15 month green GSD not barking at decoy. - Page 3

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by ValK on 16 July 2020 - 22:07

koots, is that mentioning about "inspiration" was attempt to joke?
and why prager as a trainer in quotes?

look, dog even with a half decent alertness and aloofness, have no problem to express it through bark.
once more - there were good hints from another member. i have nothing to add, beside of - "better don't screw of that dog more, than he already is".

by duke1965 on 17 July 2020 - 00:07

The main problem is that we have to find trainingsolutions, for non balanced dogs, in other words, correct breedingmistakes at the trainingfield, and if we do that well, the non balanced dog gets to breed in order to produce more unbalanced dogs

As I understand the point of view that its "only " for sport, and that its the "concept "of sport, i still think that a well balanced dog, with some agression to be able to kick in, is also a better and easyer dog to train for sports, would say the barking would be better, the guarding, the escape, and the out would be easyer to do, 

the massive prey/posession dog campain some people are pushing, also for LE is disastrous, for breeding, for sport, and on the street, and every fail that happens is blamed on bad training, it is stunning to see how many dogs that im testing in whatever country from whatever origin, be it KNPV, IPO or breeding for LE, have the same problem of OP, preyfixation, no agression no bark



by Koots on 17 July 2020 - 01:07

Have any of you considered that this dog, at only 15 months, may still be mentally immature and not be ready to work in confrontational defence?    The OP has not really said anything about the level of drives in the dog, or balance - perhaps being new to dog sport they are not aware/sure of this.  Plus, the helper does not seem capable of the type of work this dog needs to bring out its barking and initiating.

by duke1965 on 17 July 2020 - 01:07

koots, really, 15 months, mentally immature, natural drives show way more early than that, would call that an other excuse, for me, if a dog is not ready at 15 months, he probably never will be

by GSCat on 17 July 2020 - 02:07

Based on the answers to my questions/others, I'd teach the dog to bark on command and then teach the bark at the decoy in the blind/bark-and-hold. The dog doesn't know to bark at the decoy and the handler can't instruct the dog to do so until the basic bark on command is taught.

Different kinds of barking can be taught using different commands, as well. If this is intended, make sure the first (and only) bark used with the decoy, whether in or out of the blind, is the one desired for the exercise(s). Otherwise the dog could get confused.

BTW, bark on command also ends up reinforcing/teaching/help teaching the quiet command 😊

by duke1965 on 17 July 2020 - 03:07

gsCat, thats the problem, you shouldnot have to teach a dog to bark, its the extremest form of stupidity when we should have to learn dogs to do things they have done naturally for decades, same as when I see videos of people teaching a dog to hold a pipe or toy with clicker and cooky, just breed or buy one with proper drives


by Hundmutter on 17 July 2020 - 04:07

How is this being seen as a major problem when the dog has had TWO lessons ? Whatever happened to the handler having a bit of patience ? There were good suggestions in early posts about the helper/decoy's role & behaviour.

Hired Dog

by Hired Dog on 17 July 2020 - 05:07

Hund, Duke has a point. You should not have to train a dog to do things that a correctly bred dog would do naturally, two or 32 lessons later.


by emoryg on 17 July 2020 - 07:07

Good post Duke.  HD also pointed out that it should be natural, or if we look to the standard, instinctive.   Ask anyone to describe the physical characteristics of a German Shepherd and they typically paint the ideal look that distinguishes the breed.  Ask the same person to describe the character of the German Shepherd.   They typically paint the ideal character of Golden Retriever. 

Here’s the two characters for comparison. 

Biddable, intelligent and possessing natural working ability; kindly, friendly and confident.

MUST be well-balanced (with strong nerves) in terms of character, self-assured, absolutely natural and (except for a stimulated situation) good-natured as well as attentive and willing to please. He MUST possess instinctive behaviour, resilience and self-assurance in order to be suitable as a companion, guard, protection, service and herding dog. 


by Koots on 17 July 2020 - 10:07

Let's recap what we know about this dog:

  • green 15 month male GSD
  • world class IPO and Police genetics
  • Shows no fear or shyness at gun fire or whip cracks
  • barks and tries to tear out of crate when he hears gun or whip
  • only had two sessions

This is what we know about the helper:

  • helper is in college and very quiet and been a helper for about 1 yr

Without more detail about the dog's character and the aid of a video clip, we are all kinda guessing at what may be the problem.   Does the dog bark at strangers walking by the house?   Does the dog have any foundation tug work done with the handler?   Does the handler even know how to assess the drives and level/balance of the dog?   This is the experience statement of handler:    

I have been training dogs for years (Scent work, obedience, service dogs, SAR, etc.) This is my first shot at Protection Sports

To me, this sounds like a classic case of green dog, inexperienced handler and green helper.    The dog may very well be 'locked' in prey, as duke says:

...dog is locked in prey and will focus on helper to give him what he is looking for, just break the routine by frustrating him, for example decoy running out of sight(behind blind) on and off...

The OP has been given the advice from a few of us to find a different, experienced helper to assess and work the dog, especially in the first few sessions.   Whether the dog has a good balance of drives or is mostly prey focused, is hard to tell without further information and assessment from an experienced person.   This is the dog the OP has and wants to work in sport, so now the OP has some information to pursue different techniques to help their dog.



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