Kimberly Buchanan

Hi Gina! Hi Kalli! Don’t forget to introduce yourselves for those who have not “met” you two before! 🙂

First, let me say that I always love your “celebration” with Kalli when she finds a hide, no matter how hard it is or how fast she gets it your reward process is nice to see. 🙂

In this search we need to consider Kalli’s dependence on you. There are a few things you can do;

Look how far she is willing to range out from you, even in a familiar environment. She is not willing to cover the rest of the search area. So you could consider this an invisible leash and she keeps hitting the end of the leash. She is unwilling/can’t go further. So you can walk further into the space, which you do and then she ranges out and eventually finds the second hide.

You could set up a search so that there are multiple hides at a distance from each other that she is willing to go. (So when you pay her for one hide you remain and she goes out that distance.) You could set up the hides DOWN wind so she catches scent and gets brave enough to venture towards further hides on her own. Or you can just move yourself to “help” her navigate thru a search area.

Sure, ideally we want the dog to range out as far as it takes to cover the search area and your trust in Kalli to do that was evident as you remained off to the side and gave her a lot of room to work. This is a good thing. Reality is that not all dogs will go far from their handler. As we’ve seen with Kalli, sometimes not even in a place they are used to searching.

So when you set up your searches, have these things in mind and be willing to adapt your strategy with what you are seeing in the moment. And keep up the celebration when Kalli has success. 😀

Kimberly Buchanan
Joyride K9 Dog Training