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Old 02-19-2012, 06:57 PM   #976
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LOL, yeah right! I watch quite a bit of TV, or rather have it on as background noise, and my dogs pay *zero* attention other than perking up at sounds of neonatal animals in distress, like when they raid a cat hoarder's house and all the kittens are mewing. Coke will bark if there's a loud doorbell sound (which I find hilarious since the place were living when we got him and lived there for three years never had a working doorbell).

The other day I was editing a video someone shot of one of my training sessions and Pan was sleeping at my feet. He heard me say his name and give a command on the video, so he perked up and did what I commanded on the video.
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Old 03-09-2012, 02:05 PM   #977
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Rest in Peace Sheeva (1995-2012). You were my best friend who gave me and those you knew unconditional love. I will miss you so much. My heart aches at losing you. I will love you forever and I will see you again.

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Old 03-09-2012, 02:54 PM   #978
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I'm sorry, Justin. What a sweet portrait of her.
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Old 03-09-2012, 10:01 PM   #979
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Run free, Sheeva

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Old 03-11-2012, 12:41 AM   #980
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Old 04-02-2012, 10:05 AM   #981
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Love this thread .
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Old 04-03-2012, 07:47 PM   #982
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This interesting article about traffic-stop drug searches and Fourth Amendment rights had a section on the problems of treating K-9 unit drug dogs' alerts as probable grounds for a search:
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[We] showed the video of [a suspect's] stop to two K-9 experts.

Gene Papet is executive director of K9 Resources, a company that trains detection dogs, including police dogs. Papet found a number of problems with the way [Officer] Reichert handled his dog. "Just before the dog alerts, you can hear a change in the tone of the handler's voice. That's troubling. I don't know anything about this particular handler, but that's often an indication of a handler that's cuing a response." In other words, it's indicative of a handler instructing the dog to alert, not waiting to see whether the dog will alert. "You also hear the handler say at one point that the dog alerted from the front of the car because the wind is blowing from the back of the car to the front, so the scent would have carried with the wind," Papet says. "But the dog was brought around the car twice. If that's the case, the dog should have alerted the first time he was brought to the front of the car. The dog only alerted the second time, which corresponded to what would be consistent with a vocal cue from the handler."

Russ Jones is a former police officer with 10 years in drug enforcement, including as a K-9 officer. He's now a member of Law Enforcement Against Prohibition, a group of current and former cops and prosecutors who favor ending the war on drugs. "That dog was going to do what ever (Officer Reichert) needed it to do," Jones says. "Throughout the video, the dog is looking for handler feedback, which isn't how it's supposed to work."

In the 2005 case Illinois v. Caballes, the US Supreme Court ruled that having a drug dog sniff the exterior of a vehicle during a routine traffic stop does not violate the Fourth Amendment. But in a dissent to that opinion, Justice David Souter pointed to mounting evidence that drug dogs aren't as infallible as police departments often claim. Souter noted a study that the state of Illinois itself used in its briefs, showing that in lab tests, drug dogs fail 12.5% - 60% of the time. Since then, more evidence has emerged to support Souter's concerns.

The problem isn't that the dogs aren't capable of picking up the scent, it's that dogs have been bred to please and interact with humans. A dog can easily be manipulated to alert whenever needed. But even with conscientious cops, a dog without the proper training may pick up on its handler's body language and alert whenever it detects its handler is suspicious.

In one study published last year in the journal Animal Cognition, researchers rigged some tests designed to fool dogs into falsely alerting and others designed to trick handlers into thinking a package contained narcotics (it didn't). Of the 144 total searches performed, the dogs falsely alerted 123 times. More interesting, the dogs were twice as likely to falsely alert to packages designed to trick their handlers than those designed to trick the dogs.

In 2011, the Chicago Tribune published a review of drug dog searches conducted over three years by police departments in the Chicago suburbs. The paper found that just 44% of dog "alerts" led to the discovery of actual contraband. Interestingly, for Hispanic drivers the success rate dipped to 27%, again supporting the theory that drug dogs tend to confirm the suspicions (and, consequently, the biases) of their handlers.

A 2006 statistical analysis of police dog tests by University of North Carolina law professor Richard Myers concluded that the dogs aren't reliable enough to provide probable cause for a search.

[We] obtained the records for one Illinois state police K-9 unit for an 11-month period in 2007 and 2008. Of the 136 times this particular dog alerted to the presence of drugs during a traffic stop over that period, 35 of the subsequent hand searches found measurable quantities of illegal drugs. See accompanying article for a more thorough analysis of the K-9 records:
An analysis of the K9 records shows that only 25.7% of the drug dog's "alerts" resulted in police finding a measurable quantity of illicit drugs. Just 13% resulted in the recovery of more than 10 grams of marijuana, generally considered an amount for personal use, and 10.4% turned up enough drugs to charge the motorists or their passengers with at least one felony.
Jones, the former narcotics and K-9 officer, said those sorts of numbers are why he now opposes the drug war. "90% of these dog-handler teams are utter failures. They're just ways to get around the Fourth Amendment," he says. "When I debate these people around the country, I always challenge the K-9 officers to a double-blind test to see how accurate they and their dogs really are. They always refuse."

These figures strongly suggest that while the Supreme Court has ruled that there's nothing invasive about an exterior drug dog sniff of a car, in truth, the dog’s alert may be nothing more than the dog confirming its handler's hunches--which is exactly what the Fourth Amendment is supposed to protect against.
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Old 04-03-2012, 10:41 PM   #983
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I know a good deal about these dogs and how they work and have to agree with the skepticism to an extent. There is such a huge spectrum as far as the quality of these dogs, their training, how they were proofed, the materials used (pseudo-scent vs the real thing), etc that when it comes to our rights I'm find erring on the side of the dog making a mistake. That, and I just care a lot less about drugs than I do about, say, dogs that are used to apprehend actual suspects or used to track ditched weapons. The latter I find really valuable. Often a properly trained dog can find a tossed gun in minutes while it would take several offers hours to do the same search, if they're able to find the weapon at all.

There's a chance I may be training one of my dogs for narcotics and was told that if I do, I have to keep a detailed training log from day one. I asked why, since I've never before logged my dogs' training and was told that if the dog were to ever been involved in a case and I were to end up in court, I'd have to back up all the training, all the finds the dog has ever done.
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Old 04-11-2012, 10:20 PM   #984
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Pan's the fastest German Shepherd in North America!!!

Pan Progress.wmv - YouTube
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Old 04-27-2012, 06:26 PM   #985
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I remember growing up I always wanted a Border Collie or just any dog. My dad does not like dogs, found them to be too much work, and so I never got one and grew up with cats (and horses, though that wasn't at home, it was friends and the barn I took lessons at). To make up for it he did let me dog-sit for family friends and such and I learned how to take care of other people's animals when they went on vacation. I got my first dog, a German Shepherd, shortly after my 20th birthday after 3.5 years of living on my own.

It is a lot of work, but I love it. I'm definitely a dog person the same way I'm a horse person. I love being able to interact with and have a relationship with my animals. Cats are so independent and while I love them and will always have them, it's not always as rewarding. I love that when I train and work with dogs I can get a result and I know it goes both ways.

Can safely say after years of being warned about all the hard work, I'll definitely continue to have dogs. My dad was missing out.

Here's my puppers at 5 months (significant other holding the leash) :


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Originally Posted by Liesje View Post
Pan's the fastest German Shepherd in North America!!!

Pan Progress.wmv - YouTube
Way to go Pan!

You are an excellent trainer, Lies. I hope I can someday inspire my dogs to reach their potential as well as you do yours.
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Old 04-30-2012, 05:34 AM   #986
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We are finally dog owners!



I'm kinda nervous though, I've never had a dog before and obviously they take more work than cats.
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Old 04-30-2012, 09:37 AM   #987
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Question - first night. We've put him in the laundry and he hasn't stopped yelping for like 20 minutes... do we leave him in there?

He's just gone quiet...
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Old 04-30-2012, 10:54 AM   #988
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Yes, it's called crate training. You should get a proper kennel for him as soon as possible though, since I'm assuming the laundry room won't be a permanent home for him. Establish a routine where he always sleeps in there and you can start to teach him where to go to the bathroom and where not to, as they never go where they perceive their "home" to be. Once the dog is crate trained, you can start to let him sleep in your room or whatever without fear of him soiling it.

Depending on the dog, prepare for a lot of noise.
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Old 04-30-2012, 01:16 PM   #989
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Yes, it's called crate training. You should get a proper kennel for him as soon as possible though, since I'm assuming the laundry room won't be a permanent home for him. Establish a routine where he always sleeps in there and you can start to teach him where to go to the bathroom and where not to, as they never go where they perceive their "home" to be. Once the dog is crate trained, you can start to let him sleep in your room or whatever without fear of him soiling it.

Depending on the dog, prepare for a lot of noise.
My pup is crate trained now. It took about a month of whining/barking (back when he was 8 weeks old) but now he's 5 months and quietly sleeps in his crate all night long. He likes being in there and will often chill in there on his own when we let him out during the day.
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Old 04-30-2012, 03:09 PM   #990
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Oh my that puppy is CUTE!

I would crate train as well, it's safer and more useful later on. Once the pup enters the massive chewing phase you could be missing chunks of molding, baseboard, drywall, electrical cords, and anything else that isn't literally nailed down....

Some dogs take to a crate instantly and others do not. Nikon was in the "do not" category. He howled and screamed for hours the first several days. He acted wild and basically had to be "crate broken". Of course many people never use crates at all for their dogs so it's not a requirement. For us it is because the training and competing we do require all dogs to be safely confined (read: crated) while not working/competing and I've had a few instances of injury or illness where the dog must be on crate rest and it's a lot less stressful for a dog that has already grown to view the crate as their own personal den then a dog that is not used to confinement. The nice thing about using a crate with a puppy is that they don't have to be so separated. I keep mine right next to my side of the bed. They can see me and smell me. Usually with a baby puppy I take them to bed with me and they fall asleep on me while I read, then I carefully move them into the crate. They fuss a bit but seem to settle MUCH faster than shoving a fully awake pup in the crate, especially if the crate is in a separate part of the house. Nikon was from a litter of 11 which probably contributed to his distress at being crated at night. By letting him fall asleep with me and then go into the crate next to us it was a little less stressful for everyone but he still demonstrated his full range of vocalizations each night for a week or so.

And yes, crate training majorly helps with potty training unless you're one of the lucky few that get an 8 week old already trained. Not me, I swear my boys had underdeveloped bladders!
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