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by Juno on 19 September 2018 - 18:09

Hi Jesse,

Great to hear from you, and as usual appreciate your comments. Yes, we are bunch of folks having fun with our dogs and the young fella who shot the video made a mistake in the excitement of shooting it last night. We did not realize the session had lasted that long till we saw the length of the video.

Zeus is great in real life. By nature very good natured, except for the situations where he has reacted suspiciously early in the mornings or late evenings as I mentioned in different posts. I have taken him to malls and he is very neutral, even when cyclists go by. He is very neutral with kids, neither friendly nor unfriendly. Although he is much more friendlier with kids within our family but usually goes and lies down in his favorite spot after the initial greeting. To be honest besides my wife, our other dog, and I he really does not care about anyone else. He is territorial when people come to our house but if I tell him to relax he will. If I am not at home he is my wife’s shadow, once I get home not so much. That’s why training him is all on me as he is not receptive to other people, too focused on me. Hope this helps.

by Juno on 19 September 2018 - 19:09


Good question. During last week’s training we noticed that Zeus was a little unsure of himself and was not himself and not biting with the intensity we were used to seeing. We analyzed it and realized a couple of things:

(1) we were going too fast as he was a strong dog and had made tremendous progress in the very brief period (less than 2 months) and we got carried away.
(2) we introduced 2 decoys at the same time to redirect, car jacking - all PSA scenarios
(3) we did not plan our training to accommodate his temperament- not crazy prey as most sports dogs are, he is more balanced - 60/40 prey/defense.

Once we realized that, last night our goal was to work to his strengths and build him back up, without losing focus of what we are trying to achieve - PSA. So the last session was geared towards fighting the decoy, pushing bites, not giving up, not losing bite intensity even with repeated outs, building stamina, not backing down, calm full bites that are not hectic and stressful, and finally leaving him wanting more rather than thinking “thank God” that is over.

Once he regains his self confidence then we will gradually add more scenarios one at a time.

Hope this helps.

by Jessejones on 19 September 2018 - 19:09

Great answers Juno.
The dog is in great hands with you. I think I remember you mentioning his littermate was put down because of being too civil...was that right or am I misremembering? Hopefully it was not due to bad training.

Spoiler alert...pontification below:

Your answers to Valk show why no one should train blindly via one method.
Collect knowledge and put it all into a mental toolbox.
Use every tool in the box but know WHY you are using it....sometimes it will be 5 steps forward and maybe 4 backwards.
No matter what you are teaching...
Have a goal and a plan for each session.
Think it over in “real pictures” in your mind.
Use the real pictures in your mind, of your movements, and from the perspective of the dog before you start. How will the dog see the scenario from his eyes and perspective?
Every dog is different.
Watch the dog, watch his body and ear positions, listen to the pitch of his bark....and put your self in his place. What is he thinking, feeling? What does he need to remain balanced. What does he like and what does he avoid.
And above all, don’t go too fast or one will pay for it at some point or another.

by Juno on 19 September 2018 - 19:09


Yes one of his littermates from an earlier litter in Europe, Swedish Army, was put down because he turned on the handler. The original breeder, Jen-Ager’s kennel in Denmark, when I spoke to him said it was because the handler (a novice one) did not know how to handle this type of dog and he had been passed down several handlers due to aggression. Another of the same litter’s males were returned to the breeder because the owner could not handle him, again there was nothing wrong with the dog. Breeder rehomed him. Peter (owner of Jen-Agers) told me to make sure I had bonded very well and had done a lot of obedience before doing any bitework and NOT to use e-collars because as he said it they (especially the males) remember it for all the wrong reasons. Most of this aggression is coming from his maternal grandmother, Astel vom Ecke, who is described as a gangster dog even though he participated at the BSP twice. He was sold to the Ukraine. To be honest, Zeus has a serious side but not once has he even remotely been handler aggressive. Although, when at the vets we had to muzzle him as he was poked one too many tines and lunged at the vet. He is a mush with my wife and thinks he is a lap dog, that’s why she can’t believe how different he is during bitework - jeckel and hyde.


by isachev on 19 September 2018 - 20:09


by Jessejones on 19 September 2018 - 20:09

Thanks for being so open Juno.
Very interesting and sad if it could have been prevented. Bonding is the alpha and omega for working with 99.9% of hard dogs. This is true across the board, no matter what the training is for. The other 0.1 % are aloof hard dogs that don’t bond to anyone really, no matter the bonding effort and time. Many need a lot of bonding, maybe 5 months or more with no harsh corrections, or if possible, no corrections at all, only play, soft training and redirecting unwanted behavior. Earning trust and routine first if changing handlers, especially novice ones. Unfortunately for working dogs in pp or similar, it seems time is always money, and many move to fast, especially when changing handlers or with novice handlers. But ruining a good misunderstood dog is a huge loss, in terms of money, effort and time, too. IMO,

by Juno on 19 September 2018 - 21:09

Yup. In another thread there was a discussion by a NATO K9 handler specifically about dogs coming out of Vito (Zeus’s paternal grandfather) and more specifically grandsons coming from the “D” litter Weinbergblick litter progeny from Vito (same litter that Zeus’s father is out of) that are serving very well with European law enforcement agencies and are very desirable by law enforcement and military. However; in the same thread he also said that these dogs can do sport but only with very experienced Handlers as they are not your typical sports dogs. That might shed some light on type of dog Zeus is.

by ValK on 20 September 2018 - 02:09


ok. i just got little bit lost.
if i remember correctly, a while back in another topic you did expressed your desire to train PP dog.
now you seems have settled for sport route.

by Juno on 20 September 2018 - 11:09


No worries. Yes, you are correct. I went the PSA route as to me that is the closest thing to real working dog that I could find. It is still a sport but a lot more challenging and fun than some of the more traditional ones and will need a strong dog (besides a good handler) to have any type of success. So, I have the right dog, still working on the handler - who has a ways to go..

by apple on 20 September 2018 - 12:09

I would agree that PSA is one of the most challenging protection sports, but not that is that close to real apprehension work. For example, in the higher levels, the decoys are aggressively charging your dog and the dog is not supposed to bite. In real, work, such as police work, you would want the dog to aggressively engage someone who would violently charge them.

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