WORKING DOG OR HOME FAVORITE?
The fact that training and education are different things, I realized when, by chance, a year-old bitch of a boxer Dinara came into my hands. I never knew who were its masters, but one thing I know for sure: they were excellent teachers. Dinara did not know a single team – if we consider the teams standard OKD teams. But at the same time she behaved flawlessly both at home and in the noisy city streets, it seemed, telepathically perceiving my desires. Sometimes it seemed that the dog understood human speech. Good girl. Do you need to train such a dog?
I was then 12 years old and my dream was to engage in official dog breeding. I signed up for the young trainer section at the DOSAAF dog breeding club and, oh joy, my dog and I were accepted into the dog training group. According to the general course of training. With a sinking heart, I came to the first lesson, full of inspiration and naive ideas. Very quickly, both that and the other dissolved into the harsh reality. No, I was (fortunately) not forced to use hard repressive methods towards my dog, but I had enough observations about how the other trainers do it. Then I said to myself: I do not need a diploma in training my dog. In the end, the boxer does not belong to official breeds, Dinara has no documents, so that the exhibition and breeding does not threaten her. And we left the group.
Later, I got a service breed puppy, a rottweiler bitch named Bianca. It so happened that I transferred to her the style of communication I was used to with my first dog. And Bianka grew up obedient, docile, understanding me perfectly and without needing shouts and jerks with a leash. Actually, the leash usually peacefully rested in my pocket. Everything was like in the good old days, with clever Dinara. But Bianka had a pedigree, and I – the possibility of an active career in service cynology: the possibility of participating in exhibitions, competitions and shows of official dog breeding. My dog could have a beautiful velvet pad, full of medals. For this it was necessary to get a diploma in dog training. So to say, appropriate education.
For a start, a diploma in early education, a general course of training. By that time I already had a sufficient stock of theoretical knowledge and experience of practical communication with dogs. We will not go to the group, I decided, we will cope with the general course on our own. Bianke was a little over 10 months old when I signed up for the test. The instructor looked at us skeptically: do not give up, she said, better not be cold in vain (the weather was typically November) and go home. Bianca was then the only rottweiler not only in the city, but also in the whole republic, but there were (from where only?) Quite a few experts-experts who asserted that the rottweiler was not suitable for professional training. Say, bites well, but dumb as a cork. Knowing that Bianca is at an age when puppies are still being written to the OKD group, and that I worked with her on my own (with my experience), no one doubted that we would fail the tests.
We passed them. The whole program worked without serious mistakes and confidently approached the diploma of the 2nd degree, but at the last moment lost several points on a wet slippery boom, and the final result was the third degree. Subsequently, we retook 1 degree, but I was probably more happy with this first diploma of my dog than with my own results of state examinations. How, contrary to the opinion of experienced dog lovers, we proved the ability of the Rottweiler to train and the way to the medals was open for us.
At that time, diplomas and medals were an indicator of success for me. As a school certificate with a high average score. I understood that not all of what we learned in school would be useful in my life, and that a certificate with a high score is not a guarantee of future success. But this was also the way I, with clenched teeth, taught hated physics and mathematics. And she trained her dog, achieving higher and higher points in her diplomas.