Sunday, March 30, 2014

Practicing under certain conditions

    I had a tough week. Just wasn't right on and tired. I was determined to go to Nose Work Practice with Mickey and Divine. Two dogs in a three hour workshop. I woke up Saturday morning, had my coffee and was ok to go. A little slow, but was ok to go.

     As I was driving north on I-15, I noticed a white film in my vision. Fortunately I knew where I was driving, so paying close attention wasn't needed. But what concerned me was I had to concentrate so hard watching the road as it got blurry at times. It was a little hazy and bright.

     I arrived 25 minutes early to set up and get Mickey and Divine pottied.

     First exercise was one vehicle. Not Mickey's best and Divine does decent.

Things I need to remember:
      1. Don't sell the spot or odor to my dog.
      2. Keep moving.
      3. Don't concentrate so hard on your dog, don't over analyze that you freeze and stare at your dog, which essentially sells that spot as the location of the odor.
      4. Mickey is really sensitive. Watch how you handle the leash and your movements that could direct him.
      5. With Divine, let her commit to the odor instead of bobbing (targeting). We want her to sniff odor and tell me, not get rewarded for bobbing or poking odor.
      6. Let Divine source better. 

The odor was behind all four tires and one time below the hitch.

High hide on pole. Pee at bottom, pee in grass about 2-3 feet away. Bushes behind but right of the pole. Wind was going slightly away from the bush.

Mickey did really well.

Divine peed in grass.
Her second time she worked and source. I really think she got it that she was pulled away and got no food.

Then tine with odor was flung into the grass.
Mickey - Crittered a little bit, and then my leash kind of distracted him. He found it, then we did it again off leash, much better.

Divine - did really well and got the odor.

6 odors on the floor in the training hall.
---I tend to subconsciously tell the dog where the odor is with my body language. I need to walk a little more natural.

I was really tired, my hips were hurting as I walked. My feet were swelling and Tennis Shoes were tight. It was warm, my vision was giving me issues and my concentration skills were really off. But I LOVE working under these conditions, because you never know when you are going to have a bad day at a trial and working under difficult conditions makes you better when you are feeling well :-)

I do noticed that I still have issues when people watch me. I freeze a lot. I'm more calm at a trial or when I'm training on my own...BUT with known hides I have to watch selling the odor to my dogs. That's why Mickey looks at me for clues, he's been reading my body language to tell him where the odor is located and gets frustrated when I don't know where it is located. He does find odor faster when I know where it is, because I'm cuing him.

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