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I don't know what you mean by a catch dog. You can get any breed with a high prey drive, and enough intelligence to chase a wild Boar, or other prey. Dogs bred for Schutzhant work cannot display caution or nerves. They would not be able to compete with either of these traits. The drives must be very balanced. A superior trainer takes the independent thinking of these dogs in mind, and works with it. It make take a little more challenge in training, and many Boxers may not get there, but somebody with experience has no problem.

I'm curious. Have you had the chance to see working dogs in competition? If you can, it's really worth watching. I've learned so much by actual observation, but am a visual learner.

My best

Ann WI
Gus (14 months) CGC
 

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I don't know what you mean by a catch dog.
A catch dog is used for hunting large game, or sometimes as a butcher's or cattle dealer's dog. Dogs skilled at this task are able to catch and hold the game without getting injured, and keep hold of it until the hunter caught up with them to dispatch it. The ancestors of the Boxer were particularly adept at this work - John Wagner writes about it in his book:

"The Doggen and Bullenbeisser, however, knew instinctively how to tackle the game from behind and hold it in a way that kept them from serious injury yet gave the hunters time to reach the kill therefore they were more valuable to the hunt and were accordingly highly prized and painstakingly bred."


Dogs bred for Schutzhant work cannot display caution or nerves. They would not be able to compete with either of these traits.
Which is one reason some feel Schutzhund is not the be-all, end-all of a Boxer's purpose. ;) While nervousness is not appropriate, the Boxer, as a thinking breed, is meant to take a moment to assess the situation rather than just barging in and biting.

Have you had the chance to see working dogs in competition?
I'm assuming you mean Schutzhund dogs, but figured I'd clarify. "Working dogs" is a pretty broad category. :)
 

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Jennifer, I certainly have reacted to this thread, because I don't see limitations of Boxers in Schutzhund. It surely is not the end-all, be-all of the breed, just an example of their brilliance to excell in all areas. I firmly believe if you have Boxers bred from these lines, with the sole purpose of Schutzhund work (bite, obedience, or tracking) you better keep their minds and bodies busy. Otherwise you have big problems with anxiety, and behavior problems to follow.

It requires a dog who is not nervous or shy, because they couldn't handle the stress of training. An edgy dog will always be an edgy dog. A stable dog will always be a stable dog. A good breeder produces a dog with confidence and good nerves. The dogs are also bred for both prey drive and defense. Despite the Boxer's independent thinking, they can have tremendous focus when doing their thing. That's the prey and defense drive utilized with good training toward complete focus toward their task.

Interesting, that once done working in Schutzhund, they return to a natural state of just being silly, stubborn, and naughy. A Boxer is a Boxer regardless :lol: :lol:

Ann WI
Gustav, 14 months, CGC
 

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Discussion Starter · #64 ·
Two questions:

1. Wouldn't increased Schutzhund participation by Boxer owners in the US improve the health and temperament of the breed?

The impression I get is that Americans like to show their dogs, if anything, or just hang out with them at home. This cannot be conducive to good health. If many more Boxer owners got involved in versatility training or sports (flyball, weightpull), wouldn't this lead to better overall health of the breed and the decline of backyard breeders?

2. How could SchH or other tests and sports be encouraged in the USA?

As an arbitrary goal, how could twice as many Boxer owners as today be encouraged into training and sports over the next five years?
 

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Jennifer, I certainly have reacted to this thread, because I don't see limitations of Boxers in Schutzhund. It surely is not the end-all, be-all of the breed,
Oh, I didn't mean you there! :) No one on this forum, actually - but I have run into people who do have that viewpoint.

It requires a dog who is not nervous or shy, because they couldn't handle the stress of training. An edgy dog will always be an edgy dog. A stable dog will always be a stable dog. A good breeder produces a dog with confidence and good nerves.
I agree; nervousness and shyness is never appropriate. I don't equate that with 'cautious', though there is a fine line there. A better word be 'deliberate', as the standard describes. The main point is a 'non-reactive' dog, one who thinks first rather than bites first.

Wouldn't increased Schutzhund participation by Boxer owners in the US improve the health and temperament of the breed?
How so? What health and temperament problems do you feel are alleviated by participation in Schutzhund?

How could SchH or other tests and sports be encouraged in the USA?
For Schutzhund, you'd need to first increase the number of training/clubs in the country; you'd need to educate the public as to what exactly it's about, since many misunderstand it; and you'd need to eliminate the biases that surround Boxers and Schutzhund (the "Boxers can't do Schutzhund" from GSD/Belgian folks as well as the "Boxers aren't meant to do Schutzhund" and "the Boxer's primary function is Schutzhund" from Boxer folks). Schutzhund would need to be marketed as a fun sport for Boxers and their owners - one of many that are appropriate for the breed.

For other activities (and Schutzhund, too), education and marketing would be needed. It would also help to have more breeders offering incentives to their puppy buyers for training/titles; more Boxer clubs offering obedience, agility, rally, herding, lure coursing, etc.; and more buyers interested in more than just a family pet. That last would be the biggest hurdle, of course - in this day and age, most people are so busy you're lucky if the dog even gets through one obedience class, much less the years of training required for advanced titles. (Which is another reason breeding solely for Schutzhund isn't as popular in the States; as Ann pointed out, if those dogs aren't kept busy and mentally stimulated, you see behavioral problems. For the average US pet owner, this is not a good fit.)

IMO, the best way to improve the health and temperament of the breed as a whole is to educate the buyers. If they insist on buying puppies from breeders who screen for health conditions and produce proper, stable temperaments, demand for puppies from careless breeders will decrease, and thus the number of carelessly bred puppies will decrease. (Of course, this also means that responsible breeders would need to breed more - or we would need more responsible breeders - to meet the demand for those puppies. (Which, of course, tends to lead to a breeding being labelled irresponsible!) It's a strange situation we've created, where the prevailing thought is that good breeders rarely breed, and the best breeders never do. But that's a different discussion! ;) )
 

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Newcastle said:
Jennifer, I certainly have reacted to this thread, because I don't see limitations of Boxers in Schutzhund. It surely is not the end-all, be-all of the breed,
Oh, I didn't mean you there! :) No one on this forum, actually - but I have run into people who do have that viewpoint.

[quote:1pp2t40k]It requires a dog who is not nervous or shy, because they couldn't handle the stress of training. An edgy dog will always be an edgy dog. A stable dog will always be a stable dog. A good breeder produces a dog with confidence and good nerves.
I agree; nervousness and shyness is never appropriate. I don't equate that with 'cautious', though there is a fine line there. A better word be 'deliberate', as the standard describes. The main point is a 'non-reactive' dog, one who thinks first rather than bites first.

Wouldn't increased Schutzhund participation by Boxer owners in the US improve the health and temperament of the breed?
How so? What health and temperament problems do you feel are alleviated by participation in Schutzhund?

How could SchH or other tests and sports be encouraged in the USA?
For Schutzhund, you'd need to first increase the number of training/clubs in the country; you'd need to educate the public as to what exactly it's about, since many misunderstand it; and you'd need to eliminate the biases that surround Boxers and Schutzhund (the "Boxers can't do Schutzhund" from GSD/Belgian folks as well as the "Boxers aren't meant to do Schutzhund" and "the Boxer's primary function is Schutzhund" from Boxer folks). Schutzhund would need to be marketed as a fun sport for Boxers and their owners - one of many that are appropriate for the breed.

For other activities (and Schutzhund, too), education and marketing would be needed. It would also help to have more breeders offering incentives to their puppy buyers for training/titles; more Boxer clubs offering obedience, agility, rally, herding, lure coursing, etc.; and more buyers interested in more than just a family pet. That last would be the biggest hurdle, of course - in this day and age, most people are so busy you're lucky if the dog even gets through one obedience class, much less the years of training required for advanced titles. (Which is another reason breeding solely for Schutzhund isn't as popular in the States; as Ann pointed out, if those dogs aren't kept busy and mentally stimulated, you see behavioral problems. For the average US pet owner, this is not a good fit.)

IMO, the best way to improve the health and temperament of the breed as a whole is to educate the buyers. If they insist on buying puppies from breeders who screen for health conditions and produce proper, stable temperaments, demand for puppies from careless breeders will decrease, and thus the number of carelessly bred puppies will decrease. (Of course, this also means that responsible breeders would need to breed more - or we would need more responsible breeders - to meet the demand for those puppies. (Which, of course, tends to lead to a breeding being labelled irresponsible!) It's a strange situation we've created, where the prevailing thought is that good breeders rarely breed, and the best breeders never do. But that's a different discussion! ;) )[/quote:1pp2t40k]


I could not agree more, those really were excellent comments, especially about the education of potentail boxer buyers/owners. Newcastle, you have won my heart :up:
 

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dan.daugherty said:
Taken from a local Schutzhund group in southeast Virginia.

Dan I just found out for sure that this is one of Josie's (Renee's dog) puppies, Aiden. That whole litter is wonderful.

 

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The helper, or trainer, does not HIT the dog with the stick :lol: The dog does not jump and bite the stick, but only the cuff. Later the dog gets to carry the cuff around proudly in it's mouth during training. The cuff is the prey, the man is their friend. Maybe Quando can explain this better.

I don't know what the price is for a good working Boxer in Germany. Dogs bred in the US for this work are not cheap. Because of the time and effort that goes into good breeding, I don't see a Breeder making much, if any, profit on selling a dog. That may be another reason they are not popular here.

Ann WI
 

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Hello Ann,

I haven’t really been following this thread anymore so I am not sure why you made the comments, but I smelt that someone mentioned my name :whistle: so just responding to your post.

No the helper NEVER hits the dog with the stick, he will hit his own legs or thighs maybe his upper arm to “motivate” the dog, and no the dog does not jump at the stick nor does it bite it. The helper will never present the stick directly to the dog. It is used only to motivate it.

Yes, you are right :) the dog jumps at the cuff and depending on what is required will either hang on for a while or will be told to let go. It then gets the cuff to play with; it will hold it and run off a bit. That’s the dogs prey and prize and will be commended when holding the cuff. It will also be allowed to run out of the ring with the cuff in its mouth once the training is completed.

There seems to be a misunderstanding about the price for a good working dog (Boxer) in Germany. There is no Working Dog line :no: the price for a boxer is around 1000-1200 Euro so about 1500-1700 US Dollars (registered and certified Kennels with pedigree papers). There is no premium :no: for a Boxer because it has supposedly more working dog characteristics, this does not exit. A boxer is a Boxer and they are working dogs, some more some less. It is up to the helper to draw the best of it. The price you pay here is for a Boxer.

If a kennel in the US is asking more for a so called Working Dog Boxer (what the boxer is anyway) then I would call this BS :mrgreen:
 

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Ann,

Another thing, Schutzhund her is really nothing special per se here, It is offered in every dog club and is considered a normal part of dog sports. Everyone in a club is encouraged to do it because the dog does really enjoy it. I feel reading the posts on this forum about this subject that the US is still in a process of understanding what is, why it is done and if it is good or not, and possibly a misunderstanding of what it is all about.

Because it is a (normal) part of a dogs training in Germany there is no premium on price for a boxer.

Our dog is five months now, we started training 2 months ago, and part of it is Schutzhund
 

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Quando -

I wonder how many members look at the pictures, and think the stick is to hit the dog. I thought it was a good time to dispel that fear ;)

I didn't realize it was offered in every club in Germany. You're fortunate. There are not many dogs in the US who compete in Schutzhund at the International level. It's not a recreational activity that has gained popularity, but I hope that changes. I think you pay a little more here if you're buying a dog you want to put titles on, from sires and dams who have reached their VPG3, IPO3, and Sch3 titles. There is also the cost for clubs here to bring in judges, and then also ship the dogs outside the US to compete.

Gus had some beginning bite work at 5 months, and again at 11 months. He loved it. Resources are scarce. We're working on more challenging obedience now at 15 months. Tracking will be interesting with this boy. Once he sees the flags up, he's ready to go. Last track I laid he went down on his belly and crawled it with great speed. He actually rolled on his back on the last scent pad. Not good, we have work to do! At least he loves the scent :lol:

Ann WI
Gus, CGC
 

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Hello Ann,

It never occurred to me that some may think that the helper hits the dog with the stick, good point you have made there, and good that you mentioned it :clap2: The stick is sort of rubbery like, but it is quite stiff.

Ok, got your point why it may cost more in the US, completely understood :up: Sure, when I buy a pup I will take a close look at the parents and ancestors to check health and VPG, IPO, BH etc. Many of the females will not have all of the VPG titles because they do not have the time because when they are carrying a litter (before and after) they need to rest and can not be trained. Unfortunately many people will only look at the male and its titles; the mother also plays a significant role in the first 12 weeks of a pup’s life.

We try to practice trailing with ours when we go for “normal” walks with the dog. He really enjoys it, and he really likes Schutzdienst. I have attached a photo, this was taken when he was about 3 1/2 months, at this age there is of course no cuff biting, he just goes after pieces of leather and is allowed to run away with that and is praised when he does it. He is teething at the moment so we have to be careful not to have him pull to hard.

That’s a shame that it appears to be difficult training Schuzthund in the US, if anyone ever has a chance I can only recommend it, the dogs really enjoys it. One just needs to really understand that it is NOT a methodology to make the dog aggressive. During training you should never see any aggressive dog behaviour. It is however really important to have a helper who really understand his work. You can have excellent, good and not so good helpers. The helper needs to understand the dog he is working with.

So, good luck to you and Gus!
 

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I'm sure that there are even some Yorkies out there somewhere that have the temperament for protection. That doesn't make it likely. I love Boxers. My first was a large male named Scooby. My second Boxer is a very strong 7yr old girl named Shumpa. I have had many breeds and Boxers are my favorite. That said, most of them are not tempered for protection. You guys who think that holding a bone or frisbee while you lift them with it = protection dog are mistaken and thinking wishfully. I'm not saying you don't have the rare boxer that can do it, but the frisbee game is not the tell. That's a silly game to your boxer. A protection dog has to be capable of hitting hard, biting hard, and holding hard while a grown angry man is beating him with anything from a bat to a tire iron to a knife and still not letting go. They have to be willing to aggressively charge in the direction of loud gunfire to subdue an attacker. Pulling to go after a squirrel or guarding a bone or toy is only dominant behavior and shows nothing but lack of discipline from his pack leader. Educate yourself before you complain. While there are indeed some capable boxers, most that I have seen in the sport only bite long enough to get the sleeve from the helper and play with it. In other words they want the sleeve rather than the "bite". There may be some better protection stock in Europe, but US bred protection capable Boxers are rare. Boxer owners looking for something cool to do with a boxer are not rare. That is why the Shultzhund guys roll their eyes when we inquire. You disagree out of ignorance. I know that's not what you want to hear, but someone has to introduce reality to you. Boxers are great dogs but rarely good as working protection dogs in the US. We've bred it out if them in favor of making them into gentle clowns


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