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post #1 of 18 (permalink) Old 10-21-2010, 10:59 AM Thread Starter
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training question

Blitz's parents are both Sch3 so we have a foot in the door there, she is only 4 months old but showing some signs of things she is good at like tracking. She follows me everywere, so it started out as me trying to sneek away while she is sleeping so I don't disturb her rest, she would be on her bed in the family room and the only way she won't follow me is if she thinks I'm just in the kitchen, so when I wanted to go else where in the house I would go through the kitchen and sneek out the other side into the dining room and across the house in a very odd route....within minutes she figures out I'm not in the kitchen and I watch her take the EXACT path I took through the house to find me, so now it has become a sort of game and she is never off mark. Are there any "games" or traing tips to nurture this trait and do you guys see it as an budding ability at this age or is this just an every german shepherd thing?

Also she seems to have very strong nerves, she does not really care for strangers and MUST watch them until they are out of sight but as far as any noises it's like she doesn't even hear them. Just this morning there was a landscaper in our yard and though she would not stop staring him down like "why are you in my yard" when he started his chainsaw thing she had no reaction and even when he reved it (I jumped) she just continued watching him all the same making sure he was not coming near me.

We are starting some begining training next month and plan on taking it day by day to see what her abilities are but do these things sound like she may be a good prospect for Schutzhund/Agility?

Hope everyone is having a nice day,
Casey
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post #2 of 18 (permalink) Old 10-21-2010, 11:02 AM Thread Starter
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Also to note, any basic things I have been working with her on (sit, down, stay.....) she has picked up in only 1 or 2 tries!
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post #3 of 18 (permalink) Old 10-21-2010, 11:17 AM
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Casey, I love your photo album... Blitz is adorable.

I cannot answer any questions about Schutzhund/Agility. But she sounds really smart to me.
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post #4 of 18 (permalink) Old 10-21-2010, 11:45 AM
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The following you around thing may or may not be special, it's hard to tell if she's guessing or remembering how you got out, if she actually saw you leave, or if she's 'smelling you out'. I kind of doubt she's sniffing you out, though. A game I've been playing with Frag since he was 12 weeks was to put him in a down stay, let him sniff a piece of cheese, then I walk away and put it on the floor. I say find it and he's allowed to get up and go 'find it'. Obviously starting out I did this a few feet in front of him, around a corner, but in plain sight, etc. We're to the point now where I can have him on the other side of the house, I drop the cheese a few times along the way (and pick it back up, just to keep the scent down) and place the cheese in a room underneath something or behind something. He goes straight for it every time without hesitation.

As far as her staring down strangers, that may be working against you. This isn't a protective instinct or having strong nerves at 4 months, it's her fear instinct. She doesn't want strangers coming near because she's afraid of them. I'd get her out there around hundreds of people giving her pets and treats to socialize her some more.

Just about any intelligent dog would be a good agility prospect, and most GSD are good schutzhund prospects. You won't know if it will actually work out until you join a club and get her assessed by professionals. She may not like agility, but I'm sure she'd excell at it if she did.

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post #5 of 18 (permalink) Old 10-21-2010, 11:47 AM
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Originally Posted by CaseysGSD View Post
Also to note, any basic things I have been working with her on (sit, down, stay.....) she has picked up in only 1 or 2 tries!
Haha, this definitely isn't just her. This is a GSD thing. They're so dang smart! Frag was the exact same way, and I haven't heard of other GSDs taking longer. Frag had a 10-15 command repetoir by 20 weeks old.

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post #6 of 18 (permalink) Old 10-21-2010, 12:47 PM
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If you are interested in doing SchH training with her, I would suggest finding a club and having her evaluated. Having titled parents doesn't guarantee that she will have the right temperament.

If you like agility too, there is no reason that you can't do both. Several people in my club do, many of us also do Rally for fun in the winter. If your dog knows all the obedience for a BH in SchH, there are only a couple commands that you need to teach to be ready to compete in Rally.

Just get out there and go to some events and classes and clubs. Try it out. You will find your niche.

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post #7 of 18 (permalink) Old 10-21-2010, 01:28 PM
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I would taking Blitz to a good Schutzhund club nearby and see if they think he can do the training or not. Also one of the members in our club has a SchIII that also does agility with him since he turned 7 recently. So yes they can do both with no problem.

To try the tracking more do the find search fro food in the house like DJ suggested or to take the dog outside and drag pieces of food through the grass for them to follow and find. Also you can play the game in the house of find me to see how they do.
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post #8 of 18 (permalink) Old 10-21-2010, 01:31 PM Thread Starter
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Ruthie- Thank you for your input, I have a meeting with a trainer next week but he doesn't start training until 5 months so I have a few weeks to go. I have gotten many recommendations to him, he trains all the police dogs for my county but I’ll have to wait until I meet him and feel out his training methods.

DJEtzel-thank you for your input also, by no means am I suggesting my puppy is a super star. When we chose her it was to be a family pet first but I did go with the "so called" pick of the litter so that if we chose we wanted to try more with her she might have the potential to do so. I like the cheese idea, are they tracking the cheese scent or your scent and just finding the cheese at the end as a reward? As for our little "game" she can't see which way I go as it is through another room with a wall between us and I go a different way every time so it not memory, it's turned in a bit of hide and seek but of course my spots are super simple and she finds me 90% of the time and each time traces my steps.

As for my comment on the nerves with the landscaper, I was not referring to her staring, as I am well aware she need socializing and have been working on it, she is getting much better! I was more talking about her even attitude when it comes to the loud sounds (my last 2 dogs hid under the bed for a thunderstorm)

I hope I have not come across as uneducated or silly, I was only trying to find some insight on her personality and if anyone thought it would be worth looking into, like I said we got her as a pet but now that both of my kids are in school full time I find myself spending a lot of time with her doing a lot of training and it has turned out the she and I both love it. She has very good focus on me and really seems to enjoy working.
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post #9 of 18 (permalink) Old 10-21-2010, 01:33 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by szariksdad View Post
I would taking Blitz to a good Schutzhund club nearby and see if they think he can do the training or not. Also one of the members in our club has a SchIII that also does agility with him since he turned 7 recently. So yes they can do both with no problem.

To try the tracking more do the find search fro food in the house like DJ suggested or to take the dog outside and drag pieces of food through the grass for them to follow and find. Also you can play the game in the house of find me to see how they do.
so they do search for the food scent...inside with the cheese/food do you rub the cheese/food on the floor until you get to the placement spot?
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post #10 of 18 (permalink) Old 10-21-2010, 01:55 PM Thread Starter
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so they do search for the food scent...inside with the cheese/food do you rub the cheese/food on the floor until you get to the placement spot?
Oops, sorry! Just reread that you put it down a few times along the way!
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