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We were out this morning with out scent club practicing man-trailing. We were working at a park that has sport fields, a disc golf course and a nice big dog park. We were working around the sport fields and disc golf course (no games or scheduled golf competitions this morning). Along with our club dogs a number of other people were coming and going to visit the dog park or simply walk their dogs around the sport fields. Chief and I had done 3 runs already and were on our last track. This is the first time I was doing the trail blindfolded (escorted by the trainer). As we were going along a random dog walker was going to pass us with a GSD. My trainer had me come up the leash and get a hold of my dog. I simply held the handle on her harness and she sat at heel. I kept the blindfold on and felt my gal-dog's head with my hand and patted her chest. Chief was calm and cool and her breathing never quickened. It was amazing. Once the other dog passed I told her to continue on and she moved right out smartly! Not long afterwards we found our source. It was so interesting, feeling the leash, head pops and such and her not turning around asking me for confirmation. That is something I'd like to try again.
:grin2:
 

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That's very cool! Chief is beautiful.
Just the other day we were crossing the deserted parking lot...Rumo is pretty steady on leash these days, so I tried closing my eyes for fun.
It is a very different experience to put your trust in your dog!
(Of course, I opened my eyes to find myself stopped in front of a large bush.)
 

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That really is interesting.Now I need to try that!
 

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That's very cool! Chief is beautiful.
Just the other day we were crossing the deserted parking lot...Rumo is pretty steady on leash these days, so I tried closing my eyes for fun.
It is a very different experience to put your trust in your dog!
(Of course, I opened my eyes to find myself stopped in front of a large bush.)
LOL,
I had my instructor right there to let me know if I was going to walk into a tree or when to duck under a branch.
 

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That really is interesting.Now I need to try that!
You should. When my husband tried it with our Big-boy, his dog didn't like it. My husband wasn't acting "normal" and our boy almost didn't want to leave his side to follow the track. Since Patton didn't understand what was going on, he focused on a disc golf player. "oh, catching frisbees. That I understand". But an easy correction took care of that. Then our boy caught the scent and he and my hubby were off finding the source. It was so telling how much Patton took cues from my sweetheart. As a team they seem so confident, but if my husband is unsure, so is his dog. :surprise:
 

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We did detection problems in school, blind folded with the dog on a long line. It really is amazing what you can feel through the leash! You can even feel their respiration rate sometimes. It's enlightening for sure.
 

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I can tell u had fun.....how long did it take you and Chief to get to where you guys are now ?....I'm guessing there's nothing you and Chief can do at home to practice for this ?
 

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welcome to guide dog training :p i practically live under blindfold (with a spotter! don’t try this at home kids) lol.
 

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I can tell u had fun.....how long did it take you and Chief to get to where you guys are now ?....I'm guessing there's nothing you and Chief can do at home to practice for this ?

Our instructor doesn't like to have us practice at home because then she has to "unteach" the mistakes we come up with. I do practice article searching at home, though. I sometimes record that so that I can rewatch it and try to pick up missed cues from my dog's body language.

We've been doing this for a bit over a year now. For me it is a hobby and sport. I tell people that if someone is really lost and it is a matter of life and death, they had better call the pros who practice many many many more hours than we do.
 

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Our instructor doesn't like to have us practice at home because then she has to "unteach" the mistakes we come up with. I do practice article searching at home, though. I sometimes record that so that I can rewatch it and try to pick up missed cues from my dog's body language.

We've been doing this for a bit over a year now. For me it is a hobby and sport. I tell people that if someone is really lost and it is a matter of life and death, they had better call the pros who practice many many many more hours than we do.
What all types of scent work do you do?
 

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We started with Schutzhund/ IPO/ IGP tracking. That is very formalized foot step to foot step on a defined zig-zag track with specific types of articles to find.

We then started a fun game of "find coffee" most mornings. My husband hides a mug of coffee (long story how that started) and the dogs have to go find it in the house. We have since expanded to occasionally hiding coffee in the garage or the yard. We also hide it with cream or black or in a mug or in a plastic cup, hot or cold. The coffee and our scent are the only constants.

With Man-trailing we are hunting for a lost "person". It isn't just human scent, it is a particular person's scent. That is great fun.

For article searches they are following my scent to a toy or one of the old IGP articles (wood, leather and cloth rectangles about the size of two fingers). Lately I've been transitioning to clothes pins. That way I can clip them a bit above the ground, on a bush, for instance. That has been a real challenge but I think they'll be able to master it. Clothes pins are inexpensive if lost and are bio-degradable.

If you want to do nosework competitions, they use anise, clove and birch and typically hide them in cardboard boxes. We don't do that.
 
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