pup gets older, I think teaching them some of these exercises is more difficult than when they are sponges, and enthused...& don't question the why's!

I also went to different training groups when he was young, so he saw 5-6 different helpers in his early months.
It didn't hurt him, but now that I know better, I wouldn't have done that either!
He has always been very balanced and transitions in his drives, not over the top with either prey or defense.
Though now at maturity, I've had to put more control on him in our training. He has a genetic strong H&B, I never had to train it.
This is K at 8 mos~we were visiting my 'old' training group,other than his thin tail, you'd never know he was a baby still. Karlo hadn't trained there in several weeks, but engaged with enthusiasm.

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Old 02-16-2013, 10:34 AM   #12 (permalink)
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I tend to start OB and TR young, but it is all food/toy based. Protection is started when they are ready. Anymore I wait for more mental maturity. I might bring them out here and there to see where they are, but if they have what I want to work then no reason to play games with them when young.
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Old 03-01-2013, 09:09 PM   #13 (permalink)
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So many people in this thread state that they start "protection" training early. Prey work can be started early of course, this is comfortable for the dog, non-stressful. Civil work, defensive work or whatever you wanna call it, really shouldn't be started earlier than the dog is psychologically mature enough to handle the stress that comes from this kind of work. You can ruin a dog by doing this to early, any helper or trainer who advocates working a dog in defence, before it is mature, needs to be avoided. There is not way you cna tell how your dog is going to react when it is truly threatened. So how these trainers/helpers came to the conclusion that your dogs were ready to be trained in civil work is just beyond me.

Furthermore, you're only really training a dog in "protection" when you're training a dog in all aspects of protection. The initial stages of bite work development are essentially prey work exercises and are only one aspect of "protection" training.
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Old 03-02-2013, 05:41 PM   #14 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by Alwaysaworkingdog View Post
So many people in this thread state that they start "protection" training early. Prey work can be started early of course, this is comfortable for the dog, non-stressful. Civil work, defensive work or whatever you wanna call it, really shouldn't be started earlier than the dog is psychologically mature enough to handle the stress that comes from this kind of work. You can ruin a dog by doing this to early, any helper or trainer who advocates working a dog in defence, before it is mature, needs to be avoided. There is not way you cna tell how your dog is going to react when it is truly threatened. So how these trainers/helpers came to the conclusion that your dogs were ready to be trained in civil work is just beyond me.

Furthermore, you're only really training a dog in "protection" when you're training a dog in all aspects of protection. The initial stages of bite work development are essentially prey work exercises and are only one aspect of "protection" training.

I think when people are talking about starting protection, they are talking about prey work, grip development, targeting and beginning to show the dog the overall picture. You need to build a foundation before you add in the pressure right? Or do you add prey and defense together? I don't have a preference in that. I try and adapt to each individual dog.

To those that start ob and tracking early. What are you doing for ob? Is it all positive ob? What age do you add in any pressure/consequence durring ob?

With tracking, have you found that starting them early makes them want to sniff the ground all the time? Do you think it is encouraging any unwanted behaviors?
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Old 03-03-2013, 04:30 PM   #15 (permalink)
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No, I do not find starting tracking early encourages any unwanted behaviors. I do think the tracks need to be age specific and geared to the puppy/dog.

In obedience nothing for me is age specific. Each dog is different, each progresses at a different rate and each requires different things at different times to achieve what I want.
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Old 03-06-2013, 12:04 AM   #16 (permalink)
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No, I do not find starting tracking early encourages any unwanted behaviors. I do think the tracks need to be age specific and geared to the puppy/dog.

In obedience nothing for me is age specific. Each dog is different, each progresses at a different rate and each requires different things at different times to achieve what I want.
I only ask about tracking because I have been told two conflicting trains of thought. At my schH club everyone starts tracking at 8 weeks (age specific of course). At my SDA club they say starting them that early creates bad habbits of the dogs wanting to smell the ground and "find" treats on the ground. The SDA club says start tracking about 6 months before planning to trial. Since they have pointed it out I have noticed some dogs like to put their nose on the ground a lot. I'm not sure if tracking created that or if it's just those specific dogs their age and level of training.
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Old 03-06-2013, 09:19 AM   #17 (permalink)
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When are they putting their noses on the ground? Just when out walking, when doing obedience, when doing other things?

IMO this is not created by tracking at a young age. It is due to other things.
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Old 03-06-2013, 10:01 AM   #18 (permalink)
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When are they putting their noses on the ground? Just when out walking, when doing obedience, when doing other things?

IMO this is not created by tracking at a young age. It is due to other things.
Yes, durring obedience, out on walks and such. I agree can be caused by many different things.
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Old 03-06-2013, 10:03 AM   #19 (permalink)
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during obedience is usually a sign of avoidance. Why can't a dog use the nose when out on a walk? That is their communication tool! I'd never let my dog take treats off the floor when training, it does create a bad habit. Only time it is allowed is when using target plates and the treat is on the plate.
I think starting a young pup tracking early is great...sets a nice foundation and is excellent bonding time.
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Old 03-06-2013, 10:20 AM   #20 (permalink)
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during obedience is usually a sign of avoidance. Why can't a dog use the nose when out on a walk? That is their communication tool! I'd never let my dog take treats off the floor when training, it does create a bad habit. Only time it is allowed is when using target plates and the treat is on the plate.
I think starting a young pup tracking early is great...sets a nice foundation and is excellent bonding time.
I agree with the avoidance. On walks I want my dog to do just that walk not smell the ground constantly. I do give breaks for smelling. I also enjoyed tracking with my puppy. It seemed like instant gratification because I was able to see lots of progress in a short amount of time.

Please note, I'm really just trying to bring different ideas that are floating around for conversation.
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