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SCHUTZHUND - Schutzhund Training


Beginning of Bite Imprinting

The fact of the matter is that we aren't teaching a dingo or a jackal to hunt. What works in the wild is not the grip we are seeking in Schutzhund. Whether the rabbit escapes or another pup steals it, the pup still does NOT eat with a light bite and thus starves. Now back to Brice's problem, as I see it, by not asking for a full, firm grip NOW, he is teaching that a light and not-full grip is acceptable. This graduates as the pup gets older and more accomplished. What we are doing is kindergarten and maybe first-grade type work. Getting that bite imprinted full and hard IS asking for a full, firm grip NOW, kindergarten and first-grade work. If the pup can lose the toy, make him lose the toy, tease him with it as he gets put up (thus building frustration) and a drive to possess the toy that he is unable to obtain. Since we are going to off-shoot looks at things, follow me on this. Back in high school, we all wanted cars, right???? The cool guys with the cool cars got all the cool girls. If you were one of the guys who didn't have a car, your big priority was to GET a car so that you could be one of the cool guys with the cool girls.  That priority built drive to ge a job or get the cash somehow to buy that car. The cooler the car, the more you worked at trying to obtain that car. Now back to the dogs perspective. If that toy is really cool and I really love it, great. If it is cool but too easily obtained, it loses the coolness and thus that want to possess it. At club, we will often have pups that don't initially want to possess the rag. We build frustration and put them away. Later, we bring them back out and lots of times they want it more than the first time. If they don't, we do it a third time and by that time the days lesson is done, whether they possess it or not. Next week, same ritual. We use a puppy circle to help that possession, all the pups want the toy and when the puppy next to him, gets the toy that builds possession but the puppy doesn't know he is taking turns, he just wants the toy the other puppy has. Again, building frustration. The bite is much stronger when they are afraid the other pups will take their cool toy away  from them and thus we have the beginning of bite imprinting.  Dan Brigham

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