Initial Test Videos

Initial Test Videos for
Potential Working Dogs

The videos on this page are of “Initial Tests”

The initial tests are done to check for ball drive, retrieve drive, object drive, hunt drive, and the speed & intensity of the dogs drives.

After a dog passes the initial test there are several other tests done in a “live” environment with them to see if they can become a “Working Dog” in the area of detection.

These tests have been conducted at various locations with Rescue Groups, Shelters and others working to make a difference in dogs lives.  Thank you all for your time and dedication to animals!

How to do the initial test.

K9STAC Initial Dog Test/Evaluation
Dave Dorn Owner/Operator K9 Specialized Training & Consulting

K9 Candidates:
A dog, which would not, make a good “pet” at a quiet house-hold. The dog needs to be very energetic.  Not human shy (stranger or not) or shy to any new environments (slick flooring, closed/tight areas; such as bathrooms, stalls to bathrooms, walk in closets, etc.)

Evaluator will be testing the dog for:
Ball Drive, Retrieve Drive, Hunt Drive, Object Drive (ball, toy, tug rope), Drive for the “Game” (will the dog transfer/switch from the none-active ball or toy in his or her possession to the more active toy in your hand/possession)

Prior to the test Evaluator Should:
Ensure that all other non-testing toys, balls, and other play items are removed from the test area.  Test Area is usually a fenced in grass, hard dirt or cement, run area.  Ensure that all loose or unsecured dogs are removed from the area.

Evaluator should:
Have a minimum of three balls, and/or possible other toys to have ready and available (rope toy, rubber hose toy or rolled up towel 12″ in length, no more then 2″ thick).  Remember this is a test on the dog’s drives!  Do not or you should not have too talk the dog into doing or having any of the above or below “Drives”.

Evaluation Test:
Take the candidate dog to the closed/fenced-in area which is already cleared of the above listed things and should then, take the dog off leash.

If the dog has already seen the balls and is basically going nuts to get the ball from you or waiting excitably for you to throw it already…(If the dog has not seen that you have the balls then show the dog you have the balls) throw one of the balls (the other is hidden somewhere on your person, in a way which the dog does not see at this moment).  The dog chases the ball down (speed & intensity should be making you say “Wow”).  Once the dog has the ball and should be on his/her way back to you (speed & intensity), once the dog is about 10’ from you, show the dog that you have another ball, the dog should drop the ball from his or her mouth for the second ball (which is in your hand, held up to show them at this point), you throw the ball from your hand, quickly picking up the ball from the ground (that rolled toward you from the dogs mouth when you showed them the ball in your hand), while the dog is chasing the other thrown ball, repeat without having to give out commands or having to talk the dog into chasing/hunting for the ball.  (If you have to introduce the other suggested toys, do the same test/evaluation as the balls).  Use tug to ensure that the dog will tug, and not just want to retrieve toys.

Again, it’s very important that the dog does this energetically, not having to get talked into doing it.

It is also important, if the dog comes back to you with the first ball or toy, that you make the toy or ball in your hand more interesting or fun then the ball or toy in the dogs mouth (if the dog does not automatically drop the first ball or toy for the one you have shown them in your hand – more animated and fun).  Repeat as long as the dog keeps doing it (20 throws and retrieves are plenty).  With the tug toy, looking for strong tugs from dog not strong tugs from the human (gentle tug/resistance from the evaluator…not trying to “yank” the toy away from the dog or pull there teeth out).  Note:  Keep tug toys low to the ground, moving it around (prey drive) to get the dogs to come in for the tug game. 

Evaluator should make notes on test/evaluation.  What was the dogs energy, speed, chasing ball down, speed of bringing it back, intensity of wanting the ball from you, wanting to tug on any rope or towels, hunt drive to find the ball if they lose sight of it during play, pee breaks, lose of interest, if got distracted, but, then got back into it quickly, water break, never putting the ball down out of mouth when peeing, getting water….. If the dog looks good and you have the additional hands, have another person run the test and watch how the dog does.  If you’re able, do a little video of the test and send it to us or post it to YouTube and give us the link to watch that would be great too.

For further information, and to observe some videos on test -Visit: