Posts Tagged ‘Schutzhund’

Personal Protection Dogs

#4 - Personal Protection Dogs

Belgian Malinois by CPI
Price: US $65,000
Rich people are paranoid. They live in gated communities, they put gates around their homes, they buy security systems that rival the White House, they LoJack their luxury vehicles, they handcuff briefcases to their wrists and rich people love family pets that double as trained killing machines. While poodles and jack terriers haven’t made the cut as personal protection dogs, if you are rich you have choice. Belgian Malinois and German Shepherds are the most stylish but Dobermans, Rottweilers and my favorite the Giant Schnauzer offer alternatives for the non-traditional, freewheeling upper crust.

I know what you are thinking, your dog Rex bit the neighbor and he had no special training at all…what more could you get for $65,000? Like rich people, it starts with breeding. The crème de le crème are scooped up from well-heeled puppy mills in Europe. I image young Rover frolicking in alpine meadows, a castle as his backdrop while yodeling Swiss maids serve up healthy portions of foie gras and lump caviar before whisking him away on a private jet en route to the canine equivalent of WestPoint. Breeding however is simply not enough.

Protection dogs undergo extensive training to hone obedience skills and protection skills. For the uninitiated this includes training in the sport of Schutzhund or French ring sport. These are a mix of equestrian, but substitute dogs for horses, and UFC but with only one combatant fighting and the other wearing a gigantic and comedic padded suit while dogs gnaw on his privates. These skills are augmented with off-leash training, fight and bite training and integration training. All of this means that your family pet is an adorable fur ball around the kids but capable of subduing any would-be assailant on command.

Speaking of commands, your 65,000 spondoolicks gives you a veritable quiver of canine protection strategies including ‘aggressive alert’, ‘directed alert’, ‘aggressive secure’, ‘covert secure’ for the CIA operative in you, ‘protective escape’ and the patented ‘rest assured’ so you don’t lose a moment of sleep wondering who is skulking about the estate. There is a command for any scenario giving owners the wherewithal to extract themselves from any sweat-inducing situation that may arise within the security patrolled walls of their neighborhood or the dangers that lurk outside their favorite luxury spa.

Ultimately though, the money isn’t really being spent on training the dog to attack intruders it is being spent on making sure the family pet doesn’t maul the gardener while trimming the hedges or attack the pool boy while he chats up the maid. Naturally, I wager that the mother-in-law doesn’t know the safe word to call off the family assassin.

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