What are Working qualities?

Translation of the article – Ekaterina Vilkova www.deutscherschaeferhund.com
My own non professional translation from German.


Working qualities of a German Shepherd Dog is often debated and discussed. Recently, in various forums, it is increasingly possible to find arguments on the topic “working qualities and their absence in i.p.o. type sport only dogs”, and also in connection with this about the “global crisis of German Shepherd dogs”. IN other words, some how it’s implied these dogs are not “real” and will not act in a real life situation. Reading these statements, two things become clear to me:

  • The authors had the misfortune to see our sport at its worst, I don’t know where or how.
  • The authors have never been to the B.S.P, or the championships of alternative organizations, such as the D.V.G, championships of dogs, etc. Of Europe.

I understand the specifics of Russia, (author is Russian but this applies to U.S also) when people want their pets to be able to protect them on the street in a real situation. Wonderful desire, besides ABSOLUTELY CONGRUENT with the desire of the owners of dogs involved in ShH as SPORTS from other countries. However, it is necessary to take into account differences in content. In Europe and America, 99% of dogs are kept outside the city, in a fairly large areas. Dogs live in private houses or cages or pens, on their territory and walk either on the site, or in the forest or the field. As you know, the criminal centers are still the city, not the village. In the villages, even in Russia, it is much quieter and calmer: hardly anyone can get into the yard with the dog… Thus, the probability of a meeting between a European / American attacker and a ShH-dog in a real situation is minimized. In other words, due to life’s circumstances, the odds of a meeting a Schutzhund trained dog in a real life criminal attack situation is very low odds.

For European and American dogs living in the country, or in the suburbs, the surrender socialization training is done, such that, it is s the subject of special training, when dogs are SPECIALLY driven to the city, to acquaint with city noise, transport, crowds of people and cyclists. Also in other countries, communication between dogs of different owners among themselves is not accepted: the probability of a conflict is too great, which is not needed by either the owners or the dogs. The bloodthirsty Russian “let them understand, and we will see who is who” here simply would not understand. And in Russia, the collars of the owners themselves will helpfully remove in advance: to keep your teeth. And so – let them fight for health. And what is better than dog fighting? My dogs, in addition to communicating with each other, also communicate with others: but only of the opposite sex!

However, despite the small chance of situations threatening the owner’s life, to the question “Do you want your dog to protect you really?” Every joker will answer “of course!”.

Let’s ask ourselves a question: is it actually the working quality of a dog? I have already written about this somehow, but I want to express myself once more. So, dog dogs (Gebrauchshunde) worldwide are divided into:

  • Service dogs (Diensthunde)
  • Sports dogs (Leistungshunde)
  • Performing purely user functions, such as guides of the blind, shepherds, rescuers, etc.

The first are the police, customs, the search for drugs and explosives, border guards, and the like. The second ones are ShH, IPO, various rings, and other sports (it’s about sports, not the surrender of the standard !!!), which necessarily include obedience and protection.

For service dogs, depending on the type of service, the main qualities are either a good nose, or the ability to resist a person in a fight, combined with impeccable obedience. As the closest and most familiar to all, take the police patrol. I know a lot of German police and we have repeatedly talked about what dogs they need for work. Here is what they told me.

The police prefer to use different dogs for different jobs: one goes out to patrol the streets, the third person is detained by a terrorist sitting in the building, and the third is the third… There is a special standard for police dogs called DH (Diensthund). He is required to surrender for ALL police dogs in public service. For breeding purposes, this standard is equivalent to SH, and DH1 equates to SHH2, and DH2 – to SHH3. Obedience and the trace of DH and SH are very similar: the trace (the tracking portion) is almost the same; in obedience there is also movement nearby, jumping and hold and bark or previously hold and bite, shrinkage and laying, as well as endurance. The defense is different in that the dog works on two defendants: one in the sleeve, the other in a protective suit, as for Mondio Ring. There is a barking in the shelter, a convoy, a message to the helper on the barking (instead of a frontal one, very long distance), there is also an unexpected attack. With dogs that have the necessary qualities, the police often act on the ShH (Bernhard Flincks, for example, performs with his police dog). So there is indeed significant overlap in the training you see for Schutzhund dogs and the needs we see in a police dog. A proper patrol dog however needs additional training, above and beyond Schutzhund, training.

Where do the police take their dogs from? The state buys puppies extremely rarely, since what of them will grow is unclear, and the state cannot feed the dog for a year, in order to find out that it is unfit. Therefore, police schools buy mostly adult dogs. And here we come to the topic of the “global crisis.” No, they say, in Germany, dogs, all the police in the Czech Republic and Slovakia goes to buy …. They go, really. And buy. And not only Germans, but also Americans, and services of other countries. But not because the Czech-Slovak dogs are so special and the best. The reason is different, namely in the initial requests of the police.

Police need adult dogs with ALREADY AVAILABLE qualities, and for a SMALL PRICE. For the work of the police select dogs with a high level of aggression, but normally behaving in a free state next to people. In the Czech Republic and Slovakia, there are many such dogs. The police do not need strong full grasp and super-strong nervous system, high intrinsic motivation and desire to work, ability to concentrate. And a little bit of nerves, as one of my familiar policemen from Bavaria says, this is even good for our work. He, by the way, has a long-haired G.S.D. He doesn’t have good grasp, and Jochen knows this, to which he says: “even if the dog bites a little bit, it is already very painful”

Buy an adult dog in Germany – yes, it is possible. But the price, comrades dear, will be quite different. Not to be unfounded: a two-year-old dog is sold to the police for at least 1000 euros, and from ShH1 for 2 thousand. The price of the “Czechs” is up to a thousand anyway. Information received directly from police officers in Germany and America. In America, it is generally a whole business: the supply of dogs and the Czech Republic and Slovakia for the police. Athletes, by the way, sell dogs that are indignant to sports and police. And no one will sell good dogs – we need them ourselves.

German policemen and sports dogs from the same breeding occur. By the way, in the championships of servants, Czech dogs are just one. Who cares, I can give statistics. If the situation were so deplorable, and the police would stand in lines for the “Czechs,” they would have long prevailed at such events. And we can not even mention the well-known situation with the Czech pedigrees made right there around the corner. And there is no guarantee that this little dog really comes from the very father and mother. Therefore, it is possible to deal there only with serious nurseries, (well known kennels) in the Czech Republic and Slovakia the DNA test is not yet mandatory

Our Russian dog breeders are sobbing, complaining: “they have lost all working qualities, they turned dogs into rag-pickers”. Only and your sport dogs that bites rags. And no one will stand the pressure of the present … and so on and so forth. And what is interesting, lost? What are such wonderful qualities? It is right before the eyes: an uncle in a dress suit with a stick (today not in a bite suit) runs out, screams, threatens, attacks, and the dog grabs his half-calf, and let’s wag – to shake, roar and scratch his head. A proud owner stands, smiling, aside, looking around with superiority: here I have a dog! Eats for real, not that IPO sport dogs…only and arm bite as a choreographed dance. He takes everything seriously, gets angry, and protects me. 🙂 Great, right?

Let us recall the first workshop of Mr. Flyugge. And such an evil black terrier, who with might and main has bitten the evil attacking uncles in dress suits, screamed terribly and in general possessed those “real working qualities”. Who was – he remembers how Flugge calmly approached the dog and stood in front of her, and after five seconds, the verdict “she won’t bite me” followed. And did not bite. She backed away, snarling terribly and showing all her “real workers”.

Then, for the first time, I personally saw the PRESENT PRESSURE in action. The pressure is not physical, which can teach the dog, but PSYCHOLOGICAL. When the person involved stands quietly, not moving, just looking at the dog, and the dog does not dare to bite him. Or when the dog suddenly releases the sleeve and begins to show defensive aggression without visible effort on the part of the person involved: all sorts of blows with sticks between the ears and similar “influences”. (The person fails to distinguish the nerve bag dog that bit out of fear to “push away” the aggressor, or so called aggressor, and not the confident dog that can bite with sustained physical pressure on him, and is confident in himself).

Snarling on the sleeve, nipping at the feet, grasping at half-feet with chewing (it’s great to eat! :)) can only be caused by the sympathetic look of the sportsman. Such rye-trembling dogs with “real working qualities”, to put it mildly, will not withstand such pressure, which is present during the training of ShH-dogs by real specialists. The pressure, in the understanding of the owners of such dogs, is a person figurative, hitting the dog with cans, brandishing a knife, beating with feet, and so on. However, to teach a dog to endure physical pain is a fairly easy problem for a more or less skilled trainer. But only dogs with a well-balanced nervous system can hold psychological pressure. Genetics….

In what direction are “working dogs people” all over the world moving? What to strive for? Answers to these questions can be found in advertisements given to the pedigree producer or puppies, because it is there that those qualities that everyone wants to see in their working dogs are exalted. In them we read: “… a dog has a very calm, intense manner of searching, great internal motivation, willingness to work, speed and control-ability and great biddability or desire to please and learn. On defense, he is distinguished by strong and tight grip, a quick switch from prey to aggression, toughness and uncompromising attitude towards the defendant….” All this is the cherished dream of any athlete, Sport dogs, that certainly included in that. Rags,as puppies, and bite tugs and eventually bite pillows and bite sleeve, with a passionate desire to bite them, and the love of neighbor in these ads say nothing.

I sincerely regret that the I.P.O is presented to some as a “toy” sport. Although in the Champions of the B.S.P that the past, that before last, a toy is nothing. It was not “sport only” in the minds of some of these previous tough competitors. These are tough, serious dogs with killer grasp and enormous potential for resisting a person. The fact that they have passed on their training path to the podium is the most severe selection school, where the weak are left behind, and the strong only strengthens their strength. And to me, frankly, it is more than doubtful that someone of those most passionately working, “possessing real working qualities” snarling and trembling sleeves could withstand at least one lesson from Helmut Huber and his ilk. So it’s the strong nerves, strong prey drive, strong hunt drive and ability to be a socially confident animal that is well adjusted to his home and surroundings is in fact the correct type of dog. So don’t tell me these dogs are not “real”…in fact, these are the kind of dogs we should be striving for!

Leave a Reply