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Old 12-13-2012, 06:49 AM
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Laurelin Laurelin is offline
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Default The downsides of doing nosework :D

Mia's ability to sniff out treats has become phenomenally better.

1. Last week I took the dogs to class and shoved some treats in my pocket. I forgot about them. I was changing clothes into my pajamas when I see Mia alerting on my pants. She was sooo proud of her find.

This week after nose work class I put some treats in my jacket pocket. I also put my keys, phone, and garage door closer in my pocket. When I got home, I took everything out of my pocket (I thought) and put my jacket in the dryer because it had dog hair all over it.

2. Tuesday night I was sitting on my chair eating dinner after class when I see Mia working the room. I'm like what in the world is she on to now? She keeps working and searching and keeps getting to the corner of the table. She climbs the couch to get as close as she can. And then she's dancing around on her back legs at the corner of the table. I look over and don't see anything except my garage door closer. I told her to knock it off.

Mia keeps on trying to get to that corner of the table. She starts whining and then barking at the table then me. I look up and see that there is a treat shoved into the clip on my garage door closer. I gave in.

3. Today, 2 days later, I'm getting ready for work. I fed the dogs- Mia gets fed out loose and Summer is in the pen. After a while I go back to let Summer out and I see Mia jump out of the clothes dryer, which is a front load and the door is open. I did a double take because I just wasn't sure that's where she had jumped out from. I had just turned the corner as she had done so.

So I go about my business, take a shower, and then as I'm getting out of the shower I look down the hall and Mia is in the dryer again. Yeah I probably should have closed it but I was curious if I had seen right. Mia's in the dryer digging through my clothes and picking my clothes up. I'm like what the hell? Then I think 'Oh no, I left the dryer open last night and now a mouse is in it!'

I called her out and she kept trying to go back and then I realized what had happened. I had those treats in my pocket on Tuesday and put the jacket in the laundry.

I can see why the trainer is cautious about using the actual scent in the house. It could seep in somewhere and then you have a dog that alerts it constantly.
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Old 12-13-2012, 07:28 AM
stardogs stardogs is offline
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Oh Mia! Sounds like it's time to proof your cue for this behavior - you def wouldnt want to have doing such awesome alerts without reinforcement for long given how fast she puts things together!
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Old 12-13-2012, 07:36 AM
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The only problem I've had was that Nosework is done in the same building we do Rally in. A couple of days after our first Nosework class was Rally night, and Caleb was convinced we were there to do Nosework. Thankfully he caught on fairly quickly to what the focus was that night. Just one more reason I do Nosework on a harness- it's an added clue to Caleb.

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Originally Posted by Laurelin View Post
...I can see why the trainer is cautious about using the actual scent in the house. It could seep in somewhere and then you have a dog that alerts it constantly.
Our trainer keeps her odor kits, oils, etc in one room in her house, I think. Maybe it's the garage. Anyway, she said, because of the amount of Nosework she does, there's bound to be odor through out her house, but her dogs don't alert on it. I just have the travel odor kit right now. Being the OCD person I am, I keep it in Caleb's Nosework bag. It's in an airtight container, tho.
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Old 12-13-2012, 11:04 PM
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Zoe is much more into sniffing in general. It's fun to watch her using her nose more, but it's also harder to distract her from it during walks.

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Originally Posted by Laurelin View Post
I can see why the trainer is cautious about using the actual scent in the house. It could seep in somewhere and then you have a dog that alerts it constantly.
Our instructor said it's important for them to learn the difference between lingering odor and a true hide, with the concentrated scent. They almost always go to the last spot odor was hidden in, because the scent is still there a bit, so they check out the lingering odor, then move on when not rewarded. They are learning there's no reward in that non-concentrated odor.

But definitely you want to be careful of getting concentrated odor in the home. Gloves/tweezers to handle oils or swabs are important, but I just keep mine in the tins so far, and make sure to seal the jar they go in nice and tight when not in use.

I practiced with Zoe in my parents' house, and forgot to put the lid on the jar when I left it on the counter. There are two tins, and I only hid one. She found the open jar with the other tin and alerted. I gave myself a mental head slap and rewarded like crazy.
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Old 12-14-2012, 07:27 AM
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Quote:
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...
I practiced with Zoe in my parents' house, and forgot to put the lid on the jar when I left it on the counter. There are two tins, and I only hid one. She found the open jar with the other tin and alerted. I gave myself a mental head slap and rewarded like crazy.
Just one more example of how it's usualy the human team member making the mistakes, huh? I did something similar when we were just starting out. We weren't on odor yet, and I left the open bag of treats on the counter.
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