Our start at the practice boxes did not bode well when Gimme decided to destroy all five boxes multiple times. I was thinking it was not going to be a good day.
Gimme found the hide in 1:12, a really good time. Our vehicles were three trailer rigs from 18-wheelers. I was glad that we'd done searches on those when some were parked behind Shopko. Most dogs did well enough, but some didn't know what to make of them. The judge commented that she thought Gimme was great and enthusiastic, but needed more experience to overcome distraction. Yes, that is a train blaring its whistle in the background. Given that she'd never heard one before today, I think she did a great job ignoring it. I think the judge might have read "distracted" when she watched Gimme search - that wasn't my take.
Wow, oh WOW!!! Gimme did this search in 18:57 seconds! She indicated just the one correct box. This is the best container search she's done in a long time. Very clean and efficient, certainly not what I was expecting after killing all the practice boxes.
We went to the practice boxes again before the second set of searches and I had a hard time getting Gimme even interested in them. She didn't feel the need to kill them, but wasn't interested in indicating either. So I just waited until she decided to do something, a light sniffing of the correct box and rewarded that.
Unfortunately I forgot to grab the camera, so don't have video of the other two searches. Someone told me that the group putting this on had taped all the runs and would be making them available for us to download. I hope that is true. It'll be nice to see the last two searches, as well as seeing the first two again, from a different perspective.
Gimme did a great job in the exterior search. She did her usual thing of running about scanning the area before getting down to searching. She often does that and will know where the hide is, but wants to make sure there isn't another one before she indicates it. This time I saw her head tilt in the middle area, but didn't know what she was noticing. When she came back to it in just 1:06, there was a weed pushing up through the concrete and they had placed an odor tin under it. She was all over that weed, pawing at it and I actually heard the tin scrape along just as I called alert.
This was our worst search. Gimme had a hard time finding source and I don't think she ever did decide where it was. She kept searching the two bottom shelves on a bookshelf and a bunch of bedding on the rack beside it. She went over that general area three times and just didn't settle in on a particular spot. Then she decided to go break down the baby gate to the room where the dogfood was, so we lost some time there. When I got her back was about the time they called the thirty second warning. So next time she snooped around in that area I called alert. Thus our time was 2:51.5, just 8.5 seconds to spare. The judge asked me where and I sort of indicated generally where I thought it might be. He told me where it was and it was a spot that I'd thought to myself, "if I were a judge, that's where I'd put the odor".
He said if it'd been a trial he would have passed us. His comment was that he thinks Gimme needs a stronger indication behavior. Honestly, I don't think she ever committed to one spot. I don't know if it was a particularly hard hide for her or maybe she was just tired. It had already been a very long and hot day.
On a very positive note... where we parked there was a fair amount of traffic from people walking by with their dogs to the only spot that was remotely "green". I was very pleased that Gimme noticed them, but mostly ignored them. She only responded to one dog who's idiot owner allowed it to stand and stare into our car. How rude! She ignored the other dogs and even ignored the pair of dogs that barked very loudly when we walked by their car even though we were 20 feet away (the only way to get to the staging area for both sets of searches). So she's getting better about those things too.
All in all a real good day. Gimme is exhausted and sound asleep. I'm very tired myself.