Schutzhund Training without bitework? - German Shepherd Dog Forums
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post #1 of 32 (permalink) Old 05-17-2010, 03:51 PM Thread Starter
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Schutzhund Training without bitework?

I'm a complete noob to Schutzhund and have contacted some clubs in the area but still waiting to hear back.
Is it a faux pas to do only tracking and obedience without the protection?
The reason I ask is that Ontario Canada has some strict new laws about "dangerous breeds" with punishments that include fine/prison/banned from owning dogs in the future/etc. and if any accidents ever occur, I don't want to be sued and accused of training a killing machine.
I would just like to compete with Jax and see how well we could do in the other two.
Would this make me a complete outcast?
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post #2 of 32 (permalink) Old 05-17-2010, 04:09 PM
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The SchH organizations do allow for obedience and tracking titles to be pursued separately, without bitework.

Whether or not an individual club would allow it would of course come down to that club. It wouldn't necessarily make you an outcast, no, though you'd probably get some weird looks.

But do be aware that one thing most SchH clubs face is that there are often far more people interested in doing SchH than clubs can accomodate. I know I'm frequently turning away people who would probably make excellent additions to our club, simply due to the fact that we've reached the saturation point of how many people we can accomodate given limited time and other resources. Unfortunately most other clubs in this area are full, or close to it as well. This is a very common situation in some areas.

There are many other venues and organizations where one could pursue tracking and obedience titles without protection. Most of these titles are somewhat different from SchH style obedience and tracking, but of course still allow for enjoying training in those phases and pursuing titles. Many clubs will turn away folks who don't want to do protection not because they necessarily have anything against someone now wanting to do protection, but because given the number of people who do often is greater than what clubs can handle, it just makes more sense for them to take on the members who want to fully participate in all phases of SchH and steer those interested just in tracking and obedience to other organizations and clubs.


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post #3 of 32 (permalink) Old 05-17-2010, 04:11 PM
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I think it depends on how you go about it.

You can get titles like OB1 or TR1 without protection, luckily protection is the only thing you CANT do on it's own.

Our club asks that everyone train all three phases, but that's not because we think protection is crucial, but because we get a lot of prospective members that aren't really looking to do SchH at all, they want help with obedience or behavior problems, or they think that b/c their dog pulls and sniffs while on walks it will be a champion tracker. We want people who are committed to the club and the sport as a whole, which means sticking around the entire day even if skipping out on a phase. I go to training even if my dog is sick or for whatever reason has to sit out. So, if you are committed to the sport and to being fully involved in the club, I don't think it would be as big of a deal. I have one dog that does only obedience, no bitework or tracking, but I balance that by being an officer of the club, helping out with as much as I can, trying to be the first person there and the last to leave, and having a second dog that is very involved in all three phases.
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post #4 of 32 (permalink) Old 05-17-2010, 04:51 PM
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The protection phase is about obedience as well as the bitework. It isn't Personal Protection or attack training. The dog bites a sleeve and is taught to out on command. And most dogs trained in the sport are more reliable on commands (as obedience is critical) than those that are just a pet dog that might bite someone unexpectedly. Of course there are always exceptions.
So in my opinion if you were sued because your dog bit someone, it wouldn't have much at all to do with being involved in SchH but that the dog has issues, and most clubs don't accept dogs with unsteady temperaments.
And it could probably be proven in court that just because a dog is SchH trained, it is not a threat to society, but actually better trained than most.

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post #5 of 32 (permalink) Old 05-17-2010, 05:13 PM
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just tell the trainer that you want your dog to be completly just a sport dog. there are some awesome SchH, FR, MR, PSA and other protection sport dogs that are monsters on the field but some of the biggest babies off.

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post #6 of 32 (permalink) Old 05-17-2010, 06:36 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by onyx'girl View Post
The protection phase is about obedience as well as the bitework. It isn't Personal Protection or attack training. The dog bites a sleeve and is taught to out on command. And most dogs trained in the sport are more reliable on commands (as obedience is critical) than those that are just a pet dog that might bite someone unexpectedly. Of course there are always exceptions.
So in my opinion if you were sued because your dog bit someone, it wouldn't have much at all to do with being involved in SchH but that the dog has issues, and most clubs don't accept dogs with unsteady temperaments.
And it could probably be proven in court that just because a dog is SchH trained, it is not a threat to society, but actually better trained than most.
Unfortunately your reasoning and logic doesn't apply in Ontario
I'm completely of the opinion that a SchH trained dog would be better able to identify a harmless person but if anyone ever caught wind that Jax had any formal protection training, it would be curtains for him.
Google "Dalton McGuinty" and any dog related word you'll see my point...
I just think tracking and obedience would be a good sport for us because Jax is so eager to learn new things and learns so quickly. I take him to the park to play on the kids juggle gym and he gets so excited to do what I ask him and is so happy when he does good. I feel like I'm depriving him when he's run out of new things to explore.
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post #7 of 32 (permalink) Old 05-17-2010, 06:42 PM
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Why are SchH clubs legal in Ontario if the law is so unlogical?
I would look into SAR or something similar, show MgGuinty the quality of the breed.

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post #8 of 32 (permalink) Old 05-17-2010, 07:06 PM
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I live in Ontario as well and also belong to a Schutzhund club.

Although the laws regarding these "dangerous breeds" is getting silly, there are a few groups lobbying out there for "dangerous owners" instead of the breeds/dogs.

I think a well trained dog, either in OB, Agility, Herding, SchH, etc.. is a well trained dog. Doing bite work has nothing to do with this. Does your dog bite a tug that is being thrown around on the ground? Will they release it with *1* word from you, *1* time when asked? Now, add more drive, add distractions, add lots of people, lots of dogs, lots of noise to that situation, will your dog listen to you now? SchH prepares a dog for instances like this, gives them (and the handler) the training to be confident in those situations and to work under those distractions.

If you don't want to do bite work, then don't but I think maybe you should try another sport? Why not agility? Why not Rally or Obedience? Why would you go to a SchH club and not really believe in the full training? To me personally, it just doesn't makes sense. Why not go to a CKC trainer for these things (OB)?

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post #9 of 32 (permalink) Old 05-17-2010, 08:33 PM
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I suppose it does depend on the club. You'd be a welcome addition down here!! We have too many people that only want to do bitework and don't take an active enough interest in the other 2 phases (particularly tracking).

Lies is right. I find that valuable club members are usually more important than the actual training/dog. The friendly people who come out, support, help run events, donate items, are there from start to finish and learn, are WAY more valued (even if they have a dog that might not ever get titled due to poor temperament, drive, whatever) than the people who have good dogs and a bad attitude. At least down here.

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post #10 of 32 (permalink) Old 05-17-2010, 09:11 PM Thread Starter
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I don't disagree with any of what anyone here is saying here but imagine a case like this: CTV Edmonton - Family calls for dogs to be banned in city parks after girl is attacked - CTV News and them adding that the dog was "trained to attack"?
I'd love to do bite work and find it really fascinating, I just wouldn't want to end up in court (or jail) one day because some person completely uneducated on the subject paints me to be a monster that shouldn't be in public.
If this poor girl is being charged (and in my opinion it's the fault of the kid's parents for not supervising their child) who knows what would happen with a trained dog?
SchH really interests me because it's competitive and other competitors take the sport seriously... You don't just get a little hat and fake diploma at the end... There is a purpose to it with real life applications plus the social aspect of it.
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