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Training goals for a 9 Month Female GSD

11375 Views 43 Replies 11 Participants Last post by  Jeff Oehlsen
Training goals for a 9 Month Female GSD

Hello All,

Just a quick History: I have a 9 month old female GSD, which I've had
since she was 9 weeks old. When Sable was 5 months, I took her to get
evaluated at a SchH club by Gregg Tawney.

She was concidered "ok" by him, not going to win any big SchH
competitions, but just had "ok" prey drive. Again, she was just 5 months at
the time, and Gregg told me to really work w/her on building drive (and focus).

Her temperment is fine. She's beginning to bark at noises outside at night.
I like this, as I would really like her as more of a deterent than PPD. I just
don't think she has the genes. But as a sports dog, I want to do SchH with

She's a "soft" dog, althought I don't correct her much, just only for bad manners.

She recently has begun to pee when I walk up to her, after a bit of time
away from her. I think my sons may have been picking on her. I've never
caught them, but have a feeling. That has stopped (as far as I can tell,
after telling them, "LEAVE MY DOG ALONE!!!"), but now she kind of cowers
- just sometimes, not all the time - when I aproach her.

So, now that I've bored you all w/her history :eek: I'm trying to build up her
confidence (again :mad: ) and her OB.

What should I be concentrating on right now? Her sitz/platz
are great, but her heir has diminished, I feel, due to the issue
above (acting scared). She's 100% with her heir when I'm all alone
w/her, and 75% w/distractions. Sometimes, she'll cower and go the other
way :cry:

I play tug w/her every day, and (get this...) have made a bite sleeve from
my wife's old jean overalls. I've wrapped it on my arm, and let her tug at
it like the tug she has.

So, what else should I do? and should I continue the jean-tug? I have no
extra $$$ for club membership anywhere (couldn't you tell by my
jean-tug?) and don't know anyone "close" to me who I can train with.

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Ok,Ill be the devil's advocate for you Sch folks.

I correct all my dogs no matter if they are 6 weeks or 6 years.I dont see any ill effects on working ability or the will to work.Of course I dont build prey drive(although I used to) and I dont train for sport so I have different goals and needs.

Just had to aggravate you guys some more.. :twisted:
Ok ,Ill address the real issue!

The cowering and peeing I dont like.Tell the kids to leave the dog alone for awhile.Then take the dog everywhere with you.You may already do this.
Another thing you can do is take her out somewhere she can run loose in a big area without any other dogs or people for that matter.I get dogs in that lack confidence sometimes and this seems to help as much as anything.Let her be a dog and do what she wants for awhile.
When you do work her, dont allow anyone else to give her commands.All the while,you need to be very in tune with her every action and recognize when she is coming under stress.When you see this you tell her "its OK".
There's tons more to it than that but this can be the beginning to developing a communicational bond between you and the dog.She will put her trust in you and she has something to fall back on and this builds confidence.A soft dog like this will often want to work for it's handler very much.
Also,you're attitude needs to be very confident and relaxed.

As for flashy and happy :roll: :roll: you gotta do what you gotta do for points I guess. :x
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susan tuck said:
HAHAHA Greg, you sound like Jeff..(not a bad thing)...Where the hell IS Jeff?
:x :x How could you??That was cold...just cold! :(
I never said anything about real protection dogs.I am referring to something that you have a real need for the dog to do.It could be anything but sport for points isnt one of them.

I have dogs that act all happy and flashy but its not something I try to get out of my dogs.I dont care one way or the other.


Its really hard to explain the "its ok" without demonstration.Its more of an acknowledgment to the dog that you are also aware of the situation than it is a comforting gesture.Its all in the way you use your vocal tones and your attitude.
If you were to coddle her and get down on your knees and say"its ok ,poor baby,everything will be alright" then I dont think that is a good thing and yes you could be encouraging the behavior.However if your vocals are very directive and say "ITS OK,I SEE IT" then you are telling the dog that you also see what she sees and it actually sharpens the indication but your attitude and vocals are what calms the dog and builds trust and confidence.Your attention should not be on her but on whatever she is worried about or on the task at hand.
If she is worried about you, then just pick up the lead and go do something.Dont focus on what she is doing but on a task like a small obstacle or something.She will then follow and start to take direction IF you have the DESIRE to communicate with her.
I believe obstacle work is one of the greatest tools for building a working relationship with your dog.At first though you need to go over the obstacles yourself and have the dog follow you on leash.This forces you to work WITH the dog to complete the task of getting both yourself and your dog over the obstacle.You can then incorporate obedience into the obstacle work.

I could go on and on but that is a good place to begin.
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Yes, I should have been a little more specific.You are 100% correct,Al.

What you are seeing and calling "fear" is an instinctive reaction in the dog.The dog is starting to take flight.You should tell the dog "its ok I see it" and then imediately work through or around whatever it is that is causing that stress.You dont tell the dog its ok and then stop or go away from the stress.You must tell the dog its ok and work through the stress and continue the task at hand.Then afterwards both you and the dog are stronger and better for it.
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