A Brief Description of Schutzhund Training
Schutzhund is a German word meaning “protection dog.”
Schutzhund is the historical means by which genetic breed temperament has been tested and maintained, and is not simply a sport.
The concept of these working tests started in Europe at the beginning of the 20th Century when early developers of the German Shepherd Dog, among them Captain Max von Stephanitz, realized that, with modernization of rural life, the working dogs could soon become unnecessary. Recognizing that the German Shepherd was extremely versatile and capable of adapting to all types of functions, a system of standards was adapted in order to identify those dogs considered to be suitable as breeding stock.
While conformation shows established correct type and physical structure, these working tests identified the dogs who had the necessary drive, character and overall working ability. It is from these working tests that the sport of Schutzhund evolved.
Schutzhund training concentrates on three areas: Tracking, Obedience, and Protection work.
Schutzhund measures the dog’s mental stability, endurance, structural efficiencies, ability to scent, willingness to work, courage and trainability.
Obedience, Tracking and Protection.
One of the most important qualities of a Schutzhund trained dog is his complete obedience under distraction.
Tracking — The Tracking phase is intended to test the dog’s trainability, scenting ability and its mental and physical endurance. In this test, the dog is required to track footsteps and find objects over mixed terrain, change direction and show absolute accuracy and commitment to the task.
The tests vary in length, shape, and difficulty depending on the title sought.
Obedience — The Obedience exercises test the dog’s temperament, structural efficiencies and its willingness to serve. The obedience phase includes several exercises: including heeling on and off leash; heeling through distractions including groups of people and/or the firing of a gun; sit, down, stand, stay, recall; retrieving over a one meter jump and a six foot wall.
Protection — The Protection phase of Schutzhund training involves testing the dog’s courage, physical strength and agility.
During this phase, the relationship between dog and handler is of utmost importance.
Exercises include, among others, a search of hiding places, finding a hidden human decoy, and guarding that decoy while the handler approaches. The dog is then expected to pursue the decoy when an escape is attempted.
The dog must never bite unless either the dog or the handler is attacked, in which case, the dog must attack fully and without hesitation. However, all bites are expected to be placed on the padded sleeve worn by the decoy and the dog MUST release on command of the handler and guard the decoy without any further aggression.
IPO/IPG Training Highlights at Sandhills Working Dog Club 20180908
In Schutzhund protection work, the dog must at all times be under the absolute control of the handler.
While the sport is open to all breeds, including mixed-breeds, it is traditionally a Working and Herding dog sport. German Shepherd Dogs, Doberman Pinschers, Rottweilers, Belgian Malinois, Airedale Terriers, Boxers, Bouvier des Flandres, and Giant Schnauzers are the most common breeds involved in the sport, with the German Shepherd Dog being the most common.
Dog and Handler teams compete for titles at three levels — SchH1, SchH2, and SchH3 — with each being increasingly more difficult to earn.
Bc ipo working dog club
In addition, there are other titles including Advanced Tracking (FH1 and FH2), Endurance Certificates (AD), Police Dog training and Agility work.
A dog trained in Schutzhund is generally an excellent companion in the home as well as a good candidate for police work and search and rescue.
The Schutzhund trained dog has confidence and trust in himself.
He is approachable, quietly standing his ground, calm but eager and alert when the situation warrants.