Sarah Woodruff

    Ok trying to answer your questions first.
    Hmmm… Angie is a mix of independence and dependence, I think.

    Let’s break down the video and talk about it;

    Beautiful threshold! Gets the grey bucket right away. And you don’t step into the space until she gets that hide so I think that helps her. Immediately after that she starts sniffing the floor, following *something?* Goes to the area where I *assume* there is the hide on the rack? But doesn’t figure it out yet, goes directly from there across the room to the bathroom, gets to the door frame and finds the hide on the bench/shelf next to the door. I say good girl so she stays. She looks at you a couple of times(I am guessing, expecting you to go and pay her again ? ). She spends from (:22-:43) in that area, so over 20 seconds. That’s a lot of time for one hide that is solved quickly. She again starts sniffing the floor.

    At this point it appears she is caught between the hide on the red stool and the bathroom hide. She chooses the red stool but it doesn’t look like she solved the problem? Yes she got it, it was easily accessible right on the leg of the stool. Instead starts sniffing the floor again. Do you think she is sniffing dog footsteps, food drop areas or something else? I think all 3 – dog smells, food smells, odor smells. Our floors are the rubber matting that seems to attract odor.

    Angie picks her head up and begins working again but still interested in the floor. She goes to the grey cart where I think the crate is, but cuts out the niches/corners. Of course you are videotaping on your phone but you are standing back observing from a distance. Do you think she would have checked those areas at that time if you were closer? Yes if I was closer and put pressure on her to stay in an area I think she would commit to solving the problem. I start to do that towards the end of the video.

    She leaves the cart area and heads to the chairs. I think she caught that scent from the grey cart? BUT, she doesn’t solve that problem. Instead, goes back to the cart.The cart is inbetween 2 hides. there is like a cubby system for the crates on the right, and then that weird beige box coming out of the wall on the left. You step in a bit and she goes to the LH side of the cart, doesn’t solve the crate problem. Instead, cuts the niche (RH of the cart) and works the perimeter, passes the ladder and heads back to the red stools and looks at you. I think you tell her good girl? She leaves the stools (I still can’t tell if she’s gotten that hide yet?) and goes back to the cart area and goes UP on the cart. Leaves that and goes back to the red stools. (Every time she’s passing the hide on the ladder and I think the crate.)

    This time Angie goes into the bathroom and I’m guessing gets that hide? Yes, did you notice I moved closer to keep her in the bathroom till she solved it. IT was snoot height on wire shelving, straight in front of the door. She goes back to the bench/shelf and you pay her again. Not a bad choice and hopefully this will keep up her motivation. Angie heads to the fencing and then gets the hide on the folding chair. You move in and this seems to help her move along. She goes back to the far left of the search area and again goes high on the wall (?). I can’t tell what hide she’s getting here at (3:02)? She goes up a bit, goes into the niches and I can’t tell, does she get another hide at (3:30)? This is where I thought the crate was?

    With you nearby, I think your body pressure is keeping her close to the wall so she then gets the ladder hide and this is the end of the video.


    To me, it seems like she doesn’t know what to do with this much odor. She works independently but doesn’t have the skills yet to figure out what is happening so she spends a lot of time bouncing around between hides, occasionally solving them here and there but really not productive at all.

    The first question I have is knowing this was a bit different handling for you because of the phone video, would you normally be as far back as this? Would you normally do a search like this off-leash or on-leash?

    Yes and no, I’ve been to so many coaching sessions where people say to work off leash and let the dog choose, and this is what i end up with. I know they have to learn, but i think i need some basics or layering of these problems before jumping back into large # of converging hides.
    In trials because of time pressure I will start just letting her do her thing, and then I try to ensure we cover all search areas or go back on leash to finish up search areas. You saw our videos from the last trial. The first search was two classrooms where I just let her bounce back and fourth. But the remaining 4 searches were on lead and I was more involved and closer to ensure we covered all areas.