Titles Achieved to date...

Monumental A to Z High On Liberty
NW1, NW2, L1I, L1E, L1C, RATI, RATN, RATO, RATS, L1V, L2C, L2I, L2E, RATM,
R-FE/N, PKD-TL, PKD-N, ADP-L1, ADP-L2, TD, UWP, ADP-L3 and NTD...
23 and counting...

Thursday, June 4, 2015

Tracking Genius (12 & 13)

After our practice last night, I did recheck Gimme's false pregnancy support package.  There were a couple of things we'd reduced based on Monday's check, which we added back in.  It'll take a few days to see how its working. 

This track is from May 21st.  Nadine set it up to be as much like a TD test as she could.  It was a sunny/warm day and the track was 485 yards.  There was a sock at the beginning and a glove at the end.  The pale green is where the track was on a mowed short path.  The pale grey is where the path turned to gravel.

This track was a challenge for Gimme for a couple of reasons.  This was the warmest day we've tracked, which makes a big difference in the amount of scent available.  It was also challenging because this was a long track to only have one article at the end and she loves her articles.  She did well on the first leg, ran like a wild woman on the second leg through the long grass, and started to slow down halfway through the 170 yard third leg.  I'm pretty certain this is the longest leg we've done.  The little double line crossing the fourth leg of the track was a game trail, which Gimme ignored.  She sure was happy to find an article at the end and she got a ton of reward for it.  

The second time we ran it, she had a much harder time.  It was about an hour later, so just a little warmer and she acted a lot of the time like she just didn't know what I expected her to follow.  I encouraged her to keep trying and we did finally make it to the end - where she got even more reward for persevering.  I think her nasal passages were just dried out.  It's really a challenge to get her to drink enough water and she only did a few sips between runs.  So I decided to make her some tuna water and freeze it as ice cubes which I can take along on tracking days.

This is today's track, June 4th.  Five articles and 418 yards.  It turned out they've recently mowed the field and it was very dry.  The only moist area with long grass is shown with the green shape overlaying part of the fifth leg.  It proved to be very challenging for all the dogs.  Skookum, Nadine's older dog, who already has a TD did the best, but even she had to work at it.   

Between the shortness of the grass and how dry it was, there just wasn't a lot of scent available.  Gimme ran it twice and she had to really work at it both times.  The second time was harder and I had to encourage her more.   

Again I think the difference between the first and second run is a hydration issue.  As it turned out, Gimme was unimpressed with the tuna water.  I was surprised because every other dog I've known has loved it.  I had some beef bouillon powder in the car and when I added it to the tuna water, then she was more interested and drank well.  She hasn't cared for the bouillon before.  I'm going to buy some peanut butter cookies and pulverize a bunch in the blender to keep in the car.  I'm sure if I make her some peanut-butter-cookie soup, she'll drink it up.

It was a valuable exercise because they won't always have long grass or moist ground to track in.  Gimme is exhausted now and sound asleep.

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