Kimberly Buchanan

Well, the good news is that Biscuit, despite a few moments of distraction of the woods, was pretty focused during this search! It was long but she maintained her desire. I’m really glad you did re-pay her when she went back to a hide, especially when she had been working trying to locate it. 🙂 It was a bit confusing at first to know which vehicle she was searching at the time but I figured it out the second time I watched. Big thanks for your video pal and as I said vehicles are tough to video. 🙂

Let’s look at the video;

In the beginning, Biscuit was very enthusiastic and got the hide on the white car very quickly! I couldn’t tell if she pushed the food pairing out of reach or if she actually got it but she was a happy camper! At this hide, you keep walking to get her to keep moving – choosing the direction – so she goes left around the car. This isn’t “wrong” by any means, you just need to know the balance of directing vs following. We see Biscuit make a minor head-tilt at (:25) and I wonder if she’d have checked the black car if left to her choice? Instead you continue working the white car (I think this is your vehicle) and finds a hide on the back wheel – nice head snap! You keep moving and she stays nicely.

At this point you are about 5-6 feet from the back corner of your car and Biscuit comes off the vehicle instead of holding close to the corner and working the back of your car. I have to wonder if this might be a place where you could keep slightly in front of her to keep her on the vehicle? From there you do a nice maneuver and she heads to the black car. She details the side very nicely up to a hide on the wheel and you stay in front of her, working your way around the front of the vehicle where she follows.

This was very pretty where she stays ON the vehicle and locates the hide above her head. She goes UP to it and self-rewards! Nice!

From there she leads the way between the vehicles and starts working the silver car. I’m chuckling because you comment “She went by that one” where she skips a hide on the back and is drawn to the side. Your body language said you were going to work the back but she moved forward and you went with her where I think she gets another hide. Good!

At this point you two go between the two vehicles and you stand back as she explores the black and silver cars. Biscuit gets a little distracted and you realize she missed a hide so you take the lead and help her to figure out the hide behind the tire of the silver car.

From there we see a combination of you leading, Biscuit going with you and then responding to odor, etc. So your job of handler is a very active one in this search but Biscuit is still taking control at moments when she is working odor which is nice to see.

A few other thoughts:

Since in “our world of K9NW” we interchangeably refer to pairing as self-rewarding it is important that the dog can get the treat on their own. This builds independence from the handler and your timing is perfect. In this case, Biscuit at least did get rewarded “from source” even when it was out of reach but I would recommend working accessible hides in this kind of exercise.

GREAT idea in your other search to remove the hides nearby the harder one on the wall. It sounds like the high value rewards are working, too!

You haven’t mentioned Blackie so I’m assuming this is a “Mommy and Me” week with Biscuit. Do you think she searches any differently w/o competition for your attention?

Kimberly Buchanan
Joyride K9 Dog Training