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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I've been reading about Schutzhund training and it piqued my interest so I wanted to check out one of the local clubs near Portland. The problem is, the woman I contacted said that my puppy has American lines and that most GSDs with American lines "don't have the nerves to do Schutzhund."


Thoughts?
 

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She is right. Most American lines would not have the nerve for the protection part. However, you may well have a happy exception. If your pup shows great confidence in new situations, being curious and interested, readily accepts strangers and willingly engages in play with others, has good prey drive wanting to chase, catch and bring back thrown objects, or chases and bites a puppy rag, then you may have the making of a future Schutzhund dog on your hands.

You can have your puppy evaluated to see if he would be a good candidate for Schutzhund, and even if not strong nerved enough for the protection work, you can pursue obedience and tracking titles, and have fun, and learn a lot about drives and training. Did the lady you talked to say anything about checking out the club? Some clubs are open to newbies with non-traditional Schutzhund dogs, and many of us have started our SchH addiction with mixed-breed rescues, different breeds, or showline GSDs.

Other clubs are very serious about their members attaining higher-level competition, so they won't accept members unless they believe that they have a dog that can make it.

So if you are interested, see if you can visit the club (without your dog) a few times to learn more about the training, and ask to have your pup evaluated. Then you can go from there.
 

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She's right, Am-breds generally do not have the drive or the nerves to do SchH. but there are exceptions. If you are really looking into this sport, you may want to consider changing breeders and get a workingline dog.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
She is right. Most American lines would not have the nerve for the protection part. However, you may well have a happy exception. If your pup shows great confidence in new situations, being curious and interested, readily accepts strangers and willingly engages in play with others, has good prey drive wanting to chase, catch and bring back thrown objects, or chases and bites a puppy rag, then you may have the making of a future Schutzhund dog on your hands.

You can have your puppy evaluated to see if he would be a good candidate for Schutzhund, and even if not strong nerved enough for the protection work, you can pursue obedience and tracking titles, and have fun, and learn a lot about drives and training. Did the lady you talked to say anything about checking out the club? Some clubs are open to newbies with non-traditional Schutzhund dogs, and many of us have started our SchH addiction with mixed-breed rescues, different breeds, or showline GSDs.

Other clubs are very serious about their members attaining higher-level competition, so they won't accept members unless they believe that they have a dog that can make it.

So if you are interested, see if you can visit the club (without your dog) a few times to learn more about the training, and ask to have your pup evaluated. Then you can go from there.
She said they're training on Sunday and that we are welcome to come out. I think I'll go and watch, if for no other reason than to just see what it's all about. If it's something I'm interested in, but this pup isn't good to go, I might get another puppy in a year or two with working lines.
 

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We have quite a few members who work dogs that were not purchased with Schutzhund in mind. We allow anyone who is interested to come out and take a look. Like Lucia said, you can still work on obedience and tracking titles and learn about bitework from watching others. We have at least 3 dogs in our club who are doing bitework for a puppy tug, the dog is enjoying it and the handler is learning from it. Another dog in our club worked for almost a year before she would bite the sleeve, we were all commenting last week how fun it was to watch her prance around the field with the sleeve in her mouth and how no one would have ever thought it possible just a year ago. The handler has since bought another GSD from working lines, so is working both now. And how great is it that she learned so much from her first dog, and the dog is just as proud as she could be.
If available, look into multiple clubs, the right fit is a big part of the enjoyment for you and your dog.
 
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