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I was listening to two people talking about training dogs. One person said that he was starting to cross train his dog (GSD) in Obedience training (preparing for Schutzhund) but was also dabbling in flyball and even working at lure coursing (yeah lure coursing).

The other guy said that flyball and lure coursing would ruin his dog for Schutzhund.

What do you think about this. Can you have too much variety in the sports you do with your dog?
 

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Hmmm I wouldn't think with these sports that there would be any problem.
Flyball is like agility and obedience in one. Run, jump, retrieve ball, return.
Same thing with the obedience in Schutzhund. Run, jump, retrieve dumbell, return.
Lure coursing is just prey drive how fast can you run to catch the prey.

Now mixing things like Sar and protection might be a conflict of interest.
 

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I have seen problems with some people who do 'real' obedience for a few years and then start up in agility. These would be the people that have the traditional obedience instructors who refuse to ever use food/treats (won't bribe MY dog), or toys, and exclusively rely on the training collars and verbals for praise/corrections.

I've seen it be a mix of the handler being a bit of a control freak by this time. Because of the way obedience seems so rigid and specific with the behaviors of the dog/handler. I've also seen that SOME (definitely not all) of these people really get embarrassed and feel extremely uncomfortable (mad
) when their dog (in their opinion) doesn't listen, or is 'wrong'.

In some ways it's almost funny, cause when in doubt in training and on a course, these dogs all dart into the 'heel' position whether that's anything to do with the ongoing course or not. Both handler/dog are very uncomfortable not being right beside each other. And many of these dogs are
s l o w............ because they have learned that the #1 thing in life with mom/dad is to make sure you do exactly 100% for sure the exact 100% for sure thing mom/dad wants. The best way to do this is to be right near them all the time and check in every millisec to be ABSOLUTELY sure they are doing it right.

Interesting thing is many of these dogs do very well in the Novice thru open courses. Cause they are easier and have more TIME. Not until the higher levels are reached to we suddenly realize it's about being fast AND accurate, but to get a dog to suddenly realize the game has changed is very very difficult.

BUT THIS IS NOT all of the obedience people. So don't yell at me! It's more the WAY the obedience was taught, and I still see alot of people that will train the same way they have the past 20 years and refusing to all the methods I've seen developing that allow precise behaviors/focus from the dog AND the fact the dog is getting treats, tugging, parties so having just as much of a blast doing obedience as agility, herding, flyball......................
 

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I do rally, agility, obedience, and just started Schutzhund and herding. The dog is also titled in conformation and passed therapy dog training. I use different methods, rewards, and commands depending on what we are doing. She's a smart dog and I like variety. I don't think we will ever be #1 at any of these activities, but that's not why I do it. If we don't enjoy it, we move on to something else...
 

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I think it's about how you train. We've mainly dabbled in rally, canine freestyle, and agility. Ris doesn't have any problems switching back and forth. And maybe that's because all three are pretty loose as far as precision goes and have similar behaviors. I can get precision with Risa easily as she's so eager to please though I rarely require the strict precision standard obedience looks for. Our training is more about fun (clicker training).

I agree with MaggieRoseLee that a lot of it is how people train obedience that gets them into conflict with some of the other sports where 'fun' is more important than precision. Many people just can't get past the fact that it's okay for your dog to be 'wrong.' Or they don't have the patience to wait for their dog to get it right and then reward them lavishly.

So, imho, there's nothing wrong with a dog being a multi-sport dog as long as he knows what he's supposed to be doing when.
 
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