Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Grand Rapids, MI
I kind of teach it from two separate "angles", if you will, and try to marry the two before a Schutzhund trial. When I train them at home, I'm not training the dog to search. I am simply training them to be directed around any object in any order with the default being back to me. Personally, I train so that rewards come from *me* as much as possible, so I've never put toys in blinds (or had the dog run to snatch a toy off a send out tree, or pair food with scent in Nosework, and even tracking I only put food in footsteps for a short time until the dog has learned articles off the track and then after that, articles = chances for me to stop and reward on the track). Nothing wrong with doing it that way, just not how I train. With blinds specifically, I don't like the blinds themselves to have any value. Lately I've seen a few dogs blow off send outs and retrieves in order to run a blind. I've found that training the dog to take direction around objects doesn't exactly translate into "searching" blinds, like you say, but I disagree that putting toys in them will achieve this. My dog is in a totally different place, mentally, in protection. When I want searching (checking in the blinds) then we just put helpers in all the blinds and then randomize, but I don't necessarily need this to introduce the concept of being directed out and around things and coming back to me. I like to do the obedience part of it first and start that at home using anything. Then if we are preparing for a trial, we run blinds "hot" with 3-4 helpers helping me out and put the two concepts together.
Last edited by Liesje; 06-21-2013 at 03:55 PM.