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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
While I was practicing some obedience, it seems that the military decided it was the opportune moment to drop some bombs. I guess now I know that Apollo isn't going to be gun shy lol

And some bitework


Thanks for looking!
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks!

He is a really cool dog, very unique.

Apollo is trained without the use of an E-collar/correction collars and primarily we use positive reinforcement.
He is a tough dog with a heart of gold.
 

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Thanks!

He is a really cool dog, very unique.

Apollo is trained without the use of an E-collar/correction collars and primarily we use positive reinforcement.
He is a tough dog with a heart of gold.
Good job! I wish I had a few dogs I did not need to use an e collar on but I got butt heads! lol Are you just starting the bark and hold?
 

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Definitely good job on him! Looks like you guys are really enjoying it, any future plans?
 

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He actually has a funny adorable bark and hold, his ears are hilariously cute when he does it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Good job! I wish I had a few dogs I did not need to use an e collar on but I got butt heads! lol Are you just starting the bark and hold?
I guess we are just lucky at our club, no e-collars or compulsion has been needed for any of the members dogs thus far. lol
We are just starting the bark and hold and still getting reward bites so the decoy is staying out of the blind.

Looks like you guys are really enjoying it, any future plans?
Thanks! We both have a great time at practice. For the future, at some point we will compete. I want his work to be flawless before we hit the field to give us the best chance of passing.
Maybe sometime next year we will go for a BH and 1. Or it may be sooner. It all depends on what Apollo tells me.

He actually has a funny adorable bark and hold, his ears are hilariously cute when he does it.
lol, I think you mean these videos?


 

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Now you say compulsion as in no correction of any kind? This is always interesting to me with certain dogs when I have seen these methods done with several trainers. It really can work with many dogs but when you have a harder dog I have always seen those trainers tell people they cannot help them. I really would be interested in seeing what they could do with Barca if anything for things like the out.

So a question about your club how many members do you have, what breeds, what titles have they earned, and who's the trainer. I am always open to new methods and how did you teach the out? If I could find a better way with one of my dogs I totally would explore it because we still are having issues months later.

Another question, how does the decoy handle stick hits? Also your dog is very much in prey drive and starring at the sleeve and not at the decoy. Is that something you are working on or are all the dogs only working in prey drive without any defense?
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 · (Edited)
So a question about your club how many members do you have,
At this point we are not a 'club', we are a group of people who share the same philosophy and enjoy training together. We made the unanimous decision to not form an official club.
All are welcome to come and train with us. So there are 4 people or so that come on a weekly basis and more that come and go.
All of those in our group are welcome and encouraged to visit and train at other clubs once a person is confident enough to communicate what they want/don't want done with their dog.

what breeds, what titles have they earned,
Mals, Rotties, GSDs, one Pit Bull and an American Bulldog as of right now.
Titles are complicated as we are not an official 'group' and can't claim all those that title titled because of us.
But we have/have had SchB, SchI, SchII, SchIII, FRB, FRI, FHII, FRIII and a Mondio B. And various UKC/AKC agility, OB, HIC, TT, CGC titles.
Of course some of those came before I joined the club, so I can not claim that they were reached without compulsion.

how does the decoy handle stick hits?
Depends on the dog. The majority of new people to the club have dogs that are used to stick hits and often it is just going back and re-working it so the dogs are more comfortable and not growly on bite when hit by the stick.
For Apollo we are desensitizing him, (at this point not on the sleeve because he is still learning) with a tug and waving the stick around, sliding it down his back and light taps, rewarding for a calm bite.

Also your dog is very much in prey drive and starring at the sleeve and not at the decoy. Is that something you are working on or are all the dogs only working in prey drive without any defense?
Again it depends on the dog and what the handler wants. My dog is a pet so I asked he be worked in all prey. I prefer my dogs to be equipment focused.
Because defense can be very tricky we tend to tread on the side of prey.

As for training an out, well, it would depend on the dog and what training the dog has had previously.
If you told me more, I can take a stab at what my trainer would suggest. He has worked with some difficult dogs and created an out.
There are endless methods at ones disposal, the hard part is finding the 'perfect' way.
 

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It would be interesting to see them take a real dog with high drive and use no compulsion to get a SchIII with good scores. I'm not saying it can't be done but it would be interesting. I mean real dog as in one bred for the sport with drive you would want to select not a pet or a rescue who is going to work totally out of prey.

I can understand working all out of prey but when it comes to scoring it will reflect that. At the club level you might get away with it but not at a regional level.

Do they work most the dogs in prey or just your pet? To have a dog only display prey drive doesn't that defeat the purpose of the sport which should be a test of character? The bark and hold is guarding not barking to get the sleeve. If only worked in prey drive and the dog never learning how to work in defensive how would they handle a trail with a serious decoy who put real pressure on the dog if that was never done in training? I have seen in person and videos of dogs like that when the decoy put real pressure on them they ran away. So are you only trailing at a club level just for fun?

My dogs work mostly in prey but also display other drives and when pressure it put on them they can handle it. I guess have never seen a dog worked all in prey so it is intriguing on what they would do. Like the video of the dog barking at you is all based out of prey and play and it not a bark and hold. It is more of the dog barking for the toy or food and not a guarding behavior.

As far as my butt head dog lol he will not let go of anything, not for food, not for another toy, he just closes his eyes and hangs on. He has lot of fight drive and would rather fight over the toy then let it go. If I could find something that works to teach a reliable out I would be very open to all ideas. I have never had such a hard creature of my own to train and in a way he is teaching me a lot.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
It would be interesting to see them take a real dog with high drive and use no compulsion to get a SchIII with good scores.
Well, one gal that trains with us a a semi-frequent basis has been to regional and national level Sch competitions. She used PR to get there* (she now trains primarily with a guy that has her doing some compulsion for ring though). Her dog is nice and very high drive.
All of the dogs working with us are very high drive and are bred for sports like this (with the exception of my dog and the American Bulldog) and are doing very well.

*-Disclaimer- I have only watch her dog work and gotten this from her, I of course can not guarantee it is true.

Do they work most the dogs in prey or just your pet?
I can't give you an honest answer, I am there to work my dog and don't pay that close of attention to what drives the other dogs are in. If a handler asked for their dog to be worked in defense, then the decoy would do so I imagine.

To have a dog only display prey drive doesn't that defeat the purpose of the sport which should be a test of character?
People have different reasons for doing the sport, I am doing it to form a better bond with my dog. Not to test his character. Besides which, he has tons of character :roll:

The bark and hold is guarding not barking to get the sleeve.
The bark and hold is the dog 'activity and intently confronting the helper, barking continuously'. It doesn't matter if they are barking because they want to get the sleeve or barking because they are 'guarding', as long as he is displaying the correct behavior he will score well.
If I had wanted Apollo to really guard, I would have gone into PP.

If only worked in prey drive and the dog never learning how to work in defensive how would they handle a trail with a serious decoy who put real pressure on the dog if that was never done in training?
Because Apollo is new to the hard sleeve, we are not putting pressure on him. But he is capable of taking pressure, both from the decoy in the video and with other decoys (some of which are very good at applying excessive amounts of pressure).

I have seen in person and videos of dogs like that when the decoy put real pressure on them they ran away.
I have seen dogs from all types of training backgrounds fold under pressure, it is not exclusive to prey based training.

So are you only trailing at a club level just for fun?
I will go as for as Apollo wants to go. We are just doing it for fun, he is neutered so there is no need to have him titled. And because of my use of body signals I don't know if we could make it to a regional/national level with out being dinged too many points.

As far as my butt head dog lol he will not let go of anything, not for food, not for another toy, he just closes his eyes and hangs on. He has lot of fight drive and would rather fight over the toy then let it go. If I could find something that works to teach a reliable out I would be very open to all ideas. I have never had such a hard creature of my own to train and in a way he is teaching me a lot.
Hmmm, how did you train your out?

how old is your pittie?
We think he will be 2 years sometime in September-November.
 

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The bark and hold is the dog 'activity and intently confronting the helper, barking continuously'. It doesn't matter if they are barking because they want to get the sleeve or barking because they are 'guarding', as long as he is displaying the correct behavior he will score well.
If I had wanted Apollo to really guard, I would have gone into PP.
My point is when you have a dog looking at the sleeve and not the helper and they are working in prey you will not score as well as if they were actually doing a bark an hold. To hold the decoy convincingly and when the decoy goes for the escape to stop to decoy with power. Again everything should be done convincingly not just going through the motions. There are people like yourself who do Sch sport to have fun and build a bone with their dog and there is nothing wrong with that. We have lots of members who may be interested in the sport and since there is so many wrong ideas about the sport I just wanted a little clarification. A dog can go through the motions in Sch but if they are starring at the sleeve the whole time your score will reflect that. You can have a dog trained in a lot of prey drive and still have them stare at the helper not the sleeve. That is training, a good helper/trainer knows how to reward the dog to get the behaviors they want. My dogs work a lot out of prey but do not stare at the sleeve that is training on my helpers end.

Because Apollo is new to the hard sleeve, we are not putting pressure on him. But he is capable of taking pressure, both from the decoy in the video and with other decoys (some of which are very good at applying excessive amounts of pressure).
My guess is your dog like just about every other dog in the sport bounces back an fourth and works in different drives. If he is getting a lot of pressure
I bet he is going back and fourth between prey/play drive and defense or fight drive. I have one of my most prey driven dogs who goes back and fourth from prey and fight drive. Bulldogs can especially love to go into fight drive. When they were in the [] pre 1976 fight drive was very much apart of the game dog. The love to fight/wrestle gives satisfaction and you can very much see that in many bulldogs in the sport.

Either way I love to see people get involved in the sport and do something with their dogs. I hope you the best your guy is very cute!
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
We have lots of members who may be interested in the sport and since there is so many wrong ideas about the sport I just wanted a little clarification.
I have found that the majority of dog people (even those interested in the sport) have misconceptions about it being 'Pit Bulls biting people', if they are interested enough in the sport to understand if the dog is hold the decoy convincingly, then they probably have a trainer than can explain it in great detail. But maybe we encounter different dog people :eek:

A dog can go through the motions in Sch but if they are starring at the sleeve the whole time your score will reflect that. You can have a dog trained in a lot of prey drive and still have them stare at the helper not the sleeve. That is training, a good helper/trainer knows how to reward the dog to get the behaviors they want. My dogs work a lot out of prey but do not stare at the sleeve that is training on my helpers end.
If judges make comments on it, then I will change it. It will be an easy fix, as you said, reward for the correct behavior and a new habit is created. The decoy is doing exactly as I requested, it has nothing to do with their ability. At this point we are more concerned with having Apollo not molest the helper, having a reliable out, getting a nice set up and figuring out how to do a call out.
The fact that he is staring at the sleeve is a minor point to focus on.

As for help with the out command-


From watching this video, I think your timing is off for a reward. In the span that it takes the person off screen to tell you to play, you have lost the window to reward in.
I would also not have him sitting before the reward, you are chaining too many actions together when he doesn't understand the first command.
By telling him out, without having a reliable out already, you may be inadvertently creating a command you don't want. I can't remember who said it, but 'don't name it 'til you love it'!
I can't tell you how many dog I have seen where 'out' means grip harder or shake the sleeve or to one it meant let go and re-direct onto the handlers leg and not let go.

There are quite a few routes I would try with a dog like Barca.
First find a low value object, something that doesn't have the emotional connection that he has to the sleeve. And I would not use the word 'Out' or ask for an out again until he understands the command. And I would not try to train an out when he is amped up with the decoy egging him on, that requires a lot of control and an understanding that your dog doesn't have right now.
So here is the first thing I try when teaching a dog that doesn't understand the out command.

Play tug.
Stop playing tug.
Wait.
Wait.
Wait.
For the slightest release, yell 'Yes!' (or whatever reward word you have) and begin tugging again.
Repeat.

Do not say any command, don't do anything. Just wait and let your body relax. You want low, low energy.
There are of course, other ways to get the job done but this one (if done correctly) seems to work well in most cases. If you want other ways though, I have 'em :hammer:
 

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From watching this video, I think your timing is off for a reward. In the span that it takes the person off screen to tell you to play, you have lost the window to reward in.
I would also not have him sitting before the reward, you are chaining too many actions together when he doesn't understand the first command.
By telling him out, without having a reliable out already, you may be inadvertently creating a command you don't want. I can't remember who said it, but 'don't name it 'til you love it'!
I can't tell you how many dog I have seen where 'out' means grip harder or shake the sleeve or to one it meant let go and re-direct onto the handlers leg and not let go.
There are quite a few routes I would try with a dog like Barca.
First find a low value object, something that doesn't have the emotional connection that he has to the sleeve. And I would not use the word 'Out' or ask for an out again until he understands the command. And I would not try to train an out when he is amped up with the decoy egging him on, that requires a lot of control and an understanding that your dog doesn't have right now.
So here is the first thing I try when teaching a dog that doesn't understand the out command.

Play tug.
Stop playing tug.
Wait.
Wait.
Wait.
For the slightest release, yell 'Yes!' (or whatever reward word you have) and begin tugging again.
Repeat.

Do not say any command, don't do anything. Just wait and let your body relax. You want low, low energy.
There are of course, other ways to get the job done but this one (if done correctly) seems to work well in most cases. If you want other ways though, I have 'em :hammer:
This is when I first got him back, He was sold to a home in Canada and it did not work out and I got him back. He came to me with these issues and I really missed the opportunity to fix it when he was younger. I also think she created conflict with the toys and it did not help with him letting go. In the video I had not worked with him very much and yeah my timing was off, we were trying something new.
The problem is there is no low value item to Barca anything he can put him mouth on is a toy. You cannot wait for him to let go (we tried and at the 45 min mark we decided that was not going to work.), we did try what you described above and no success. He will not trade for another toy or for food, if you do not make him carry the toy he will ground it with his paws and fight drive kicks in. The problem with him is he is based in a lot of fight drive and if it was up to him he would tug and fight with me all day. This dog is really obsessed to the point where I am not sure I can do much with him. He has an extremely hard time sitting in the presence of a toy and has almost no self control. He really is an extraordinary dog and has the characteristics of what this breed was bred for. He is a game bred dog from proven lines (not his parents) and he was bred for the original function of a bulldog. That breeding with tons of fight drive and the desire to not let go or quit was bred into him and I am fighting genetics. While his brother is more biddable and going to be a great sports dog, Barca is 10 times harder.

In the video this is after we did several sessions that day with the e collar. Now he is on 127 on the e collar but does not flinch. This is months of trying different methods I think I have had him back for almost 6 months now.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Don't you hate when someone else screws up a dog and you are left picking up the pieces?
Sucks :(

Honestly, I don't think you have an out problem. You have an obedience problem.
For a dog like him there is no 'quick fix' and zapping him with the e-collar on the highest setting is only going to make it worse.
If he was my dog, I would go back to the basics, no bitework. If you can't do OB around a sleeve on the ground and a sleeved decoy, you are not going to have enough control to teach him a reliable out. He needs to learn self control.
You need to build a relationship and give him a reason for working with you.
Just my thoughts.
 

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This is more bulldog than most people ever see, I am just giving you an example of a dog who cannot be asked or traded anything with his intensity. Self control is not something that applies to him and sitting next to a toy even 15 feet out is almost too much. I have tried everything you have suggested but this is an example of not all dogs will conform to one way of training and to be truly versatile you should have many tools in your tool box. Good luck with your girl, keep it up! Are you close to CA? are you going to the WPBTCA nationals? If so see you there, I hope to see many west coast people come out and support the nationals.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
I have not seen a Bulldog like that, but have worked with Mals with that kind of intensity (I know, different breed, different type of intensity/drive/personality quirks). One that was not able to go on the same field as a sleeve without literally loosing his marbles. He would not pay attention to any tug toy, flirt pole, treat, anything. If allowed to go for long enough (10+ seconds) he would redirect on the handler.
I literally took him to a place where he could be calm and level headed (getting out of the car and out of sight of the sleeve) and took baby steps closer. If your dog can't control himself well 15 feet from a tug toy. Go out 20 feet and once you get a small amount of what you are looking for release him to go tug for a reward. And move closer and closer.
I want all my dogs to be able to walk over a tug/sleeve in heel, recall over and lay down on. OB is listening to exactly what I say, regardless of what they want.
You are, of course, right. All dogs are individuals and we respond differently, not only to different techniques but to different people. Which is why I am always open to listening to how other people accomplished their goals.

Sadly, I am not in Cali :(
Stupid vet bills are tying me down to work, and I can't afford a plane ticket.
 
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