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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm looking for serious answers here. I almost didn't post this, but I'm taking the chance anyway. I'm pretty sure I'm going to get some certain replies, but WTH.

Jak is 2 years old, and, according to my TD, not doing as well as he was expected to be doing by now. In his words, "Jak is inconsistent." He showed excellent potential as a puppy, started on the sleeve at 10 months old, and then, a few weeks later, began a (pretty long) phase where he was basically a turd, and now he seems to be doing well again. In other words, he's been slow to mature, I guess. My TD is not one to fart around with a dog that may or may not 'cut it,' as he puts it, and honestly, had expected Jak to be a much better dog than he's turning out to be (as far as sport goes). He did say that Jak could probably go SchH III, but he doesn't want to put in the time training for it because of Jak's inconsistencies. He has recommended that I consider selling Jak, either to a pet home, or to a home that's not really interested in competing at higher levels, or just interested in 'dabbling' in bitework just for fun.

I've done very little obedience work or tracking with him, because of his 'turd-spell,' but he seems to be a natural at tracking, from what we've done so far, and I don't think polishing up his obedience will be difficult. This is where we're at in bitework:




He will also do long bites, but we've never worked him in the blind, and we've never told him to aus. He will aus his toys at home.

He is not a natural retriever, and would rather possess and play keep away than bring anything back to you and give it up. He is not aggressively possessive, though - I can take anything I want away from him, including food, without so much as a growl out of him - as long as I can catch him first! :lol:

I wouldn't feel comfortable putting him in a home with cats, because he just has too much interest in them and I'm afraid he might hurt them. When introduced properly, I think he would do okay with other dogs, but I can't say 100% that he would be.

Just to get an idea, what do you all think Jak is worth, based on what you've seen and what I've told you? IOW, what would you be willing to pay for him? I've had people tell me that they would buy him from me in a heartbeat, even when he wasn't doing so hot, but I wanted to hear what you all had to say, because I know you'll be brutally honest and upfront. If you're not comfortable replying here, feel free to PM me.
 

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to be honest..

well, first of all, do you care if he's a podium dog? It seems to me that you're learning a helluva lot more by owning him than you would by owning a stellar dog that did everything easily. I think by owning and titling Jak, you'll be a lot better trainer and handler in the end - and this will only be helpful to the dogs that follow. Will he be a good choice for a breeding program? Probably not. Is there anything wrong with you still working him and titling him? Definitely not.

Also, I don't know who your TD is, but he seems very quick to give up and write the dog off. Maybe think about finding another trainer? Most trainers don't mind working a dog that isn't top of the line as long as the handler is dedicated and willing to make a concerted effort, and it seems that you are. You never know what different training methods may bring out in your dog.

As far as $$ goes, I don't know.
 

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Explain "inconsistancies".

As far as what the dog is worth, considering you are thinking about placing him due to his inability to work, I would just look for a good home, and not rip anyone off.

As far as his inability to work, and "inconsistancys" I have seen this, but the dog never really looked all that good to begin with. I have also seen plenty of dogs that were pushed too hard, and after they went to different owners and trainers, went on and were really nice dogs. However these dogs showed themselves to be very nice occasionally.

As far as a TD telling you at this point that the dog isn't going to cut it, you have been paying club dues for quite a while, so he can just go piss up a rope. He should have been able to tell you this years ago.



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what i see from that second video is inconsistent helper work. i understand that for SchH he's working on the B/H, but when the dog does it properly, he steps back and runs away and the dog breaks his B/H. he does this one more time before finally giving the dog a bite. when he does finally give the bite, the dog's B/H isn't as intense as the first two (surprise, surprise). so if that guy is the one giving you the opinion on your dog, i might be tempted to seek another opinion.

as for the dog, i agree with amber that it would probably be in your best interests as a handler to keep the dog, maybe get him a SchH 1 and then if you want to progress further in the sport, look for another dog at that time. from those two videos i don't see anything that would suggest he is currently a "turd".

but one thing i've found with dogs. they are like a significant other in that once you start thinking about giving them up, i mean seriously contemplating it (like just "looking around" for another dog), then it's as good as over. your heart won't be into it with the dog. so be sure it is what you want before you "seriously" start to think about giving up on him...
 

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I think it's really going to be up to you. There's absolutely nothing wrong with having and working a club level dog if that's what you don't mind. If you want to be a national competitor or whatever and that's what is really important to you, than you may want to pass on him. If you are doing it for a fun activity for you both, I would chalk it up as a learning experience and go with it. In my very humble opinion, as long as they have the right drives and temperament, most things beyond that in sport are just going to be tweaking what you've got. I don't have time to be out there training 3-4 hours a day, 7 days a week, so I am not going to cry about it if Fawkes will be more suited to something not quite as intense, like agility or rally and whatnot. Having a physically, mentally, and environmentally sound dog is way more important than titles and trophies. Sure, it sucks when you see other people with really really nice dogs and you think "man, how cool would it be to have a dog at that level?" but at the same time, that takes way too much time for me! :smile:

And as far as inconsistencies, if your trainer says he's inconsistent but he could be Sch 3, that sounds somewhat inconsistent to me. Not to mention that a two year old GSD can be the very definition of inconsistency sometimes! ;)
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I'm not interested in ripping anyone off at all. One thing I'm just a bit concerned about (and the reason I asked what you all thought he was worth) is the TD selling him for, I don't know, $5,000 or something, and me having to start all over again with another puppy to housebreak, and start obedience with, etc., and having to wait another 2 years to really start doing anything 'productive' with it (because my TD doesn't do bitework with puppies). I paid for Jak. If the TD now sells him to someone else and gives me another puppy as a replacement, the TD is most likely going to sell Jak for more than what I paid for him, and basically make a profit off of all the work that I've done with him already (bitework aside, because club is the only place we do bitework). That just doesn't seem right to me.



I will say that my TD is not very interested in working club level dogs; his interest is in the dogs that can excel in the higher levels of the sport. He said that he could probably take Jak to SchH III, but that Jak would not be a top placing dog. The TD is not the helper.



As far as 'inconsistencies,' I know you remember how I was really frustrated with him because he would not carry the sleeve, and would instead take it straight to the ground and maul it, digging in with his back feet so that it was nearly impossible to even get him moving in the first place, to prevent the mauling behavior - and difficult to choke him off, too (http://media.putfile.com/Sept10-06-003). He's 15 months old in this video.
He did this for a year and a half, and he did it from the very beginning. He will carry now, but he does not want to go all the way back to the helper, and often will get within 2 arms lengths before stopping and either thinking of trying to play keep-away with it, or starting the mauling behavior again if the helper can't get ahold of the sleeve fast enough. If I can't get him to sit and hold my hand underneath his chin once we get back to the car or whatever, then he'll start the mauling then, too. Sometimes I will run around with him for a few minutes after the last bite and slip, before going back to the car, or stopping somewhere else on the field to let him hold it. Sometimes I'll take him to the car, let him sit and hold it for a few seconds, and then let him run around with it some more, so he doesn't associate going to the car with losing the sleeve.

The other thing was his grip. When we first started doing bitework with him, he had a nice full bite. Then he started getting chewy while on the bite. It wasn't like a 'chattering' or anything; it was like a snake does when it's swallowing large prey - chomp..............chomp...............chomp - but instead of countering, he was losing grip. He wouldn't come off the sleeve, or back off all the way or anything, but there would be about an inch of daylight at the back of his mouth. Now, his grips are NICE, according to the helper. He counters properly now, too.

In this video (http://media.putfile.com/July-2206-Jak-sleeve-thrashing), Jay was trying to get him to counter, but he just wouldn't, and would thrash/shake instead. This was a combo of the last two 'issues,' and lasted for SEVERAL months.

Another thing is the whip. As a puppy, the sound of the whip never bothered him in the least, then, he started shying from it for no apparent reason. Then, a couple of months ago, he was unaffected by it again (http://s96.photobucket.com/albums/l...action=view&current=Nov1906JakBitework001.flv this was the first long bite we ever did, and I ran up to him too quickly, making him come off because he wasn't sure why I was running at him - my bad - that was the only time he ever came off), and now he's afraid of it again. He will actually jump back, and hesitate to go forward towards the helper again, when the whip is cracked. If it's cracked 20 or more feet away, he doesn't seem to care. I know the whip isn't used in a SchH trial, but I don't like that he's afraid of it for no reason. He's never been struck, either with the padded stick or with the whip. I'm worried that this fear may transfer over to the stick, though, and that he'll come off the grip when he is struck. When he was a little younger, and Matt H. worked him in Spartanburg, Matt hit the leash, but I couldn't tell if it affected Jak's grip - he didn't come off, but I wasn't close enough to see how he reacted to it, and the video is small and dark, so it's hard to tell. (http://media.putfile.com/July-2206-Jak-2nd-suit-bite) Now I know the flanking was probably not the best thing to do, but it's what I was told to do at the time. Jak was 13.5 months old here and in the last video.


My TD recognizes and said that Jak is doing very well right now, but he's concerned that he'll regress again, I think, and just doesn't have the patience to deal with a wishy washy dog.

I think I'm going to talk to him about how Jak would be replaced. I don't really want to start over with another puppy, and if that's what he's thinking of doing, I may discuss going for a SchH I with Jak instead/first. I don't know how that will go over, but we'll see.

There is no one else to train with, as far as SchH goes. The only other thing is the club in Spartanburg, and I don't know if they're training for APPDA or not, or whether Jak could even do that. I do know they are a great group of people that I'd love to train with, but I can't do both.
 

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Ok, just about everyone would like to be in the position to only work "high level sport dogs", but thats just not the way the world works. Sounds more like the TD's wet dream to me. If you have any other clubs in your area, you might want to check them out for someone a little more "realistic". Most TD's are "giddy" if they can say all the members/handlers in their clubs have dogs that will some day be schHIII, and maybe compete at the local level. Maybe some members have the skills & calibre of dog to get to the top, but that sure as hell is not where his breads buttered. Sounds a little meglomaniacal.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Actually, Susan, my TD is widely known in the SchH world, so it's not a 'wet dream' to him to work only the best. That's just what he's used to. ;)
 

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Kristen there are many well known trainers in schutzhund, but unfortunately, there just isn't enough talent in any one region to completely fill out a club with only people destined for the upper echelons of the sport.
 

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The business with the whip and some other stuff you have mentioned in the past makes me think Jak could have some nerve issues, I'm wondering if this is something the TD thinks would be too difficult or not something the dog would be able to work through. You mentioned he would sell Jak for a profit. Does that mean he is going to trade you for another dog? If so, and you trust him to find a good home for Jak, that might be a good option for you.
 

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well, seems to me that the first question is: what are your goals? with jak or any other dog? and i mean your personal goals, ie, to train a dog to sch1,2,3; to train a dog only to a 3 (a 1 or 2 being not acceptable); to simply learn/become a better handler thru experience?

if you wash jak out, what are you doing with jessie? what are the criteria for a wash-out for you? just thoughts from my little old boilermakers brain, and FWIW.

sounds to me like you're trying to lay off the guilt you're feeling for getting rid of jak cause he doesn't fit what you want to do on to *everyone else*. if he doesn't fit you, find another home where he will fit, keep him yourself as a pet, or euthanize him.

if that seems harsh kristen, well, that's how i see it at this time. do the boy the best you can (and i know you will).
 

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I'm not interested in ripping anyone off at all. One thing I'm just a bit concerned about (and the reason I asked what you all thought he was worth) is the TD selling him for, I don't know, $5,000 or something, and me having to start all over again with another puppy to housebreak, and start obedience with, etc., and having to wait another 2 years to really start doing anything 'productive' with it (because my TD doesn't do bitework with puppies). I paid for Jak. If the TD now sells him to someone else and gives me another puppy as a replacement, the TD is most likely going to sell Jak for more than what I paid for him, and basically make a profit off of all the work that I've done with him already (bitework aside, because club is the only place we do bitework). That just doesn't seem right to me.
See, honestly, this bothers me... if they think the dog is good enough to be sold for $5000 (which in my opinion is just INSANE for a dog at this stage, I've seen FR III mals for sale for that price), then why is he not good enough to 'waste his time' training? I'm not being rude, I'm really not, but are you having a good time? This should be fun for you and for the dog, and I'm sure your TD knows what he's doing and that he's big in the competition world, but I've met quite a few bigwigs that were utter ***holes. Like Jeff said, you paid your club dues, and he can either train your dog or give you a refund.

As far as the Spartanburg group goes, there are several people there that are training for SchH. Have you talked to Becky Chatos? She has a nice GSD that she's training for SchH. I think Eric Collins is working with her on it, but I'm not entirely sure.

I think Jak can title, and I think you are attached to the dog and don't want to find him a home. If you do decide to place him, then YOU need to place him, not give him to your TD to make a profit. If you want to sell him, that's fine - but at least YOU can be honest about the dog's talents and shortcomings. I guarantee that your TD isn't going to sell Jak for $5000 with the advertisement "This dog is OK, but not good enough for me to waste my time on." Is he where you got Jak from in the first place? If so, do you trust his judgment enough to get a replacement puppy from him? Or would you feel more comfortable placing Jak and finding another puppy on your own?

Sorry, I'm sure your TD is a nice guy and all, but this all seems a little fishy to me.
 

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another thing - I know there are some people who don't choose to do bitework till 1 year old with their dogs, and that's fine - but if he's not going to do bitework young, how in the hell is he going to evaluate another puppy for you to decide if that one will be a washout too?
 

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OK, just take the quote that Amber outlines and that is where I am going to stay at with this.

I have seen a lot of work done by helpers that are well respected in the Sch community and honestly it is shit work. As long as they are working with the type of dog they like, the dog turns out really well. Well, this is **** all training. I have seen some pretty stupid training, and I mean stuff that people that do not know much about training will sit there and ask me what the **** is that?? On a good dog, I have seen it work. Who knows what the dog with good work could have been, but they are in the top 5 at trials.

So, having seen a very few videos, I am not impressed with what I have seen at all. Sorry, looks like either the videos you have posted were all bad days, or you are working with a goofball. That is just my opinion, and there is a slight chance that I am incorrect. (right, sure.)

OK, to say it again, 5000 bucks?? and you get a puppy??? **** that. That alone would make me train somewhere else. I mean does he require you provide him with a hooker to go along with that??

Not doing bitework with puppies??? That was done years ago, and I see how it could have some benefits with an easily crushed dog...........OK, no I don't get that.

The whip thing is a bit weird, do you have any video of the dog wigging on the whip?? This sounds like another issue that came from somewhere else and has transfered to the training field.

Whatever, if the dog isn't good enough to train, then find another club, where they can actually train dogs, or give him a home yourself and get a dog on your own. It all sounds too scammy for me.



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is this your club?

http://www.ashevilleschutzhundclub.com/index.html

I have heard some nice things about dogs from this club, true. However -

"No guest or member may participate in bite or protection training unless he or she has achieved a SchH B with the dog to be included in such training. This rule may be waived at the discretion of the D.O.T. "

WTF??
 

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No bites until the dog has a BH? I can understand not doing much bite work with a well bred pup, puppy circles are more for the owners anyway but to wait until the dog has a BH is.....well that I'm not clear on why. If they are doing it to avoid jerks who only want to do bite work, then they should just have people who go verify the newbies are doing obedience and tracking. Can someone shed some light on that for me?
 

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I think Tim makes a good point about the timing of the reward in the second video.
Do you have any videos showing where Jak is in the obedience work, or showing how he plays for a tug?
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
I do not train at the Asheville Schutzhund Club, partly because they never would return any of my phone calls or e-mails when I was looking for a dog and somewhere to train, and partly because I didn't like many of their by-laws.


Saying Jak would be sold for $5,000 was just me coming up with a price. I honestly don't know what my TD would sell him for. I have seen so-called green dogs being sold for this online, though, so someone probably would pay that for him. Yes, Amber, I bought Jak from my TD, and I know you (and everyone else) aren't trying to be rude. I'm not taking any of these replies that way at all. I WANTED everyone's honest opinions and I thank all of you that are replying.

Amber, no, I haven't talked to them in Spartanburg about training for SchH. When I was going down there, most of the stuff they were doing was on the suit. Is Becky the one with the German showline male? Did she come to the ASR trial in Augusta? I have a hard time keeping names straight sometimes. :oops:


I asked if Jessie was intended to be Jak's replacement, and was told no, I would get another male. Then my TD started talking about puppies and starting over, and that kind of got me thinking that I wasn't too sure about that. The puppy thing does annoy me, like some of you have said. The more I think about it, the more I think I want to just keep working with Jak and see how things turn out. I really don't want to deal with another puppy right now, and I really don't want to start all over and have to wait at least another year and a half to really begin training. To be honest, I thought that by age 2, we would at least have been working on the B&H in the blind.

The reason my TD states for not working puppies in bitework is "because they learn [and continue] to bite like puppies [into adulthood]." He doesn't even like for a lot of obedience to be done with puppies, because he wants them to "grow up thinking they're the shit." Puppy tracking isn't done, either. All of that was pretty hard for me when I first joined and got Jak, because I wanted to get started training then, not a year later.


Susan, what other things that I've mentioned makes you think Jak is a bit nervy? Just out of curiosity, because he seems very stable to me.

I don't have any video of him acting weird with the whip, unfortunately. I wish I did. He did it the last time we trained, and I didn't bring the camera with me that time. What he does is continue to bark (his bark never changes, if you've noticed), but he'll jump back either against my legs or beside me, and then gradually go forward to the end of the line again. He doesn't put his hackles up, or his tail down. It's more of a startled response, I think, because he doesn't react like that if it's done at a distance; but he did it every time the whip was cracked up close, that day. The helper probably did it 4 times that day.


Ann, my goal was to train a dog to SchH III, but at this rate, that's not going to happen until I'm 50. :lol:
 

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Kristen I know who you train with. He is a good trainer no doubt, but in my opinion not well respected.

Keep your dog and enjoy him, learn from him. You do pay your dues to train and unless they ran me off they would help me with my dog or I would go someplace else. There's other good trainers up there. May have to drive but they are there.

Your dog is a late bloomer, a lot of dogs are. Most dogs are only good club dogs. Not many go much futher. Don't junk your dog. Junk that decoy.
 
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