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let me say this first, i have a feeling that there are gonna be a lot of opinions on this one and was rather hesitent to post but i wanted to know what u guys/gals had to say.

i understand that an 8 month old GSD (my boy is 8 months) is not considered "protective" at this point but i am starting to notice some aloofness about him (which is natural in the GSD). ill also add that he has good nerves has been bread through a generation of good nerves so i think i can count out haveing a bad nerved dog.

so if it came down to it, what would a PPD do vs a dog that has not been trained even though they have the instinct to protect his/her owner? i know that a PPD is trained with a lot of socializeation with all sorts of conflicts but would the instinct of the GSD keep telling him/her to stay in the fight?? (this is all curiosity, plz dont think i would take my dog to a gun battle..etc) thanks
 

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There is no way to answer this question in a concrete manner, and PPD's are not trained to stay and fight 'til the end. They are trained to give their handler and or their handlers family enough time to get away or get a weapon. How long the dog stays in the fight is a combination of training, the dog's natural level of defense/aggression/joy of fighting and dominating an opponent and the strength and toughness of the individual they are fighting.

The difference between a trained PPD and a regular pet dog is...

1. The PPD can be "turned on" and focused on a threat.

2. The PPD gives you the benefit of KNOWING he will engage.

3. Provided the training is sound, you can retain control of the PPD through the altercation allowing you to call the dog back to you, out the bad guy and handle him without fear of getting bit yourself since he will not redirect.

Can a regular untrained dog do 1 and 2? Yes maybe, but almost certainly 3.
 

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Hard and soft refer to what effect corrections have on a dog. There are plenty of handler soft dogs (especially other breeds - malinois and pitts for a few) that will stand up to a tough opponent.
 

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IMO, hardness and softness relates to the dog's resilience to negative experiences overall, not just corrections. So a hard dog is hands down better for protection work.

However, what John said about differentiating between the dog's attitude toward the handler vs others is very true. There are many hard dogs that are also handler sensitive, as this relates not so much to their hardness/softness level but rather is an extension of pack drive.

So it depends on the definition of softness... if towards the handler only, not so much of an issue. If soft in general, not a good prospect for protection.
 
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