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Discussion Starter #1
HI y'all,
I've been wanting to do something more with Gandalf lately competitive wise. We just finished a fun scent class and he enjoyed it, but was honestly too easy as most of it was indoors. As soon as we went to the outdoor dog section (lots of poop and pee out there) to track he lost focus and started marking. Couldn't blame the guy, he was off leash and there was dog pee everywhere. Indoors our trainer said he had very great focus and determination, he plowed through obstacles and succeeded in high and low searches. I'm just not sure if this is right for us. Not sure if the area was to blame... I feel after some work I could train him to not mark off leash while tracking but it's not something I've really been interested in. I looked into agility near us, but the only serious club I know of practices only at times I have work. I know a good IPO group, but I don't want to do bitework with Gandalf. Gandalf has shown great interest in agility, obedience, tricks, and nosework and I want to earn some titles with him. He already earned his CGC easy no problem. The only trouble I'm having is that he is fearless, smart, and very obedient so I'm not sure what we should specialize in, he loves doing everything! Not sure if he would be show quality since he's a long coat white shepherd lol. Anyone have some suggestions for us?
Thanks!
 

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I seriously enjoy both tracking and detection work. Loved doing searches. All of my shepherds have enjoyed anything that used their noses.
The only one I have seen any natural herding ability, like untaught, in was Sabs. She liked to round up everything. It was fun just for kicks to have her bring in the chickens or the kids.
If it was me I would look for anything to do with his nose.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
I seriously enjoy both tracking and detection work. Loved doing searches. All of my shepherds have enjoyed anything that used their noses.
The only one I have seen any natural herding ability, like untaught, in was Sabs. She liked to round up everything. It was fun just for kicks to have her bring in the chickens or the kids.
If it was me I would look for anything to do with his nose.
Is it true if they mark mid search they will be disqualified ? I've never tried herding with Gandalf, but he does herd the cat sometimes... she's old and wanders out the door if someone leaves it open and he leads her back inside lol :laugh2: How do official tracking competitions work?
 

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AKC Tracking will not disqualify a dog only for marking on the track. I was worried mine might but I have discouraged it and the more "into" the track he is the less I think he will do it because in his head he is working and he is not scouting for something to mark. He has done it rarely in training but not in either test he has done.

We also really love dock diving and rally. First dock practice of the season for us this coming weekend! Not the club's first but we couldn't go last time
 

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Marking is a training issue. They lift their leg, you correct them. It's that simple. No, you don't pee while we are training and you really better not when we are trailing.

You don't let them do it in your house. This is no different.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Marking is a training issue. They lift their leg, you correct them. It's that simple. No, you don't pee while we are training and you really better not when we are trailing.

You don't let them do it in your house. This is no different.
Yep thought I made that clear in my post. It's something I haven't bothered working on since it never bothered me. I was simply asking if it was allowed in a trial.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
AKC Tracking will not disqualify a dog only for marking on the track. I was worried mine might but I have discouraged it and the more "into" the track he is the less I think he will do it because in his head he is working and he is not scouting for something to mark. He has done it rarely in training but not in either test he has done.

We also really love dock diving and rally. First dock practice of the season for us this coming weekend! Not the club's first but we couldn't go last time
Dock diving looks really fun!!! Is it dangerous though? I've watched the trials on TV and I'm always worried the dogs are going to lose their footing running and jumping off the deck.
 

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If he loves obedience and you have a good IPO club, I would definitely check it out. Honestly, with his bright eyes and gorgeous coat, he will look stunning on that field. :)

AKC also has obedience trials, UD and UDX.

I'm a little surprised that the outside area for the NW class was off leash. For the outside searches (exterior and vehicles)The NW1 trial as well as the number of mock trials that we have entered and the NW2 & 3 trials that I volunteered for were on leash only. Even on leash, my boy has tried to mark. For the most part he now understands it's not allowed. Instructors should be able to help Gandolph with this.

Along with the other suggestions, Rally may be worth looking into also and lure coursing if that's available.

It took us a while to find what we both were suited for and liked the most. I was hoping for agilities but the only reason he kind of liked it was because he got to run through a tunnel. Lol.

Wish you both lots of fun while on this quest.
 

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Yep thought I made that clear in my post. It's something I haven't bothered working on since it never bothered me. I was simply asking if it was allowed in a trial. Thanks though for your stellar advice, you know I always appreciate it!
Apparently it was not clear that the issue was just your lack of interest in stopping the marking. I thought you actually wanted input on how to stop it rather than could you just get away with it.

Will you get disqualified? It depends on the event.
Will you lose a ton of points? Yes.
Will all the other competitors hate you for not caring that your dog just peed on the field and it will most likely affect their performance that they have worked so hard for? Absolutely.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
If he loves obedience and you have a good IPO club, I would definitely check it out. Honestly, with his bright eyes and gorgeous coat, he will look stunning on that field. :)

AKC also has obedience trials, UD and UDX.

I'm a little surprised that the outside area for the NW class was off leash. For the outside searches (exterior and vehicles)The NW1 trial as well as the number of mock trials that we have entered and the NW2 & 3 trials that I volunteered for were on leash only. Even on leash, my boy has tried to mark. For the most part he now understands it's not allowed. Instructors should be able to help Gandolph with this.

Along with the other suggestions, Rally may be worth looking into also and lure coursing if that's available.

It took us a while to find what we both were suited for and liked the most. I was hoping for agilities but the only reason he kind of liked it was because he got to run through a tunnel. Lol.

Wish you both lots of fun while on this quest.
Cool will have to look into those thanks! Yeah it was a silly just for fun introduction class with some trainers who don't do any formal NW, they primarily run a doggy day care. It didn't make much sense to me either, that the entire 6 week course we practiced indoors and then the exam was supposed to be outdoors in an area where dogs play and live all day. Obviously not something Gandalf and I have worked at all on... normally he is off leash hiking by my side and I don't mind him marking in the woods one bit. He listens fine on leash and doesn't mark where he isn't supposed to. I think all the smells and being the first time trying to track outside he was just a little overwhelmed! Overall I wasn't too interested in NW... it was a little boring for me not being able to be more involved with him like teaching tricks, etc. But if he enjoys it I would be willing to keep working with him on it. It certainly tired him out, which I had never seen before! What exactly is Rally? Thanks for your help :smile2:
 

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I took an intro course to Rallo O with his puppy obedience instructor way back when.. I believe it is formally called Rally O. Here's the first vid I found. Easier to watch than for me to explain.

 

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Nosework is a lot more involved than people realize. There is teaching a trained final response (if you choose to do this, some don’t), teaching patterned searches, learning to read your dog, learning to discern if your dog is in odor, recognizing the signs your dog is critering, learning what level of pressure your dog needs to work best. Then there’s leash handling, teaching yourself to not block odor, recognizing what certain behaviors mean in regards to where the odor might be, learning how to get your dog to detail, how to get your dog to work converging odors... the beginning classes can be a little boring, I suppose, but really it’s fascinating once you get further into it. I’m currently teaching my 4th dog nosework. You get from it what you put into it. The only downfall is it can be hard to get into trials.
 

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Training control/obedience re: peeing is kind of a universal thing that needs to be done with dog sports.

Dogs eliminating on training fields are HEAVILY frowned on. There's generally a separate, labeled place to relieve dogs. If someone's dog repeatedly marks on the formal field (excluding baby puppy accidents), it's pretty much a guarantee that a veteran member will give you a stern talking to.

It is painful to watch a dog slam to a halt to sniff recent pee, in the middle of any sort of run. It's even worse when one dog marks the corner of an agility obstacle, and then a bunch of other dogs get distracted or their heads snap around at the exact same spot. We keep deodorizing cleansers on hand, but you can absolutely feel the irritation from the other handlers if a dog pees on an obstacle, or marks the field's entry gate where all dogs pass through.

It's an important thing to train, because it's an automatic DQ in many sports ("Fouling the ring"). Since you have lots of fun choices on the horizon for Gandalf, I'd prioritize this.
 

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Is the dog supposed to be off or on leash?
It depends on the search area. For trials, containers, vehicles and exteriors are normally run on leash. Sometimes you have the option to go off leash for an interior search. In class, you normally practice both ways for interiors. It really depends on what the CO decides to permit at a trial, and if your dog works well off leash.
 

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Discussion Starter #18 (Edited)
Training control/obedience re: peeing is kind of a universal thing that needs to be done with dog sports.

Dogs eliminating on training fields are HEAVILY frowned on. There's generally a separate, labeled place to relieve dogs. If someone's dog repeatedly marks on the formal field (excluding baby puppy accidents), it's pretty much a guarantee that a veteran member will give you a stern talking to.

It is painful to watch a dog slam to a halt to sniff recent pee, in the middle of any sort of run. It's even worse when one dog marks the corner of an agility obstacle, and then a bunch of other dogs get distracted or their heads snap around at the exact same spot. We keep deodorizing cleansers on hand, but you can absolutely feel the irritation from the other handlers if a dog pees on an obstacle, or marks the field's entry gate where all dogs pass through.

It's an important thing to train, because it's an automatic DQ in many sports ("Fouling the ring"). Since you have lots of fun choices on the horizon for Gandalf, I'd prioritize this.
Jeez people it was a DOG DAY CARE facility with dog pee and poop everywhere and he was off leash and i didn't even interfere. I get it, if you're in trial don't do it. Can a mod just delete this thread? I wanted some suggestions on fun sports/activities not how to train my dog not to mark lol. He has no issues in a regular clean field on a long line or inside. Not really something I feel we need to work on.
 

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Discussion Starter #19 (Edited)
It depends on the search area. For trials, containers, vehicles and exteriors are normally run on leash. Sometimes you have the option to go off leash for an interior search. In class, you normally practice both ways for interiors. It really depends on what the CO decides to permit at a trial, and if your dog works well off leash.
Then that's not a problem. Do they often hold trials in doggy day care facilities with feces everywhere? Tracking seemed really boring anyways.
 

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:shrug:

Gandalf is obviously doing really well, and you're trying more sports with him, which is excellent.

The comments are meant to help give some thought into universal training that will apply whether you move into Nosework, Agility, Tracking, other things. If you join a new sport (or two!), it can be heaps easier if you already have the "manners" stuff out of the way so you can get right down to the good stuff.

Hope you find something you really enjoy for the summer, he sounds like fun boy.
 
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