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Stupid question, but what is the difference? I know the Schtuzhund club is all about the sport but is the GSDCA also about that or something totally different or that and more? I ask because everyone says to join a club, get involved, have your dog looked at, watch and figure out what you want to do, but not sure which would be the one to go to. Side note, the closest Schtuzhund club is a few hours away but there is a GSDCA in my city. Also are these clubs where you are supposed to find a trainer or is it ok to use a trainer/Schtuzhund trainer who does not work directly out of the clubs.

Sorry if I sound really stupid, just trying to figure this all out.
 

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GSDCA is the German Shepherd Dog Club of America. It is the parent club to many local German shepherd dog clubs. The one I am a member of is the German shepherd Dog Club of Northern Ohio.

What we do is put on two specialty shows a year, where they thrust is conformation for specialty, basically American or Canadian bred German Shepherd Dogs. They do have Obedience and Rally at these shows, and often CGC testing. I have not been to a show that does the TT, temperament test.

Our members are mostly those with American bred dogs, people who are deep into showing dogs in conformation. One member has the Herding grand victor of last year. And they usually sponsor a herding fun day.

Other members are into rescue, and some are into Search and Rescue (SAR).

At our specialty, we honor the local k9s.

I do not think there are many working line dog owners in our group, though there are some German showline dog owners.

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A schutzhund club would be primarily a training club that would focus on the three basic parts of the schutzhund title, tracking, protection and obedience. It would welcome dogs of many breeds. You would find more working line dogs, and possibly some k9 owner handlers, though they generally train their police dogs separately, I imagine they may go for schutzhund as well, not sure, it is just more in line with what they do. Shutzhund is about the total dog. The obedience includes some agility like the a-frame.

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You could join other training clubs, and sign up for classes at training facilities. Around here that includes, rally obedience, obedience, agility, tracking, flyball, and maybe a few others.

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It really depends on what your dog's strengths are and what your interests are.

Join a breed club, local and get involved in local shows. I go for the obedience and rally. But also there should be some concern with local and state laws they are trying to pass, rescue information, general breed specific and dog specific current events and issues that makes sense as a dog owner for you to be a part of.

As for training, get in as deep as you want to, join a club if you want or just go to classes. Get out there meet people, network, get GSD friends/dog friends.
 

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The GSDCA is also affiliated with the WDA - a Sch and working dog club. The GSDCA also is heavily into obedience and does a lot with it although as stated their major thrust is toward the conformation end.
 

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I was a member of the GSDCA, and they really do not do much with obedience. I mean they have an obedience chair, but while I was a member, there was not that much done with them. They sent me certificates when I got my titles.

Local clubs are even worse about obedience dogs. We are the red headed step child of the group. As for the WDA, I thought they were splitting themselves from the WDA? Or did I read that wrong. I found the GSDCA was mostly just the Review, and looking at all the showcased specialty dogs. One issue is usually dedicated to working dogs, kind of.

Training clubs are cool because they do social stuff besides just training. They get together and eat and talk about dogs, and set up events like run throughs. they are not usually breed specific, but they can be a great place to associate with other people into training.
 

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Actually the national club (GSDCA) does do a lot with obedience even featuring the obedience GSD's in at least one issue of The Review (the monthly magazine published by the GSDCA) every year.

They also do a lot with working dogs through the WDA affiliation. They have a lot of information on herding and even Rally. Anyone with a GSD should definetly look into the GSDCA and esp. Their web site - lots of great information for GSD owners and potential owners. www.gsdca.org

Of course there is a lot of conformation stuff there as well, but if anyone is not into that aspect of our dogs, just ignore that stuff.
 

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Ok, I do not know where I read about the WDA and GSDCA splitting, maybe it was something else. Now I have to go and look up stuff again.

I think you get more out of a local club, than the parent club, that is just my opinion.
 

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There is always some areas of fussing with each other. I believe quite a while ago the SV told the WDA they had to affiliate with the GSDCA and you can imagine how well that went over.

And no question that folks should join a local club - I agree with you that a good local club is a great organization to join. Wish we had one where i am.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Thanks for the info guys! My pup is only 4 months old so we are just looking into things, figuring out what we can and want to do and it can feel overwhelming sometimes.

Blitz is from West German showlines with working titles, so I have no idea what our thing will be yet, are there any accreditations a local club should have and how do you go about finding one? Just Internet searching?
 
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