I What a Trained Protection Dog for My Family - Should i Get a Puppy?
No, you DO NOT and probably SHOULD NOT get a puppy if your ultimate goal is to have a family personal defense or protection dog and here are some reasons why...
With a pup you simply dont know what you are getting. Its like a human baby, how do you look at one and determine if its college material or not, good doctor, musician or lawyer? How does one tell if the human baby will have a good character or personality or temperament? By his parents??? Well, we all know that's not always the case. Sometimes the apple falls close to the tree and sometimes what falls isnt even an apple.
In regards to pups, there are tests that we can do to kinda see if they have prey drive, if they are sound, sensitive or shy etc but we can not see defense drive or fight drive or how balanced the drives are. Yes, coming from good bloodlines help but there are absolutely no guarantees no matter what you are told. Each pup (each human) is an individual and is those individual traits that make a dog desirable or undesirable for family protection dogs, police or military work. I guess almost any dog can bite, its all else that must be whole if the dog is to make it into a family environment.
Aside from the fact that with a pup you just will not know how it will grow up to be there is also the issue of proper raising and imprinting specifically for defense and protection work. There is a 99.9% chance that if an inexperienced handler/trainer get a good pup with potential for defense work he or she will ruin it by improper imprinting and socialisation. Assuming a pup has all the desired traits we look for in a quality family or personal protection dog they must be harvested correctly and proper imprinting and socialisation becomes the most important part of the dogs training. Studies show that the optimal imprinting time for pups is 7 weeks of age. Its the time in the dogs life when its more susceptible to behavioral shaping by its caretakers.
Most people that are considering a cute puppy for future protection work do so hoping the pup will bond with the family stronger or faster that a young trained dog would. This, however, is a misconception and thou pups will bond with its owners so do young dogs. There are 2 more stages in a dogs life, the juvenile period which is from 12 weeks to 6 months and adulthood, when any tendencies seen in the socialisation period become more fixed or evident. Its during the juvenile period that the pup is more susceptible to change so problem behavior must be corrected or it will get worst. For example food guarding is a common behavior from juvenile pups, especially from pups that are alpha or territorial in nature. If food aggression is not corrected at this stage it will become difficult thou not impossible to change as an adult.
In summary, cleaning up after your pup until house trained and putting up with some chewing is the least of your challenges. Puppies are undeniably cute and if you have the time and money to invest in the acquisition of a good pup and the proper raising and socialisation it requires and are willing to take somewhat of a chance as to his innate personality and traits go for it, otherwise, we strongly recommend you consider a young trained dog. This is the absolute best way to find a dog that suits your lifestyle and exceeds your expectations for years to come.
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