My question is how to get my dog to refocus so he will be ready to bite the sleeve?
I have two German Line dogs, one a Tom Vant Leefdaalhof grandson and one with Fero Hemmelreich, Troll and Xato Nachbarschaft and others. Because I made many errors before getting your videos and attending a Flinks seminar, I am hoping you might have a suggestion on refocusing my dog's prey drive to the sleeve.
When they attended the Flinks seminar at eight months and 13 weeks Flinks said the Leefdaalhof grandson was a great, great puppy and could it was up to me how far I took him...the other pup at first appeared to have little prey drive (level 4) to Flinks when he played with him with the flirt pole. (I knew better) until he got me to play with him w/ flirt pole, then he said maybe 7, we don't even know because his drives had never been developed. Later he would not play with Flinks at all. When I showed how he chased his favorite toy ( a partially deflated basketball) the whole crowd and Flinks said WOW..because he was very driven and took a huge full bite as he literally attacked the ball at very high speed and held it with a full grip. After watching him with this toy they thought his drive could even be a 9. Sometimes he does this with hackles up even though he is alone in his own yard when he attacks the ball. My dog also rushed into Flinks when he grabbed the flirt pole out of my hand (Flinks said he liked that) because he thought Flinks was bothering me by pulling on what was in my hand. Even though he did not bark or growl, (he rarely does that deep barking unless he sees someone hiding or acting strangely) I knew if I had hit Flinks or he me, my pup would have bitten him. My question is how to get my dog to refocus so he will be ready to bite the sleeve. He is totally uninterested in rags and tugs because I never used them when he was young. He bites this ball and a rubber frisbee and will hold on even if he is raised off the ground onto his hind legs. I release when he counters. He is actually far more prey driven than the other pup Flinks thinks is great. He is the one that wants to go and go and go and won't eat if he can bite that ball (He does chase and retrieve balls but his thing is to BITE fully into that basketball). Still, at the local club they wave a rag and he just ignores them. Oh, Flinks also said YOU have to do this work because he works for you, not just for food and not for the toy. I don't THINK he has anxiety with other helpers (he did let a few strange folks from the seminar pull on the basketball while he held on) but he seems totally uninterested in playing with others especially with the tugs/rags. Also, when he was younger my son tried to play with him (in all the wrong ways) with a puppy sleeve and he would rip the sleeve off and want to keep biting my son. I think he thought son was prey, so I told my son not to do this any longer. Anyway, at the local club they insist on going from rag to tug to sleeve and if my dog shows he not interested in the rag so what now? He hurls himself into that basketball, he bites it, shakes it, won't let go (unless I ous him) under any distraction, noise, stick etc and he is biting it with a full full mouth. He does bark at the helper when the other dogs are doing bite work. Even though folks at the seminar said he does have a high drive after all and I can use his frisbee and basketball to get him ready no one at my club will do anything with me until he goes after the rag and tug and he just won't. (I think because he gets a lot more satisfaction from the bite on the partially deflated ball) Do you have any suggestions? I thought of trying a bite wedge on a string and eventually putting the sleeve on the string what do you think? If I don't solve this I am stuck.
I have to title this dog because I do not get full breeding rights to him unless he gets Sch titled and he is clear of the DM gene, so I do want to breed him. After both are titled I want to just protection train them if they have the right fight drive. The Tom grandson's daddy is Sch3 and a certified police K9.
Thanks so much and because of your videos I am not making the same mistakes with the younger pup (probably lots of different ones :() I am trying to be the handlers my dogs deserve. Thanks so much for your wonderful work!
I would definitely try the wedge on a string, or even a big tug (at first) you will also need to get the Frisbee and ball out of the picture so he learns to satisfy his drive on the other items. If you still offer him the other items, he will be less likely to want the tug, wedge, sleeve. Also, get him playing with the tugs and stuff at home before you try to do this at your club, it may just be too much of a distraction for him right now. Don’t give in and pull out the old toys, because then he’ll just learn to hold out for his preferred items.