Many dog owners are looking for a leisure activity which is fun for both human and dog, ensures enough exercise and, in the ideal case, strengthens the bond between dog and owner. The German Shepherd Association offers a multitude of possibilities for this, for non-members as well as for members: Starting from puppy play groups to dog training and various dog sports up to the completion of officially recognized trials; every team will find the right activity here.
A strong team - dog and handler
Dogs – especially the German Shepherd – need regular physical and mental exercise to stay healthy and fit. In particular, Shepherds that are challenged and stimulated enough are more balanced in their nature, more obedient and satisfied. To achieve this is the dog handler’s task – because the team can only face up to the different disciplines if the necessary trust exists and the communication between human and dog functions flawlessly.
If dog and handler are a well-rehearsed sportive team, they can prove themselves in competitions and championships at the municipality, state and federal level and also internationally. Here, not only the qualification of the dog is important – the owner also needs to prove him or herself in dog sports!
Socialisation through fun and games
The dog has a social nature, just like humans. As a pack animal, it searches for contact with its mother, its siblings and fellow dogs from birth on. If this contact is withheld from the puppy, its social awareness is crippled and it is in danger of becoming a loner. Often, these dogs behave aggressively or extremely fearfully towards other dogs because of their insecurity.
Regular contact with other dogs of the same age, for example in puppy classes or – as we call them – “puppy play hours” can counteract this and give the puppy security in the contact with other dogs.
Puppy play hour means that the dogs learn, from puppy age on, to meet fellow dogs and to play and communicate with them in a social way. Even the mostly still inexperienced dog owners learn the right handling of their puppy and the most important basics of dog education in these puppy play hours. In order to strengthen the social bond between human and animal, regular play times with the dog owner take place during the puppy meetings.
Because dogs who have confidence in themselves, their owner and their environment become loyal and reliable partners for their whole life!
Adventure playground puppy meeting
Fun comes first - that is the theme of the puppy play hours at the SV local groups. All puppies over eleven weeks’ old are welcome once they have been fully immunised for health and safety reasons. The dog club of the local group is transformed into an “adventure playground” for the puppy meetings every week: The puppies playfully learn the right behaviour with other dogs of the same age, they get to know different environment stimuli and, with secure supervision, they gather valuable experiences for healthy social development. At 20 weeks, the puppy turns into a young dog and can leave the puppy play hours.