I'm just wondering how all of you got started in schutzhund?
I am really interested in it. I've been interested in it since before I got my pup (now 6 months old). Since getting her, I've traveled with her to training days etc. to watch her pappa be worked and get a sense of what it's about.
Here's my question:
For a novice handler, how do they get started? It's not really as simple as finding a club (I found one), but also finding the right dog *for their experience level*.
I am a rank beginner, I didn't want to 'out-dog' myself. I was the only pet owner out of the entire litter, so while my pup has the genetics (all the other pups went to working homes - SAR, K9, sheep herding, firehouse & schutzhund), I'm a bit worried that she might be a bit soft for schutzhund, but I'd still like to give it a go.
Her pappa's owner thinks she's a great dog who would do well at it and thinks I'd be a good handler, but in watching the others working older dogs (I realize she's just a pup), some of their dogs are so intense and I look at my pup and I'm wondering if that's in her somewhere?
Is it pointless to try schutzhund with a softer dog? She is VERY bonded to me (has a tantrum if someone tries to take her away from me) and is a submissive pee-er. I'm thinking these may be two red flags that it's not in her, but can a dog like this be developed? I don't think she'll be a world champion, but I'm hoping she would do ok with work.
At the end of the day, she's a pet and I want a dog I can live with, so if she's not the right temperament for schutzhund, so be it. But I'd still like to give it a go. If I like it, with more experience, I might be ready for a harder dog if/when I get another, but this being my first GSD, I think putting a really high drive dog with me would not have been a good idea, so I think her breeder did right by me. But I still want to try.
Do you think it's possible to give it a go? I just don't want to embarrass myself or more importantly the club, but it would have been foolish for me to take on a dog who's too much for be to handle before I know what I'm doing.
Do you see the predicament?
Ha ha. I'm just not sure how you guys got started. It seem like the choice is out-dog yourself, or have a dog who's maybe too soft. What's worse? lol
Is it worth trying with my pup?
Sorry for rambling. lol