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...

Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Nosework (6/20)

We had 3 container searches and 1 vehicle. 

Container 1 video - Three paired hides in open containers.  As always I got comments for letting her dash off the startline.  She does better if I let her start her way, especially for the first search.  Yes, this does mean I'm not in position to add treats to the container when she gets to the first paired hide, but if it wasn't paired, then she would wait for me.  I understand the value of paired hides, but I also see a downside.  The down side becomes very obvious in the next search on the false start when they forgot to pair.  Also, I let her use the area the way she wants... she finds a lot of hides when the scent pools near something else in the room.  I think it makes more sense to be standing near the containers, to make it clear we are doing a container search, while still letting her use the length of the leash to check for pooling odor elsewhere.  Naturally given prior experience, I don't voice my thinking. 

Container 2 false start video - Supposed to be two paired hides in open containers and one unpaired hide.  You'll see here, when they forgot to pair, she didn't stick the hides.  Like most dogs, she does what she learned last, which was look for odor-with-food.  When she didn't find odor-with-food, she immediately moves on.  And even though she went by the hide in the luggage two times, she paid no attention to it, I think because it wasn't paired. 

Container 2 video - Dorothy comments this is a better start, but its the way Gimme chose to start.  If she'd wanted to dash out, I would have let her.  She slows herself down after the excitement of the first couple starts.  I see no advantage to frustrating her by holding her back.  She finds the two paired hides quickly and only then does she bother looking for the unpaired hide. 

Container 3 video - Two blind hides.  You'll see Gimme actually catches the hide in the luggage, but just keeps going, because I believe she's looking for odor-with-food.  She wastes 40 seconds looking for food before she settles down to search for just-odor - I don't see this as helpful.  Once she gives up on food it only takes her 20 seconds to find the first luggage hide.  It takes her almost 3 minutes to find the next hide.  She spends a bit of time checking the tall piece, where odor is pooling against it, but she never pays any attention to it after that.  Its in a little purse and she checked it early, but something about it throws her.  It takes a long time before she commits to it.

I find it interesting how Dorothy said I "get a bunch of behavior" from telling her what to do, but she never notices this same bunch of behavior when we are working on a short leash and Gimme is frustrated by the restriction.

It seems all the dogs had difficulty with this particular "container".  In my opinion, this would have been a really valuable time to pair the hide.  In the past when we set up a really challenging puzzle, we often pair it to help the dogs at first.  Then we'll do it again without pairing.  After they initially learn nosework, I think pairing for challenges is probably the best reason.  I know, at least for Gimme, every time we go through this pairing game - she seems to learn an unintended lesson and then has to unlearn it.  She's a really smart girl, so it doesn't take much to get her back to normal, but I don't see the point in "going there" in the first place.  Maybe dogs who aren't as brilliant as she respond differently to the game.  I'll have to watch for that next time we do this set of exercises. 

Vehicle search video - One hide, in front of  R-front tire.  Weirdly Dorothy is suddenly okay with me letting Gimme dash off the startline to the curb near the vehicle.  I don't see any consistency to her suggestions on this topic.  I thought it was very interesting how Gimme tried to use the curb to find source.  Of course, scent was pooling there.  And given her experience with curbs in urban tracking, it made sense to her to check it.  Gimme was the only dog to go around to the far side of the truck and only when she got to the far side did she get more purposeful, so she clearly got something from going around there.  I can't explain it, because there was almost no breeze and it wasn't going that way.  She was still faster than the others.

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