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Protection Dog Blog

Shock and Awe

Posted:

April 9, 2019

By

Ruth Godinez

Okay, pictures of dogs strategically biting that “special place” seems sensational and over-the-top. I get it. That's the reason we call it “shock and awe”. It is over-the-top, sensational but also very strategic for a few reasons. First, this strategic targeting is something we use to reserve for smaller dogs. It improves physical leverage, something you want in a violent encounter. However, there is also a second, and maybe even greater benefit. It inflicts immense pain and no doubt takes the aggressor’s mind off of assaulting you, the owner.

The benefit of this type of strategic biting is obvious if faced with a threat. However, there is also an everyday benefit to this “shock and awe” approach as well. Sound strange? Really, a benefit in everyday life? Well before I go into that benefit its helpful to first understand what most people experience from their “protection dog”.

Most people purchase a protection dog but in reality it's a dog just trained for dog sports. It pretty much the standard in our field. Then owners try to turn their protection dogs “on” (instruct to show aggression) shortly after their purchase only to find out their dog doesn’t turn on whatsoever. They then call the dog broker or training center where they purchased the dog. The standard response is "Your dog obviously knows the difference between a real threat and an artificial one. Our dogs are trained only to repsond to real ones.". Imagine purchasing a gun, bringing it to a range, trying to shoot it and it doesn’t fire. Then being told when you go back to the gun dealer if it was a real threat the gun would have worked! Absurd with a gun right? Well its just as absurd with a protection dog. Here’s the point: what level of confidence do you think you would have after instructing your protection dog to “turn on” and he or she did nothing? An easy answer: no confidence.

We have found that clients who have a real sense of what their dogs can do have a deep feeling of security. As most threats today have a gun they have no need to yell, flail their arms or use any other exaggerated gestures. As a matter of fact most threats are pretty passive in appearance. Make no mistake, that passive appearing threat can literally take your life.  

Once you understand the typical threat, occasionally turning your dog on to passive threat just makes sense. It is something we teach clients to do during our three days of handling instruction. It’s simple. No one needs to get bitten or even be at risk. We have found this use of a protection dog is the most common way for clients to feel safe and secure. Something we all want in our everyday life.

Another way to have further confidence in your dog is to participate in our quarterly maintenance programs. We work with you, and your dog, one day every three months for three years. While it is not necessary to do so for your dog to be fully functional it certainly instills confidence as an owner, and furthers your dog’s advanced fighting skills.  

I also have to say when it comes down to it, without a doubt, having your dog taught to strategically bite the crotch takes confidence in your dog to a whole other level. I know it does for me. The dog in the pictures is Bodhi, my personal dog. I'm not saying its necessary but knowing you have “shock and awe” at your disposal at a moments notice sure feels good.  

Bodhi

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