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Discussion Starter #1
I'm not exactly sure where to start with this question. I guess I'll start with my background and what I have and what I'm wanting.

What we have: I have my first GSD - a "nicely bred, but no where near impressive" female that is almost 6 months old. My mom (70yo) bought a male out of the same litter.

What we're looking for:
Mom first - she is a 70yo widow (my dad died 5 years ago). She is looking purely for a Personal Protection dog that will make a good companion. She has no desire to ever breed her pup (and will probably get him neutered when he reaches maturity). To expound, she wants a dog that is VERY well behaved in the house and is very tolerant of her grandkids (and great-grandkids), neighbors, etc. But will "eat the butt off" someone who tries to do the wrong thing.

Background: My mom had had dogs her whole life (including GSDs), but has no experience formally training a dog. Imho, her now 6mo old male's obedience is "ok", but not great (he will ignore her when the distraction is high). He is house-trained and doesn't tear things up. He is good with the kids, including a 2yo (keeping in mind he does still act like a 6mo puppy who weighs 50lbs).


Me - my desires are not that different than my mom, BUT I might want to breed my female at some point down the road .... yes, yes - IF she is "worthy" (health certs, temperament, etc.). It's this last part that will eventually lead to my question at the end of what is going to be a very long post... :eek:

My background: I have 25 years of experience at training retrievers for both real-world hunting situations as well as "playing the retriever games". At one point I was a fully qualified judge with for both AKC and HRC hunt tests. I have had 2 dogs qualify for National hunt tests.

.... which is to say, I do understand training dogs in general. I do NOT understand the particulars of training for Sch, IPO, KNPV, or PPD (or even where the differences between them are).
 

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Discussion Starter #3
(continued)

So being a novice at this, the "game" I thought I wanted to play was Sch/IPO (which I believe are the same thing now, right?).

But that's where things get interesting...


This past weekend I was up in Dallas visiting my mom and decided to run our pups out to a professional trainer I have known for a long time. Back when I was playing retriever games, he was as well .... and did very, VERY good. But he quit doing retriever games at about the same time I did (2007?) and took a job as a defense contractor in Afghanistan ... specifically to train military dogs over there. The "60 Minutes" show this past April was about his group there...

Which is only to say, my buddy does know his stuff...

...Well... he knows how to train for THAT. But I'm not so sure that everything he was telling us really applies to a dog that will live in the house 24/7 with other dogs, cats, chickens, and kids.


At any rate, what he was telling us was that Sch/IPO is a good game, but it really doesn't create a dog that won't back down. (ok, now that I've got everyone's hackles up....)

The example he pointed to was in HOW 99% of these dogs are taught to bite. They grab and arm and PULL. According to him, what you want is a dog that will bite and drive INTO the "target". And keep driving in.

Quite honestly - there is something in this that makes logical sense.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Well I think I've gotten off track. So - to finally get to my question: I guess what I'm wanting to know is this:

What "evaluation game" is there for Personal Protection Dogs?


It would seem that Sch/IPO goes way beyond what is really needed in real life. Is KNPV closer?
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Last thing: I'm going to train my dog in English. :p

When the SHTF and I need to tell my dog to do something, I'm not going to be stammering around trying to remember what german/dutch word I am supposed to use.
 

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Depends how you train and the dog you own.... that's what makes the final result.

I've seen many IPO dogs that are very real. Some are even cross trained as a PPD. My younger female is training in IPO, but once she's titled will probably move to PPD. So far, she is very promising for them both and seems to hold the capacity to do them both. But that's to be later evaluated... for now, we're staying on path to title. Now, on the other hand.... I've also met some IPO dogs that will NOT bite unless you have a sleeve, pillow, or wedge... period! They are "sleeve happy" and it's all just a fun game of tug... nothing serious about it. That's not all of them though. That would be a huge, false blanket statement.

KNPV, like RobK said, is very hard to find here in the US. It's more of a "police dog" type sport. Not 100% the same... but, it's definitely way more based on the real-life style of protection. Those dogs will most definitely bite for real. That's from what I've seen... like I said, it's hard to find, so I haven't met many of these dogs. However, when we have dogs sent in for our LE K9 departments to be evaluated, many of them will have KNPV titles or backgrounds. Typically they like to train their own from green.... but, if not, they will absolutely take a KNPV dog. In KNPV, you also will see way more Malis and Dutches over Shepherds. It's not unknown, but definitely not as common.

If you have a stable dog that's trained properly, there should be no reason that dog couldn't live in the house as a normal family pet. The great thing about this breed is it's versatility. When on the field or "working" my dogs are focused, intense, and ready to do whatever they have to.... and home, they are just another family dog.

As of it "being more than what's needed". Well, some may see it as that... but I see it as well rounded. Just like when kids go to school, they don't just learn Science... or Math. They also learn Geography, History, Humanities, Reading and Writing Skills, some states require a Foreign Language and have music and art available. This makes for a well rounded education. It's the same in our Universities. IPO dogs have to learn strict OB so this way you always have FULL control of them and they prove they can be obedient, which is important especially when working with protection. They learn tracking..... teaches patience, focus, works their brain, and most of all it teaches them to use another one of their senses. Protection is wonderful and lots of fun.... but, OB is needed to round the dog out and set boundaries.

KNPV I'm pretty sure doesn't have anything else other than OB and protection..... which, correct me if I'm wrong.... is not judged separately like IPO? I believe it's all together in different types of "scenarios".

If you want to do something with just OB and Protection and have it a bit more "realistic" and not really get super involved in a sport.... find a PPD trainer, or here we have bodyguard competitions and titles. It's just OB (kind of like a BH pattern) and then protection which mixes in the two and it's a bit like IPO with not as many different commands and such. It's still a lot of work though.

When you check those out (or any of these sports), they'll evaluate the dog and go from there.

-Forgot to add- About the language you use.... IPO doesn't care what you use... it just has to be consistent. So you can't say "Platz" (down in German) and then "Stand". It all needs to be in one language. The others I'm not sure of, I've never really looked too far into them... but, I'm pretty sure they'd have the same idea.
 

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KNPV, like RobK said, is very hard to find here in the US. It's more of a "police dog" type sport. Not 100% the same... but, it's definitely way more based on the real-life style of protection. Those dogs will most definitely bite for real. That's from what I've seen... like I said, it's hard to find, so I haven't met many of these dogs. However, when we have dogs sent in for our LE K9 departments to be evaluated, many of them will have KNPV titles or backgrounds. Typically they like to train their own from green.... but, if not, they will absolutely take a KNPV dog. In KNPV, you also will see way more Malis and Dutches over Shepherds. It's not unknown, but definitely not as common.
KNPV I'm pretty sure doesn't have anything else other than OB and protection..... which, correct me if I'm wrong.... is not judged separately like IPO? I believe it's all together in different types of "scenarios".

If you want to do something with just OB and Protection and have it a bit more "realistic" and not really get super involved in a sport.... find a PPD trainer, or here we have bodyguard competitions and titles. It's just OB (kind of like a BH pattern) and then protection which mixes in the two and it's a bit like IPO with not as many different commands and such. It's still a lot of work though.

When you check those out (or any of these sports), they'll evaluate the dog and go from there.
KNPV has a timed search exercise done off leash. I wish there was more interest in the KNPV training in the US. KNPV Trial Rules
 

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(continued)

So being a novice at this, the "game" I thought I wanted to play was Sch/IPO (which I believe are the same thing now, right?).

But that's where things get interesting...




...Well... he knows how to train for THAT. But I'm not so sure that everything he was telling us really applies to a dog that will live in the house 24/7 with other dogs, cats, chickens, and kids.


At any rate, what he was telling us was that Sch/IPO is a good game, but it really doesn't create a dog that won't back down. (ok, now that I've got everyone's hackles up....)

The example he pointed to was in HOW 99% of these dogs are taught to bite. They grab and arm and PULL. According to him, what you want is a dog that will bite and drive INTO the "target". And keep driving in.

Quite honestly - there is something in this that makes logical sense.

The bottom line is genetics....not training....either the dog has the genetics for serious protection or it doesn't....they both can be trained in playing this biting game with a guy dressed up and tapping a sleeve invitingly...but the instincts are different...some dogs will play as long as there is no pressure, some are bored unless there is pressure...some will play without much pressure but take it to another level when the pressure is upped....sounds like you want the third type ....which is the hardest to find, even though everyone says theirs is this type LOL LOL

You have the dog you have, and will have to train her to find out which type you have...some can train 24/7 and never have the third type of dog....training and being critical is how you find out...

Lee
 

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The chances of you having a gsd dog capable of KNPV work are nil and you cannot participate anyway. Forget personal protection, because the chances of your dog excelling at this is also nil. Find an IPO club and learn how to train your dog motivationally and in prey drive and then you can begin to learn.
 

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I want my dog to bite for fun not protection, I carry a gun for that. I don't want a bad guy shooting my dog, lol here in Texas everyone carries a gun to protect the wife kinds and the pets/working dog

Sent from Petguide.com Free App
 

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I want my dog to bite for fun not protection, I carry a gun for that. I don't want a bad guy shooting my dog, lol here in Texas everyone carries a gun to protect the wife kinds and the pets/working dog

I carry one as well (yes, this IS Texas) :wild:

But I'm now 51 years old and tend to be a pretty deep sleeper. A PPD that can give me enough time to get to my gun (and wake up enough to use it) is a desired asset. :cool:


Ok, so what should I do now? Carly (my GSD) is now almost 6mo.

She seems to have a pretty good prey drive. She plays fetch with pretty much anything I throw (training bumper, squeeky ball, stick off the wood pile). She LOVES to chase the ducks and chickens and cat (although if they stop running, she stops chasing and doesn't actually catch them ... which I prefer).

She will play tug-o-war until my arm falls off - but is always careful to bite the tug-object and not my hands.

Her obedience is pretty good: sit, here, & "corner" (meaning go lay in your corner in the living room and quit pestering everyone to play). Heel is ok for my purposes (ie. stay within 5'-10' feet of me).
 

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Really any GSD, or any dog for that matter, is going to alert to things going bump in the night and in doing so will serve as a deterrent and an early warning system to buy you time. You don't need training for that.

There is nothing wrong with doing PPD training either, if that is something you truly want to do. But this is not something to be entered into lightly. It is a HUGE responsibility and in most places a greatly increased liability. It is also a huge time committment for the life of the dog. It must be done properly as both you and the dog have much to learn. That requires finding a good trainer to work with, and investing a lot of time and money. Finding a good trainer is the first, and perhaps hardest, step as unfortunately there are more crackpots out there peddling protection dogs and protection dog training who are doing nothing but creating unstable dogs. There are far fewer legitimate, experienced PPD trainers to work with. And as someone new to this you may not be able to tell one from the other.

As for what to do next, you need to start contacting clubs and trainers in your area. I would start with established protection sport clubs. Doesn't matter if they are IPO/SchH, SDA, PSA (as others have said you won't find KNPV in the US). Sport work, even if that isn't your ultimate goal, is a good place to start for both you and your dog to develop some skills and a basis of knowledge to build upon to help you make sound decisions later with regard to what direction to take your training. Transitioning over to more real life protection later isn't difficult provided the foundation is solid and the dog has the genetics for it. Those same clubs can probably help you with that. If they don't do some more real life type of work themselves (and many do, even if their main focus is sport), they can probably direct you to legitimate trainers in the area that you can work with, and help you avoid the dangerous crackpots. The dog world is a pretty small one. Especially in local areas. They will know who is good and who to avoid. They will also be able to provide you with guidance on what direction to take your training once they've worked with you for a while to develop a foundation and more is known about what you truly want to pursue and what your dog and you as a handler are capable of.
 

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There is nothing wrong with doing PPD training either, if that is something you truly want to do. But this is not something to be entered into lightly. It is a HUGE responsibility and in most places a greatly increased liability.
Ok, I guess I'm confused. By this am I to understand that PPD is "higher" than IPO?

I was under the impression that PPD was a generic term. The analogy would be in the retriever world - we have 3 levels of performance (from highest to lowest):
(1) field trials - competitive events where a dog earns titles, dogs are judged against each other in the event and one dog "wins" the event.
(2) hunt tests - NON-competitive events where a dog earns titles. The dogs are judged against a set standard of performance and either pass or fail on their own, regardless of how other dogs at the same event perform.
(3) gundogs - dogs that are trained to be "simple hunting companions." No titles (in fact, no event).

I was equating PPD to be the "gundog" level. Is this not correct?


It is also a huge time committment for the life of the dog. It must be done properly as both you and the dog have much to learn. That requires finding a good trainer to work with, and investing a lot of time and money. Finding a good trainer is the first, and perhaps hardest, step as unfortunately there are more crackpots out there peddling protection dogs and protection dog training who are doing nothing but creating unstable dogs. There are far fewer legitimate, experienced PPD trainers to work with. And as someone new to this you may not be able to tell one from the other.
Gotcha. Kind of one reason why I went to go see my buddy up in Dallas last weekend.

I have found 1 trainer in the Houston area (much closer to me) that seems to have a good reputation (Circle K9), but have not yet met with them (life keeps getting in the way).



As for what to do next, you need to start contacting clubs and trainers in your area. I would start with established protection sport clubs. Doesn't matter if they are IPO/SchH, SDA, PSA (as others have said you won't find KNPV in the US).
Ug! :eek:

I have tried and tried to find a club in my area. The nearest one I have found is in Dallas (3 hours away). I did find a lady that USED to be the chairman of a club here in Bryan/College Station, TX - but the club folded back in 2008. :(



I guess I should add this. For me, there only 2 reasons to play any doggie game that results in a title:
(1) it gives me an objective measure to gauge the training I'm using and what I need to work on.

(2) if I decide to breed her later on (assuming all health checks, etc. are also good). This is probably my history in retriever games, but to me a title provides some level of "buyer assurance" that the dog meets some standard from an objective and knowledgeable source.
 

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Well I think I've gotten off track. So - to finally get to my question: I guess what I'm wanting to know is this:

What "evaluation game" is there for Personal Protection Dogs?


It would seem that Sch/IPO goes way beyond what is really needed in real life. Is KNPV closer?
PSA would be your best route. Puts real pressure on dogs with more real world style situations. Trials have exercises created on trial day so you cannot condition a dog to complete the exercise but must actually teach the dog to perform under unknown conditions... and PSA clubs exist all over the states. I'd love to give KNPV a try but no idea where in the states I could do that.

There is also K9 Pro sports which Butch posted a thread about just recently in the "other sports" forum, but I know very little about it other than I believe it was also created to be more "real" than IPO/SchH and get back to testing dogs for real PPD/PSD breeding stock.
 

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Ok, I guess I'm confused. By this am I to understand that PPD is "higher" than IPO?

I was under the impression that PPD was a generic term. The analogy would be in the retriever world - we have 3 levels of performance (from highest to lowest):
(1) field trials - competitive events where a dog earns titles, dogs are judged against each other in the event and one dog "wins" the event.
(2) hunt tests - NON-competitive events where a dog earns titles. The dogs are judged against a set standard of performance and either pass or fail on their own, regardless of how other dogs at the same event perform.
(3) gundogs - dogs that are trained to be "simple hunting companions." No titles (in fact, no event).

I was equating PPD to be the "gundog" level. Is this not correct?


Gotcha. Kind of one reason why I went to go see my buddy up in Dallas last weekend.

I have found 1 trainer in the Houston area (much closer to me) that seems to have a good reputation (Circle K9), but have not yet met with them (life keeps getting in the way).





Ug! :eek:

I have tried and tried to find a club in my area. The nearest one I have found is in Dallas (3 hours away). I did find a lady that USED to be the chairman of a club here in Bryan/College Station, TX - but the club folded back in 2008. :(



I guess I should add this. For me, there only 2 reasons to play any doggie game that results in a title:
(1) it gives me an objective measure to gauge the training I'm using and what I need to work on.

(2) if I decide to breed her later on (assuming all health checks, etc. are also good). This is probably my history in retriever games, but to me a title provides some level of "buyer assurance" that the dog meets some standard from an objective and knowledgeable source.
Contact Van Meerhout German Shepherds, 138 Cotton Rows Lane, Taylor, Texas 76574

They are only an hour from you and I regularly work a male from their kennel... very nice dog. Don't know if they have their own club, go elsewhere, or what their training situation is, but I'm sure they can help you find something close.
 

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I want my dog to bite for fun not protection, I carry a gun for that. I don't want a bad guy shooting my dog, lol here in Texas everyone carries a gun to protect the wife kinds and the pets/working dog

Sent from Petguide.com Free App
If your dog is biting just for fun, then you're kinda just going through the motions of the sport rather than actually testing the dog.
 

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Ok, I guess I'm confused. By this am I to understand that PPD is "higher" than IPO?
It's not "higher," it's just different.

IPO is a sport with patterned scenarios and strict rules about where and when the dog can bite. It trains a lot more than bitework; there are obedience routines at each level and tracking routines as well.

PPD is not as patterned and doesn't have the same level of strictness/precision. It is (supposed to be) more about training the dog to respond to "real life" situations.

I guess if I were making a real clumsy analogy I would say that IPO is a little bit like boxing or taekwondo (strict rules about where you can hit, when you're allowed to engage, when you have to stop) and PPD is more like a self-defense class (far fewer restrictions on formal technique, and you practice with scenarios like "mugger in alley" and "carjacking").

One of the reasons PPD can be a little risky, particularly for newbies, is because it's not patterned and the dog is supposed to learn to respond to a wide variety of unpredictable stimuli. If your training is clumsy and your control is not good, this can result in a dog who attacks when he shouldn't -- and who has learned how to attack people hard. There are also a number of self-proclaimed "trainers" in this area who will straight-up abuse a dog in the name of teaching it to fight back.

I don't do and have never done PPD (I have seen the fallout from badly bungled attempts at it, though, and it wasn't pretty), and I am a total newb to Schutzhund/IPO, so if I'm wrong about this I very much hope someone will correct me. But that is pretty much my understanding of the difference between the two.
 
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