schutzhund

SCHUTZHUND IS A GERMAN WORD MEANING
PROTECTION DOG
, BUT THE SPORT OF
SCHUTZHUND IS MUCH MORE. IT’S AN
INTERNATIONALLY COMPETITIVE DOG TRAINING
SPORT IN THREE PHASES OF DOG TRAINING.

TRACKING: this consists of precisely following an
aged track of a human and indication of articles
dropped by that individual. This has application in
search and rescue work. It is a very challenging
portion of a schutzhund test where the dog
works independently with little influence from his
handler.

OBEDIENCE: this is the basis of the working
relationship between a good dog and their
handler. The schutzhund dog must precisely
execute various commands on and off-leash
while under distraction. The dog must remain
under complete control of the handler while
performing various heeling, motion and
retrieving exercises.

PROTECTION: this consists of a series of exercises
where the dog displays his natural protection
abilities combined with precise training. The dog
must show courage and high protection drives all
while under strict control of the handler. This
phase of the sport has applications in personal
protection, police work and most importantly;
the devoted Family Companion. As you can
readily appreciate, schutzhund is a proving
ground for those inherited traits and training
techniques that make certain dogs loyal, useful
members of your family. Unstable, nervous,
overly aggressive, or timid dogs are identified
through schutzhund competitions and are
removed from the breeding program. Before a
dog is allowed to compete in the protection
phase, he must demonstrate his stability around
various distractions including cyclists, traffic,
strangers, children and other dogs. Unacceptable
behavior or training techniques that do not work,
result in dogs that do not obtain their
schutzhund titles. The best breeding and the best
training result in the best performances.

RESULTS: there are those who import
schutzhund titled dogs and a growing number
who compete in this demanding dog training
sport. Some of the trainers will actually title dogs
and a few will qualify for National competitions. A
handful of elite trainers will win or place at these
National competitions. An even smaller group will
qualify and compete at the World
Championships. We’ve been there. On the
podium. Many times…