Chloe & ZorroRottweilers and German Shepherds are Family
A friend of mine with a delightful pit told me that although her dog was reasonably good with other dogs, certainly with mine, but she would sometimes notice a hardening in its eye with other dogs so it was something she monitored during interactions. It is not something she denied in owning a pit.
I dont think I would have any luck teaching my kelpie to be a fighting dog she just doesnt have it in her. She is also a straight casting dog unlike my BC who is hardwired with a killer cast on sheep. I have trained a cast in my kelpie but it is unreliable under pressure as she comes from yard lines so when I want sheep fetched from a distance I use my purpose bred casting dog whio is paddock bred. You would unlikely be able to train a BC as a livestock guardian dog like the Maremma. They dont have the right genetics.
Have you ever seen a working bred jack russell dispatch rats in a barn, they are machines.
Sure you get dog aggression across all breeds and you get dogs that are poorly bred and not true to their breed characteristics. The way they are raised certainly has big influences but in general working breeds were heavily bred and selected for certain traits for the job they were bred for. Certainly you could gets pits that had dog aggression heavily selected out of them but you are then breeding them away from their original purpose, just as bench bred Border collies have lost a lot of their herding traits.
To me it is responsible dog ownership to understand your breed, its lineage, and the possibilities that come with that lineage and train and manage accordingly.
Last edited by Kalacreek; 12-10-2013 at 09:56 AM.
I know it is a serious topic but I had to laugh at the previous comment about BC as guard dogs.
My sister, about twenty years ago ( at that time she had a 5 yr old BC) heard a knock on the door one day. A policeman was there with a man who had confessed to breaking into houses around the town. He said " this is the house I climbed through the window and that is the nice dog I patted! She discovered her 50 cent collection had gone but hadn't previously noticed as it was at the back of a drawer. ...some guard dog
Maggie barks if we are home but otherwise is invisible if someone comes into the back yard she doesn't know, hides down the side of the house or under a bush...total chook..brkkk bkkkk
Last edited by farrview; 12-10-2013 at 09:31 AM.
Yes my Border collies are the same, although very welcoming to strangers and would probably assist the thief, although I was actually referring to them as not being suitable as livestock guardians LOL.
My cattle dogs on the other hand although neutral to marginally friendly to strangers when I am around would not take kindly to someone breaking in or attacking me.
Last edited by Kalacreek; 12-10-2013 at 10:07 AM.
I agree that genetics do matter. But to people who keep their dogs as backyard ornaments, a dog is dog is a dog. If they know that little about dogs that they don't make an effort to meet their most basic general needs, it is highly unlikely they will be aware of breed specific needs and subtleties. They shouldn't be owning a dog full stop and though them owning a JRT would be far less risk to others than them owning a pitbull or Rotweiler, it would still be abuse.
The videos I posted show that Pitbulls are not like some people claim them to be....I've heard many bad things said about GSDs...Rotties and Dobermanns that just defies belief. A GSD is a sheep dog...does my GSD know how to heard sheep...no. A Rottie was a cattle dog and latter pulled carts...do Rotties know to do these things...no. The Dobermann was bred to be a vicious guard dog...are Dobes vicious guard dogs...no. A few years ago a shopkeeper put a Dobermann in the backyard of the shop...someone broke in and stole the Dobermann...so what does this all mean...dogs aren't born trained...it's up to the owner and in some cases that's the problem.
Chloe & ZorroRottweilers and German Shepherds are Family
No one said that training wasn't necessary to make dogs do things their breeds were selected for nor that you cannot train a dog to do the opposite of what their genes are wired for. That doesn't mean that genetics don't matter. You can try as hard as you can to teach a Lab to herd, you're not going to have much success because they will lack the focus, the intelligence and all sorts of other genetic traits that are required to do the job. That doesn't mean that every herding breed dog is going to have all those traits to the level required to be able to be trained for all types of herding jobs or any at all, as Kalacreek says. But even if they can't become good working dogs, they still have lots of the traits of that breed.
Look at our staghound pup. Compared to my kelpie cross she seems thick as a brick in some ways. She has FA focus, except for moving objects/animals at a certain distance. These are some of the traits I expect in a hunting dog. (I sound negative about her, but I love her to bits probably because of those traits)
Now I know this staghound can be trained a solid recall. But it's going to take a LOT more effort than it did to train my kelpiex for example. And maybe she can be trained to leave guinea pigs alone but that is going to take even more effort and I never would've risked it with my old staghound, no matter how well behaved she was.
It is unfortunate that people came up with the idea to breed dogs to fight with other dogs. But it has become a trait of the breed that they are more prone to become dog aggressive. Of course that doesn't mean that all of them do. But it is more important for these breeds to be socialised early and intensively. If that doesn't happen, the dog will most likely revert to behaviour that is bred into his genes. If my staghound pup gets thrown into the backyard for years without attention and then escapes, it is quite likely that she could kill a cat when she gets out. If this happens to a pitbull, it is more likely that they will kill a dog when they get out. If it's a BC, they might just run to the park and join someone else's game of fetch!
The less time you spent on training (or the worse you are at it, I suppose), the more likely the dogs will just revert to instinctive behaviour and that has lots to do with genes and breed specifics.
Breed or instinct - has something to do with it, as does the physical strength - some dogs would take a lot longer to kill a human than others - tho they could all kill a baby. Cats do that by sleeping on their faces and suffocating them. Keep your cat out of the cot.
So this is a video about training against the instinct - of the species and the dog (there's a very cute boxer who isn't as naturally trainable as a Border collie).
Intelligence isn't Everything. - YouTube
Even with the top fighting dogs - they're supposed to stop on command or when grabbed by a human (physical cue / signal), they're not supposed to turn around and bite the human. When they do that - something is wrong - with their environment, training (or training by not training), or even their brain/body.
Herding dogs - natural instinct is to chase moving things (as with sight hounds) but they need to stop on command or they're not much use and they can kill stock. Guarding dogs - need to be fierce with strangers but gentle and affectionate with people they know. If they're left outside alone all the time - everyone is a stranger.
So yes - instinct is a factor but not in the way that some people think and banning particular breeds - ie all dogs of that breed whether they've done something wrong or not - doesn't reduce the number of dog bites.
Interestingly - I'm watching WA govt - trying to stop shark attacks by introducing shark attracting bait to swimming areas - urk. Seriously - it's not going to work. Controlling the over fishing of shark food and by catch kill of shark food like seals and penguins might help more. Even tagging as many GWS as possible would help more - then at least they'd know where the sharks were.
My working bred BC is a different matter altogether he had 200 of my neighbours sheep that wandered through my fences rounded up at age 6 months before I had done any training on sheep at all. A wonderful display of pure instinct of traits heavily selected for.
Original instincts can surface in various breeds. A couple of my bench bred heelers are not useful on stock work but they still have the tendency to nip heels which surfaces sporadically in certain situations and I am mindful of this and manage accordingly especially around horses and children.
Pitties were selected for dog aggression end of story. I am not saying that every pit bull is going to be dog aggressive but it is something that a responsible pit bull owner is aware of. Yes training is very important but to be blind to the possibility of a trait surfacing in a certain situation is what gets certain breeds potentially into trouble.
I have met many nice dobes but as a child walking to school with a friend was viciously attacked by one out in the front yard playing with its owner as we walked by. My friend bore the brunt and was badly mauled. The man claimed it had never done anything like that before and was well trained which was found to be correct under investigation by the police. What triggered the attack is anyones guess. We were out walking our well trained whippet when he spied a kangaroo. He was gone with the wind despite and ran for miles, oblivious to anything. Note to keep on lead when bush walking where furry animals could run. I notice many traits that are not useful anymore but often seem to be breed specific.
I for one will treat all pit bulls with respect when my own personal dogs are involved, just the same as I treat many other particularly large powerful breeds with respect particularly if I dont know them.. Owning cattle dogs comes with a certain level of responsibility and training that I am well aware of. Most of my cattle dogs have had wonderful temperaments and are well trained but I am mindful of the nip factor that some may display on a fast moving vehicle and the odd fetlock or heel in the heat of the moment.
As I said the owners of pit bulls that I personally know are well aware of the responsibility and never leave their dogs unattended playing with other dogs, no matter how good they perceive them to be, and they keep an eye on their body language and that of the other dogs. These are the owners that suffer when other people are not so responsible and ignore the possibility.
A friends toy poodle was shaken to death and mauled by a police trained Rottie being walked by a police officer. Go figure. Once the attack started there was not a thing anyone could do. The officer was completely surprised as it coexisted with other small dogs and other police dogs.
My friends pitties played with my dogs nicely on many occasion but we were both watchful of any change in mood or dynamic during play.
Last edited by Kalacreek; 12-11-2013 at 10:05 PM.
There are currently 1 users browsing this thread. (0 members and 1 guests)