On Thursday, October 4th, Nadine and I met at Auburn Cinema. She laid a track for Gimme starting in the parking lot, crossing the little lawn up to the building, following the turns of the building, then along the fence rail and back out into the parking lot. It was a cool 57º, the pavement was moist from recent rain and there was no breeze. This track was aged 65 minutes.
Gimme did a really nice job on the building. There were two inside L's and she went right up to the wall turning 90º, i.e. not cutting the corner. Sil calls those "cartoon corners". She did miss one small plastic article there. Her work along the rail and out into the parking lot and following the track around the end of the island was very nice. She had no trouble going out into the open parking lot from there and got the next article. Where she had difficulty was the left 90º (heading back generally to where we'd parked). She missed the turn and instead took me on a lovely walkabout - almost to the island straight ahead. If there was any sign she'd lost the track, I sure didn't see it. I worked her back to the turn using a spiral search and it took her a long time to find it. It didn't help that Nadine wasn't sure exactly where she'd turned. Once she found it, Gimme was solid to the end.
The track I laid for Cricket turned out to be an issue. I started along the perimeter of the parking lot, too close to the road for Nadine's comfort. We have tracked along that area many times, I just don't think we'd ever started there. Cricket tends to zig zag all over at the start. I doubt there'd ever be a start so close to traffic at a trial, so it's a non-issue. We'll just make sure to start by the islands, then move to that area.
Anyway, Nadine kept stopping her with the line in a way that Cricket didn't understand and she just stopped trying. We finally took her to the next article and restarted her.Unfortunately she was now uncertain and was thrown off by some of Nadine's line handling.
The most noticeable was how Nadine tugs on the line to re-center Cricket's harness. I hadn't really noticed it before, but it was really evident here, since each time Cricket stopped tracking and returned to Nadine. I don't think Cricket is as confident as Nadine thinks, eh...
On Saturday, October 6th, I took Gimme to the property where the old Ford dealership used to be. I wanted to replicate for Gimme what we'd done to Cricket to see how she'd handle it. I laid the track, then we drove up the street for a short walk. It was about 60º, the pavement and grass were both wet and there was no breeze. The track was aged 1:15.
Gimme couldn't seem to find the track until we got down to the first corner. She did scan close to the road, but didn't seem to be bothered when I checked the line to keep her from going too far. She really did the rest of the track beautifully.
I am wondering now if the movement of the cars going by on Pacific was disturbing the air and moving track scent around and/or dispersing it. I plan to do a track here again, but I want to reverse it, to see how she handles the part close to Pacific. I won't use this site very often, since there are chainlink fences that limit where I can go and what options I have for track design.
On Friday, October 12th, Nadine and I met at Game Farm park. It was about 60º, the grass was a little moist and no breeze. Her track was 1 hour old. The track was basically a series of transitions back and forth across various paved paths.
Gimme did a nice job with all of them until we got to the big circle of grass on the lower left of the picture. Gimme had found a second "article" at the turn, a square of leather, and we assumed Nadine dropped it accidentally. Gimme wanted to take the right turn, but Nadine said there was no turn there. Since I wouldn't follow her, Gimme was content to go on a walkabout straight ahead. When we got to the path, there were no chalk marks and Nadine couldn't recall where it was supposed to go. Then she remembered she had dropped the leather square to mark the corner. I worked Gimme back in a spiral. Each time she crossed the leg after the turn, you could see she knew it was there, but she wouldn't take it.
I re-scented her on the sock and told her I'd follow her if she'd just show me where the track was. She took two steps then turned to see if I was keeping my promise. Her "look" was priceless, speaking volumes. From there to the end of the track she did very well.
Then when we got home Gimme suffered the greatest outrage of her life!
There was a very large deer in our yard, munching away on apples. It was about 1p.m. and Friday, so the traffic on Boulevard was full and fast. I didn't want to risk Gimme running at the deer, causing it to panic and jump the fence into traffic, so I put a leash on her to get her in the house. Normally the deer come and go over the fence from 9th Avenue where there is a wide grass/gravel strip, unlike the narrow sidewalk on the front.
Here's a picture through the screened window of our intru-deer...
Gimme thinks it's beyond offensive for them to enter our yard. I say I'd rather they eat the apples than have to pick them up myself. And Gimme hasn't offered to help pick them up, just sayin...