We started Easter morning with a dove release. I had never seen one before, so it was really moving.
Here is our first attempt at Senior...
I edited out all the time it took me to get her undressed and started. This bum hand really slows me down. I also need to make some modifications to her harness. She finds the first rat in 25 seconds (times are factored from 8 seconds into the video, when I actually released her). I have found it goes faster if I pick up the rat tube and hand it over to the rat wrangler, than if I let them pick it up and have to restrain her (its against the rules to molest the rat wrangler). If they pick it up, she follows them to the edge of the ring. If I pick it up, she goes back to hunting as soon as I turn it over - which is when I think she knows I'm not going to open the tube and give her the prize. The clock continues ticking so time spent getting her off the rat and hunting again is an important factor.
At 1:07 she starts the tunnel. You can't really see her backing out, but there's no missing the hoot of laughter from the judge. 2:15 seconds in she finds the second rat - apparently there was some intriguing smell in the corner near the rat tube and a number of dogs got caught up in it. At about 2:45 into the run, she passes her nose right over the 4th rat,
but I was far away and not really supporting her. Since I wasn't paying much attention to the small piles, she didn't either. She got her third rat at 2:52 seconds. You'll note she starts checking out the rafters just before they called time. Still it was a very nice run.
Here is our second Senior class run...
Just like in nosework, its an important skill to keep track of where your dog has been as well as what they show interest in and then leave - particularly with Gimme. She enjoys the hunting more than the finding, so often finds something only to leave it - saving it for later so she can continue hunting. These times factor in 6 seconds for the time on the video when we actually started.
Gimme found her first rat in 32 seconds and had the second rat 1:25 seconds into the run. The second rat find is a significant improvement over the day before. She finds the third rat at 2:15 seconds into the run - again a big improvement. Then about 3:21 she goes into the tunnel for a second time and doesn't come out until I call her - wasting 15 seconds. She found the fourth rat at 4:11, forty one seconds over time. Factoring in the 15 seconds in the tunnel, she still would have been 25 seconds over.
I plan to study this run and get a friend of mine who is working on her RATCH to look it over and tell me what I could do better. Still - I'm very happy with Gimme's efforts - she certainly doesn't lack enthusiasm.