Although I work with people’s pet dogs in whatever issues they may be having, the foundation and focal point of my training is working with police dogs. I have started dogs from all ages from 3 months old up to 3 ½ years old and have successfully trained and sold them as police dogs.
When I get a young pup, I am very adamant about taking the pup everywhere I go. I take the puppy to the mall, to the movies, on the train, to Starbucks, to the fair, sports games, and everywhere else so from a young age that puppy is exposed to everything environmental. That helps with environmental desensitizing so as the puppy ages, the chances of the puppy having environmental nervousness decreases. Most puppies I have are naturally very confident, but it definitely helps to socialize them and expose them starting from a young age.
I also work on the puppy’s obedience. I use food to teach the obedience positions to the puppy, but I hold off on any compulsion and correction training until they are over a year old. I use the sports of French Ring and Schutzhund to teach the foundation work of obedience and bite work of my puppies, so by the time they are ready to do police-style training at about 14 months old, their obedience is already on point and they target perfectly in the bite work. Until then, I work happy obedience and their prey/chase drive in the bite work.
By the time they hit the proper age to start working police-style, I start adding more pressure to them in the bite work. I put the dogs in real-life situations for training, such as building searches, area searches, article searches, tracking/trailing, and defense of handler, and the pressure on the bite becomes more intense. I work the dogs in small, tight, dark rooms and also add pressure them via the decoy. By the time I sell the dog, the dog is as well rounded as I can make him. Obedience is on point, the bite work is excellent, and the dogs have been exposed to as many different environments as possible. They have also had experience in real-life scenarios and exposure to real-life defensive work.
I spend many hours at police K9 training working my dogs in buildings and in large corp-yard areas to get them accustomed to working on the streets.