What age do you start Schutzhund obedience training - German Shepherd Dog Forums

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Old 06-20-2014, 06:04 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default What age do you start Schutzhund obedience training

Ok I have my 15 week old shepherd and so far we have just done basic commands like sit, and platz, and shes ok with stay just stays for about 10 paces. I really would like to get further into the obedience part of schutzhund but im not sure if shes just to young to start now or if now is the perfect time. I really would love to get her titled in the future, any help would be greatly appreciated.
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Old 06-20-2014, 06:34 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Go join a club. They can guide you. Even simple things like sitz and platz need to be taught the right way or you'll just have to go back and retrain down the road.
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Old 06-20-2014, 06:47 PM   #3 (permalink)
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I agree. A Schutzhund club will lead you in the right direction.
They usually have you start right away. "Sit" was the first thing my pup learned. Then "fuss", "platz", "hier", etc. The club I was involved with used Shaping. They will also get your pup started with bite work and tracking.
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Old 06-20-2014, 06:51 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Yes, get with a club.
At the places I train, the main focus is focus and drive building/capping.

Restrained recalls are always part of a training session(3 or 4 recalls at the last part of the session). The formal positions go hand in hand with the drive building. Rewards are always in the position you are rewarding the pup for. A few steps of heeling with reward, keeping the pup in position(do it along a fence or barrier)
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Old 06-20-2014, 07:35 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Thx I appreciate the help. Whats killing me is that im moving to a different state next month and so far the closest club is about 45 mins away. Ive emailed both and havent received any response. Im going to end up having to call them and hopefully get more info. She loves when we train I use the treat method and shes very focused. As far as the "fuss" im having a hard time figuring out how to go about to get her to come and sit by my side. I get how to train for the position when walking. Also she actually started to get the understanding of "oust" when we play tug or,ball she'll release the toy when I keep my hand still and at times ill have to repeat the command but she gets immediate praise and play when she releases. She also kind of retrieves ill throw a ball or toy and give the command to "brring" she'll come back with the toy but right when she gets close she turns away. For me to not grab it. I just dont want to stay stagnant and not do any training for a while till we get to a club.
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Old 06-20-2014, 07:39 PM   #6 (permalink)
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If you plan to move in a month and there will be a club where you are moving, I would reach out to them. In the meantime, while it may seem like unusual advice, I would probably lay off working on obedience until you can get instruction from a club and focus on socialization and some basic manners. If you intend to do competitive training of any type, be it SchH or AKC, there are right and wrong ways to do things as simple as "sit". And it is much easier to teach it correctly from the start than to try to change it after the dog has habituated a particular way of doing it. So in other words, no training is better than bad training. If you just want to dabble in activities and have a well trained pet, than how it sits doesn't matter so long as it does sit when told to do so. In competitive sports, the how matters, so if that is your goal wait until you can get guidance from experienced people. Especially if it's only a month away.
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Old 06-20-2014, 08:09 PM   #7 (permalink)
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I understand, its one of those things where Its hard not to do anything.
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Old 06-20-2014, 10:42 PM   #8 (permalink)
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You can play with the dog. Throw a ball. Play tug. Use a flirt pole. Chase it around.


Honestly at that age the most important thing is engagement. Make the dog think you're fun. Commands aren't a big deal yet.
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Old 06-21-2014, 12:42 PM   #9 (permalink)
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I definitely always make sure that I play with her everyday. I just get this feeling that if I dont do any obedience training im wasting valuable time. Just like kids they're sponges when they are small so the biggest impressions and learning is done at this age. Even if I never get to have her titled I would love to be able to have her very well trained in obedience.
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Old 06-21-2014, 01:08 PM   #10 (permalink)
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I second what Chris said - you are actually better off not doing anything at all then starting off with the wrong foundation work because you had no help or guidance.

In IPO, pup need to be at least 15 months before they can even do a BH, so there is no urgency to get everything down now. I didn't get Gryffon until he was 6 months old, and he had zero formal OB training until I got him. Had picked up some nice house manners, like sitting for a treat, but even that was something I had to work to undo - i.e. he had been sitting facing the person giving the treat - nothing wrong with that, right? Except it was very hard to teach him to do sits in the basic position at my side - no matter what position he was in, a "Sit" command would have him swing out and face me before sitting. In his mind "Sit" meant FACE the person and sit - it took a lot of work to re-teach a proper IPO sit in the heel position. Yet, even with NO formal obedience and not even a basic position imprinted, he passed his BH a week shy of his 16th month B-day with flying colors - those first six months of no training did not hurt him at all.

The most important thing you can work on right now is engagement and focus on you even with distractions. Start with a few seconds and work your way up, and be patient until you move.

Heck, if your pup has the genetics for IPO, she'll still have a month from now, and being a bit older will have a bit more of an attention span making it easier to work with her then.
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