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excellent article, but the protection dog trainers would take exception to the rule about the trainer having to have sport credentials. while i agree that a sport foundation is the best one to have for a protection dog trainer, it probably isn't mandatory. since sport is the only way to quantitatively test a trainer's ability, it remains the best yard stick. there's the rub. sport dog/protection dog trainers will tout their sport achievements as proof of their protection dog training prowess. protection only trainers will point out that real life isn't for points. i would prefer to have a trainer who is well versed in both...
 

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i think it's a VERY useful article for ppl just getting into protection, whether sport or personal. it's a pretty unbiased view of things, with good tips overall. well worth reading.
 

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The warning about "graduate of xxxxx school for dog trainers" is on of my favs. There are a ton of these graduates in my area.
With ANY school there are those who have the ability to learn and those who will never get it other then going through the motions "Cause that's how I was told to do it"!
 

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ITA very good article, has anyone on here ever trained or been to a seminar with Ivan?
Not me, but I know a guy who lives in Tucson. He went to Kentucky to work with Ivan and learn all about his training styles. It was like three years ago because I remember he talked about it before I went to England. I've seen him around with his five different dogs! :p
 

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I recently trained with Ivan. Obviously Ivan is at the top of totem pole when it comes to Schutzhund. While I really like a lot of his obedience training techniques I'm not one to endorse his PPD methods, which I witnessed first hand on a solitary occasion.

There are a lot of sport dog trainers that will train a supposed ppd prospect the same way and then label it a ppd.
 

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One of the best articles I've seen was an older article by Dominic Donovan on training protection dogs. Essentially, he said training a dog for sport is contraindicated for training a dog in personal protection. By training for sport, you are trying to develop a refinement of style in the bitework before the dog is mature, and the dog ends up seeing the helper as someone to play a game with and the prey object/equipment becomes the target of the dog's bite, not the man. As protection obedience is added with the maturity of the dog, the neccessary corrections teach the sport dog that people (those providing corrections) are stronger than him. He emphasizes you need the correct genetics for a ppd, and start with mature, untrained dogs starting in defense in a dimly lit situation so as to maximize suspicion in the dog. The agitator has no equipment, approaches the dog slowly and avoids eye contact. When the agitator is about three feet from the dog, he whips out a section of garden hose, strikes the dog hard and runs back to his hiding place. This process is repeated for several sessions without the dog geting a bite. Around the 6th-7th session, give the dog a bite on the sleeve. If the dog bites strong and hard, no more bites for a few sessions then move onto muzzle work and distractions.
I have never trained a dog this way, but believe that doing so with a dog with the correct genetics, would be very effective. The other issue is that most people don't really need a personal protection dog, and other approaches make for more fun in the training. Once you piss a strong dog off and he learns is it acceptable for him to fight the aggressor, that is all that is really needed in a ppd.
 

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JMHO but if a dog has the correct genetics and training in Schutzhund it wont have a problem switching over to either PPD or PSD. The key being "correct" genetics and training.
 

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I've taken a few seminars with various people...Wallace Payne, Ivan Balabanov, Gert Vandermissen / Cristina Sonberg, etc. I've also enjoyed a great number of videotaped sessions from various trainers.

Just about everyone varies in style. Many people who watch the Ivan videos have the opinion or state that he's "all positive all the time" ...others say he doesn't correct his dogs.

Ivan's seminars are very well run, depending also on who helps and how. He does one on ones and runs several sessions per student. I haven't seen him do group agitation sessions or other similar things with a group, for better or worst.

One seminar I was in, with adolescents / pups, the instructor proceeded to grab the pup, beat it to "teach it who was boss" with no real purpose or good positive result. We did not return.

By contrast, Ivan is completely the opposite. He has a very keen eye for what a dog gets motivated by, and proceeds with impeccable timing to use it. He openly states the trainers he admires are Gottfried Dildei (from the Sheila Booth / Gottfried book "training in drive") and others...

I've been fortunate enough to consider him a friend, and think seminars with him are invaluable. You will learn something great - even if it's to carry a darned sleeve to motivate your dog while doing obedience :)

Cheers..
 

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One of the best articles I've seen was an older article by Dominic Donovan on training protection dogs. Essentially, he said training a dog for sport is contraindicated for training a dog in personal protection. By training for sport, you are trying to develop a refinement of style in the bitework before the dog is mature, and the dog ends up seeing the helper as someone to play a game with and the prey object/equipment becomes the target of the dog's bite, not the man. As protection obedience is added with the maturity of the dog, the neccessary corrections teach the sport dog that people (those providing corrections) are stronger than him. He emphasizes you need the correct genetics for a ppd, and start with mature, untrained dogs starting in defense in a dimly lit situation so as to maximize suspicion in the dog. The agitator has no equipment, approaches the dog slowly and avoids eye contact. When the agitator is about three feet from the dog, he whips out a section of garden hose, strikes the dog hard and runs back to his hiding place. This process is repeated for several sessions without the dog geting a bite. Around the 6th-7th session, give the dog a bite on the sleeve. If the dog bites strong and hard, no more bites for a few sessions then move onto muzzle work and distractions.
I have never trained a dog this way, but believe that doing so with a dog with the correct genetics, would be very effective. The other issue is that most people don't really need a personal protection dog, and other approaches make for more fun in the training. Once you piss a strong dog off and he learns is it acceptable for him to fight the aggressor, that is all that is really needed in a ppd.
I disagree with the fact that in sport one is trying to develop a "refinement", far from it - what the dog brings with it, one doesn't have to refine.

It depends on the helper as to whether the dogs find it "play" or not. As for starting in a dimly lit area, if that's what it needs to start these dogs off, then so be it. I would prefer a dog that would bite in daylight.

The same genetics that provide sports dogs can provide personal protection dogs - in my opinion - it's the handler that has to know how to further the dog from sport to personal protection, if at all necessary:-\"

Gillian
 
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