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1 Year PPD Training Update
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Old 03-01-2016, 06:55 PM   #1 (permalink)
Ankle Biter
 
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1 Year PPD Training Update

Hey everyone,
It has been a while since posting here, but I just wanted to let you know how our PPD training is going.
I will status current progress against original goals.

The definition of my PPD is:
1. a family companion pet that is loose in the house and obeys house rules-
yes, loose in the house everyday, obeys house rules about furniture, beds, no begging, no chewing, does not enter or exit house without command

2. is crate trained for times when necessary, without distress-
Yes, crated on very rare occasions

3. is able to be left around small active horseplaying children without aggression-
Yes, at home without leash, exposure to many kids on leash outside of house (as a SAR team, we do alot of PR parades and community service events)

4. is suspicious of all people not in the "circle of trust"-
Yes, hesitant and suspicious to approach any strangers unless cleared by me, parades are a constant "yes, she's ok" or "say hi". Circles, but does not approach hider in SAR work, but indicates and alerts just fine

5. ignores/coexists peacefully with other animals inside and out of the house-
Yes, no pet issues with 3 other dogs or 3 cats in house. Chases ducks.geese on command with recall. Will chase deer on occasion. Did chase a shunk once and got sprayed twice in the face. Still stinks after getting wet 6 months later- tomato sauce, peroxide/dawn or skunk remover did not work

6. is properly sized to be handled by all family members- Full grown weight at 54 lbs, all muscle.

7. has enough work drive to be trained effectively-
Play, food and praise motivated, in that order, but effectiveness of each is dependent on environment. Food works better in house, play outside, praise is a not so distant third.

8. is confident and environmentally stable (not skittish)-
Work in progress on this one, Shadow is aware and reactive to changes in her home environment and anxious around loud noises (fireworks/gunfire). We are working desensitization into our obedience, agility and protection work.

9. will play with toys without handler aggression and is not excessively possessive(fetch, tug, etc)-
Yes, has been taught to obey play rules, toys are for shared play and rewards only, reliable "out and drop-it"

10. comes to the door obediently to greet guests- Not this one, which needs training.
Shadow is quiet and observes from the living room, i think that the the entry area makes her feel trapped and anxious.

11. is mistaken for a service dog when in public-
Yes, Calm and under control when in public places, CGC certified, goes into stores and restaurants without issue, only awe.

PPD specific training includes, but not limited to:

1. Bonding (spending alot of social and relaxing time with family member and friends, in car,on trails, wherever)-
Although I work a full time job, we spend an average of 3 hours training per day, plus two hours of chill out time.

2. Obedience (everyday, every opportunity to train, agility, various environments)-
Yes, Obedience every day in house, outside, walks, car rides, in public, on exercise runs, ball play

3. Protection Training:
Yes, Joined a local club that follows SDA standards, we train Protection 1-2 a week starting in October of last year. Excellent nerves, super enthusiastic, good bite, worked out the head trashing issues, we work with wedge, sleeve, but prefer the suit. Not interested in playing with slipped toys, is focused on the decoy. Attacks targets of opportunity, decoy got bit in groin two weeks ago

4. Stability training:
Making progress- She gets pretty amped when she hears other dogs working or the decoy agitating. Using obedience and soothing touch to calm her down. Working on the agitated recall after deployment- Tried this for the first time on Monday and it went pretty well.

PPD behavior should be escalating force:
Level 1: Obedient stare down- Yes
Level 2: Bark- Goes to the end of the leash with aggression and barking when given the command (as a reward for obedience and stability)
Level 3: Bite and retreat when threat is reduced (incapacitated or disengages)- Since we have been working on improving the bite, we have not focused so much on a strict out. Outs with collar correction.
Level 4: Deployment with call-off and return(Very optional, for very rare PPD situations, as this could cause unwanted liability or undesirable behaviors)- As above, we started training this week and initial results were promising.

We cross train the following activities: practical (life and CGC) and competition obedience (SDA), Narcotics detection (using Scentlogix), Air-scent SAR searches, PR events and Parades (volunteer work with SARTEC- my 9 year old daughter helps as a hider/but not for us), Protection (SDA), Agility (home course which mimics competition courses, with some of my own additions), community service activities (Huntsville Dog Ball VID), local running races (5K- half marathons) both road and x-country. Current reigning champion of the U.S. Canine Biathlon.

I think that Shadow is exceeding all of our expectations. No dog is perfect, but she is perfectly mine.
We just celebrated her 4th birthday yesterday. (We got her a squeaky skunk toy- so she could get even)

Cheers
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Old 03-01-2016, 11:44 PM   #2 (permalink)
Broke the Bark Collar
 
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Re: 1 Year PPD Training Update

Nice work! Sounds like your getting what you want.
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Old 03-02-2016, 12:59 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Re: 1 Year PPD Training Update

Great summary. Sounds like life is good. Lucky dog to get so much time training & playing & relaxing with you.
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Old 03-02-2016, 10:58 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Re: 1 Year PPD Training Update

Tx for checking back in

A few months ago you started a thread "PPD Training and proofing" that went ten pages and except for the usual sarcastic, off topic joke posts it stayed on topic and had a lot of keepers. I (and others) thought it was a very interesting and in depth discussion of how PPD training relates to a family dog situation

- can you tie this post to that thread in terms of progress ?
- weren't you working with Liberty K9 ? still with them ?
- did you eventually do bite work at home ?

- is this dog now also certified in SAR ?

by the way, it appears Shadow still likes groin shots //LOL//
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Old 03-02-2016, 11:39 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Re: 1 Year PPD Training Update

Hi Rick,

I will take the time to status our progress against the other PPD thread.

I still consult with the owners and trainers at Liberty K9, and take quarterly trips out there. Liberty is a solid 4 hour trip each way, but their instruction, decoys and facility make the occasional trips worth it. They still remain like a family to me and advice and onsite training are at no cost.

Late last year a group started up in my town, North Alabama Working Dogs (NAWDs), co-run by my SAR operations officer and local Police Department K9 Lt. While the organization follows Service Dogs of America (SDA) standards, and while we may title in obedience at some point, we have developed a custom tailored program for my dog and my family. We rotate 3 decoys.

We have spent the last few months performing assessments of nerves, stability, drives, distractions and bite performance.

Some things we initially discovered:
1. Head thrashing and bite adjustment was being encouraged by my repeating the command during the bite event- Changed the encouragement and the bite improved significantly
2. Shadow is lacking 3 premolar teeth and this has affected her ability to bite- just like any bitework, we are working to encourage the deep bites
3. Shadow is not equipment focused on wedge or sleeve, which is very different than the competition dogs who are encouraged to parade the props in circles.
4. Shadow really enjoys suit work, remains latched on- unphased by distractions, but eyes are constantly scanning for additional threats.

Not to say everything is perfect, an example:

A heart stopping moment occurred on Monday night when we were going to work recalls, I had Shadow on the 6ft leash on the flat collar and was putting a tab on the prong. The decoy (A fellow SAR handler without any equipment) barely out of range, said something jokingly but antagonizing to my dog, before the snap shut Shadow was Mach 7 launching to the end of the leash within inches of a bite. I was stark white and mostly embarrassed.

We have not progressed to hidden sleeve or muzzle work yet. We also have not done exercises at our home. We have not done multiple decoys with NAWDs, but we have done this at Liberty. But I now have cultivated the local resources to make these activities happen.

We are testing for basic SAR certification on April 16th.
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Old 03-02-2016, 12:07 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Re: 1 Year PPD Training Update

Good luck with your SAR certification test. Just remember that aggression towards humans can be grounds for dismissal by some groups. What discipline are you testing for?
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Old 03-02-2016, 12:17 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Re: 1 Year PPD Training Update

somewhat jokingly stated but not completely

i would give a higher priority to adjusting that "trigger pull" over recalls. And I say that even though I feel a solid recall is essential too.

a safe, reliable PPD can NEVER be allowed to 'operate' with a hair trigger. It would be an immediate disqualifier for me. There are many scenarios you can come up with and just as many ways to proof it. proof proof and more proofing!!
.....Imagination required

But for SURE it would be an EVERYDAY part of my training and that trigger will only be "adjusted" in small increments over time. Corrections for accidents would indicate the increments are too big and too much conflict is being added too soon.

- i know you will say your dog is stable and clear headed, etc. but do not let that belief cloud over that there is a problem. because when you train a PPD around family and kids you don't get as many second chances for accidents like you do on an IPO field.
- this behavior may seem like it comes out of the blue and comes as a total surprise, but in my opinion, it's temperament based and environmentally conditioned, and CAN be recognised. With that said, i DO believe temperament can be adjusted and modified through specifically targeted training. Not many here will agree, but it doesn't deter me from conditioning and counterconditioning temperament changes

tx for posting and glad you're happy with the progress
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Old 03-02-2016, 12:20 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Re: 1 Year PPD Training Update

certified SAR PPD
you like challenges, yeah ????

i LIKE that !
//LOL//
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Old 03-02-2016, 12:32 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Re: 1 Year PPD Training Update

oops.....forgot to say that i would also do a lot more testing to get a better baseline. try and duplicate the accident and be as careful as you can to keep it realistic. you may observe small behaviors or body language you hadn't seen when you weren't looking for them
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Old 03-02-2016, 02:39 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Re: 1 Year PPD Training Update

Sarah,
We are certifying to NASAR, Canine Trailing IV.

Rick,
Cautions acknowledged. Just like a loaded gun, we cannot afford mistakes.

Just want to add some context to get advice:
Before the close call we were training obedience for about 30 minutes during 3 or 4 other dogs work sessions while in the next room. While this is going on, she makes strange cooing noises like I have never heard come from a dog before. This makes Shadow very excited, hence a great distraction for improving focus and obedience work. It was our turn, Shadow was in her agitation vest and we had just talked about the training objectives and course of execution. She was in an equipment configuration we tend to use for bitework. In talking with witnesses, somebody else may have voiced my command before she launched into action (maybe).

We train the trigger nearly everyday using tug play for the "get" and "out".

As suggested, we will try to recreate the event. I wish that we had video recording.

Thanks for your input Rick.
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