Beau passed his HRD recert. He was 12 for 12 with no false alerts. And wild man got through the offlead obedience just fine.
Most of us SAR folks realize this is an annual rite (passing recertfication testing) but it is still nerve racking....because there are few master trainers in this discipline (cadaver) and scheduling a test is expensive. There are no fees but we have to fly them in and take care of their expenses or else travel to a seminar. It is well worth it.
Our trainer is retired with a lifetime of experience training K9 officers. The things I learned this weekend (he called them "tweaks") are amazing. You cannot go into one of these tests with thin skin. I have been very impressed with my experiences with NAPWDA MTs. Many of the SAR organizations let folks who have only trained one dog, not hundreds, certify other handlers. I once saw a trailing test (SAR) where the evaluator was an HRD handler who had never worked a trailing dog in her life. For scenario based training, I would go to the SAR folks. For skills assessment, I am sold on the police organizations.
As far as Beau, his main comment was that he is still a YOUNG dog (2.5) and is maturing slowly and not to rush him or look for quick fixes. There were no issues with the scent work or his focus during same. Obedience, sure he passed but we are going to be working on more with more and more distractions to make him rock solid. This was his second certification. Many have not even had their first by this age.
He did some fun things to us though. In one of the building searches I could not go into the room with Beau and had to call it based on his breathing. It was the last hide so I "could" have failed it and been ok. You are allowed one miss or one false indication out of the 12 challenges to pass. We are going to incorporate that into our training.
NAPWDA Certified Cadaver Dog
Waiting at the Bridge (italics
=GSDs) (hemangiosarcoma=blue):Grim , Cyra, Toby
, Rainbow, Linus, Oscar
, Arlo & Waggles