|Tiller- (Skansen's- Ira in the M|
I DO Exist...To- Drive You Batty
|Barked: Tue Nov 27, '12 11:58am PST |
|This is a good question. Thank you!
I think it depends the way you look at it. I lusted over Giants for about 15 years before I got one. I made my inquiries and did my research and realized I was not ready. Grew up with a majorly hard and aggressive dog, had Dobermans at the time I was getting bored of. Was FAR from "inexperienced" but also was FAR from stupid....I was not ready. Got on GSDs, import lines, the real deal. Then eventually felt I was ready.
I cannot tell you how GLAD I am that I did that. If you fancy a breed where there is that "experienced" requirement, you need to find out WHY. Do not dismiss just because you like the dog. For despite all of my now VERY experienced ways, my first round put me in tears and retrospectively I dare even think how much I would have screwed my dogs up if I had moved sooner than I did.
The question here is fallout, and heck knows Giants have that. I think another very classic example is the Chessie. He's a retriever, but the last thing you want is a Golden guy to leap on that breed. At least have had experience with a harder Lab. A Chessie can be a major time badarse....sort of the off the jag retriever. I know a couple who have been trained as PPDs. I know TONS who are seriously territorial. They can get aggressive towards strange dogs. They can be tough. I mean like German-import-people-love-them sort of TOUGH.
Now with both these breeds, the potential for fallout is major. One thing I love about GSDs is they tolerate mistakes. If you do everything wrong and are in a bad situation, realize it and go back to square one....they are there for you. Part of that is the character balance, part of it is the adaptability, which is in the WOWZERS range. But whatever the case, you can screw it up, they will respond to that, but you can say "do over! and they say "oh, ok, cool beans!" Giants, on the other hand, capitalize on mistakes. It is not simply that you made one, but as a gateway for them to amp into this whole new county, and they are not too kind about heading back. They also are a tricky breed that is too smart for a lot of training out there. They also are a ton more independent than GSDs are. They really want to do this on their own, and when "this" is cause mayhem, be a 90 lbs of walking mischief and overall rather disturbingly comfortable with aggression....you want to step wrong with THAT? Good luck to you.
So you really need, with breeds like this, some experience. You need to get some basic principles down right, or you are just in a losing battle. In terms of their respective working types, they are loads more hardheaded, vigorous, are intense. If you goof up, you are in over your head very fast.
To me personally, I am a lot more comfortable with these phrases as I have been very involved with horses, and as you start riding....let's say you've ridden five years...there are horses you are not yet qualified to ride. You are not up to that level. You perfect your skill, your hands, your seat, the whole bit, then eventually you can ride them. But not yet. I am very ambitious as a person, and I know the minute I heard "stay away from that stallion!" I made it my goal to become a stallion manager And became one. But had the sense that I was waaaay off from where I needed to be. I worked very hard to get there.
I am a breed matcher. It is what I do. You are not ninety. You have your life ahead of you. Work towards your goals. Read what the potentials of the breed are. Don't swell your head or have offended pride. That's my advice. I know in researching Giants early, back in the 80's, I read a real behavioral case where a Giant had set a curfew in his home. A CURFEW! This was written by the actual behaviorist who took that case on. At 10:00, he would not let anyone leave, nor would he let anyone in. The kids would have to climb up the trellis simply to get in. And that was it for me. I had a lot of training experience, but if THAT could happen, and if the very behaviorist wasn't considering that NOVEL? He wasn't! He said that was a Giant. So I had to do more before I ran with that.
But I will tell you the cool thing....I will never do it justice, but it is frozen in my memory. I waited 15 years. I went through two GDSs of substantial pedigree. Found great working dog mentors. And of course Giant mentors, endless research. All this work. This journey. Found the breeder I wanted....who for literally ten years had been talking to me. And so I walk into the airport. I wait. And then there, down the aisle, I see a crate. And in it, a little black puppy with his silly white tapped antenna ears, looking at me. See....I just got a chill saying that. It was him. It was my Giant. I swear it felt like he had been my pen pal for fifteen years and now we finally were meeting. It was just romantic, it felt so right, and I felt so ready. I will never, ever regret taking that journey.
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