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Well, I would say my current dog has extremely high pack drive, lives to please.
Prey drive has been high from day one, as is his drive to play. ( he was one of the two pups who were harassing and chasing their littermates and older dogs).
Rank drive doesnt seem to be super high, but yeah he will use his teeth at times to try to get what he wants, shows some handler aggression, and is generally toothy when in drive. He decided he really wanted to harass my wifes lab the other night, I was in no mood, so put him in a down stay at my feet while I sat on the couch. Well, he was in no mood for that! After I think his third foiled attempt to get up the little knucklehead put his mouth around my knee and applied some pressure ( while looking me in the face ).
Fight drive I just dont know about. Havent had any mishaps with strange dogs yet. I'll say that when he plays, it gets super rough and he wont take corrections from older dogs. Never has. What I've noticed, is that in play at least, he will escalate right along with another dog or human. We've not hit the point where he will stop or back down as I stop things short of getting that rough.
Hunt drive is decent, we play alot of find it games in the woods, and he seems pretty good at it. I can throw a ball into the woods at night and he almost never fails to bring it back, even in pitch dark. And he's quick about it too. Has to be the nose.
Work ethic is pretty darn good. Loves training, always ready to go go go, and is an overall pleasure to train. Always there wanting to help out. Its like having an employee in training shadowing me.
My only ( sort of )complaint is that he's exceptionally mouthy, even for a gsd. He's ALWAYS ready to bite something. Not aggressively, its almost like a reflex for him. So we've been working to develope his self control without outright squashing the desire to bite......slow going there. Would be easier to squash it altogether but I dont want that.
Havent seen him go into flight yet. Havent seen much more than slight hesitation from him. So far he's been one of those dogs who needs to be protected from himself.
He just turned a year old so we're still learning each other, and I'm no expert on drives....but overall our personalities mesh very well, and I really enjoy having him as an adventure companion. Hes been great everywhere I've taken him, and has alot of enthusiasm for pretty much everything, which rubs off on me.
 

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My boy does not have super high food drive....either his ball or a game of tug is what he mostly cares about. His ball is actually better than a leash.......
 

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Hmmm...this is really interesting to see how people interpret " drive ". In my own little head I tend to think of drive as I guess the intensity of the desire to do something/have something, and I think of threshold as the point where that drive kicks in. One of my old bullmastiff females was pretty intense when she decided to chase something, and she was after a kill when she did, usually would eat what she caught.....but she it wasnt like she was always looking to go after something at the drop of a hat. I tended to think of her as high prey drive due to the intensity, but higher in threshold. The dog I have now is low threshold on prey, and has intensity but doesnt go for the kill, which is more than fine by me at this point in my life!
 

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@capnjack your thoughts on threshold are interesting.....I never really thought of it as being the point where they cant think clearly.....I guess I should have though after reading so much about severely reactive dogs.
More than one type of threshold perhaps?
That same bullmastiff wasnt an aggressive dog per say, but there were limits to what she'd take of coarse.....we have alot of loose dogs in the area, and we have pet miniature goats and chickens, so one of our dogs jobs are to drive off other animals. Point being please dont take what I'm about to say as bragging or some such.....that bmastiff would actively challenge another dog, but she wouldnt just outright attack right off the bat. But if the other dog didnt respect what she was trying to get across she'd do her job and fight. When she finally decided to fight, we learned early on she would fight to kill. She was a no nonsense dog, and would go for the belly. Why I bring this up, is that I thought of her as being pushed over her threshold when she finally did fight....but she wasnt out of her head when she did. She was what I thought as being clear headed. I could grab her collar to pull her off, she wasnt a thrashing mess, she wasnt so worked up that she'd turn around and redirect onto me. She was calm about it in a way. Had one time the offending dog didnt leave the property when I pulled her off. I walked towards the other dog to finish running it off, she just calmly trotted past me, not running but trotting, cornered the dog against a section of fencing and very calmy and deliberately layed into the dog again. She knew she was big and powerful and knew how to throw her weight around. I guess what I'm asking is if being over threshold means unable to think clearly, then when she went into fight mode, was there no crossing of a threshold involved at that point?
 

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@3gsd4ipo
" I tried giving her more structure (not Positive Punishment.. simply more consistent obedience everywhere in her life with nothing in life for free) and it squeezed the joy juice right out of her. I prefer the joy juice."

This was interesting to me. The exact opposite of my current dog. I do NILIF with all my dogs, its how I raise them in general, been doing it that way since before I ever heard the term NILIF. The dog I have now seems to really thrive on this sort of lifestyle. I mean, he loves to do things for me, I swear he'd be dissapointed if he didnt get to work for his stuff. In his case it doesnt seem to be so much an obedience/all good things come from me sort of thing, but seems to give him more...sense of purpose and fulfilment in his life.? Lol did that make sense? I could be reading it all wrong, but I dont .....think so. Its amazing the differences between dogs of the same breed....well in gsds sort of the same breed anyway!

@capnjack
You have an interesting take on the bmastiff/pyr x gsd doing their jobs. I agree that the dogs are doing their jobs and know it, but if we say that drive is what motivates a dog to do what it does, how do we have dogs who are motivated to do their jobs without drive being involved? I guess I'm thinking of it in terms of the drive to do their jobs..... I want to figure this one out alittle more since it directly pertains to how I live and what my animals do.
 

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Hey @canyx I totally get what you're saying in your last post. Hearing a description of a dog based based nervy or high prey drive or whatever is a very generalized thing, and I'm seeing it means different things to different people. I think german shepherd enthusiasts have sort of got a lingo all to their own in a way. I'm a gsd enthusiast, but dont do dog sports, and I'm an outdoors person who tends to avoid places with people in my spare time. Usually just me and the dog, and the wife sometimes for adventures. So, almost the only place I interact with other knowledgeable dog people is online, and this is a recent thing for me. Getting to interact in these discussions really helps me to expand my knowledge base! When I hear someone talk drives, I generally get a very broad picture of a dog, but yeah nothing specific without further details.

I think the other thing to remember here is that drive is relative, what is a high drive dog to me, may be only medium to 3gsd4ipo. Or lower.
It is kind of funny how many people I run into who say they have protective dogs, when the dog is actually scared to death and just putting on the big show. I've had some luck explaining to a few people the general concept behind fight or flight, I do use drive just a sort of generalized way to express it.
I do think that if more people had a general understanding of drive as what motivates their dog to act the way they do, and even a shallow understanding of types of " drives " it may serve as a good starting point to deeper understanding.
Like @canyx said, telling me a dog has high prey drive just tells me the dog likes to chase.....but then I my mind jumps to more specific questions.
I think that maybe in sports like IPO and certain other training venues, things are broken down to such minutiae, it probably really helps within that specific venue to have drives pinned down as much as possible. Seems like that sport engages facets of a dogs temperament that most others dont? I've certainly heard people say that such and such dog crumbled when we pushed him from prey into defense. That type of talk I can understand, but its just a generalization for me since I dont take part in the actual activity, but I am able to glean a general understanding from those descriptors.

So.....I gather that I am wrong to think of threshold as being the point at which drive kicks in?
 
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