View Full Version : Dog training - what's your training discipline? Hunting, sport, pet, or working?

09-25-2012, 07:40 AM
So one of my passions is dog training, and to the level I require for protection sport it's more of a lifestyle than hobby. I own Dobermann and train them in the protection sports. This is a huge commitment to the dogs and is a full time lifestyle. The reward is having a powerful and confident animal that is completely trustworthy in any situation I can put it in, and it's great to watch the animal come together and develop.

None the less lets see the other dog owners and the field they train in, either for hobby, sport, working dogs, or house pet.

Now my rule for clothing is to not wear anything while training that I'd regret wrecking. At times I've looked like a hobo as the slightest hole in the pants or shirt always get found and enlarged somehow :redface:. Needless to say in these pics I'm about to share I'm wearing my dog training clothes and some may be torn up a little.

Here's my boy and I, this series is in tracking;

Still a young pup here getting the hang of tracking. Climatizing him to the pinch collar as well which will be worn for work much later in life. He's actually on a black flat collar and the pinch is just hanging for those about to tell me about not putting a puppy on a pinch.

Here we have several hundred feet of track laid out in a line across a field, not straight at all as you can see (it's the "silver" line laid out by a drunk across the field :rolleyes:). This was his last "intermediate" track before being graduated to true footstep tracking.

Last bit of obedience before he goes to work.


Here's what he's doing now, finally footstep tracking. :cool: In this picture you can see that he's right on a cross track, he just kept on the track he was on, I was so happy with him that day :).

09-25-2012, 07:41 AM
Here we are with basic obedience (OB). Once you've got your basic positions down you have to eliminate variables and put a little stress of confinment on the dog. At first the box is very confining to the dog and adds stress to the OB work, but they learn the box is a good place to be and how to listen through the stress. Soon it becomes somewhere they want to be and love to see the box come out, one of the first steps of learning to listen through high excitement or stress. Here's my boy going through basic positions in his training box.






Here I am going through the positions fast at a distance I can reward quickly. Training to go through positions as straight as possible with little forward or backward movement, note the shoulder is consistent at 3.5 diamonds in the box.


OB from a distance.

Gotta keep him from getting bored at work, he works for toys too ;).




Here he is on a 20" jump. Quite a wuss jump height considering he can clear 8' walls on command, but this is all about form on a competition jump and building height as he keeps form.

Training correct targeting. I can do this from any position I can give him a proper presentation and he's never missed the target. This trains him to be safe in later areas where he has to take the reward from close to my body.


09-25-2012, 07:41 AM
Heeling is where it all begins and ends, a dog that doesn't heel well will get picked apart for points in competition. For a long time you could find us along fences, long walls at the mall and other public places, barriers and curbs, all forming the heel.

Here we are with one of my portable walls, 3 4ft lengths just over 12ft when clipped together.


Off of the wall when I'm confident he's positioning well.

Here we are later on in his training with less guidance. Now we're proving the work here. This is the starting and ending position to any movement unless I command otherwise.

Right face!

About face!

Right face and move. He's midway into dropping into starting position here.




09-25-2012, 07:42 AM
Now here's the part people like to watch, but where less than 1 or two days a week are spent; protection. We do much more OB work, so much that at times both of us are going battsh!t crazy, but it's worth it to have a dog that listens solidly through distraction and excitement. For the most part I don't have a helper so this is what he gets most of the time. When I do have a helper they're not able to work the camera so pictures of him on the sleeve are rare so far.

Perfecting the hold and bark.


It's on, fight fight fight!

Here's what happens when he touches the decoy without being told to do so. More OB! He listens excellent through excitement and wants to win, OB is damn near discipline at this point.

Hard won prize from the fight.

Bigger prize from a different session. Perfected a lot of movements here and now working toward better grip and harder fight.

09-25-2012, 07:42 AM
The thing about training is that it always ends fun. Hell if he looks bored in the middle it becomes fun for a bit and goes back to work, or I fool him and just make him work through fun ;). It's all fun so he loves to go to work.

Having some fun at the end of the day.

Here I let him run in and I swing the toy through for some height.

He's driven to win that damn toy ;).

09-25-2012, 07:43 AM
Here's our little girl. My wife is the trainer and handler of her (with my guidance) and they're coming along so fast. In lots of ways they're way ahead of where she should be at her age. I don't have permission to post pics of my wife (yes I asked so it's not happening) but here's our little girl.

Basic tracking;




In this one she's a little more advanced and she pulled my wife into the track. We used a small wire without flag to mark it for us (left side of the pic), but it looks like grass to the dog so they don't get too used to looking for flags and have to use their nose.

Here she's on the scent and getting praise.

09-25-2012, 07:43 AM
Learning her basic OB;

Every OB position must be learned in every direction. A dog will always revert to the foundation of training when commanded, so OB must be taught in multiple directions. For those who own dogs and have trained the dog to sit always facing you, you'll notice the dog only knows how to sit when facing you. Tell it to sit from the side or facing away and it will come to your front and sit facing you ;), or just doesn't know how to sit unless it sees your front.

Side facing down;

Front facing down;


Side facing sit;

Front facing sit, she did it correct I just got the pic as she was released so her paw's up :eek:;

Stand from down;

09-25-2012, 07:44 AM
Here's how early we teach heeling, pretty much right away. At this point there are no rules other than position and walking along looking up, but it's the basics taught very young and worked on for a long time.



09-25-2012, 07:45 AM
Puppy bitework education. The basis of the bitework is taught very young, and all kinds of surfaces, both for sport and lots outside of sport, are introduced to give a good surface education. Most importantly of all the "drop it" is taught.

Dropping the toy;

Re-engaging after the drop;

This dog can fly!;


Puppy bitesleeve, fight fight fight!;

Winning the bite sleeve after a good fight. This thing was so big for her at this point that she could hardly carry it without tripping over it :D. Didn't stop her though.

This one's a rare mid teething bitework session. The whole day was working on frustrating her for the sleeve to increase her desire for it. After she was showing full on drive she got a bite and a very fast win. She needed the reward for the job well done but we made sure not to hurt her teething mouth. For the record this is the same size sleeve as above, just a different material, so this shows how much she's grown.

Her carrying her toy. She was on her way to bringing it to me to play some more. She likes beating me up :D.

09-25-2012, 11:22 AM
Nice pics, those pups are having a blast! Much respect to you for the time and discipline it takes to train them. I had a couple Rotties and now a Shepard, just pets but decently trained - compared to barely trained. Poorly trained compared to your Dobbies. I've always had a pipe dream of training for search and rescue but priorities always put training for more than a family pet too far down the list. Thanks for sharing!

09-25-2012, 11:50 AM
I gotta ask ... What's with the colorful horns ?

09-25-2012, 12:24 PM
I gotta ask ... What's with the colorful horns ?

haha they tape the ears so they stand up vs flopping over

09-26-2012, 12:27 AM
haha they tape the ears so they stand up vs flopping over

Exactly correct. We add the bit vet wrap for a splash of colour. Really all that's needed is the tape at the top and bottom of the ear with a backing post in the ear like in this pic;


Nice pics, those pups are having a blast! Much respect to you for the time and discipline it takes to train them. I had a couple Rotties and now a Shepard, just pets but decently trained - compared to barely trained. Poorly trained compared to your Dobbies. I've always had a pipe dream of training for search and rescue but priorities always put training for more than a family pet too far down the list. Thanks for sharing!

Thanks DOA for your kind words. A lot of work goes into these dogs to get to this level :).

10-01-2012, 05:16 AM
Well so far bitework photos are rare, but this series is from todays session. It was miserable out, cold and rainy, so the photos are a little dark and grainy. Still better than any pic of Bigfoot I've ever seen so I thought I'd share a few ;). This is after about one and a half to two hours of OB and fun, this dog just keeps going.

A little bit of preface; I needed a helper today so I recruited a friend that has never done bitework with a dog before. After a quick lesson on the basics we went to work. It was quite fun and he was a great help, and it's always good to get the boy playing with new people. Of course this meant no long run ins or anything that would put risk of injury to the dog or helper with him being brand new to the sport, but he took what the boy can throw at him like a champ. Best part of today was my friend took direction very readily and didn't come in with preconceived notions on how he wanted to work the dog, which made for a very fast day in the direction my boy needed. I think everyone had fun and if this guy is game I'll get him to help us again anytime.

Hold and bark! From sit.

Touched helper without command! Back to start position. Only time this had to happen in the entire session, didn't touch again at all without command, this boy hates not getting what he wants.

These next pics are in sequence of the same bite. I'm posting them to show his rhythm and bite sequence.

Hold and bark! From Stand.



Good hold and bark gets the reward. Release, fight, fight, fight!



Anything worth doing is worth doing from different distances and on both sides. This is the furthest we went out today as the helper wasn't educated in catching an incoming dog and I didn't want any injuries to the Dog or helper.



He and I decided to play. He likes beating me up. Incoming dog catch.

After circling into the catch it's on, fight fight fight!

Good boys get to hold their toys.

As said I'm very grateful to my friend for coming out and playing with my dog. If he's game I'll get him out again anytime and I hope we all had some fun. Hope you enjoy the pics :).

10-01-2012, 05:17 AM
By the way folks, this thread is open to all forms of dog training. Let's see your photos from training sessions, hunting trips, dog shows, and other forms of training.

It's always fun to watch a dog come together in any discipline :).

11-10-2013, 06:58 PM
have had our GOlden puppy home for a week now, will be posting soon!!!

11-10-2013, 07:27 PM
That's awesome. My dog can chase squirrels and birds, drool on the floor, take up a whole bed, he will come running anytime he hears a whistle and his farts can clear a room. I wish I would have put in that effort, I tried teaching him to bark on command....but I think I lack the tools to train like that!

:Beer time:

11-10-2013, 07:54 PM
Love those German dogs!

Before Rottweilers were popular I raised a few and trained using the Koehler method.

I kept the same blood line for 3 generations...cancer ended it before I could make it 4.

I trained and raced sled dogs for a few years after that but always wanted another "deep nose" in the family.

It is definitely a commitment that must be taken seriously and I hope one day I have the time to do it again.

I have to pass on a story that my brother told me.

His in laws worked in the dog/movie biz and he wore the gear one day to be the chew toy for a young Shepherd bitch.
She beat the livin daylights outta him lol.
Anyway, he was telling the story to a buddy at work and said " I'll never do that again"
His co worker replied " me neither...and I didn't have a suit!"
I almost peed!!

Have fun loki, a truly good dog can be a once in a lifetime gift.