New to Schutzhund and looking for some tips please - German Shepherd Dog Forums
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post #1 of 120 (permalink) Old 10-12-2014, 08:59 PM Thread Starter
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Wink New to Schutzhund and looking for some tips please

Okay so here's a short background about myself and why I want to do Schutzhund/dvg. I grew up in a AKC show home where every weekend we would travel around Florida and Georgia showing my grandmothers american cocker spaniels and my mothers german shepherds. I was hooked and knew I was going to work with dogs for the rest of my life. I became a dog groomer and met my husband grooming his yorkie. We got a house and talked about getting a large breed dog when we got a bigger place. We bought our dream property of 20 acres in the Ocala national forest and true to his word my husband finally let me get my dream dog, a solid black german shepherd bitch we named Trinity. I am now very interested in taking her all the way in schutzhund and would like to ask a few questions.
* Do you need to join a club to compete in DVG?
* What are the routines of most clubs? I went to one today and everyone seemed to be socializing more themselves then the puppies or working their dogs, but the training director couldn't be there so maybe its different then?
* Do clubs do one on one time or is it just got out and walk the routine by yourself. If so couldn't I just do that at home? I know I need the helper for protection training of course
* Are there any recommended personal trainers around the Ocala area. Can travel an hour or so.

Thank you so much for any input. I've almost finished the book "Schutzhund:Training & Theory and am going to read Advanced Schutzhund. Any pointers or tips greatly appreciated. I am very determined to go all the way!
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post #2 of 120 (permalink) Old 10-12-2014, 09:52 PM
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Hi, and welcome to the forum!
Quote:
* Do you need to join a club to compete in DVG?
I don't know about DVG in particular (being an IPO club in Canada, the clubs/orgazinations and requirements are different than the US), so not sure about the need to belong in a club to actually compete, but you will almost certainly need to join a club to train. This is not something that you can do on your own - the club will give you guidance on developing your puppy, starting tracking, and most importantly, will have an experienced helper to do bite-work.

Quote:
* What are the routines of most clubs? I went to one today and everyone seemed to be socializing more themselves then the puppies or working their dogs, but the training director couldn't be there so maybe its different then?
Every club is different and has a different culture. Some are laid-back and easy going, people's goals are mostly to get out and work with their dogs and have fun with the added bonus of getting titles on the dogs, and other clubs are hard-core competitive, with the members' all working towards regional, national, world championships.

Some clubs have very strict routines and expectations, others are more go-with-the-flow type.

Quote:
* Do clubs do one on one time or is it just got out and walk the routine by yourself. If so couldn't I just do that at home? I know I need the helper for protection training of course
As a newbie, the club members will work with you one-on-one to bring you along. You will be expected to do you homework too and work on certain exercises at home, but do wait for direction from the club.
At the club, you will want to use the resource of having others around to coach you along - you'd be surprised how easy it is to make little unintended mistakes if you don't have someone watching and giving you feedback. You will also want to work with others for proofing against distractions.

Lucia


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post #3 of 120 (permalink) Old 10-13-2014, 04:07 AM
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In the US to compete in DVG you need to belong to a club. The club's training director approves you to the trial. (at least at some clubs)

Sometimes people get distracted from training and do a lot of unrelated talking. Other times they are more focused and in some clubs you will learn who to listen to, who to try to avoid (because you don't want drawn into the chat but want to watch the dogs and listen to people.) And yes when the TD is away, the troups can get a bit slack.

When someone is assisting another person with their dog - go out on the field so you can hear. If you want help, ask a person who seems to know what they are doing. It may take a while after joining a club to figure out who that is.

There are probably some personal trainers near you. Listen at the club, ask at the club.
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post #4 of 120 (permalink) Old 10-13-2014, 09:26 AM Thread Starter
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Thank you for the replies! I kind of figured that since the TD wasn't there people were just bull****ing around. The President of the club was more in the lines of showing off her "NEW" dog from Germany and didn't really explain anything that happens besides "in the mornings we track then do obedience and protection work." Well I know that already! My husband and I were kinda twiddling our thumbs walking around with our puppy. There were very experienced people there and some were working their dogs and they looked so beautiful and graceful! I did get to talk to a couple people that are going to the malinois nationals coming up and they gave me a lot of good tips and pointers. Another thing is the trainer was supposed to come out Saturday and canceled so they did the puppy socialization and obedience sunday instead. Well he can't come next Saturday and the following Saturday the president has a band recital with her daughter so theres not going to be any training for another 2 weeks. So that would be 3 weeks in a row where the training director won't be there. If I am going to be paying my hard earned money to join a club and the directors aren't holding persistent training sessions what should I do? I tried calling all the different clubs within 2 hours of me and a couple of them recommended the club I went to and the others were just paper clubs. I'm not against chatting at all I just am very serious about titling my dog and my first experience with a club wasn't that great.
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post #5 of 120 (permalink) Old 10-13-2014, 09:52 AM
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You have to kinda shop around to find a good fit with a club. My hubby and I found a good fit about an hour from our house. The club meets twice a week, sometimes more before a trial. Because it is such a long drive for us we only go once a week.

We do chat, but we also work our dogs, share advice, grumble about politics, and yes, we even pay attention to who is on the field and learn from their mistakes and successes. New folks are always encouraged to bring their dogs out on the field so that the TDs can see how the dog and the handler work out.

If the group had wanted me to put down hard cash to evaluate our puppy, or if they had been standoffish we probably would have kept looking for another club.

Good luck on your search and post when you find a good match for yourself. I'm sure others are looking, too.

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post #6 of 120 (permalink) Old 10-13-2014, 10:08 AM
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Unfortunately this is part of being in a club and not just paying a business to get what you want done. The TD is a volunteer, they do this on their own time. Rarely does anyone get paid, so when they have personal plans, they won't be there. Unfortunately for a completely new person to the sport, this is highly detrimental, where as for more advanced people, they can generally get by and do some things.

You get much cheaper training at a club than you would at an actual business, but you have to live with the fact that these things happen. On top of that, this is trialing season and it's not unheard of to have TDs missing from clubs or a lot of members going other places and training on the fields they will be trialing on.
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post #7 of 120 (permalink) Old 10-13-2014, 10:19 AM
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Well, at our club, we don't have a TD, and consider the membership fees to give a person unlimited access to our training grounds. Nobody is paid to do anything, not even the helpers (we don't even have a 'real' helper, we bring in trainers from time to time).

Granted if I were going somewhere where membership was 3 grand a year, then yes, I would be expecting some more involvement from the club directors.

Lucia


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post #8 of 120 (permalink) Old 10-13-2014, 01:23 PM
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This is trial season so often club schedules will be a bit different. And the ones trialing should get priority on the field and with helperwork.
Even if the TD or Pres isn't going to be there, why can't some of the other members still meet up to track and do obedience?
Unless of course, it is a private field owned by one of the heads that won't be there...liability would be a concern.
Your pup can do some scentpad work anyway, which doesn't take up space. You can do much of the foundation on your own til pup is a bit older. If there is a club member willing to work with you on the early foundation stuff, that may be best for now.

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Last edited by onyx'girl; 10-13-2014 at 01:26 PM.
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post #9 of 120 (permalink) Old 10-13-2014, 09:27 PM Thread Starter
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That makes sense trial season is here. I know a couple people at the club were going to the malinois nationals here in florida. I'm going to check it out next time the training director is there and see how it goes.
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post #10 of 120 (permalink) Old 10-13-2014, 10:51 PM
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Will a German shepherd dog that has done the IPO/Schutzhund exams be then automatically a protection dog that will defend me of being attacked in the street by someone or if someone breaks into my house or those that require a different training for the dog?
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