Service Dogs of America
Ultimate Dog Sport

SDA

Working Dog Registry

Titling program for protection, obedience, tracking & search dogs

 

PROTECTION 1 TITLE (P1)

 

Rules and Exercises for the Protection 1 (P1).  The Protection 1 (P1) class is divided into two phases: The Obedience Phase and the Protection Phase.

Introduction: This title is totally designed around the training needs of a family protection dog. The class requires practical and realistic obedience and protection exercises that are considered essentials for developing a safe and dependable dog for protection. The Protection 1 Sleeve is a training title that clearly defines the skills a handler and dog should be able to perform when training or keeping a dog for family protection. In addition, the Protection 1 Sleeve has a difficulty level suitable for beginners and part-time trainers and was created to meet the demands of American dog owners who want, need or enjoy training and owning a dog that has the ability to protect the family. The Protection 1 Sleeve teaches all the fundamentals of both obedience and protection training and lays the foundation for participating in more advanced titles.

 

Basic Obedience Exercises

Points

Protection Exercises

Points

Reporting to the Judge

5

Friendly Greeting

10

Long Down

10

Alert on Command

15

Heeling on leash

or

Heeling off leash

25

 

25

Jump Out 360 threat

25

Sit out of Motion

15

Defense of Handler

35

Down & Recall

20

Re-Friendly Greeting

15

Agility Exercise

25

 

 

TOTAL POINTS

100

TOTAL POINTS

100

 

General Rules for P1

A.  Eligibility: To perform the P1 routine a dog must have earned an FO title. Must be at least 12 months old.

B.  Collar: Only one collar is allowed on the dog for the obedience phase. Single collars include the following: flat, choke chain, fur savor, or similar types of retracting collars, all used on a dead ring. The protection phase allows for the use of two collars; one collar can be a flat collar, fur savor on dead ring, choke collar on dead ring, or a pinch collar on dead ring. A harness may be used in place of one collar. Pinch collars must be worn with an additional collar attached except when used with a harness.

C.  Leash and leash option: The P1/OB1 allows handlers the option of performing any exercise in the obedience phase of the class off leash except where a leash is required. However, exercising this option does not earn any additional points. The Sit out of Motion and Down Out of Motion and Recall exercises must be performed off leash. The leash is to be held in the left hand when heeling. Whenever the leash is removed, the handler must put it away, or hang it around their shoulder or waist with the clasp positioned on the right side of the handler’s body. The protection exercises must be performed on leash. During the protection exercises, the handler has the option of using two leashes, one attached to the control collar and one attached to the harness or flat collar. The leash attached to the control collar may be a tab.

A dog must be leashed when:

1.   First reporting to the Judge or Steward;

2.   When doing the long down honoring exercise;

3.   End of class as soon as all the exercises have been completed;

4.   Whenever a Judge is critiquing the score; or

5.   Whenever the Judge instructs the handler to place a leash on the dog.

6.   During the protection exercises.

 

D.  Praise: When reporting to all assigned areas, teams are required to maintain formal heeling with mild praise permissible once arriving at the start position for the next exercise.

E.  Call name: A handler may use the dog’s name prior to any command.

F.   When heeling is required: For the obedience routine, dog/handler teams are required to perform formal heeling when reporting to all designated areas.

G.  Heeling & hands: The dog should always heel close to the left knee of the handler and the shoulder blade of the dog should be aligned next to the handler’s knee. The dog must not forge ahead, move to the side or lag to the rear. A dog that demonstrates positive, energetic, attentive behavior toward the handler is very desirable. The handler should walk freely with both arms moving freely as if the dog wasn’t there.  All exercises begin and end in the basic position.

H.  Left about turns: Are to be performed as either the (German turn) where the dog circles around the handler or back up in place (FCI International/military) where the dog stays in heel position as the handler turns left. The handler and dog must execute the same turn throughout the obedience phase.

I.     Neutrality test: During its entire performance, a dog is under the neutrality test. A dog that shows extreme aggression, fear, shyness or whose demeanor gives the Judge reason to believe that the dog may not safely be judged may be given a non-qualifying score and excused from the ring and further participation in that trial.

J.   Judge’s instructions: Any place these rules state “Judge’s Instructions” the Judge or Steward can give the instruction.

K.  Qualifying score for P1 title:

1.   OB1 title. A qualifying score in the Obedience Phase of the P1 class requires the passing of the Obedience phase with a score of 70 points or more. Passing the P1 Obedience Phase qualifies the dog to earn the OB1 title.

2.    P1 title. A qualifying score for the P1 Title requires the passing of the P1 Obedience Phase with a score of 70 points or more and passing the P1 Protection Phase with a score of 70 points or more at the same trial.

L.   Scoring note: The score sheet for each exercise has multiple listed features that the Judge is required to assess to determine point deductions. However, the Judge must also assess major or minor imperfection deductions that are not listed on the score sheet for any other deviations from the ideal performance.

M. Acknowledging the Judge and critique: For the P1/OB1 exercises, all handlers are responsible for acknowledging the Judge for instructions on when to report and when concluding the routine. The Judge shall instruct all dog/handler teams where and when to report to receive a critique of the performance and the announcement of the score.

N.  Judge’s note for all evaluations: The Judge will be evaluating the handler and dog on the basis of an ideal performance. All of the listed reasons for imperfection deductions are given as a guide for handlers to have some idea of what is expected. The Judge must assess deductions for other behavior that is not covered or that takes away from the ideal performance. In addition, the Judge will be assessing the dog’s behavior concerning attitude, attention to the handler and the willingness to perform the required exercises. Dogs that display energetic attitude and are attentive and responsive toward their handler will receive the most points.

O.  Knowledge of the routine is scored: The Judge/Steward will announce the exercise to be performed and will then indicate to the handler to start the exercise. Handlers are required to know all exercises and will lose points if performed incorrectly. The point loss will be proportionate to the error and circumstance. This loss can be .5 to 1.5 for minor to as much as 2 to 4 points for major. Because improper use of equipment can be a safety issue or even an advantage, 1/2 of that exercises points will be deducted for reporting with the wrong equipment. The equipment will be corrected prior to continuing. Point deduction will be taken at finish of hand shake in reporting to judge and after the handler acknowledges the Judge for all other exercises.

P.  Pulling a dog from participating in the P1 Protection Phase: When a dog has passed the P1 Obedience Phase, the handler has the option to continue to the protection phase of the class or pull the dog from competing in the protection phase. The handler should inform the Event Secretary of their decision to pull the dog before the dog is scheduled to run. The dog will be marked “Absent” by the Judge for the protection phase on the Trials Results Form/Judge’s Book.

Note: All other general rules on our “general rule page” also apply.  See that page here. General Rules

 

Obedience Routine (P1/OB1)

 

1.   Reporting to the Judge Exercise. The primary purpose of this exercise is to show that the dog/handler team can demonstrate proper heeling and control of a dog while reporting to the Judge. In addition, this exercise is used as a starting point for evaluating temperament and for determining whether the team is suitable for performing the evaluation. Dogs that display extreme shyness or extreme aggression will be excused from further participation.

a)   Judge’s Instructions. The Judge’s instructions for this exercise include the following: indicates to the handlers when and where to report, when to begin the exercise, where to report for the heeling exercise and where to report for conducting the long down.

b)  Exercise Instructions. The Obedience phase starts with two dog/handler teams reporting to the Judge. The handlers report with their dogs on leash, demonstrating proper heeling. Once reaching the Judge, each handler halts with the dog automatically sitting and maintaining a sit throughout the introduction. Handlers are responsible for a formal introduction that includes introducing themselves, giving the dog’s name, stating the type of class for which they are reporting, whether the dog’s heeling exercises will be performed on or off leash and what type of finish the dog performs. On the dog’s score sheet, the Judge notes the handler’s heeling choice and type of finish, after which time the handler shall be committed to the heeling choice as accepted by the Judge. After the introductions, the Judge indicates which team reports for the heeling exercise and which team reports for the long down or honoring exercise.

c)   Scoring the Reporting to the Judge Exercise. This exercise is evaluated primarily on the ability of the dog/handler team to perform a formal introduction to start the routine. The Judge evaluates heeling, introduction procedure and the dog’s behavior during introductions. The dog should display neutral, well-mannered behavior toward the Judge and the other dog/handler team.

Note: If a dog is ruled extremely shy or aggressive, unruly or out of control, the Judge may excuse the dog and handler from performing any additional exercises.

1)   Non-qualifying (Zero) Score. The following must be given a zero on this exercise.

a.   Dog is ruled out of control;

b.   Dog receives more than three commands to sit during the introductions and instructions;

c.   Handler forcing the dog to sit; or

d.   Rough treatment of a dog by a handler.

2)   Major and Minor Imperfections. Imperfections may be major of minor depending on the extent of the following:

a.   Dog is very slow to sit;

b.   Incomplete sit (hovering/space between butt and ground);

c.   Handler gives an extra command;

d.   Improper heeling approaching or leaving the Judge;

e.   Dog’s heeling could be better;

f.     Dog is dull and needs more enthusiasm;

g.   Dog moves slightly during the sit; or

h.   Dog sits crooked.

 

2.   Long Down or Honoring Exercise. The primary element of this exercise is to demonstrate the honoring dog’s ability to remain in the down position while distracted by the presence of the other dog/handler team.

a)   Judge’s Instruction. The Judge indicates where to perform the long down, when the exercise begins, when to re-sit the dog from the down, when the exercise is finished and where to report.     

b)  Exercise Instructions. The long down or honoring exercise starts after the handler reaches the designated area. After acknowledging the Judge, the handler with a single voice or signal command (not both) commands the dog to down. The handler remains beside the dog holding the leash or may drop the leash by the dog and stand on the end; the leash must remain loose and not restrain the dog. The dog must remain in its assigned position while the other dog handler/team performs their routines. After the other dog/handler team completes the agility recall, the handler acknowledges the Judge and on the Judge’s order, the handler verbally commands the dog to sit. Once again, the handler acknowledges the Judge and waits for Judge’s order to report.

c)   Scoring the Long Down or Honoring Exercise. The honoring exercise is primarily evaluated on the ability of the dog to demonstrate a long down while the other dog/handler team performs their required exercises. The exercise evaluation begins when the handler acknowledges the Judge to start the exercise. The dog should down quickly and remain calm and stationary.

1)   Non-Qualifying (Zero) score. The following must be given a zero on this exercise.

a.   Dog refuses to down after three commands;

b.   Handler pushes or touches the dog to make it down; or

c.   Dog moves substantially or stands up before the other dog/handler team has completed half of their routine.

2)   Major and Minor Imperfections. Imperfections may be major or minor depending on the extent of the following:

a.   Dog needs a double command to down;

b.   Handler uses too much body language when giving the down command;

c.   Dog is very slow to down;

d.   Dog moves a substantial distance by creeping or crawling;

e.   Dog refuses to re-sit;

f.     Incomplete sit (hovering/space between butt and ground);

g.   Dog is slow to down;

h.   Dog moves slightly;

i.     Dog whines or barks excessively;

j.     Dog’s re-sit is slow; or

k.   Dog’s performance is dull or sluggish.

 

3.   Heeling on or off Leash Exercise. The primary purposes of these exercises are to demonstrate the ability of the dog and handler to work smoothly as a team and the ability of the dog to stay in the heel position.

a)   Judge’s Instructions. The Judge indicates where to start, when the handler is to remove the leash (if the handler is exercising this option) when to start, when to restart after each halt, when to leave the markers and when the exercise is complete.

b)  Exercise Instructions. The handler and dog (on leash) report to the correct area as specified by the Judge. Handler removes the leash and puts it away if the exercise is going to be performed off leash. The heeling exercise starts with the handler acknowledging the Judge and the dog in the basic position. The dog should willingly and freely follow the handler upon the voice command to heel. At the beginning of the exercise, the handler must proceed in a straight line 40 to 50 normal paces without stopping. A left turn about is performed and after 10 to 15 paces of normal heeling, a running exercise and a slow exercise, each of at least 10 to 15 paces are to be demonstrated. The handler must go directly from the fast pace to the slow pace and then back to normal pace. Each change of pace allows the handler to give a single heel command. After the slow pace, the handler resumes normal pace and continues another 10 to 15 paces and then performs a right turn for 10 to 15 paces and then another right turn and continues forward for another 20 paces and then performs a left turn about and continues another 10 to 15 paces and halt. At this time, the handler acknowledges the Judge and continues another 10 to 15 paces and performs a left turn and then continues heeling toward a set of markers (obstacles) where the handler must perform a heeling pattern around the markers. The markers shall be rubber cones or similar objects placed on the corners of a rectangle approximately eight to ten square feet. When entering the markers, a right and left turn must be demonstrated, after the turns, the handler halts and the dog sits (in the basic position) within the group of markers. The handler acknowledges the Judge, continues heeling back to the original starting position, and performs a halt. The handler then acknowledges the Judge for concluding the exercise.

Additional instructions for this exercise concern the actions of the handler. The handler is only permitted to use voice commands when starting the exercise and when changing pace. When the handler comes to a stop, the dog should sit in the basic position without being influenced by the handler. During the halt, the handler is not permitted to change the basic position and must not step sideways toward the dog.

c)   Scoring the Heeling on or off Leash Exercise. The Judge is evaluating the correctness of the heeling position and the behavior of the dog. Dogs that display positive, energetic attitudes and attentiveness to the handler are most desirable.

     Note:  Points earned are the same for performing the heeling routine on or off leash!

1)   Non-qualifying (Zero) scores. The following must be given a zero score on this exercise:

a.   Handler giving the dog constant or repeated extra commands or signals;

b.   Handler slapping the leg or snapping fingers repeatedly;

c.   Handler continually adapting pace to dog;

d.   Unqualified heeling; or

e.   Dog breaks or leaves the handler’s side and cannot regain its composure and resume heeling;

2)   Major and Minor Imperfections. Imperfections may be major or minor depending on the extent of the following:

a.   Handler moving forward and then giving a “heel” command shall be penalized a major imperfection;

b.   Handler gives a signal command to heel;

c.   Handler giving extra commands or signals;

d.   Dog moves out of the basic heel position before a command from the handler;

e.   Dog anticipating command;

f.     Dog crowding the handler, forging, heeling wide, heeling in an improper position, lagging, poor sitting on the halts, sniffing and any other additional heeling imperfections;

g.   Dog fails to stop and sit automatically in the proper basic position each time the handler is required to “Halt”;

h.   Incomplete sit (hovering/space between butt and ground);

i.     Failure to change pace by the dog or handler during the fast or slow portion of the heeling exercise;

j.     Dog sniffs a Steward or marker; or

k.   Lacks natural smoothness.

 

4.   Sit Out of Motion Exercise. The principal purpose of this exercise is to demonstrate the dog’s ability to perform heeling and upon a verbal command from the handler, perform a stationary sit while the handler proceeds in straight line without stopping, turns to face the dog and returns to the dog at the end of the exercise.

a)   Judge’s Instruction. The Judge indicates where and when to start, when to return to the dog after the sit, and when the exercise is complete.

b)  Exercise Instructions. The dog/handler team reports to the designated area as indicated by the Judge. The handler will acknowledge the Judge, remove the leash (if attached) and, from the basic position, the handler and a free heeling dog will proceed in a straight line for a minimum of 10 or maximum of 15 paces, and upon voice command by the handler, the dog should move quickly into the sit position while the handler does not interrupt their pace nor turn about. After another minimum of 10 or maximum of 15 paces, the handler stops and turns around to face the dog. When instructed by the Judge, the handler will return to the dog and assume the basic position on the right side of the dog. The handler will then acknowledge the Judge for concluding the exercise. A period of approximately 3 seconds is observed prior to the Judge’s orders for returning to the dog and another approximate 3 seconds is observed when the handler returns to the dog’s side before acknowledging the Judge for concluding the exercise.

c)   Scoring the Sit Out of Motion Exercise. Scoring of this exercise starts after the Judge acknowledges the handler to start. The Judge is evaluating proper heeling, response to the sit command, handler’s actions and the behavior and performance of the dog. Dogs that demonstrate positive, energetic, attentive behavior toward the handler and perform with quick responses will receive the most points.

1)   Non-qualifying (Zero) score. The following must be given a zero score on this exercise:

a.   Handler gives more than two extra commands to sit;

b.   Dog moves a substantial distance away from the place where it was sitting;

c.   Dog does not sit but continues with the handler; or

d.   The handler totally interrupts their pace or comes back to sit the dog directly after giving the command to sit.

2)   Major or Minor Imperfections. Imperfections may be major or minor depending on the extent of the following:

a.   Dog doesn’t sit but stands or lies down;

b.   Dog doesn’t maintain proper heeling position;

c.   Dog sits extremely slowly;

d.   Incomplete sit (hovering/space between butt and ground);

e.   Dog lies down before the exercise is complete;

f.     Handler gives any kind of body language when giving the sit command;

g.   Handler turns and looks back at the dog when the sit command is given or while leaving the dog;

h.   Dog moves prior to the heel command;

i.     Dog sits slowly or moves slightly;

j.     Dog whines or barks;

k.   Handler doesn’t acknowledge the Judge when starting and finishing the exercise;

l.     Dog shows pressure when the handler returns; or

m. The overall performance is not well executed.

 

5.   Down with Recall Exercise. The primary purpose of this exercise is to demonstrate that a dog/handler team can perform formal heeling, a down out of motion, a recall, front and finish or a straight to finish exercise.

a)   Judge’s Instructions. The Judge indicates to the handler where to start, when to start, when to recall the dog and when the exercise is finished.

b)  Exercise Instructions. The Down with Recall exercise starts with the dog/handler team reporting to the original starting position assigned by the Judge. The handler reports with their dog in the basic position and acknowledges the Judge. The dog/handler team then demonstrates normal pace off leash heeling in a straight line for minimum of 10 or maximum of 15 paces without stopping, and upon voice command, the dog is commanded to down. The handler proceeds walking in a straight line a minimum of 40 paces turns and faces the dog. Upon the Judge’s instructions, the handler will recall the dog. The dog should come to the handler and perform a front and finish or a straight to side finish; the type of finish must be the same as indicated to the Judge when the team reported. When the dog performs a front, the handler should wait approximately three seconds and then command the dog back into the basic position. The handler then acknowledges the Judge. The Judge’s evaluation of the down and recall exercise ends once the handler acknowledges the Judge.

c)   Scoring the Down and Recall Exercise. Scoring this exercise starts after the handler acknowledges the Judge. The Judge is evaluating formal heeling, performance of the down and the recall exercise. The Judge is also evaluating the overall smoothness of the entire exercise.

1)   Non-qualifying (Zero) score. The following must be given a zero score on this exercise:

a.   Handler gives two extra commands or signal to “stay” after leaving the dog;

b.   Dog refuses to come to the handler;

c.   Dog follows the handler when leaving the dog in the down position; or

d.   Handler moves from the stationary position on the recall.

2)   Major or Minor Imperfections. Imperfections may be major or minor depending on the extent of the following:

a.   Improper heeling throughout the routine;

b.   Dog moves a substantial distance in the down by crawling or creeping;

c.   Dog stands prior to recall;

d.   Dog anticipates the recall;

e.   Dog is very slow coming to the handler;

f.     Dog does the wrong finish;

g.   Handler gives extra commands;

h.   Handler gives the down command with body language;

i.     Dog heels improperly for part of the routine;

j.     Attitude of the dog is dull and not attentive to handler;

k.   Slow down;

l.     Creeping or moving slightly;

m. Incomplete sit (hovering/space between butt and ground);

n.   Dog could come faster;

o.   Overall routine could be smoother; or

p.   Handler doesn’t acknowledge the Judge.

 

The agility equipment requirements are listed on equipment page.   Equipment

6.   Agility Recall Exercise. The primary purpose of this exercise is to demonstrate the dog’s ability to perform a down and recall exercise after performing agility (climbing and jumping over obstacles that lie in dog’s path.)

a)   Judge’s Instructions. The Judge indicates where and when to start, and when the exercise is complete.

b)  Exercise Instructions. The dog/handler team starts the exercise from the same location as the down and recall exercise ended. The exercise starts by the handler acknowledging the Judge with the dog in the basic position and off leash. The handler and a free heeling dog proceed to an area containing the agility obstacles. The handler heels the dog to a designated area five paces back from directly facing an incline wall. When reaching this point, the handler halts with the dog sitting in the basic position, a verbal command to sit is permitted. The handler pauses for three seconds, then gives the dog a heel command to approach a series of obstacles lying in the dog’s path; as the handler and dog approach each obstacle, the handler gives a verbal command to the dog to climb or jump over each obstacle. After crossing each obstacle, the dog should return to the heel position as the handler continues walking at a brisk pace. In addition, the handler may speed up as the dog crosses each obstacle to catch up with the dog and then returns to a brisk pace, furthermore, a single verbal heel command is allowed after the dog crosses each obstacle. When the dog crosses the last obstacle the handler immediately commands the dog into a down position as the handler continues forward approximately ten paces after reaching this point, the handler then turns and faces the dog. The handler then acknowledges the Judge for permission to recall the dog; the dog should report performing the same recall exercise as performed earlier in the down and recall exercise.

The dog is required to negotiate (cross) a series of obstacles that include the following:  an incline wall, a window jump, a rail jump and a solid jump; each obstacle will be spaced 8 to10 paces apart and in a straight line.  Jumps may be placed in any order. The handler will walk a path that allows the dog to negotiate (cross) each obstacle and return to the handlers left side in heel position. The handler should walk close to each obstacle without interrupting their pace. Once the dog has completed the agility and recall and is back in the basic position the handler waits three seconds and acknowledges the Judge for concluding the exercise.

Note: the dog is required to follow a path that would require the dog to successfully negotiate (cross) each obstacle. The Judge will be responsible for approving the obstacles and the location. For dog’s jump height requirements refer to the table:

c)   Scoring the Agility Recall. Scoring of this exercise begins when the Judge acknowledges the handler to start. The Judge is evaluating the entire exercise to determine the rating the performance deserves. Dogs that demonstrate positive, energetic, attentive behavior toward the handler and a strong willingness to perform the exercise are most desirable. Each obstacle is worth two points.

1)   Non-qualifying (Zero) scores. The following must be given a zero on this exercise:

a.   Dog follows the handler and doesn’t perform any obstacles;

b.   Dog breaks and will not return to the handler; or

c.   Dog refuses to recall after three commands.

2)   Major and Minor Imperfections. Major or minor imperfection deductions may be assessed for any deviation from the ideal performance.

a.   Dog lags, forges, crowds or is wide during heeling phase;

b.   Handler runs between obstacles;

c.   Dog is slow to respond to the command;

d.   Dog moves or takes extra steps after becoming stationary in the sit;

e.   Dog hesitates to perform the agility obstacle;

f.     Dog’s feet touch or tick the window jump, rail jump, solid jump;

g.   Dog doesn’t successfully negotiate each agility obstacle;

h.   Dog leaves early or breaks prior to being called;

i.     Recall is slow, crooked front or improper finish; or

j.     The handler gives extra commands or handler help with body signals.

 

Conclusion and critique Obedience Routine. The Obedience routine is complete when both dog/handler teams have completed all required exercises. The Judge indicates a location for both dog/handler teams to report for their score and critique. The handlers report with their dogs on leash and halt with their dogs maintaining a “sit” in the basic position, handlers should then command their dogs into a “down” position while waiting for their score and critique. Dogs should display proper control during the critique and when exiting from the field. As much as a two point deduction can be assessed for dogs that display lack of control during the critique or when entering or leaving the field.

Protection Phase of the Protection 1 (P1)

General Rules

A.  If dog grips the helper firmly two times during any of the protection routine, no title will be achieved.  But dog and handler may finish routines for practice.

B.  Evaluating Grips and Courage-Drive: The Judge is evaluating grips and courage drive on the following criteria: the dog demonstrates a strong desire to engage the helper. The grip should be full as possible and should be maintained in the same location. Dogs that grip full initially but lose part of the grip due to shaking and pulling are not faulty; dogs that display this type of behavior may actually earn points and be rewarded for demonstrating courage drive and strong willingness to engage the helper. However, if a dog loses part of the grip due to shaking or pulling, the dog should re-grip as soon as the opportunity presents itself. Dogs that take full grips but don’t display courage drive or strong desire to challenge the helper must not receive full points. In addition, dogs that hackle up, growl excessively, show any form of avoidance, loosen their grip while being challenged by the helper or take shallow canine grips are faulty. Judges award full points to dogs that clearly demonstrate firm gripping, courage drive and overwhelming enthusiasm and commitment to engage the helper.

C.  Outs. If the dog, during the gripping stages of the exercise refuses to release the grip a maximum of 3 commands are allowed for each gripping exercise. If the dog does not release the grip on the third command, the Judge shall instruct the handler to quickly go to and control the dog. The dog is excused from further participation. A 3-point deduction shall be given for any extra commands to “let go” used during the exercise.

All exercises will be performed with decoy wearing a suit jacket.

Protection Exercises

1.   Greeting the Helper. The primary purpose of this exercise is to demonstrate the handler/dog team’s ability to perform a non-threatening procedural introduction with the helper.

a)   Judge’s Instructions. The Judge will indicate to the handler when and where to report, when the exercise starts, when the helper will come out and leave and when the exercise is finished.

b)  Exercise Instructions. The Friendly Greeting exercise begins by the handler/dog team reporting to a designated starting position determined by the Judge. Once arriving, the handler will halt with the dog sitting in the basic position. The handler will then acknowledge the Judge to begin the exercise. The Judge will then instruct the helper to come out from behind the blind or hiding place. The helper will make a direct approach toward the handler to a point where a friendly greeting and handshake can be given; the handler will be responsible for providing a procedural greeting which includes: introducing themselves, giving the dog’s name and stating the name of the title they are reporting for. After the greeting, the helper will return to behind the blind. The handler will then acknowledge the Judge for conclusion of the exercise.

c)   Scoring the Friendly Greeting Exercise. The exercise will be evaluated on the handler’s ability to conduct a procedural greeting and the dog’s behavior during the greeting. The dog should be alert, but should display non-aggressive behavior during the entire exercise. The dog may be attentive to the handler but must clearly indicate non-threatening behavior.

1)   Non-qualifying scores: The following must be given a zero score for this exercise:

a.   The dog will not sit in the basic position to start the exercise;                                              

b.   The handler uses excessive force on the dog to get the dog into sit position;                                          

c.   The dog displays aggressive behavior toward the Judge, also if the Judge feels the dog is not under control or too aggressive, the Judge may dismiss the dog from further participation;

d.   The dog shows extreme shyness or timid behavior when the helper approaches; or                                                                                                              

e.   The dog moves from the sit position and grips the helper firmly.

2)   Major or Minor Imperfections. Imperfections may be major or minor depending on the extent of the following:

a.   The dog makes too much eye contact with the helper such as a constant stare throughout the routine;

b.   The dog moves or stands up when the helper approaches;

c.   The dog barks excessively; or                                                                                             

d.   The handler doesn’t perform required procedures during introductions;

e.   The dog whines or barks a few times;

f.     The dog doesn’t clearly indicate neutral behavior toward the helper;

g.   The dog becomes restless or moves slightly from the stationary position; or                                                                                             

h.   The dog is dull or not attentive to the handler.

2.   Alert on Command. The primary purpose of this exercise is for the handler with his/her dog to clearly demonstrate that the dog knows the handler’s command for turning on and off to defend from a helper’s threat.

a)   Judge’s Instructions. The Judge will indicate to the handler where and when to start the exercise, when to alert the dog and when to give the call off command; the Judge will also instruct the helper when to come out from the hidden position, when to cease threatening the dog and when the exercise is complete.

b)  Exercise Instructions. The Alert on Command exercise will be conducted from the same location as the “Greeting the Helper Exercise” and starting with the handler with his/her dog sitting in the basic position. The exercise will start by the handler acknowledging the Judge. The helper will walk in a direct approach to a point approximately 1-2 yards from the dog. The helper will then walk back and forth in a fairly brisk pace displaying a non-aggressive manner. After pacing back and forth one complete time, the Judge will instruct the handler to give the dog the command for defending against a threat. The dog will be allowed and expected to come to the end of the leash barking and wanting to engage the helper. When the helper hears the dog barking or sees the dog come out, the helper will turn and challenge the dog with threatening gestures. After the dog is challenged, the Judge will instruct the helper to cease the direct threats and return to behind the blind. The helper will be allowed and expected to be suspicious and threatening while returning to the hiding place. When the helper is out of sight, the handler will be instructed by the Judge to reclaim the dog. The handler must demonstrate a call off by giving a command to return to the basic position. When the dog has returned to the proper basic position, the handler acknowledges the Judge to conclude the exercise.

c)   Scoring the Alert on Command Exercise. The Alert on Command Exercise will be evaluated mainly on two criteria. The Judge will evaluate the handler’s ability to control and command the dog and the dog’s eagerness to bark and engage the helper. Dogs demonstrating proper control and high enthusiasm to engage the helper will receive the highest points. Dogs should continue barking and display a willingness to continue after the helper until being called off by the handler.

1)   Non-qualifying scores: The following must be given a zero score on this exercise:

a.   The dog moves from the sit position prior to the helper making one pass in front of the dog and alerts on its own.

b.   The dog grips the helper due to poor handling or lack of control;

c.   The dog will not leave the handler’s side;

d.   The dog runs or shows much fear from the helper’s threats.

e.   The dog can’t be reclaimed when the helper is out of sight; or                                                                                             

f.     The handler uses excessive physical force on the dog to make it sit or to regain control.

2)   Major or Minor Imperfections. Imperfections may be major or minor depending on the extent of the following:

a.   The dog is slow to respond to either the alert or call off command;

b.   The dog doesn’t display enthusiasm and courage to engage the helper;

c.   The dog never barks; or                                                                                              

d.   The handler allows the dog to pull them from their original starting position.

e.   The dog spins excessively;

f.     The dog should display more enthusiasm and willing to engage the helper;

g.   The dog could respond faster to commands;

h.   The dog moves slightly when helper is passing back and forth in front of the dog; or                                                                                             

i.     The dog slightly anticipates the command.

3.   Jump Out 360 Threat on the Handler. The primary purpose of this exercise is for the handler with his/her dog to demonstrate proper heeling during a protection routine and the handler/dog’s ability to demonstrate a 360-degree perimeter guard from a jump attack by the helper.

a)   Judge’s Instructions. The Judge will indicate to the handler where and when to start the exercise, when to halt when approaching the blind not containing the helper, when the handler will heel toward the blind containing the helper, when the helper is to come out for the attack, when the helper is to cease the attack, when the handler will call the dog off and when the exercise is complete.

b)  Exercise Instructions. The Jump Out Attack exercise starts by the handler reporting to the starting position location as determined by the Judge. The handler will start with the dog in the basic position and by acknowledging the Judge.The handler/dog will perform heeling in a straight line to an assigned area containing a blind, upon reaching this area the Judge will instruct the handler where to halt. The Judge will then indicate to the handler to turn and heel the dog in a straight line to a blind where a hidden helper is waiting for a jump out attack. On the signal from the Judge, the helper will attack out of the blind and go directly at the handler and dog. When the handler sees the attack, the handler will give an alert command. The dog must come to the end of the leash to engage the helper. The handler will stand still and hold the dog by the leash. The helper will make threatening gestures toward the handler and dog. The dog should demonstrate warning barking and stay at the end of the leash trying to engage the helper. The helper will threaten the dog until a 360- degree turn has been completed. The Judge will then instruct the helper to cease the assault and go back into hiding. Again, the helper will maintain a suspicious and threatening posture while leaving to return to the hiding place. Once the helper is out of sight, the Judge will instruct the handler to reclaim the dog. The handler must demonstrate a call off by giving a command back to the basic position. Once the dog is under control, the handler will acknowledge the Judge to conclude the exercise.

Note: Dogs should continue performing the exercise until called off by the handler

c)   Scoring the Jump Out Attack Exercise. The Judge will be evaluating the handler’s control and the willingness of the dog to protect from hidden attack. The degree of courage by the dog and the control displayed by the handler will be the main focus for full points. Heeling must be very correct to receive full points.

1)   Non-qualifying (zero) score. The following must be given a zero on this exercise:

a.   The dog grips the helper due to handler error;

b.   The handler cannot perform proper heeling for most of the routine;

c.   The dog runs behind the handler when the helper attacks;

d.   The handler cannot bring the dog back under control during the routine; or  

2)   Major or Minor Deductions: Imperfections may be major or minor depending on the extent of the following:

a.   The dog’s heeling is not correct;

b.   The dog lacks enthusiasm and courage during defending the attack by the helper;

c.   The dog stays back near the handler and doesn’t keep pulling into the leash to engage the helper;

d.   The dog is very slow to respond to commands by the handler;

e.   The handler gives double commands;                                                                                       

f.     The handler applies a leash correction during the routine.

g.   The dog could respond quicker to the commands;

h.   Minor heeling errors during the heeling exercises;

i.     The dog spins excessively;

j.     The dog lacks attention to the handler;

k.   The dog anticipates the commands;

l.     The dog should display more barking; or                                                                                                                                                                                    

m. The dog needs more intensity toward the helper.

4.   Defense of the Handler. The primary purpose of this exercise is for the handler with his/her dog to demonstrate proper responses to the alert and call off command, the ability and willingness of the dog to defend the handler by gripping the threatening helper, the amount of intensity and quality of the grip and the ability of the dog to respond to handler’s commands.

a)   Judge’s Instructions. The Judge will indicate to the handler on where and when to start, when for the helper to cease the attack and when the exercise is finished or complete.

b)  Exercise Instructions. The Defense of the Handler exercise will start by the Judge instructing the handler to report to a designated spot with their dog. The handler will start the exercise with the dog sitting in the basic position. The helper will be waiting at the side of the hiding place visible to the dog and handler. On the Judge’s instructions, the handler will give the dog its alert command. The helper will stand still for at least three seconds to determine if the dog can demonstrate the alert command, after three seconds has past, the helper will first threaten the dog by yelling and making quick threatening gestures at the same time toward the dog, after the initial threat, the helper will make a direct approach at the dog in a threatening manner. The helper may yell and threaten with a stick during the approach. The helper will present an arm presentation for the dog to engage; however, the dog may grip in other locations. Once the dog engages the helper, the helper will challenge the dog with threats and resistance while driving the dog back toward the hiding place or blind. The Judge will instruct the helper to cease the attack. Once the attack by the helper ceases, the dog should release the grip; the handler is allowed to use a verbal release command. Once the dog is called off from the helper, the handler will have an option in commands and procedures for commanding the dog back into the basic position. The handler may do the following: after the out, the handler may step into the right side of the dog and commands the dog into a sit and then instructs the helper to leave, or the handler may give the release command, tell the helper to leave and then call the dog to basic position. After the dog is in the basic position, the handler then heels the dog back to the original starting position and halts facing the Judge. The handler acknowledges the Judge to conclude the exercise.

c)   Scoring the Defense of the Handler Exercise. The Defense of the Handler is the only exercise in the Protection 1 Routine where the dog is allowed to engage the helper with gripping. This exercise will be evaluated on the dog’s willingness to engage a threatening helper. The dogs grip and fight drive during engagement are the main things the Judge will be evaluating. The call off and the ability of the handler to reclaim the dog are also important. A dog that will not release the grip with 3-commands will be dismissed. The out command will be given with 3-seconds intervals.

1)   Non-qualifying score: The following must be given a zero score on this exercise:

a.   The dog will not release the grip on the helper after three commands to release;

b.   The dog will not engage the helper;

c.   The dog will not return to the basic position after gripping;

d.   The handler drops the leash during the exercise; or                                                                                              

e.   The handler uses excessive force on the dog to get it back into the basic position.

2)   Major or Minor Deductions: Imperfections may be major or minor depending on the extent of the following:

a.   The dog receives extra commands;

b.   The dog is very slow responding to the handler’s commands;

c.   The dog will not leave the handler’s side during the alert command;

d.   The dog lacks intensity in the grip and fight drive while engaging the helper;

e.   The dog comes off the grip but will reengage the helper;

f.     Handler cannot perform proper heeling back to the starting position after the grip;

g.   The dog doesn’t bark;

h.   The handler forgets the procedures in the routine;                                                                                          

i.     The dog re-grips the helper or continuously bothers the helper.

j.     The dog is slow to release the grip;

k.   The dog slightly re-grips the helper or bothers the helper;

l.     The dog is slow to sit in the basic position;

m. The dog could respond faster concerning all commands;

n.   The overall performance needs improvement; or                                                                                             

o.   The dog needs to bark more.

5.   Re-Friendly Greeting. The primary purpose of this exercise is for the handler with his/her dog to be able to demonstrate a re-friendly greeting by the helper, after the dog has performed a series of protection exercises. The handler must perform a procedural re-greeting routine.

a)   Exercise Instructions. The Re-Friendly Greeting Exercise will be conducted from the same location as the Defense of the Handler Exercise. The Exercise will start with handler having his/her dog in the basic position; the handler will acknowledge the Judge to start the exercise. The Judge instruct the helper to come out from behind the blind and approach the handler. The helper will make a direct approach toward the handler to a point where another friendly greeting and handshake can be given. The handler should report his or her name and the dog’s name and announce the completion of the Protection 1 routine. On the Judge’s instruction, the helper will return to behind the blind. The handler will then acknowledge the Judge for the conclusion of the exercise.

b)  Scoring the Re-Friendly Greeting. This exercise will be evaluated on the handler’s control and the dog’s behavior toward re-greeting the helper. The dog should remain alert but non-aggressive to the re-friendly greeting helper. The handler will also be evaluated on the procedural requirements for this exercise.

1)   Non-qualifying score: The following must be given a zero score on this exercise.

a.   The dog firmly grips the helper;

b.   The dog moves from the sit position and tries strongly to engage the helper;

c.   The dog will not sit in the basic position to start the exercise;

d.   The handler uses excessive forces on the dog to get back into a sit position;

e.   The dog growls or threatens the helper with a closed mouth and staring; or                                                                                              

f.     The dog is ruled unruly by its overall performance.

2)   Major or Minor Imperfections. Imperfections may be major or minor depending on the extent of the following:

a.   The dog makes too much eye contact with the helper such as a constant stare throughout the routine;

b.   The dog moves or stands up when the helper approaches;

c.   The dog barks excessively; or                                                                                             

d.   The handler doesn’t perform required procedures during introductions.

e.   The dog whines or barks a few times;

f.     The dog doesn’t clearly indicate neutral behavior toward the helper;

g.   The dog becomes restless or moves slightly from the stationary position; or                                                                                             

h.   The dog is dull or not attentive to the handler.

 

Concluding: The Judge will inform the handler where to report for critiques and announcement of the score. The handler reports with dog on leash and halt with dog maintaining a “sit” in the basic position, handler should then command their dog into a “down” position while waiting for their score and critique. Dog should display proper control during the critique and when exiting from the field. As much as a two point deduction can be assessed for dogs that display lack of control during the critique or when entering or leaving the field. The Judge will have the option of providing a detailed critique, a short summary, or simply announcing the score of the performance of each handler and dog team. Handlers may request an individual critique or review of the performance with the Judge if a critique is not provided. The Judge will determine the time and place for any individual reviews.

Note: The Judge’s score is final. Respect and good sportsmanship must be displayed by all parties at all times