What is the Volhard Puppy Aptitude Test and how do I use it?

Discussion in 'General Mastiff Discussion' started by Vicki, Jul 26, 2009.

  1. Vicki

    Vicki Administrator

    What is the Volhard Puppy Aptitude Test and how do I use it?

    July 25, 11:05 PM

    Puppy evaluation and testing has been around a long time. It began when humans started breeding dogs for certain characteristics and created the breeds we have today.

    One test that has been used extensively over the years is the Volhard Puppy Aptitude Test. It has been updated and copyrighted by Wendy Volhard as recently as 2003 and is presented by Jack and Wendy Volhard in their book "Dog Training for Dummies," (published by IDG Books in 2001).

    The Volhards also maintain a website at Volhard Dog Training and Nutrition that has a lot of helpful information.

    When this test is administered at the proper time (as close to the 49th day as possible) and under certain circumstances, it is fairly accurate. The Volhard Puppy Aptitude Test concentrates on the following categories of behavior and drives:

    • Social attraction. This tests for the degree of social attraction to people, confidence, or dependence. Pack drive.
    • Following. Willingness to follow a person. Pack drive.
    • Restraint. Degree of dominance or submissive tendency, and ease of handling in difficult situations. Fight or flight drive.
    • Social dominance. Degree of acceptance of social dominance by a person. Pack drive.
    • Elevation dominance. Degree of accepting dominance while in a position of no control. Fight or flight drive.
    • Retrieving. Degree of willingness to do something for you. Together with social attraction and following, a key indicator for ease or difficulty in training. Prey drive.
    • Touch sensitivity. Degree of sensitivity to touch and a key indicator to the type of training equipment required.
    • Sound sensitivity. Degree of sensitivity to sound. (Also a rudimentary test for deafness.) Prey drive.
    • Sight Sensitivity. Degree of response to a moving object, such as chasing bicycles, children or squirrels. Prey drive.
    • Stability. Degree of startle response to a strange object. Fight or flight drive.
    • Structure. Degree of structural soundness. This is where the breeder observes the pup for structural soundness according to breed and health standards.
    The Volhard Puppy Aptitude Test is usually performed by the breeder before you take a pup home. If you have an extra-ordinary relationship with the breeder you might ask for permission to observe the testing. If observing is not possible then when you are previewing a litter it would be a good idea to ask the breeder if they performed an assessment and what the results were for each pup you are considering.

    With a good New Owner Profile, the Puppy Aptitude Test can provide excellent coinciding information that will greatly assist in the process of matching the right puppy with the best family.

    What is the Volhard Puppy Aptitude Test and how do I use it?

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