Demand for dogs capable of carrying out protective service does not decline, as well as demand for trainers. This is where a funny collision arises: on the one hand, some breeders and kennel owners try to accustom the layman to the next myth that cool dogs do not need to learn good lines – all science is in their blood, and in extreme situations, genetic mechanisms work, accurate as a swiss watch. On the other hand, most trainers claim that every dog should be taught at least the general training course, this is like a letter for a person. It seems to sound logical …
First, let’s define the terminology. Although the phrase “bodyguard dog” is quite common, I would still prefer to use the term “protective dog” in cases where the task of the dog is to guard the owner, or “guard dog” when it comes to protecting the territory.
So what is, in my understanding, a protective dog?
At one time, in the article “AMERICAN PITBULTERIERS IN A PROTECTIVE SERVICE” (“Friend” No. 11-12,2000), I already spoke out on this subject. “The purpose of training a protective city dog is to train not a killer dog, but a guard dog, which gives its owner time to assess the situation and make a decision (enter the fight, run away, etc.). Below I will comment more on these words But, I want to warn you right away that without claiming to be “the ultimate truth”, I am only setting forth my opinion, with which some trainers will agree, while others will argue.
So, a protective dog is one that can engage in combat with one or more attackers, either on the owner’s command or on its own initiative, evaluating the situation and deciding to attack on its own.
Of course, in the conditions of the city, the first requirement for a protective dog is its controllability, that is, clear knowledge and implementation of the basic commands of general obedience …
Very often, a conversation on first contact about training in protective service begins with the words: “Do you poison dogs?” As a rule, the traditional answer of trainers is: “They poison the rats, dogs are trained!” However, the term “train” does not mean all instructors mean the same thing.
If in the process of training in the course of general obedience the main burden is borne not so much by the animal as its owner, then in training the protective service little depends on the owner. Here, basically, it all depends on the genetics of the animal, on the skill of the instructor and the defendants.
Unfortunately, not all service dogs shine with talent, so the instructor’s skill is not to spoil the strong, raise the average level and tell the whole bitter truth to the weak owners.
One often hears that an untrained dog can protect the owner. Yes maybe! I think one of hundreds, or maybe two hundred. If you have such a dog, then congratulations – you are lucky!
Here you can draw an analogy with martial arts. There are talented people, the so-called “born fighters”. But, meeting with the same talented, but TRAINED fighter, they, as a rule, lose. Why? Because the trained fighter knows how to beat, where to beat and when to hit!
Similarly, a talented dog that bites from God still needs to be trained: how to bite, where to bite and, most importantly, WHEN to bite!
We have already said that the ability to frighten a passerby on the street or push him with his chest is not the defensive service that the four-legged bodyguard has trained. In my opinion, if the dog has decided to attack, then it must complete the attack with a deep and strong grip, while not being afraid to engage in the fight against an actively opposing person or even several people.
Here the question is relevant: “But would such a dog be dangerous to others?” You can answer this: “It will be if it turns out to be in the hands of an irresponsible owner, just as dangerous is any weapon in the hands of an insane person.” Here you need to understand that when you take on the training and training of a guard dog, you have a huge responsibility, because your slovenliness can turn into trouble not only for you, but also for others (for which, incidentally, the criminal code provides for liability).
Beginners often ask: “And what is more effective – when a dog bites his arm or leg?” Or: “Which is better – a tight grip on the forearm or work with an interception?” I believe that if a situation is created when it is required to use a service dog, the damage from its actions should be as minimal as possible. A tight grip on the forearm is usually enough to prevent attempts to attack the wearer and not damage the attacker’s vital organs. For small dogs (for example, Staffordshire terriers, bull terriers), this grip is not always convenient, so sometimes it is advisable to train them to work on the legs. The effect of the use of steel jaws, especially when grasping a full mouth in the forearm, is similar to a powerful electric shock, i.e. a person for a while simply paralyzes.