Sorry for my delayed response. Just worked on interior thresholds with Prim and my answers to these questions don’t always pan out in real life. Translated: I don’t want a dichotomy between theory and practice; I need to focus!
*Do you use the warm-up boxes or not? Yes.
*What do you do as you wait for your turn in the queue? Yoga breath. It is always important to remember to breathe.
*Do you watch your dog as you are walking up to the search area? Yes.
*Where do you change your equipment if it’s different for the search? Before the line.
*What do you do with your leash if you choose to run your dog off-leash? Carry it in my other hand–always has been on leash thus far.
*Do you take your eyes off your dog as you listen to the steward’s instructions? Try not to.
*Can you hear and comprehend what the steward is saying? Yes, but due to nerves, I usually perceive a slow motion deal like the Charlie Brown teacher’s voice. (Wa-wa-wawa-wa!)
*Do you have a start line routine? I try to. Access. Breathe. Watch dog. Wait for her to look at me. Say “seek.”
*Kiss the dog’s head? Never.
*Make them sit? Never.
*Get them on your left/right/center? Usually left; an obedience vestige?
*Give your dog a treat and/or show them the reward? No.
*Do you stroke your dog for calm assurance? No
*Do you stop at the start line or walk through? Walk through.
*Do you rev them up or wait until they’re calm? Calm/ focused.
*Do you release your dog or do they choose when to go? I release.
*Do you let your dog’s head go OVER the start line in order to give them a better assessment of an Interior space? No.
*Do you begin on leash and slowly pay it out so they first investigate the threshold? That sounds like a great strategy.
*Do you step in behind your dog or do you wait until that threshold is cleared? I try not to crowd.
*Do you begin a Vehicle search from the line or do you go right up to the first vehicle? Line.
*Do you have a plan for the search? Yes, but during the search, I try to be flexible if need be.
*Do you think about the wind and air currents of the space? I try to.
*Is your dog READY when you release them to begin? I hope so, or it will be the longest search ever! 🙂