by VomWangen on 18 September 2020 - 23:09
I had to jump into this chat because I believe that shepherds naturally have protective instinct they are born with. One can't ignore the testimonials of family pets with no training-that happen time and time again. You can refer to the other chat about defensiveness for my statements about a dog with zero training in drives will come through and protect you at the end of the day-in a real situation. Even the happiest of dogs that wants to meet and love on everyone they meet with zero perceived prey/fight/defensive drive will protect in a live situation at their home, given the dog does not have mental problems or has not been abused, or put into attempted simulations of training scenarios to get the dog to protect and attack so much that it has developed negative feelings to the point where it would run away from said threat instead of using its natural instincts to protect. Time and time again, normal shepherds regardless of lines and training come through in real situations at your home or with it's family somewhere other than home- regardless of bloodlines, drives and training. This is because, every bloodline stems from the same bloodlines of the original German Sheperds that had these natural traits. That is why reading a book about the interesting behaviors of a shepherd in daily home life in the 1920s, is like reading a book about our dog in present day.
I had a happy go lucky american shepherd when I was in highschool that had no noticable drives and was sensitive and responsive to any corrections or scolding. He had an undying love for humans and lived to make us happy and do whatever it was we asked of him.
He constantly was trying to make us happy and he was heartbroken if he felt that he fell short. he was a random backyard bred dog. He had zero training except for basic obedience. There were three live situations-one where I was being attacked in my own home and he bit the attacker and chased him out of the house barking at him. Another where my best friend's drunken exboyfriend came over to our house uninvited and looking for a fight, the second he came in the door the dog walked over to him and bit him straight in the face, blood dripping everywhere-I had to pull him away and hold him back and he ran to the bathroom. Another where my sister's husband whom everyone hated was staying at our home over the holiday resulted in a live bite and blood drawing, I believe just due to everyone's negative feelings towards him. He just had a natural instinct.
I also had a wgsl female that full on body slammed a guy off of me when I was 14. I was not screaming or anything, I was only panicking in my head. She held him down snarling and making this crazy screaming sound that I will never forget. Very rarely I will hear a dog provoked during training that makes a screaming sound like this, but the few times I have heard it, I am taken back to that day and it actually fills me with joy because it was pure, raw, natural protection and love coming out of her in that sound. She repeatedly bit him every time he moved. This female was the most friendly and sweet tempered, and generally submissive dog. she was actually only around 2 years old when this happened. She never again in her life showed any aggression or fear of people. She also never was presented with a situation that called for her protection, but I was fully confident that she would protect if the situation called for it. This is actually what triggered my passion and interest for getting into training when I grew up.
No level of training can simulate a real situation in the home with it's family, and there's no way to judge a dog's ability or willingness to protect in a live situation based on what is perceived by their drives for training, or their reactions in attempted simulated situations. There is a lack of the smells and emotions associated with a truly dangerous situation. Until we can simulate the smells of the handler in fear, and mask their actual scent, can we truly simulate a situation that calls for protection. Even then we have to consider heart rates and the bond between the handler and their dog.
"For the dog, his nose memory is truly the carrier of his love and hate sensations."-The German Shepherd Dog-Capt V. Stephanitz
After all, the only thing training is accomplishing is bringing out their natural instincts and shaping them into something we can control and command, developing more provocable triggers and developing muscle memory for how to respond to those triggers. Training robotic movements and reactions to commands that simulate protection, but are not really, truly an act of protection when we have to ask for it or tell them to do it. Just because one isn't a good enough trainer to be able to bring out the drive of a seemingly driveless dog and shape it how they want does not mean the dog will not protect in a real situation. Just because a dog does not engage in a simulated situation does not mean the dog will not protect in a real situation that calls for it. To deny the fact that these dogs will naturally protect without being trained to do so shows me a lack of trust and confidence in the breed. Noting a protection trained dog failing in a live situation shows me that their training methods failed- not the dog itself. It also could be the dog/handler relationship failed. How can one ask a dog to protect on command when there is no relationship backing the command?
"For what is education but, first and foremost, the recognition and the development of the innate qualities of the person to be educated? For, as with horses, with men and with children, so it is with the education of the dog. He who knows how to “educate” the qualities of his pupil is a master in his profession." -The German Shepherd Dog by Capt. v. Stephanitz.
"A handler without expert knowledge of his dog, and affection for him, will achieve only very mediocre results with the best trained dog, while an expert dog-loving handler can achieve good results with a dog of only average capability. In other words, the whole question of the Service dog is not only a question of the dog but quite as much, if not more so, a question of the adequacy of the handler." --The German Shepherd Dog by Capt. v. Stephanitz.
I prefer to handle a dog that I can trust to not bite me or others for no good reason, that only bites when asked to or when the absolute need to protect is present, and the dog is able to competently and instinctually judge itself when that need is present.
"Watchfulness and the habit of defending are found specially strongly developed in the shepherd dog, thanks to its evolution, but in him it is genuine watchfulness, not a senseless yelping; he gives tongue and deals with the situation only when the necessity arises." -The German Shepherd Dog by Capt. v. Stephanitz
by duke1965 on 19 September 2020 - 02:09
by Hundmutter on 19 September 2020 - 03:09
ValK : Unless the OP is a closet Police Dog Handler & not telling us (and he certainly does not 'sound' like one to me), the fact is that he said he has had the bitch since she was 11 weeks old. You just have to read the original posted question. Not querying pros and cons of the parents' abilities*.
He has also said - on his concurrent thred under different username Zarasdad - she has done no 'work' or sports training.
Which she would have to have done, even if not completed, in order to get 'washed out' from a PD course. (Although I am fairly sure these training courses do not start as early as 10 weeks).
So I am not creating any 'story', nor drawing unwarranted conclusions. I live here; I know something of how the British Police forces work, when it comes to breeding, training and allocating their dogs. Just putting together a picture from what has actually been posted.
I agree that maybe by 2 years, depending on how mature she is for her age (and this does vary), she should have shown some signs of natural aggression, but the fact remains that we do not KNOW that she has never done so, for the reasons I outlined earlier.
The OP does not seem to be regretting his purchase or unhappy with her, beyond querying her apparent lack of innate aggression potential.So any suggestion she be rehomed seems entirely unnessary. If she is confirmed to be lacking in resolve, 'soft', whatever label we put on it, it really only becomes much of a problem if he wants to breed from her in the future. In which case, I would advise "Best not."
As is clear from many posters' experiences & anecdotes, our GSD, however 'soft' it seems, can clearly very often be of use to us in the event of an attack. Obviously I cannot speak for the OP's view but in the UK most people do not think, first & foremost, of their dogs as a defence weapon; we do not generally seem to subscribe to the notion that owning a dog is mainly to defend our families n property against intruders. Maybe this is a cultural difference to (working breed) dog owners in the USA ?
* If you insist in being concerned with the sire & dam, what I said about the other pups in this litter stands; IME UK Police do not waste money producing puppies none of which are any use to their role ! I think there are some different perceptions, also, in what the UK Police want from their dogs, and what various Dog Sections consider best 'W/L' suitability. Am not commenting on the rights & wrongs of that. :-)
To answer your other point, Manchester Police Dog Section have a number of home-bred studs, the OP does not say which of them this was. And yes he has almost certainly been a serving K9. In common with other Forces it is quite probable that the dog is still operational, they do not usually let dogs sit around doing nothing except serve bitches, to the best of my knowledge; unless of course this dog has retired due to age or some injury. He is also likely to be used by other Police Forces, the Dog Sections tend to swap studs quite a lot (so if he was consistently not 'producing the goods' that would not go on happening ...)
There is another possible scenario: that this litter was not really 'bred through the Manchester Police Dog breeding programme' at all but that the ManPol stud has been studded out to some other breeder, rather than the bitch being imported BY ManPol to use. If that is the case (I could only find out if the OP supplies the names of the dog & bitch), and if she is owned by someone else SHE need not have seen any K9 service; and the puppies will not likely have been assessed by the Police, so in that eventuality ALL her siblings may now be in pet (&/or sports) homes. But that would be adding too much speculation to what the OP has told us, I would not dream of going there in order to conclude the pup is 'faulty' because her mother is responsible or unproven.
In any case, what we are discussing about not exhibiting natural suspicion & aggression, and that not being 'breed typical', does not hinge on all GSDs being suitable for POLICE work, does it ?
by Hired Dog on 19 September 2020 - 04:09
You can quote Stephanitz all you like, but, he lived in a different time period. You can post all the emotional stories and beliefs you have about the breed, but, it does not change FACTS.
Duke supplies dogs to the LE community, he tests a ton of them all over Europe weekly, ask him how many qualify to do police work?
Finally, its always genetics first, always, otherwise, there is nothing to train.
by Entwerfer Haus on 19 September 2020 - 04:09
by Hired Dog on 19 September 2020 - 05:09
by bladeedge on 19 September 2020 - 05:09
by Hired Dog on 19 September 2020 - 07:09
by bladeedge on 19 September 2020 - 08:09
by Rik on 19 September 2020 - 10:09
the proofing they initiated was just the starting point for identifying suitable dogs to go forward, today it is the end all, be all
goal to be achieved by any any means possible, the dog doesn't matter. just the title.
For the long timers here, there was a guy (from Texas, I think) who used to come on here and tell everyone what shitz their dogs were, how stupid everyone was and how to breed real GSD. I think his last post was about his home getting robbed and his dogs
just watching his stuff getting carried off.
it was pretty high comedy, but that's pretty much descriptive of the majority of GSD today. a few breeders seem to still be making a difference but it's not the norm.