Volhards Aptitude Test
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Thread: Volhards Aptitude Test

  1. #1
    Milesmom's Avatar
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    DefaultVolhards Aptitude Test

    Hey there!

    I am wondering if any of you have any experience with or opinions on the volhard's aptitude test.

    In the next year or two, I will be getting another puppy. When I got Miles, I didn't know that I was going to do obedience and agility with him. I just wanted a pet, a dog to go trail running with. I knew he needed to be well trained so that started us down this road. When I got Miles, I was asked to choose at 4 weeks and my choice was between 3 black males and 1 yellow male. At 4 weeks, it was too soon to tell. I think we picked the yellow because I couldn't tell the other 3 apart!

    It all worked out just fine.

    However, now, I know that I want to do obedience and agility with my next dog too. I know not all labradors are going to be interested. Had I been looking at Mile's litter at 7 weeks to choose a performance puppy, I probably wouldn't have chosen him because he was probably the most laid back of the bunch. He was not all that playful, and honestly seemed kinda lazy. When I went to see him at 6 weeks and even when we brought him home at 8 weeks, I wondered if I'd chosen the right puppy. I wanted a running buddy! He turned out to be a great dog! I know that just looking at how active and playful the pups are isn't necessarily the right guage. I was talking to a woman at a trial recently and she mentioned an aptitude test so I did some You Tube searches and found Volhard's. I think this is the test I have heard people describe in the past.

    So being very inexperienced with all this stuff, I would like to hear your thoughts about it.

    Volhard Dog Training and Nutrition: Behavior and Training: Behavior


    Of course, I realize there are never any guarentees when it comes to a puppy!

    Ann & Miles
    MACH ARCHEX "Miles" (DOB 3/10/2006) UD RAE MXS MJS OF CW-OB3 CW-ARF CW-AR CW-ZR2 CL-1 (DOB 3/10/2006)
    "Hartley" (DOB 7/21/2012) RN CGC CW-OB1

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    patm's Avatar
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    I don't really know much about this test, although I have read about it before - I think it would be a great tool to use. I would love to see how Emilu and Baxter would have scored. I have a feeling a wouldn't have picked either one of them based on their scores to be trained for showing in obedience. I saw Emilu a couple of times before I got her, and looking back, I can see a few red flags that should have gone up, but I probably would have ignored them anyways, because I had already picked her as the one I wanted (and I wasn't looking for an obedience trial dog at the time). With Baxter, I knew I wanted a dog to continue to show in obedience, and STILL didn't really do it right. I left the picking of the pup up to the breeder, and at the time she only had 2 pups left - one she was thinking about keeping, and other just hadn't been spoken for yet. I told her what I wanted, but she showed in conformation and not in obedience. She Baxter because he was more outgoing - which he was - but I don't think he would have scored well on some of those test items! But I love him and with better training than I have given him, but would be an even better obedience dog than he is now - but i still have great hopes for him.

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    Milesmom's Avatar
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    Hi Pat! Thanks for your input. I know that a test like this isn't the end all be all. I know it is common for breeders to make the choice and I have no problem with that. As you mentioned, you worked with a breeder that only shows in conformation so they may not know really what to look for for a performance puppy. Most of the local breeders I know only do conformation and they tend to equate high energy with high drive. I don't think the two are the same. Miles has alot of drive in the field and for agility, but, as I said, he was the laziest puppy I ever saw. One thing I want to avoid is being the last pick. There was a litter around here from which a friend of mine purchased a puppy. A great litter! They have one black female remaining. I know I could go look at here and say no if she is not the right pup for me, but I don't trust myself to leave without her. Fortunately, now is not a good time of us to get a puppy so it was easy to convince myself not to go, as much fun as it would have been to have the littermate of my friend's puppy.

    The more I am talking to people and doing my research, I think the best plan is to find a breeder who is breeding dogs that do hunting, obedience, agility and understands performance needs and get early enough on the "pick" list so that they can choose a puppy that is best suited to me, or if they are close enough to me, narrow it down to a few to pick from. I know I will never meet a labrador puppy I don't like. ;-)

    I must say, I am enjoying this learning process.

    Ann & Miles
    MACH ARCHEX "Miles" (DOB 3/10/2006) UD RAE MXS MJS OF CW-OB3 CW-ARF CW-AR CW-ZR2 CL-1 (DOB 3/10/2006)
    "Hartley" (DOB 7/21/2012) RN CGC CW-OB1

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    I believe the gal who is set up to test one of my stud dog's litters in a few weeks for us is using this method. She is big into performance w/ Weims. I've had individuals come here and do this w/ the pups I had determined to be the best fit for them (I narrow down the choices for folks since I'm watching my litters the entire time). The 2 (breeder observation plus this test) in combo seem to be a nice mix. OTOH, so far so good on my "picks" for folks too. I think the main thing w/ any one day/one time test to realize is that puppies can have off days. 7 wks is a good enough time to do this since it's usually before any fear stages, but what if you have a mild intestinal bug go thru the litter? Unfortunately it seems like 7 wks is the curse time for my spring litters, whether it's because they are getting to do more outside at that point typically, or what! Hence, why I like winter litters more and more these days!

    WindyCanyon Girls, August 2014

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    I think the test can give you a pretty good indication of what your puppy will be like, but it's not fool proof and IMHO the majority of your dog's behaviour and attitude comes from his environment (meaning you). I would look at a dog structurally for soundness as my main concern with doing performance work (since I've had two labs tear ACL's while competing in agility, I can tell you it is utmost to have a sound dog with good structure). It has also been my opinion that the heavier boned labs do not last long in the competition ring... figure you will have a competitive dog for five years max. The field type labs seem to fare better from the labs I know of that are currently competing/working.

    If you are dealing with a good breeder they generally know their pups the best and are best equipped to pick a dog for you, based on what you want to do with that dog.

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    Thanks a bunch! You all have pretty much confirmed my thoughts.

    Ann & Miles
    MACH ARCHEX "Miles" (DOB 3/10/2006) UD RAE MXS MJS OF CW-OB3 CW-ARF CW-AR CW-ZR2 CL-1 (DOB 3/10/2006)
    "Hartley" (DOB 7/21/2012) RN CGC CW-OB1

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    I had my puppies aptitude tested, I had a litter of 9.

    It was done by a very good obedience trainer/friend and his wife (who I hate LOL) at their training center at exactly 49 days.

    They saw mostly the same things I had from just watching them. And their picks weren't much different from mine.

    One of the things that jump out as 'wrong' about their predictions was that on boy, the lighter yellow boy was that he had less ability to retain information.

    He finished his UD at the youngest my trainer and his owner had ever heard of...I think he was 17 or 18 months old.
    Last edited by Luvmydog2much; 11-30-2011 at 10:50 AM.
    'Don't grow up too quickly, lest you forget how much you love the beach.'
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