BB Litter Temperament Test

BB Litter Temperament Test Results

I kept Miss Red, who is now Celhaus Berakah (call name Berakah, which is Hebrew for “blessing).

Miss Yellow (now Celhaus Bonnie Ann, call name “Annie”) went to Colorado for Search & Rescue, while Mr. Lime stayed in Wyoming for SAR work.

Miss Gold (now Celhaus Bounding Grace, call name “Grace”) went to South Dakota for Search & Rescue, agility & obedience.

Mr. Turquoise (now Celhaus Budnah, call name “Cutler”) stayed in Sheridan as a pet.

Mr. Silver (now Celhaus Best Pal, call name “Pal”) and Mr. Sparkle (Celhaus Beowulf, call name “Gus) went to Montana as pets.

The BB Litter was tested when 51 days old.

The main difference I see between the police/narcotics test and the SAR test is the attitude of the tester.  In the police test, the tester is very quiet, talking little and using very little body movements.  No other people are present and the environment is kept quiet.  In the SAR test, the tester is enthusiastic and uses lots of verbal praise and body movements to get the pup “up” and gives lots of praise.  Other people are present, walking around, talking, and generally making for a noisy, busy environment.  This would fit well with the ultimate purpose of the dogs being tested for both types of training.  In police work the dog must be able to dig down deep inside himself or herself to find the courage and aggression to confront a criminal and/or to search independently and at great distance from the handler.  In SAR the handler is usually closer to the dog and is able to praise and encourage him, especially in extended searches.  There is also generally all kinds of activity and distraction at a search scene so the dog must be able to filter out the extraneous activity and focus on her job.  Both tests are fascinating to watch as is the difference in the pups’ responses in each test.  My usual tester, a former police K-9 handler, moved out of state.  The new tester talked more to the pups during the test, rewarded with bits of food, and generally had more body movement during the different exercises, so the difference between Police Exercises and SAR exercises was much less.

The Police Dog/Narcotics Dog Temperament Test:

 

Results are listed after the description of each part of the Test. 

 

1.  Acceptance/Attachment         The first test involves evaluating the pup’s acceptance of the strange place and its willingness to interact with the stranger.  Ideal reaction is eye contact and interest in the stranger but no sign of nervousness in the interaction (we don’t want a “Protect me!” attitude), followed by visual investigation of the surroundings and then a return of attention to the tester.  All puppies rated “Excellent.”

Turquoise Male:            Written-in comment:  “Instant eye contact.  Would not leave handler.”

 

2.    Pain Sensitivity       The loose skin over the ribs is gently pinched and the pup’s reaction is noted.  Ideal reaction is to notice the pinch but be unconcerned by it.  We also look for a willingness to forgive the tester.

 

Gold Female:                Above Average

Lime Male:                   Above Average

Red Female:                 Excellent

Silver Male:                  Above Average

Sparkle Male:               Average

Turquoise Male:            Average

Yellow Female:             Above Average

 

3.  Retrieve       Next, willingness to retrieve is evaluated using different toys:  a stuffed toy, and a tennis ball.  Ideal reaction is to repeatedly being the toy back to the handler rather than moving off to “possess” it.  The type of bite on the toys is evaluated:  a full mouth bite shows more confidence and drive than a front-teeth-only bite.

 

Gold Female:                Average on ball; Above Average on toy.

Lime Male:                   Above Average on both ball and toy.

Red Female:                 Minimal on both ball and toy.  (Cel’s note:  she caught my scent and was only interested in finding me.  When, after the main test, we did the FEMA test of retrieving and searching for the toy, she was the only one of the four tested (Gold, Yellow, Purple and her) who would either retrieve or search for the toy. I was no longer taking photos and was better hidden so she was not distracted.)

Silver Male:                  Above Average on both ball and toy.

Sparkle Male:               Excellent on both ball and toy.

Turquoise Male:            Minimal on ball, Insufficient on toy.  “No interest in retrieve; only interested in (possessing) toy.”  (Cel’s note:  was nervous, whining, didn’t want to play.)

Yellow Female:             Minimal on ball; Average on toy.  Chased.

 

4.  Perseverance           Then perseverance is evaluated by seeing how enthusiastically they will pursue, grab hold, and tug on a sack.  Ideal reaction is to pursue enthusiastically, grasp with a full mouth bite, tug and do everything possible to posses the sack.  We like to see a pup get its whole body on the sack in an effort to subdue it.

 

Gold Female:                Above Average

Lime Male:                   Above Average

Red Female:                 Average (again, was looking for Cel to the exclusion of all else)

Silver Male:                  Above Average

Sparkle Male:               Excellent

Turquoise Male:            Minimal.

Yellow Female:             Average

 

5.  Courage and Aggression      Next, courage and aggression was evaluated using an very loud battery-operated toy that when turned on also moves erratically.  Will they stand their ground?  Will they go investigate it?  Excellent reaction is to go to the moving, clanking train and check it out.  Extremely excellent reaction is to actually attack it while it moves.  Good reaction is to investigate it after the tester turns it off.  The tester encourages the pup to investigate after it is turned off, if it wouldn’t while it was “singing” and moving.  She notes how much encouragement is needed.

 

Gold Female:                Excellent

Lime Male:                   Excellent.  (Cel’s note:  went up to toy and barked/growled at it.)

Red Female:                 Minimal.  (Cel’s note:  absolutely did not like toy and went 20’ away.)

Silver Male:                  Average

Sparkle Male:               Excellent

Turquoise Male:            Average

Yellow Female:             Above Average

 

6.    Fear          Then a metal coffee can filled with metal items (nails, bolts, etc.) is dropped behind them from a height of about 2 feet while they are looking away from it.  Will the pup hold its ground and then go look at what dropped from nowhere?  Excellent reaction is to acknowledge and turn towards the sound and then confidently go see what made the racket.  The tester encourages the pup to investigate, if it doesn’t on its own.  She notes how much encouragement is needed.  I find most of my pups look towards the racket and keep on playing with the toy they had, rather than stopping their play to go investigate.  All puppies received an “Excellent” rating on this test.

 

7.    Surprise     The last test involves getting the pup to chase you (or a toy or the burlap sack) towards a doorway, from behind which an umbrella is opened suddenly and then lowered to the ground, still open.  They are evaluated on how they recover from being startled and if they’ll go investigate.  Ideal reaction is for the pup to startle but hold its ground, then move right up to check out the umbrella.  A super excellent reaction is to go up and bite it and/or walk all over it.The tester encourages the pup to investigate after the umbrella is on the ground, if it doesn’t on its own.  She notes how much encouragement is needed.

 

Gold Female:                Above Average

Lime Male:                   Above Average

Red Female:                 Average

Silver Male:                  Excellent

Sparkle Male:               Above Average

Turquoise Male:            Excellent

Yellow Female:             Excellent

 

Submission Test   The submission test is designed to give an idea of the pup’s tractability, trust in humans, and willingness to submit to a human’s directives. In the submission test the pup is held firmly on its back for a short period of time.  The tester counts the seconds it takes for him to resist, then accept, the restraint.  She should not passively accept the restraint, nor should she panic or show avoidance of eye contact.  Ideal reaction is to resist, then submit and look the tester in the face.  We also look for a willingness to forgive the tester.

 

Gold Female:                Above Average

Lime Male:                   Minimal (did not submit)

Red Female:                 Above Average

Silver Male:                  Above Average

Sparkle Male:               Average

Turquoise Male:            Average

Yellow Female:             Average

 

Search And Rescue Test

 

Unstable Footing   Since SAR dogs will search in all kinds of terrain and areas of destruction, they must be confident in insecure situations. We used a plastic tarp and two planks crossed unevenly to form a low teeter.

 

Gold Female:                Excellent

Lime Male:                   Excellent

Red Female:                 Excellent

Silver Male:                  Excellent

Sparkle Male:               Excellent

Turquoise Male:            Above Average

Yellow Female:             Excellent

 

Hunt for Toy   The tester will play with the pup with a toy, then suddenly hide it under the tarp or other object to see if the pup will search for it, using its nose.

 

Gold Female:                Average

Lime Male:                   Above Average

Red Female:                 Average

Silver Male:                  Average

Sparkle Male:               Excellent

Turquoise Male:            Minimal

Yellow Female:             Average

 

Hunt for Food Test 1:  Tester bounces piece of bacon tied to string, to get pup’s attention, then drags it to see if pup will put nose down and follow.   Test 2:  As part of the game she’s playing with the pup, asking it to use its nose to find pieces of food, the tester will place pieces of food under the tarp and low dogwalk so that the pup must actively use its nose to find all the food.

 

Gold Female:                Test 1:  Above Average; Test 2:  Excellent

Lime Male:                   Above Average

Red Female:                 Above Average

Silver Male:                  Average

Sparkle Male:               Average

Turquoise Male:            Above Average

Yellow Female:             Excellent

 

Hunt for Food, Test 1:  Tester bounces piece of bacon tied to string, to get pup’s attention, then drags it to see if pup will put nose down and follow

Gold Female:                Above Average

Lime Male:                   Excellent

Red Female:                 Above Average

Silver Male:                  Excellent

Sparkle Male:               Minimal

Turquoise Male:            Insufficient

Yellow Female:             Average

 

Hunt for Food,  Test 2:  As part of the game she’s playing with the pup, asking it to use its nose to find pieces of food, the tester will place pieces of food under the tarp and planks so that the pup must actively use its nose to find all the food.

Gold Female:                Excellent

Lime Male:                   Excellent

Red Female:                 Average

Silver Male:                  Excellent

Sparkle Male:               Minimal

Turquoise Male:            Minimal

Yellow Female:             Excellent

 

Tester Comments:

 

Gold Female:                Used nose.   Very methodical nose work.  Did not use eyes to find.  Very people oriented.

Lime Male:                   Retrieves very good, with nose work.  Confident.  Good working prospect.

Red Female:                 This puppy has great confidence in handler—will try to do things if she’s encouraged by tester.  Did not have a lot of toy drive.  Used both nose and eyes to find bacon (Food Test 1).

Silver Male:                  Very handler friendly.  Good eye contact.  Used nose to find food without help from handler.  Hunted for food on ground and under tarp.  Retrieved ball, played with toy.

Sparkle Male:               Very toy driven.  Did not use nose to find food.

Turquoise Male:            Very handler focused.  Handled noises and umbrella well.  Not interested in toys or food, but may get better.

Yellow Female:             Very trusting of handler to keep safe.  Good hunting with nose.  Played with soft toy, not with ball.

 

For interest, I include the puppies’ parents and a grandparent’s temperament test results below.  Chaos’ breeder did not do a formal temperament test, so we did one when he arrived.  He was 8 weeks old.  All three of these tests were done by Suzan, my original tester, the former police K9 handler.

Chaos

 

Attachment:                     Above Average.  Nice!  No problem with adjustment.

Sensitivity:                       Excellent

Retrieve:                          Average.  Somewhat interested in other things as well.  Easily encouraged.

Perseverance:                  Average.  Very nice. Looked at other objects.

Fear:                               Excellent.  Looked at can, then went about business.

Aggression & Courage:  Excellent.  Did everything but pick it up.  (toy used was an electric train that when turned on moved erratically, whistled loudly, clanked, etc.)

Surprise:                       Above Average.  Not fair test but no problem.  Looked at umbrella and investigated person.

Submission:                  Above Average.  5 seconds.  Was squirming.  Made eye contact once.

Hunt for Toy:                Above Average.  Pretty good.  Couldn’t decide which toy he liked better.

Hunt for Food:              Above Average.  Very good. Fairly systematic.

Tester Comments:  Nice pup – very solid and courageous.  Has a good bit, full mouthed with toys and pull toy.  Nice reaction to train and umbrella.  Gets along with other dogs well (met her dogs afterwards).  Good nose – found food easily and liked looking for it, followed direction of handler.  Nicely encouraged.  Great little boy!

Joyful

Attachment:                  Excellent

Sensitivity:                    Above Average

Retrieve:                       Excellent

Perseverance:               Excellent

Fear:                            Above Average

 

Aggression & Courage:  Excellent.  Did everything but pick it up.  (toy used was an electric train that when turned on moved erratically, whistled loudly, clanked, etc.)

Surprise:                       Excellent

Submission:                  Above Average

Hunt for Toy:                Above Average

Hunt for Food:             Above Average

Unstable Footing:         Excellent

 

Tester Comments:         Happy female.  Lots of prey drive.  Nice bite and hold one time on burlap sack.  Lots of prey drive.  Excellent on noise.  Good reaction to train.  Umbrella—easily encouraged after stopping in tracks. Nice & steady.  Good SAR prospect.

Ashi (Joyful’s mother, grandmother to the BB Litter) 

The A litter, in 1997, was the first litter that Suzan tested for me.

 

Attachment:                     Excellent.  Had no difficulty putting her attention to new person and staying with person

Sensitivity:                       Average.  Left handler for a few steps then turned back.

Retrieve:                         Excellent

Perseverance:                 Above Average

Aggression & Courage:  Average

Fear:                              Above Average

Surprise:                         Average.  Startled, did not move towards or away from.

Submission:                     Above Average.  4 seconds.