We’ve been talking a lot about nose works lately, and I was especially pleased with how well both Luke and Cricket did with it after we had taken a break for a few months.
We did run into a snag though when I tried to move Cricket forward with something different. She did well with searching boxes and containers, even in a new location, but when I took those away and tried to get her to find the scent tin without it being inside something, she didn’t do so well. We only had three objects in the room, with the magnetic tin stuck to one of them, and most times, she just stood there and looked at me.
Luke can search pretty much the whole house and find a tin, and I look forward to moving up to outside searches for him in the future. He and Cricket have different styles though, and she’s always been just a bit slower than him at this. I think it’s just a motivation thing. Cricket is solely motivated by treats, whereas Luke is motivated by the desire to succeed. However, I have seen Cricket track where her ball has been many times, so I know she is capable of following a scent – but a ball is a totally different motivation for her too – she’s completely obsessed with it.
I did try taking the tin out of the box while leaving all the boxes from a search set up though, and that time she did well at finding it. I think it also made a difference having the tin flat on a surface – when it was stuck to something sideways that seemed to challenge her more. I guess maybe we just need to practice that way more for a while, and then gradually reduce the boxes. That’s my plan right now anyway.
We’re taking another break while I’ve been getting ready for my trip, and now on my trip, so who knows? Maybe another little break will do her good and she’ll come back and get it right on. Luke has done that many times, and totally surprised me!