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Old 12-14-2012, 07:56 AM   #11 (permalink)
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Hey, Im actually part of a club I just havent got into the tracking phase yet as the dog is to insecure to do bitework atm and we are working on that. If she can overcome that in the next year we will get into tracking this spring/summer. If not Ill be pulling her from the sport. I was just having some fun on my own and didnt want to wait until january to speak to the TD about it as we are on a break now..lol.
Ill stop being lazy and do some more research on the IPO version before we progress.
I would definitely not do anything else in tracking then! Fun, yes, but asking to create headaches I don't know why you wouldn't work on tracking while you're also trying to work through the issues in protection? Also, no reason to pull her form the sport if she doesn't pan out in bitework...you can get OB and tracking titles
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Old 12-14-2012, 08:58 AM   #12 (permalink)
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Hey, Im actually part of a club I just havent got into the tracking phase yet as the dog is to insecure to do bitework atm and we are working on that. If she can overcome that in the next year we will get into tracking this spring/summer. If not Ill be pulling her from the sport. I was just having some fun on my own and didnt want to wait until january to speak to the TD about it as we are on a break now..lol.
Ill stop being lazy and do some more research on the IPO version before we progress.
I wouldn't push anything in tracking if you're having trouble in another phase. As somebody who has gone through the exact situation you are describing, when I continued working tough things in tracking/obedience during problems in the protection, my dog fell apart.

I also agree that if protection doesn't work out, that you could always work towards obedience and tracking titles. I failed the IPO2 twice with my dog, but with a 91 in obedience and an almost perfect track, there isn't too much reason not to work towards those titles with my dog.
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Old 12-14-2012, 11:52 AM   #13 (permalink)
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I started tracking as well and my instructor has had us on circle tracks with treats in every footstep for a very long time. The dog just goes around in a circle and gets all the food he can/wants and can go around as many times as they want as long as they are interested in the track. The circle has about a 20 foot diameter and 4 scent pads with extra treats at the 3,6,9,12 points.

You really don't want to be correcting your dog or telling it "you're off the track." It means nothing to your dog at this point. Actually reminding it to get back on the track is also something you don't want to do (according to my instructor) because YOU shouldn't know where the track is. You also shouldn't place such high value things at the end of a straight line...the dog can see it and just goes to it. This is proven by the fact that your dog doesn't pick up the treats along the way to the item. It is no longer tracking but just going towards the high value item that it has seen. It is very important in Schutzhund tracking that the dog's nose stays as close to the ground for the whole track. You want to teach your dog to stick its nose into every footprint as according to my trainer, even if they don't do this once they're "trained" they will resort back to this type of tracking if they do end up losing the track.
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Old 12-14-2012, 01:19 PM   #14 (permalink)
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Speaking from experience, you definitely want to get the proper guidance as suggested above.

I worked with my girl for two years on tracking and was over the top frustrated because she pulled me to the end of the track, skipping the food on it, every time. I tried every treat out there with the same results, I tried everything imaginable with the same results. At the end of two years I pulled her from the program.

Definitely get the proper guidance...you will be glad you did!
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Old 12-14-2012, 07:56 PM   #15 (permalink)
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She actually doesnt see the end item. She has her nose to the ground and is clearly scenting I think once she figures out what the goal of the exercise is she picks up speed still keeping her nose to the ground she just finishes the track fast. She still gets some of the treats, but I get what everyones saying about having her take more time on the track. I just assumed you wanted a drivey type of scent work. As you do with the OB and Protection.
Anyways I will do more research before progressing and thanks for the info and resources.
As for why I am focusing on protection, for me there is not really any point in pursuing the sport farther with this dog if she doesnt have the heart for protection. Right now the work we are doing at the club is desensatization and some light OB. She is only 11 months so we will be giving her another year to see if things get better. If not then we will re evaluate her at that time.
That being said I do plan on doing some light scent work with her in spring/summer. Who knows if she doesnt work out in Scchh she may have another talent.
I do fairly intense OB with her at home which makes managing her sharpness a lot easier, not to mention being fun.
Its interesting as she seems to really enjoy the limited scentwork we have done, perhaps this could build her self esteem some. Using her nose is what I want to see more of as it definitely creates a healthy state of mind. However, I will be consulting with my TD in January.

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Old 12-14-2012, 08:02 PM   #16 (permalink)
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I agree with you on your last sentence. Onyx is not a protection phase dog either, but she loves to use her nose.
Doesn't your club track together? If not, maybe you could get with one of the members to help you. Tracking a dog that isn't real confident will help grow that confidence. Another option if you don't want to continue w/ IPO would be nosework classes.
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Old 12-15-2012, 12:35 AM   #17 (permalink)
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They do do Scentwork just not during the worst of the winter when there is lots of snow on the ground. We train indoors during the winter OB and protection. Scentwork will likely resume in april/may.
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Old 12-15-2012, 01:28 PM   #18 (permalink)
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We have 3 people in our club who just got their BH and are planning on titling further in tracking and obedience. We are having a great time working with them.
You've gotten some great advice here, so I won't bother adding except to say that your early tracks need to be such that the dogs head doesn't need to come up at all, ever. When we start puppies we kind of overload the beginning tracks just so we can reiterate the "Such" (pronounced Tsook) command.
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Old 12-15-2012, 02:20 PM   #19 (permalink)
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Just to add on the method I was taught...the reason you do a circle is so that the dog never picks up on the fact that its just a straight line and there will be something good at the end of it for them. The circle never really ends, and so the dog can keep going and going and there isn't a super high value item in there. The point isn't to advance your dog as fast as possible (although I know you really want to), but to really instill good tracking habits in them early. The way I learned we also don't hold the long line at all, just let it drag behind the dog. This way, you guarantee that as a handler you aren't helping at all. Every time you corrected her, to get her back on the track, would be either points or a non qualification. You really don't want the dog to depend on you at all...because in a trial you won't know where the track is, so if she loses it, and you just make her go back to where you think it is, you might be completely off.

It is pretty good that she can take turns, and also cross paths where other dogs/people have walked, but her finish isn't tracking at all. She knows the thing is there and she's going to go get it.
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Old 12-15-2012, 05:05 PM   #20 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Blitzkrieg1 View Post
She actually doesnt see the end item. She has her nose to the ground and is clearly scenting I think once she figures out what the goal of the exercise is she picks up speed still keeping her nose to the ground she just finishes the track fast. She still gets some of the treats, but I get what everyones saying about having her take more time on the track. I just assumed you wanted a drivey type of scent work.
Two things:
1. Drive is not speed. A dog that has drive to track, will show drive to track, not just plow to the end for the reward.
2. The problem with this is that if she is already picking up speed on the track because of the reward at the end, this is only going to get worse. By worse I mean she will get faster, skip more food, etc. Tracking in SchH is not just getting to the end of the track but showing the correct behavior throughout the track. What you're describing is pretty common and is not the end of the world but if you already have this behavior in your very first few tracks, why not change up the training so that your dog can do better? Again this is assuming you want Schutzhund style tracking. I had this exact same problem with my dog. I started putting a ball at the end of his track for more motivation. It worked for about 5 tracks. Then, on the next several tracks he would start to get faster, pull harder, and show more anxious behavior after each article on the track (so his pace on the first leg would be good, second leg a little fast, third leg going like a freight train....). For *some dogs* having balls at the end or even during a track works but not for all dogs. It doesn't sound like your dog has had any foundation so I wouldn't worry about putting toys on the track yet. You may go back to it later on, but right now the dog needs the foundation which is learning what tracking is about and shaping the correct behavior.
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