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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Okay, I got a lot of feedback--some of it much more explicit than others ;-)--about how this was a good thread done bad by me cutting up with a forum participant yesterday. FWIW, I was very serious about what I said about the forum and its participants, but I should have knocked it off sooner than later and quit feeding it, and definitely done it in another thread. I want to apologize to those of you who were offended or irritated. I set a bad example yesterday and forgot that it's a community forum. Hoping we can start this topic off again, and stay on topic, the right way this time. I'll keep my yap shut. Thanks in advance for hitting it this time the right way.

I had a great question PM'd to me by a forum member last night...who wanted it put out for discussion.

Quote:
Back in the 80's, folks with money and an interest in Schutzhund (but no interest in training for Schutzhund) would purchase titled dogs. It seemed like these owners lacked the ability to maintain these dogs, and the dogs neither respected nor worked for them.

It seems like there are a ton of people offering up PP trained dogs for sale to people with money. What I'm wondering is...what kinds of qualifications do trainers require of these buyers? Are there "rules" about to whom you do and do not sell these dogs? Are these rules ignored by less ethical PP trainers, and what are some of the consequences of this?

Well, PP trainers and owners, what do you think?
 

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Okay, for what it's worth...
Last night I returned home with my "new" PPD.(Having spent the last two weeks with the trainer learning as much as possible about handling the dog.) This is the fulfillment of a search which began this last November when I was abruptly convinced of the need for the added vigilence and support. (My husband and I have, and know how to use, a 9 mm handgun, but hardly consider ourselves ready for WWIII, Jeff. Interestingly enough, several PPD trainers will not sell a dog to someone unwilling to at least make the minimal effort to protect themselves which owning a gun indicates)

While I needn't go into detail as to my circumstances, the trainer/seller with whom I ultimately placed my confidence did indeed ask immediately why I felt the need for a PPD. He cautioned me as to the responsibility that came with owning such a dog, the need to learn from him how to handle the dog, and the need to maintain the dog's edge with regular training provided by an experienced decoy.

I really can't comment as to the type of person who regularly seeks out a PPD, but I can tell you I am eternally grateful this man didn't blow me off as some crackpot who didn't deserve the time of day. I am equally glad that forums such as this exist which enable one to gain information from those kind enough to share their experience. It seems to me that one of the great benefits of civilization is that people can utilize knowledge which they need not always acquire first-hand.

My experience is that there is at least one very responsible source of PPDs doing business with the highest integrity :D

Anne, avowed newbie.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Anne Schmaltz said:
Anne, avowed newbie.
And welcome Anne! Take a moment to go introduce yourself in the Members Bio's page. Glad to hear about your PPD experience, hoping others will chime in. Including the people training and selling them...Al, Andres (?)...
 

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When I USED to train/place PPDs, I would use an extensive interview process. First and foremost, the person wanting the dog would have a background check performed for any violence on others (human and animal alike). Next, if I was still a little iffy, a psychological exam would be performed (at their expense, they want the dog they can pay to get it!) to make sure the person is stable mentally. Then, they would spend a week down here handling a few finished dogs (not neccesarily the one they were interested in) to see what their skill level was. If they had little to no skills, they were denied a dog and encouraged to attend seminars and trainings to learn more and gain more experience. If their skill was adequate, they would be matched with a dog based on personality, working style, and family situation. I know it seems an awful lot to put someone through, but these dogs are like firearms. When placed in the proper hands they are amazing, but in the wrong hands the results can be catastrophic.
 

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Woody Taylor said:
Okay, I got a lot of feedback--some of it much more explicit than others ;-)--about how this was a good thread done bad by me cutting up with a forum participant yesterday. FWIW, I was very serious about what I said about the forum and its participants, but I should have knocked it off sooner than later and quit feeding it, and definitely done it in another thread. I want to apologize to those of you who were offended or irritated. I set a bad example yesterday and forgot that it's a community forum. Hoping we can start this topic off again, and stay on topic, the right way this time. I'll keep my yap shut. Thanks in advance for hitting it this time the right way.
that's crazy. you shouldn't have to apologize to anyone for voicing your opinion. geez. i don't believe there was much if any vulgarity. so things got a little heated. so what. you're human. i like to see people fired up. it shows they have passion for what they're debating. i, for one, salute you for your contributions in the other thread...
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Tim Martens said:
i, for one, salute you for your contributions in the other thread...
Now THAT is a cut and paste. ;-)

Tim, do you all ever run into a lot of PPDs in your line of work? Or is it mostly just toughened up junkyard dog stuff?
 

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Woody Taylor said:
Tim Martens said:
i, for one, salute you for your contributions in the other thread...
Now THAT is a cut and paste. ;-)

Tim, do you all ever run into a lot of PPDs in your line of work? Or is it mostly just toughened up junkyard dog stuff?
i don't think i've ever run into a PPD on the job. actually i don't think i've ever seen a dog anywhere that someone called a "PPD". seen plenty of sport dogs, but never a "PPD"...
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Anne Schmaltz said:
several PPD trainers will not sell a dog to someone unwilling to at least make the minimal effort to protect themselves which owning a gun indicates)
Anne, how was that communicated to you as you looked at different vendors? Would people verbally set out expectations to you, or was there some type of screening document they would share?

All new to me, just wondering.
 

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Actually, on another forum frequented by PSD trainers (who, IMHO are the best source of good PPDs) the subject came up for discussion earlier this year. Also Will Rambeau, who recommended Matt Hammond, brought up the subject during my pre-screening screening :D

While I was researching trainers and kennels prior to meeting Will, I did come accross several outfits that prominently stress screening, instruction and follow-up training either verbally or in their websites. The thing is, anyone with half a brain (myself, for example) would expect a reputable PPD seller to do exactly this, so I really couldn't take it as any real measure of integrity. The absence of any mention of on-site training being required, however, ("Dog comes with instructional DVD," for example) does allow one to eliminate maybe half of the sellers immediately, though.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Anne Schmaltz said:
The absence of any mention of on-site training being required, however, ("Dog comes with instructional DVD," for example) does allow one to eliminate maybe half of the sellers immediately, though.
That amazes me. Wonder how they (the PPD "trainer") would avoid liability in a situation like that? I would think someone on the wrong side of one of their dogs who was then improperly handled would be looking down the barrel of a really big civil suit, at the very least.
 

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Oh that reminds me of something. In the early 90's there was a kennel importing/training GSD's. Anyway, the proprieter sold a dog to a lady, who was shortly thereafter bit very badly. She sued the kennel & the jist of the whole thing was that he had told her to never take the dog out without a muzzle. Now obviously, you don't sell a dog like that to an inexperienced person. I guess this is an example of the bad extreme. I don't remeber what the outcome of the whole thing was.
 

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susan tuck said:
Oh that reminds me of something. In the early 90's there was a kennel importing/training GSD's. Anyway, the proprieter sold a dog to a lady, who was shortly thereafter bit very badly. She sued the kennel & the jist of the whole thing was that he had told her to never take the dog out without a muzzle. Now obviously, you don't sell a dog like that to an inexperienced person. I guess this is an example of the bad extreme. I don't remeber what the outcome of the whole thing was.
Why, for the life of me, would you purchase a PPD, then have to keep a muzzle on it? Someone got took on that one. JMHO!
 

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The whole thing was screwy, but supposedly she was in the "getting to know ya" stage with the dog & the trainer let her take the dog home, but with instructions to keep the dog muzzled if she took him out of his kennel except when the trainer was there to "complete" the training. No one with any credibility would have ever sold the dog like that. I think with this particular facility, it was only a matter of time until something bizarre & stupid happened. This trainer was one of those who bought European rejects & turned around & sold them for big $$$ as pp dogs. He was more interested in the turn around time than the consequences.
 

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OK, I will be the one to be honest about this. I had NO experience with a trained or civil/defensive dog. One day I bought an older puppy from a family home that said it was too rough on their smaller breed dog, but that she was a good dog. GSD of course. The problems were immediate. This older puppy was in full control. Fist, I received a bite on my arm that sent me to emergency for tetanus shot, then she began to use my young son's clothing as a tug toy, but would not release. I had no experience and pulled and popped that leash out of instinct. It took everything to make her release. She constantly mauled me and everyone else she could get near. Pulling socks from feet, pullng clothing, mouthing until hands and arms where torn up. I began to read books and start to learn. Then things escalated as she matured a bit more. But she also, bonded to my son and myself and stopped mauling us and instead became a highly civil and aggressive dog to strangers and other dogs. Then she became civil with close friends that she knew very well. I called our local working dog trainer and asked for help. He stated that "he did not waste his time with beginners and would have nothing to do with the dog" I finally gave up this dog to a cop who wanted her to protect his girlfriend. I gave her up gladly and bought an 8 week old GSD and went to obedience school with her right away. Then continued to learn from there until I fully understood their nature and what was needed to remain in control of a working dog or any other aggressive dog. But I am still and always learning. I think the screening process is highly important and a good match between dog and owner is needed.
Actually about 5 years back, one of my females ripped me up pretty good and I met Lou Castle on line for advice. He had good advice and I used it to solve the problem. I think any dog owner needs to be fully educated and learn from experience before ever owning a civil/guard/protection dog.
 

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I am new to the professional training world and have had my own business for almost 2 years now. In that time I have had several requests to train a person's dog as a PP dog. Out of all the requests, I have had none that qualify in my professional opinion as being capable or ethical enough to have a PP dog in their possession. Many were involved in growing or selling drugs, some just thought it was cool, some haven't the brains to deal with it. (For clarification, I would never train a person's pet as a PP dog that was trained to bite unless it had the breeding behind it to handle the job and the owner was exceptional in every way. I would however, train a pet dog to be a Bluff dog if the owner was exceptional, but the dog not of good breeding. I see a PP dog as a loaded weapon. Very few people can handle that responsibility.


My qualifications (hoops I make people jump through) before I will train a PP Dog or Bluff Dog for anyone:

1. Extensive interview process conducted by me in their home, billed at my hourly rate
(If I am even slightly unsure of the person's motives, qualifications, etc, I will refuse.)
2. Criminal Record Check at their expense
3. Dog must be proficient in obedience and have no behavioral vices. If obedience is not up to snuff, they must work with me to get the dog up to par, if possible.
4. Thorough tests and examination of the dog and vet check of current and past conditions. Mental and physical tests of the dog's capability to possibly learn the skill of PP/Bluff.

No one has ever made it past #1. Actually, no one has ever made it past asking me if I can do it, and me telling them about the process before they back out. No one wants a PP/Bluff dog enough to let me interview them or do a crim check.

Mind you I have only been training professionally for 2 years and I do not own my own kennel yet. It would be nice to be able to purchase and train real PP dogs and then find suitable buyers, as not all "pets" can become PP dogs or Bluff Dogs. But that will come in time.

Hope my 2 cents made sense!
 

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Al Curbow said:
Luna, What do you mean by "bluff dog"? LOL, i've never heard that term,
AL
I believe it's used in this sense: dogs who look like they will bite as opposed to "actual man-stoppers."

These are not my terms; I've read them on web sites.
 
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A person who has identified his requirement and in in dire need of a protection dog will work his dog to supply his need. No question about that or the deal is off. The person must possess good judgement and with deep respect for humanity, making sure his use of dog will only be under extreme cases where his personal safety will be heavilly compromised. On the other hand, anyone who supplies that dog must make sure the buyer receives adequate training fitting his security needs as well as instilling stability on that dog in the name of public safety. Of course, info on proper care, maintenance and feeding of that dog should go as well.

As a PPD, it goes to say that the dog must be crowd-safe, street-safe and above all, child-safe, else it's too far off to be called a PPD and hence, has no business being in the streets. Now you can probably imagine the level of training that dog must have that, totally handler-controlled and can be commanded to ignore commotions up ahead that doesn't concern its handler, nor triggered by non-aggressive movements like a child running with a ball, etc. Nowadays a dog sees a ball and he goes nuts, or bites anyone in motion. One simply reaps what he has sown.

My opinion and best regards...
 

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Bluff Dogs

Al Curbow said:
Luna, What do you mean by "bluff dog"? LOL, i've never heard that term,
AL
Just a term used to describe a dog that will bark and act like a PP Dog, but if the attacker continues, the dog will back down and will not bite anyone. The point being that you can have a "protection dog", but not have to worry about an accidental bite as the dog is never taught to bite, only bark - and most attackers can be scared off by a barking dog.
 
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