PROTECT AND SERVE
Rudy Drexler, proprietor of Rudy Drexler’s School for Dogs in Elkhart, has been working with dogs for over 50 years. For much of that time, he specialized in training dogs for perhaps the most disciplined canine calling of all: law enforcement.
Now, he uses that expertise to import and train protection dogs for private homes and businesses. “Every 16 seconds, a burglary happens somewhere in the country,” he said.
Drexler says purebred German Shepherds, Giant Schnauzers and Dobermans are the best breeds for home and personal protection. He works with breeders in Germany, Belgium, Hungary and the Czech Republic to personally select dogs for clients back home.
“These dogs must be good with kids and be good family dogs, but still be protective if they need it,” he said. He spends two weeks screening each dog to ensure it’s the right fit for a particular family or client before bringing them home.
"A well trained dog is a better citizen."
These are full grown dogs, usually one to three years old, and most often female. “They’re more devoted,” Drexler said, noting that he uses the same criteria when selecting private protection dogs as he does for law enforcement dogs.
Protection dogs are trained in a language other than English, usually German or Hungarian, and the new owners go through training with the dog to learn her command words. This allows the owner to give the dog instruction in a dangerous situation without giving an attacker the chance to react.
These highly specialized dogs cost an average of $10,000 to $12,000 to select, import and train, but for the right dog, Drexler says, it’s well worth the investment.
THE PERFECT MATCH
Training a dog is hard work, so naturally many people prefer to choose dogs that are already trained and socialized — even if home protection is not a priority.
"A well trained dog is a better citizen," Drexler said.
Drexler has matched clients with dogs of all breeds, from Weimaraner to Labrador, with an expert eye for temperament and trainability.
He says he’s careful to only work with breeders that he knows to take good care of their dogs, because animals raised in cruel conditions can be unpredictable.
Whether a family wants a puppy or a grown dog, they come fully trained and socialized – to get along with men and women, kids and other dogs – for the smoothest possible transition into their new homes.
YOUR WISH, MY COMMAND
As wonderful as it is to have a dog in the family, one that’s improperly trained can be more of a burden than a joy. Problem behaviors like jumping, barking, aggression and leash pulling can all be alleviated by some careful training — for both dog and human.
The first things Drexler asks of new clients is what food the dog is on, and what bad behavior they want to fix.
The typical obedience training regimen involves six 30- to 40-minute sessions, three on the leash and three off the leash, addressing specific problems and teaching general obedience techniques.
For those looking to take their dog’s training to the next level, off-leash training programs teach dogs to respond to voice commands and hand signals.
Drexler believes that with one-on-one training, any dog – regardless of breed or age – is capable of learning new tricks.
This article is brought to you by Rudy Drexler’s School for Dogs, located at 50947 C.R. 7 North, Elkhart. The school offers obedience training, behavior correction and boarding for dogs of all breeds in its climate-controlled indoor facilities. To apply for a class, or for more information about Drexler’s trained domestic and imported dogs, call 574-264-7518 or visit drexlerschoolfordogs.wix.com/drexlerschoolfordogs.