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Old 05-15-2014, 12:03 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default She's holding onto the sleeve!

Wasn't sure where to put this since Leia isn't exactly a sport dog or a personal protection dog, but I am just so happy and so proud of my girl that I want to share it somewhere!

It's been almost a year now since Leia was first evaluated for doing bitework. She failed her instinct test, and since that point we've been working with her mostly in defense drive. She looks like she's out of control when we work with the helper, but the truth is that she is trustworthy in public situations. She is friendly to strangers, tolerant of children, ignores most other dogs. If people saw her working, or if they see her in a kennel or in my car, they wouldn't believe it. She will defend me and my other dogs, my car. I have no doubt in my mind. If they have my okay, she's cool. If they attempt to approach without an okay, she is not cool.

We have been trying to work on bringing her prey drive up to balance her out, getting her to calm down between bites. She has been doing pretty good, granted Miss Thing knows that if she's quiet for a few moments she gets to bite again, so she often tries to jump the gun if we are trying to give her a breather. But she totally took us by surprise not this past saturday but the one before (when I had no friend with a camera).

The first bite, when the sleeve was dropped, she kept a hold of it and started to shake it. She's never really done that. She may act like she is going to grab it when its down or give it one good bite, but it's never really something that she has tried to keep. The last bite that day, she actually held it by the very end for four strides before she dropped it. The helper and I were both super excited. It's a giant jump forward for her! I am so insanely proud of my girl.

This past saturday, the 10th, she was at it again. She was holding the sleeve for a small touch longer every time, and not as willing to just drop it and jump over it. However, she somehow kind of figured out how to bark with it in her mouth... No idea how that is possible. She usually growls once she has the bite, but the barking was a new thing lol.

This next time that we go out, the decoy planned to bring out the baton. He can touch her with his hand now without her letting go, so he thinks we are ready to move a little more forward. ^^ I trust his judgment on that one.

And I have two different examples here of what she used to do and what she did this last weekend to show you guys. She can't be worked on a harness any longer since she literally hurt herself one day, but I leave a harness on so I have more areas to grab to try and keep control lol. My roommate fancied up the first video, which was back last July before she had to take 4 months off, and the other is from this past saturday.

I don't mind comments about me and my girl. She isn't a sport dog and I do promise she isn't as out of control as she seems. The helper and I were actually laughing about that the other day, since he knows she's not anything like this outside of the field. It's what makes it easy to have a bratty teenage dog is that my older kids are very well mannered and stay close. Leia was almost five in the first video and she'll be six this coming year. I've had her since she was 3.5 years old.

Bitework July 2013

Bitework May 2014
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Old 05-15-2014, 10:14 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Glad you are enjoying it! She looks very happy to be working. I actually like the first video best. I don't think she looks out of control at all in either (or at least, control is probably not the priority at this point). Why does the helper want her to be calm and quiet before a bite?
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Old 05-15-2014, 11:33 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Your dog is very pretty. Its nice to see white shepherds out there working.
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Old 05-15-2014, 01:48 PM   #4 (permalink)
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She hit the end of the leash so hard on the harness she flipped vertical in the air and fell flat on her back. She pulled her illiopsoas muscle badly so we started having her move when she went for a bite to prevent that sudden lurch that likely caused the injury. She's really hard to hold when she's excited lol. She lives to work and she gets such joy out of it that I get a lot of joy out of it.

We are trying to get her to calm because she wastes a lot of energy in the barking that she does lol. She gets so pumped by the second bite her tongue is hanging out to the side and she is panting pretty hard. She is calmer than she was, but she is a very intense and serious girl. She isn't easily distracted and I know if she could she would keep going until she fell over dead.

I like being one of the few working the white shepherds lol. I never expected Leia to become the dog she has, but it makes me so happy and the puppy I have already is showing promise to being on his way to a good working dog too. I may try sport with him but time is hard for me, which those sports do require.


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Old 05-15-2014, 08:10 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Video of the day she hurt herself

This was the first bite out, but you can see how she kept hitting the end of the leash. No idea why she was so crazy that day, but outside of dropping the leash, I couldn't have avoided her flatlining herself. Dogs I swear lol.
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Old 05-15-2014, 09:11 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Awesome videos, looks like you guys are having a lot of fun!
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Old 05-15-2014, 11:40 PM   #7 (permalink)
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We really are! I had never thought that she had it in her, but man she thinks that she is something awesome when she's out there. I wouldn't have thought that she would have it in her when she stood there next to me, just staring off into oblivion lol. It had been hard to do obedience with her since she generally would shut down. Not sure who handled her before but it isn't fun to her like it is to my golden and is becoming to my younger shepherd. She is so crazy fluffy right now. I swear she looks like a yeti in some cases...


This is what she looks like (adding in the shepherd yell because she's frustrated that we aren't moving quickly enough) when we go for the first go of the day.


It is almost hard to see where her back legs are some times...


Oh her butt fluff...

It was funny that the video my roommate got you can hear her barking with the sleeve in her mouth. xD I think her favorite part is that she gets to tell people off.
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Old 05-16-2014, 04:59 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Oh her butt fluff...

I love it!
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Old 05-16-2014, 01:26 PM   #9 (permalink)
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She gets so insanely fluffy when I haven't been able to get her to the groomer. The fur actually gets crimps to it lol.
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Old 05-21-2014, 09:11 AM   #10 (permalink)
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It's silly but just watching that video makes me grin. She has come so far for being 5 when all this started.


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