We had a two week break from classes while Dorothy and the other instructor went to the big annual nosework camp. Sadly I forgot to take my camera last night, so no video.
Class was about "odor bombs" - about 30 q-tips. The dogs are used to searching for a tin with 3-5 q-tips. So when there is so much odor, they have to learn what it means and how to work it. Think of it like being around a person who wears waaaaaay too much perfume or cologne. Luckily for humans after a certain point, we don't smell it anymore. It takes a very long time for a dog to go nose-blind to a smell, like hours.
We started with a vehicle search - 3 vehicles and 1 odor bomb. Gimme quickly eliminated the blue truck as part of the search. It didn't seem to take her any time at all to decide it was on the white trailer. It was inaccessible between and behind the two tires (on an axle). I was pretty certain it was the trailer, but Gimme kept leaving it. She checked out the white van's front bumper and near tire. She went around the trailer a twice more and kept wanting to check out stuff nearby which wasn't part of the search. At first I thought she was goofing off, but I belatedly realized she was really trying to avoid so much odor. I think she was trying to figure out a way to get paid without getting her face near the bomb.
For the second search, they added another bomb on the wheel of the van and brought the first bomb out so it was accessible too. This time Gimme didn't avoid the bombs as much as before. It probably helped she was very motivated to get more raw steak - just sayin... She found the bomb on the van first and then went to the other. She was more reluctant for it than for the other, but still got in and indicated much faster than before.
Our last search was in the training building. Two odor bombs at opposite ends of the room and one regular hide. The front bomb was in an expen and the other was in an airline crate. The regular hide was in a floor crack between them.
Gimme found the bomb in the crate at the far end of the room first, but didn't indicate. She went around checking other things before going back to it. Then she found the bomb in the expen at the front of the room, but again didn't indicate. From there she got the hide in the floor crack and then went to indicate the bomb in the expen.
I can't say she particularly likes odor bombs. I get it, I don't like people who wear too much perfume or cologne. I find it intrusive.
Dorothy shared something she learned at camp about odor bombs in the real world. There was a time when drug sniffing dogs had difficulty with detecting drugs. It was because the drug pushers learned to ship huge amounts and it had the effect of an odor bomb. The dogs would avoid it. They had to be trained for this circumstance so they knew how to react. We won't see an odor bomb at a trial until we get into Elite.
Gimme says she wants to be trained on a steak-odor-bomb. She got steak last night because I got a super good deal on some steak. I did a side-by-side test with peanut butter to see which Gimme preferred. It was pretty clear she still likes peanut butter best, but was able to leave it for a brief moment to grab the steak in my open hand. She was very excited by the raw steak as a reward, but we know dogs are attracted to novelty.