Workin' Pups! - German Shepherd Dog Forums
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post #1 of 13 (permalink) Old 06-09-2009, 03:02 AM Thread Starter
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Workin' Pups!

Not only am I in need of a refresher course, but I thought it would be fun...What is everyone's best advice or tips on raising a young puppy set out to do schutzhund? I'm looking for things like dos and don'ts, differences from raising a pet puppy, and behaviors to encourage or discourage. I have a brand new little land-shark and I'm just brushing up on info so I can make sure I'm doing all the right things! (Pics soon!) Thanks in advance for helping me learn through your experience!

-Jackie
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post #2 of 13 (permalink) Old 06-09-2009, 10:23 AM
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Re: Workin' Pups!

Lots of focus games, hand following for heeling position.
Imprint the stand, downs from standing & moving not from a sit.
Perch work, it isolates the front end so you can bring
the pups attention to what they are doing with the rear.
And most of all Have fun.

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post #3 of 13 (permalink) Old 06-09-2009, 12:07 PM
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Re: Workin' Pups!

Get to a Michael Ellis seminar as quickly as you can, especially if you plan on living with your dog as a companion as well as training for work/sport. His overall methodology avoids so many conflicts and issues that are common to this type of training.

John
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post #4 of 13 (permalink) Old 06-09-2009, 03:37 PM
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Re: Workin' Pups!

Bernhard Flinks seminar, he is good with pups also.
People from the UK and Ireland come to germany with pups to take lessons from him.

For me, I can say I am really hands on rough when wrestling and playing with my pups. I like them to be confident with all loud noises and fast movements, or when you try to push them away and they keep coming back for more and harder.



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post #5 of 13 (permalink) Old 06-09-2009, 06:57 PM
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Re: Workin' Pups!

Scent pads, socialization, and playing; not in that order. Your most important job is to let him (or her) be a puppy.

The German Shepherd's faults are faults of education not nature, for if someone worked with him he would be blissfully happy and most obedient of all dogs. - Max von Stephanitz
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post #6 of 13 (permalink) Old 06-09-2009, 10:37 PM
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Re: Workin' Pups!

Aside from some puppy tracks, keep your hands off the pup.
I find that most people with their first schutzhund pup try to do too much in their enthusiasm and forget to let the pup be a puppy. Its like all these pre-schools for children that are preparing kids for graduate school w/c are just a projection of their parents' worries.
Also most people with their first pup make too many mistakes especially in bitework and obedience and basically give the dog bad habits. This is where no training is better than bad training.
If the pup has the right genes and is in the right club, there is nothing wrong with doing no obedience in the first six months and no bitework in the first year. I've never seen a dog suffer from a late start while I've seen many dogs be disadvantaged by too early a start from a neophyte handler. I'm sure some people will disagree but just another perspective to consider.
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post #7 of 13 (permalink) Old 06-09-2009, 10:57 PM
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Re: Workin' Pups!

Our TD doesn't even want us doing a rag/string at home, only at the club so we don't start them off wrong. And while they are teething no ragplay/tug whatsoever of course. We are working on focus and the scentpads for now. Confidence building is most important, IMO.

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post #8 of 13 (permalink) Old 06-09-2009, 10:59 PM
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Re: Workin' Pups!

I've always started imprinting by 8-9 wks old for ones I hold back. Bite rags are around the same time. First trip to the field is about 12 weeks. Jake is now 5 months old, on a regular long tug, and puppy pillows and barking for it. He is calm on the bite, and calm on the cradle. He is in the house, he gets to do alot of things, but I don't correct alot except for cat chasing, garbage cans and counter surfing. He has to sit/stay before going outside, or coming in. Sitz/giblaut for ice cubes, food, etc. Leave it for his bowl. Pups can have manners without being ruined for sport. My method of correction for most at this age is a verbal cue, and witholding of a reward/treat, not collar corrections.

Angela

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post #9 of 13 (permalink) Old 06-10-2009, 04:54 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Workin' Pups!

Quote:
Quote:Lots of focus games, hand following for heeling position.
Deejay, would you mind describing this in more detail for me? One of the areas I feel I could have done better in with training my first dog was focusing on me, especially during heeling. So I want to be sure I start the new girl off on the right foot in that aspect. Thanks!


Quote:
Quote:Get to a Michael Ellis seminar as quickly as you can
Zeus, I know it can't compare with a live seminar, but does he have any training dvds that would sort of be the next best thing?


Quote:
Quoter when you try to push them away and they keep coming back for more and harder.
Berg, the little snapper has been doing just that since day one! I am really impressed with her drive. I have a question about mouthing that I will ask at the end of this post if you have any advice on that.


Quote:
Quote:Scent pads, socialization, and playing; not in that order. Your most important job is to let him (or her) be a puppy.
Jes, already started on all three! And I totally agree about letting them be puppies as well. Certainly don't want to overwhelm her at her little age!


Quote:
Quote:Also most people with their first pup make too many mistakes especially in bitework and obedience and basically give the dog bad habits. This is where no training is better than bad training. I'm sure some people will disagree but just another perspective to consider.
Ocean, actually, I agree with you that sometimes no training is better than bad training. I've always tried to be honest with myself and if I am not fully confident that I know all I need to about training a certain behavior, I would rather not train that behavior at all and instead wait for myself to be properly trained first. I also believe that in most cases, it's easier to train than to un-train in a situation where the handler didn't have the proper knowledge and as a result, the dog's learns a behavior incorrectly or a bad habit and now associates it with that particular command. This actually isn't my first pup but it's been a few years since I've raised one so I just thought it would be helpful for me (and the pupper!) to brush up on things. This is however, the first working line <u>female</u> for me so I'm interested to see how she differs from the male pups I've raised.


Quote:
Quote:Our TD doesn't even want us doing a rag/string at home, only at the club so we don't start them off wrong.
Onyx, I can definitely understand how that would be good advice from the TD, like I was talking about in my reply to the quote above.

Quote:
Quote:He is in the house, he gets to do alot of things, but I don't correct alot
Angela, my dogs are always inside dogs as well. That's another thing I was wondering about...corrections when it comes to younger pups. My girl just turned nine weeks old and I haven't corrected her very much. It's actually been easy to do that since I'm always watching her like a hawk and she is absolutely never out of my sight when she is outside of her crate.

Quote:
Quote:He has to sit/stay before going outside, or coming in. Sitz/giblaut for ice cubes, food, etc.
That's almost exactly the way I have been doing things since we brought her home one week ago. Smart as a whip she is, and learned within one to two days. I just LOVE seeing that look on their faces the moment everything clicks into place for them and they suddenly understand!

Quote:
Quote:Pups can have manners without being ruined for sport. My method of correction for most at this age is a verbal cue, and witholding of a reward/treat, not collar corrections.
Again, I agree with you that even a working pup can have manners without negative effects on the sport. And I too don't collar correct on a pup this young. But to elaborate on what I was talking about above, I'm a little unsure when it comes to corrections being either too infrequent or too often. For example, let's say she grabs onto something she shouldn't, like a book or the corner of the couch...I have been quickly locating her nearest toy and redirecting her with a "Uh-uh!" then praising as soon as she grabs the toy. Do you think that there could come a point where a working pup was being voice-corrected too often and have a negative effect on her confidence or drive? That was a little long-winded but I hope I was able to accurately describe the situation I'm curious about.

Thanks very much to everyone for their help so far!

I am seeking advice on something that I will post right after this one.


-Jackie
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post #10 of 13 (permalink) Old 06-10-2009, 09:34 AM
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Re: Workin' Pups!

While some don't agree I feel the more correct behaviors you can Motivationally imprint while young, the better.
And you hopefully can chain them together with little to no correction latter when older.

Free heeling

Eye contact game

You make the pup push you for the treat with his eyes.
Sit on the floor have some great treats under one hand.
Don't say anything, the pup should go to your hand, may paw it.
But the second the pup looks you in the eye, treat with the other hand and say "Yes".
Note: as soon as the last treat is done, get up and walk away.

We use this thinking in ball play too!!

Have a ball in both hands, hold them out, when the dog sits & give you the eye, you throw one.
You don't ask for the focus, let the dog push your button with his eyes.

OTCH SG1 (CAN) Deejay von Hausnobilis UD HIT CGN
~A Well-Balanced Dog has Titles at Both Ends~

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