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KAZKIRI GERMAN SHEPHERD DOGS

show training

The following paragraphs, dealing with Show Training, have been copied from the German Shepherd Puppy Booklet written by Dr. Karen Hedberg BVSc which is distributed by the GERMAN SHEPHERD DOG LEAGUE. Permission to copy the advice given was granted by Mr Graeme Stevenson, President of the GSDL. Graeme also said that anyone can purchase these booklets by contacting Pam Jarvis, GSDL Marketing Officer.
Thank you Graeme

show training
For show training, obedience training is not particularly desired. In obedience the dog is trying to show you how well he/she can do something and is watching you all the time, waiting for the next command. In the show ring the dog is showing itself off to the judge and people around the ring. Showmanship is the art of you, the handler presenting your dog in the best possible way to exhibit the good points and hopefully minimise the bad. A good dog who has 'presence' will catch the judges eye time & again. Teaching your dog to stand, look alert and so on, can take years to learn to do well is as important as presenting your dog clean & well groomed.
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For beautiful leather leads, collars and obedience & tracking training collars & leads contact the German Shepherd Dog League Merchandising Shop

basic lead training
Lead training can start as early as 5-6 weeks . This is a good area for the bribery and corruption brigade as a little bit of food in the hand while encouraging the puppy to follow you will start the puppy in the right direction.
By the time they realise they have a lead on, they have generally got the idea that they should follow you as you are both attached. If the puppy pulls back allow a bit of slack, wait until the puppy calms down and resume operations. When they move forward even if only a few feet, give a very small tit-bit and lots of praise. Use a soft lead and collar - never a use a correction collar on a puppy - they have enough to contend with being attached to something they cannot rid themselves from without the discomfort of a correction collar. After several short sessions of 5 -10minutes, the bribery aspect eases into the background as praise takes over.

Following you around is a natural habit the puppy acquired when very young trotting around after its mother; as the pups new parent and holding the food , they are fairly keen in the first place. The earlier you start, the easier and quicker the response.

Teaching a dog to stand & stay in a show position is a matter of repetition & patience.The puppy is stood in the approximate position or 'stance' that is applicable to the breed, holding the lead/collar up slightly in the right hand, run your left hand along the side , slightly under the belly of the puppy saying 'staannndd, staannndd'. Running your hand slightly under the belly encourages the puppy to stand if he is sagging in the middle or sitting down on the job as you can raise the puppy with your hand as you go.. Even if the puppy holds the position for several seconds, praise the puppy, pat him on the side and allow him to relax. If the puppy is not performing the stand very well, which is quite common, give the puppy a slight tap on the side as both very mild discipline and recalling him to the matter at hand, then try again.

As the puppy learns to hold the position, the length of time increases, always give the puppy a congratulatory pat on the side of the head at the end , to signal the 'exercise' is finished.The puppy learns to associate the pat not only as praise for being good, but that he can now relax.>

The stand for examination is extended somewhat for the ring situation, where the mouth & also testicles in the males are quickly examined whilst in the 'stand' position. Teach the puppy to allow his mouth to be examined by different people. If the puppy is teething (4 - 6 months, the gums are very sensitive and pups can become mouth shy if not handled without due consideration of this condition. Gently lift the lips up and look from side to side, as well as examining the bite, a quick glance, particularly with a baby puppy is quite sufficient for most judges.

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