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Oh, the hide was OVER the pile of loose lumber about 5 feet above the wood hanging from the rafters.
 

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Discussion Starter · #22 ·
What work I've done with Airscent, you are very hands off when it comes to the dog. Maybe tomorrow I'll video a short search if the weather holds. I'm very focused on nose, tail, and ears. If his nose is up, tail is up, and ears are forward, I don't do anything. If he starts circling around a spot and starts looking frustrated; tail falls, nose is on the ground snuffing in the dirt, ears are moving like a satellite, I'll say "find it!" and he'll come back, circle around me, and go straight back in. I'll also say "get it!" to kind of rev him up a bit if he can't get a good hit on the scent, especially on those hot, muggy days when the scent just hits the ground and goes nowhere.

I started out working with one of the team members and her Tracking/Trailing dog, but it just wasn't my thing. I didn't feel like getting dragged through the woods by my dog and I love working the nuiances of SAR like looking for signs of humans (foot prints, bent grass, dew missing in spots, ect.)

BTW, the calling suggestion is working. He's still hesitating, but not as long. I tried the backchaining, but he seemed to not 'get' it. We also re-introduced super jackpot treats (dried hotdog pieces) and hungry training. He could be ready to go back before I am.

@Catu: The very first time Finn did a full search without hesitation, I thought my heart was going to burst. He moved like a dream and he wasn't 25 yards from me before I knew he had it. You could just read it on his body that he had the scent.
 

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What work I've done with Airscent, you are very hands off when it comes to the dog. Maybe tomorrow I'll video a short search if the weather holds. I'm very focused on nose, tail, and ears. If his nose is up, tail is up, and ears are forward, I don't do anything. If he starts circling around a spot and starts looking frustrated; tail falls, nose is on the ground snuffing in the dirt, ears are moving like a satellite, I'll say "find it!" and he'll come back, circle around me, and go straight back in. I'll also say "get it!" to kind of rev him up a bit if he can't get a good hit on the scent, especially on those hot, muggy days when the scent just hits the ground and goes nowhere.
Actually, I think when they are frustrated and working hard they don't need to be pumped up and encouraged to work when they are already working hard, and taking them out of scent and resting them clears the nose and the mind. So I am not talking at all about being "hands on"

Kind of like when you are so focused on something you get lost in the details and stepping back for a minute makes the picture crystallize. I always view them like they are seeing with their noses like we do with our eyes.

This was showed to me by a Miami-Dade USAR fellow who was working on becoming an evaluator at my last NAPWDA seminar. I was really impressed with how well it worked.
 

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Discussion Starter · #24 ·
That's an interesting idea. I think I have to start getting in the mindset of not "seeing" Finn at all once he gets operational and gets a good scent. The Airscent group I worked with, the dogs were gone and came back only to alert to the find and there was easily twenty minutes before sending them off and them coming back.

He also works close. I wish I could describe it better, but he does these zig zags and circles when he's working his way in the cone, but he's no more than 50-100 yards out. As the cone narrows, he zig-zags, but if it's wide, he circles while looking for the edges.

I was thinking you had your dog on a long lead...that's what I ment by hands off.

I'll have to try it and see how it works.
 

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No leads. Whenever possible we work offlead but even the team airscent dogs have to learn to work onlead for some scenarios. More "urban" searches these days........
 

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Discussion Starter · #26 ·
I never thought of that....the team I started with is wilderness only. There's a team here that does both, but they are the 'big dogs' when it comes to SAR around here and they do both. I think they'd laugh Finn and I right out the door.
 

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Our team is wilderness only (as opposed to disaster). The vast majority of our live person calls now manly folks with dementia and autistic kids. We have talked with people in several other teams in the Carolinas and the number of true wilderness calls has dropped for all of us.

Hunters have GPS units and fewer people seem to be hiking and camping and playing in the woods..and cell phone signals are getting to be pretty much most places we go {even though often all you can get out is a text but that is good enough} .and the few who do are typically so prepared with technology they do pretty well.

We are much more concerned about clandestine meth labs, booby trapped pot, etc than bears and coyotes.

That is a good thing but if people are not getting out and enjoying the Wilderness, I wonder how much they will value it........
 

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Discussion Starter · #28 ·
That was why I got into SAR: I love being out in the woods. What could be more fun than trapsing around in the woods with your beloved dog looking for people?

Yeah, the last three call-outs I saw for my team were all dementia patients. We did do one for two kids that got lost walking from a friends' house to theirs, but it was still a primarily wilderness search.

I would love to do Disaster work, but I have no clue how to even get on a disaster team.
 
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