Rottweiler Mentoring Small Puppy on Protection Training

Schutzhund (German for “protection dog”) tests not only a dog’s physical fitness, but mental soundness as well. It is a dog sport that was developed in Germany in the early 1900’s to test whether a GSD (German Shepherd Dog) could perform as the breed was intended rather than just evaluating the physical appearance of the dog. It is an incredibly demanding teat and there are few dogs that can pass. Besides ensuring the temperament of the dog, the trials and test are also necessary in determining if the dog would be suitable for police work, specific odor detection, search and rescue, and other physically and mentally demanding jobs. Some of the characteristics tested for in Schutzhund are:

• Strong desire to work
• Courage
• Intelligence
• Trainability
• Strong bond to the handler
• Perseverance
• Protective Instinct

Schutzhund training tests these traits and also physical traits such as strength, endurance, agility, and scenting ability. The goal of Schutzhund is to illuminate the character of a dog through training. Breeders can use this insight to determine how and whether to use the dog in producing the next generation of working dogs. In Germany, the test was and is still used to this day to determine which dogs will be allowed to breed. The correct temperament of the dog is just as important as the dog’s physical appearance. “It is only by testing the working ability of every generation that the strong working characteristics have been maintained.”

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