Most people keep dogs for a specific purpose and some special jobs. The dogs are used for some jobs are called working dogs. They assists people in their work and most of the cases serve as security or guarding purposes. In most countries, working dogs are trained to protect livestock herd, police work, minesweeping, detection of narcotics, tracking, guarding important installations, and many more.
Working dogs are those dogs that are trained for a specific job or purpose. You may use working dogs for guarding, protecting farm animals from the attack of wild hunting animals, military or police use, search and rescue purposes, the companion to older persons, toy animals to children, and many more.
Working Dogs: Most Common Dog Breeds
For selecting the breeds of Working Dogs, you may choose one of the following kinds. After that, you must see the general characteristics, body weight, origin, and temperament of that specific dog. but must have intelligence, hard-working and sturdy. The name of breeds are:
- Border Collie.
- Doberman Pinscher.
- Great Dane.
- Bull Mastiff.
- German Shepherd.
- Welsh Corgi.
- Giant and Standard Schnauzers.
- Alaskan Malamute.
- Anatolian Shepherd Dog.
- Bernese Mountain Dog.
- German Pinscher.
- The great Pyrenees.
- Greater Swiss Mountain Dog.
- Saint Bernard.
- Siberian Husky.
Top 20 Things You Must Know During Selecting Working Dogs
The characteristics and features of Dogs have been introduced and strengthened by the use of selective breeding with animals who have already clearly demonstrated the desired traits. I have chosen the following 20 tips for you that must help to select the best working dog for your specific purpose.
1. Physical Health
The dog must be physically healthy to provide adequate and long-term assistance. You must know the dog vaccination and all health status should be checked by your vet. You must see that there will be no congenital anomalies in the selected dog. The dog should be healthy and stout, and it must stand with courage.
2. Categories of Dog
They are following two categories firstly, Dogs that were selected from the available populations over generations to perform some task( Sled dogs, herding and guarding sheepdogs, pit bulls, terriers, hunting breeds). Secondly to complete a task ( Guide Dogs, Assistance Dogs, Search and Rescue Dogs, Bomb-Sniffing Dogs).
3. Behavior and Temperament
You must select a dog with good behavior and well-tempered. The well-behaved dogs are gentle, friendly, responsive, obedient, listen to commands easily, and helps handlers. Your dog must be easily conditioned by surroundings, mentally sound to receive the command, and alert to external stimuli.
4. Environmental Adaptation
You must select a dog that will easily be adapted to your environment. Your dogs will familiar with the food, temperature, housing, and your purpose. The dog must be suitable enough to work in extreme environmental conditions like cold, hot, and humid weather, heavy rain, even in freezing temperatures.
5. Movement Adaptation
A working dog needs frequent move at working places and you must select a dog well adapted with easy movements. They must be alert to unwanted movement even a small reptile. During sleeping or rest dogs must be shown alertness to adverse stimuli.
6. Appearance of Working Dogs
The physical condition of the dogs mostly understood by the general cleanliness of the dogs. Dogs should be well-groomed, bathed, free from ticks and fleas, nails are trimmed, teeth clean, and free from tartar. All excess hair must be clipped; eyes should be bright and clean, ears clean and free from oozing, anus, and external genitalia should be clean.
7. External Parasites
Dogs also need to be free of fleas and ticks. If fleas or ticks present in the skin coat and body hair it may attract other infections of the skin that hamper the physical condition of the dog. While selecting working dogs there should be flea collars on your dogs or other chemicals on the dog’s coat.
8. Good Records
You must be select a dog with a good record. The records include pedigree history, birth records, vaccination and deworming records, treatment records, feeding behavior records, etc. A well-recorded dog can apply for any works and you can rely on the health issues of your dogs.
9. Basic Training
Dogs must be trained up of few commands. The basic commands for the livestock in working Dogs are Come or Come in, Lie Down, Stay, Stand, Heel, That will Do, Get Back, Get off or Back off, Get Around, Bring them in, Walkup, and Walk-in. Basing on the requirement then you may introduce new commands, and your dogs must be responsive to the command.
10. Working Dogs Selection: Potential Traits
Dogs must be potential personality traits that have been identified in dogs, for intense playfulness, curiosity/fearlessness, sociability and aggressiveness, and shyness- Boldness. You must find these potential traits in your selected dogs that will help you find the best dogs for your specific purpose.
11. Senses of Smell
Working with Dogs must have their superior senses of smell and hearing. A more common important thing is that a dog can be trained to react consistently to specific stimuli, he can be taught to this always in a way that immediately alerts the handlers. Smelling power is the most important trait that you must see before choosing a dog.
12. Analytical Ability
Dogs should have the character ability of the power of Analytical Acumen, Intuitive Sensibility, Tenacity, and Optimism. Dogs should be obedient to their master, responsive to the command, and aggressive to unknown persons. This much analytical ability is the essential requirement during the selection of a working dog.
13. Size of Dogs
The dogs must be generally large, intelligent, and protective of their master. Sometimes dogs are medium to giant size and strong, often independent, domineering, and difficult to manage. Typically, the size of the dogs depends on the requirement of the owner. If you are in a small apartment, you should select a small or medium-sized breed. If you employ an open place or for policing purposes, you may choose a larger breed.
14. Official Registration of Working Dogs
Select a dog those have registration in a well-recognized kennel club. They maintain good records of pedigree, vaccination, deworming, breeding, and treatments. Never select a dog from an unregistered source because it may not be vaccinated. Unknown dogs may also spread some diseases and may cause a health hazard to you.
15. Age of Dog
Before six months never allow unknown visitors or dogs because they are prone to various diseases before maturity. Especially about parvovirus infection spread via direct contact from a non-vaccinated dog. The physical and mental development of a dog occurs at least six months of age. Some congenital anomalies also observed after a certain period. So before selecting a service dog age is one of the critical factors as a dog user.
16. Selection of Working Dogs: Working Hour
Every dog for a specific period like one hour or two hours. Divide the work of your dogs few splits and employ more than one dog for each section. These will increase the efficiency of your dogs. Overstress may reduce the working potentials of your dog and excess working hour may loss of the willingness of your dogs to work.
17. Gradual Acclimatization
You must train your dog gradually with your environment and work. You just spent time with your dog and train its work at the actual place to reduce the risk of accidents. Fully acclimatizing dogs will be more efficient in work.
18. Familiar with Signs
During employ working dogs in the actual ground, you must select a dog who is familiar with some signs of command. In a working place, many times dogs will not hear your voice. That time you will control your dogs with visual signs. If you find your dog in a stress condition, then give some rest and find out the causes of stress. Try to remove the reasons and do not select a dog that becomes stressed easily.
19. Inherited Traits
Inherited Traits of dogs must have the following characteristics:
- Hair-black hair dominates over red.
- Eyes – dark eyes dominant over ‘wall’ (pale blue eyes).
- Jaws – normal laws dominate over ‘undershot’ jaws.
- Palate normal palates dominate over cleft palates.
These will help you to identify the dogs you desire for your purpose.
20. Working Ability
You must select a dog knowing the pedigree history of working dogs. They must be able to work for a long time in stressful conditions. The working ability will depend on the physical condition, psychology, and good temperament. Your dogs must work for your desired time with enthusiasm and willingness.
The Final Advice on Working Dogs
In the above discussion, I have tried to find out the best tips for you to select the best working dog for your desired purpose. The few necessary criteria are breed, age, temperament, physical ability, responsiveness to command, intelligence, boldness, working ability, analytical ability, have some basic training, and good appearance with all available records. The size of the dog may vary from small, medium, and largely based on the requirement of you.
Working dog breeds are used for various purposes like herding, drafting, carriage, guarding, search or rescue operations, sniffing purposes of various materials, and customs duty. You may follow the above tips I have mentioned. I think these will help you to choose the best working dog that will give you accurate service. If this information helps you, please subscribe to my website and share it. And don’t forget to share your personal experience and suggestions in the comment box.