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post #101 of 867 (permalink) Old 09-29-2014, 11:37 AM
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Good luck on your upcoming ORT.

Stadiums are great places to hold NW trials too. We've trialed at a couple of stadiums. So many interesting interior and exterior spaces.
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post #102 of 867 (permalink) Old 10-05-2014, 06:32 PM
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Our ORT was mostly successful! Brandy and I passed Clove, but missed Anise. She gave one box a bit of a snout, but kept on going so really didn't give me a clear indication. Then the fly buzzed in and it was over. As much as I tried to reset her and get her interest back to the boxes, the fly was clearly there to kill us all and had to be dealt with. Of course the stupid thing wouldn't just fly away, so we basically spent our 3 minutes chasing a fly up and down the rows of boxes. The judges and stewards couldn't see it, so it was probably hilarious to watch. Oh well, we'll get it next time! Happy to have only one to go.

I'm also happy to report that the doxy I was handling, Aby, got her Birch! My instructor even complimented me on how well I did, as Aby was going into a bit of a meltdown with the video camera and other people in the room. It was a very proud moment for me!

I unfortunately didn't get a good pic of Brandy and me, but here's Aby and I after we were finished.


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post #103 of 867 (permalink) Old 10-23-2014, 06:34 AM
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Brandy and I made it into the Element Trial in Joliet, IL in November! I signed us up for both Containers and Interiors, but we only made it into Interiors. From looking at the wait list, both elements have over 100 people waiting, we're pretty lucky to have gotten into Interiors!

Anyone else going!?

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post #104 of 867 (permalink) Old 10-26-2014, 09:46 PM
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Brandy and I made it into the Element Trial in Joliet, IL in November! I signed us up for both Containers and Interiors, but we only made it into Interiors. From looking at the wait list, both elements have over 100 people waiting, we're pretty lucky to have gotten into Interiors!

Anyone else going!?
I entered interiors but didn't get in. Did get in the NW3 trial that weekend tho. May volunteer for the element trial; if so, see you there. Good luck!
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post #105 of 867 (permalink) Old 10-26-2014, 11:37 PM
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I've really been hoping, for a while now, to get Silas into a beginning nosework class but there just don't seem to be any in our area. I'd like to get started on my own, but I need help!

Can you experienced handlers recommend any great books/videos that helped you when you were just starting out? I've been familiarizing myself with nacsw.net and videos — what I'm looking for is more of a how-to book (using strictly postive-reinforcement).

Right now, I'm most curious about making the leap from marking a hidden treat to marking a scent. I read DogsR4Life's comment about the cocktail method. My question is: am I going to have to come up with a new cue for Silas? Right now, I ask him "where is it?" and he will find the treat. If I start out jackpotting him for paying attention to a box containing scents, should I add a new cue after he's figured out the gist of our new game? In other words, should I reserve "where is it?" for finding treats and develop a new cue for finding scents?

Were there any other great methods you used in the beginning? Thanks in advance for your help and opinions!
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post #106 of 867 (permalink) Old 10-27-2014, 07:57 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SilasPup View Post
I've really been hoping, for a while now, to get Silas into a beginning nosework class but there just don't seem to be any in our area. I'd like to get started on my own, but I need help!

Can you experienced handlers recommend any great books/videos that helped you when you were just starting out? I've been familiarizing myself with nacsw.net and videos — what I'm looking for is more of a how-to book (using strictly postive-reinforcement).

Right now, I'm most curious about making the leap from marking a hidden treat to marking a scent. I read DogsR4Life's comment about the cocktail method. My question is: am I going to have to come up with a new cue for Silas? Right now, I ask him "where is it?" and he will find the treat. If I start out jackpotting him for paying attention to a box containing scents, should I add a new cue after he's figured out the gist of our new game? In other words, should I reserve "where is it?" for finding treats and develop a new cue for finding scents?

Were there any other great methods you used in the beginning? Thanks in advance for your help and opinions!
The method we used in my classes was to start pairing the scent with the treats you are hiding. Continue using the same cue. Your dog will find the treats, get self-rewarded (eat the treats he finds) and you also reinforce with treats you give him. You slowly wean away from having treats with the scent, but your dog has created a very strong association with that scent - when I find this scent and indicate that I've found it, I get rewarded.


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post #107 of 867 (permalink) Old 10-27-2014, 08:50 AM
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^^^What Meadowcat said! And just make sure you treat right on the source/scent.

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post #108 of 867 (permalink) Old 10-27-2014, 09:12 AM
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^^^What Meadowcat said! And just make sure you treat right on the source/scent.
Yes, I forgot to mention that! Thanks for doing so. You want your dog receiving the reward RIGHT ON the scent.


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post #109 of 867 (permalink) Old 10-28-2014, 06:31 AM
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When we first started we were just using treats. High reward for the dog using their nose.
At the end of our lvl1 class they paired scent with food so that the reward is right there.
End of lvl 2 was scent and no food (in the box) handler to treat snack dab on top of the scent.
One of the games we used (at home) for lvl3 was to hold the scent tin (wth scent inside) and ask the dog for a 'touch' dog touches 'YES' and treat. Play game daily but not for long long periods. Gradually you increase how long the dog needs to touch for before gaining the reward. Slow and steady!
This teaches the dog to hold their nose on the scent. Tank loves this game. He's so funny pushing his nose into the scent tin but his eyes are looking to me for his treat.


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post #110 of 867 (permalink) Old 10-28-2014, 08:06 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SilasPup View Post
I've really been hoping, for a while now, to get Silas into a beginning nosework class but there just don't seem to be any in our area. I'd like to get started on my own, but I need help!

Can you experienced handlers recommend any great books/videos that helped you when you were just starting out? I've been familiarizing myself with nacsw.net and videos — what I'm looking for is more of a how-to book (using strictly postive-reinforcement).

-----------------

Were there any other great methods you used in the beginning? Thanks in advance for your help and opinions!
You are in luck! Fenzi Dog Sports Academy is offering their beginning nosework class starting December 1st. Fenzi Dog Sports Academy - About us Strictly positive-only training, and they start the dogs on scent from the very first lesson.


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post #111 of 867 (permalink) Old 10-28-2014, 08:27 AM Thread Starter
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I teach scent work in my small town, and I'm one of the very few people who mark behaviour, rather than pairing scent with food. What I found out was better communication and less weaning and going back to correct set backs.

With this method I found that 6/7 dogs that took my class, were independently searching for the scent and indicating on weeks 4,5, and 6. 5/7 were trial ready by week 6.

You use target work, scent in one hand, reward in other. Build that commit to the scent. Then you put the scent in an open container, and mark any interest in the container that holds the scent and just build from there. Once your dog gets it, put a lid on the container, this is where the dog will have that 'ah ha' moment and realize its the smell from the bottle that you are marking.

If we used food in the container, we would have to wean them off and depending on when the dog will understand its the scent they are after, not the food, it can take days or weeks. By not pairing, and rewarding the behaviour towards the scent, Ive skipped a step that I find can confuse them.

My dog was taught with food pairing, when I was first introduced to scent work at a class I took. His drive for food made it difficult to wean him off, and he would go off course to sniff out other treats people had, instead of thinking 'where is that bottle/scent that makes my mum bring out the treats?'

With the cocktail method, people in my class were very skeptical and didnt think their dogs would get it. On week 4 I took out the cocktail and put in a single scent and for the first 30mins of doing container searches I didnt mention it to my students After a few runs I asked them how they think they did, they said they were pleased with how their dogs are coming along. When I told them their dogs were searching for one scent, they didnt believe me, they were so surprised!

Every dog is different and do better on certain methods. The important thing to remember is to have fun

A fun video. I taught my GP to target Wintergreen without pairing. It was a lot of fun and quite amusing to watch a GP target a scent:
[youtube= GP Scent Work]v=JVwESdXN3RY&list=UUxqYNsG48nRc_qNII5udRMg[/youtube]

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post #112 of 867 (permalink) Old 10-28-2014, 09:01 AM Thread Starter
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Hmm, maybe this would work:
[youtube= GP]JVwESdXN3RY[/youtube]

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post #113 of 867 (permalink) Old 10-28-2014, 09:19 AM
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Rosemary, I'm glad you mentioned the Fenzi class — I was going to ask about it. I noticed they do NOT teach your dog to search for food. I guess this brings me back to my origination question: Will Silas and I basically have to start over, with a brand new cue? Will these be two separate games for him? One is the "where is it?" treat game he already knows, and the Fenzi game with be an entirely new game?

Has anyone taken the Fenzi class?
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post #114 of 867 (permalink) Old 10-28-2014, 09:29 AM Thread Starter
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Rosemary, I'm glad you mentioned the Fenzi class — I was going to ask about it. I noticed they do NOT teach your dog to search for food. I guess this brings me back to my origination question: Will Silas and I basically have to start over, with a brand new cue? Will these be two separate games for him? One is the "where is it?" treat game he already knows, and the Fenzi game with be an entirely new game?

Has anyone taken the Fenzi class?
Going by my experience with Chase, no you do not need to change the cue

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post #115 of 867 (permalink) Old 10-28-2014, 09:36 AM
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We started with food. Same command. Tank had no issue switching over


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post #116 of 867 (permalink) Old 10-28-2014, 12:51 PM
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From what I understand, starting a dog immediately "on scent" is how real-life detection dogs are trained. They actually show the first nosework lesson as a sample. Basically, the dog is given a choice between a treat held in one hand, and a target scent, held in the other. The moment the dog quits trying to get the treat, and investigates the scent, it is rewarded by bringing the treat to the scent, and being allowed to have the treat.

This is Leo's first time with anise. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J_jx...-AZPA&index=20 She was familiar with birch, and I was working on introducing the next scents. We've only done birch, anise, and clove so far. Once I get to feeling better (another sinus infection, yay), we'll go back and do some refresher stuff, and then introduce vetiver and myrrh.

Might as well give equal time for Ilka. She is highly food motivated, so it actually took her longer to figure out. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3plG...-AZPA&index=19

Also, using a smaller tin is a good idea. I was desperate, so I used this one, and I'm not happy with it.


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post #117 of 867 (permalink) Old 10-28-2014, 01:17 PM
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That's awesome, Rosemary -- thanks for sharing the videos. I love how Ilka offers you a down and a sit, when she's trying to figure out how to get the treat. Smart girl.
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post #118 of 867 (permalink) Old 11-02-2014, 01:54 PM
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Gio earned his NW1 title!! Also trialed (NW3) with Maiya. She found 9/10 hides. So proud of her. I called 2 false alerts. Don't even know why I called one of them. Sooo close...
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post #119 of 867 (permalink) Old 11-02-2014, 06:22 PM
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Great work, congrats!!!!!!!!

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post #120 of 867 (permalink) Old 11-10-2014, 07:43 PM
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Silas and I went to our first nosework class on Saturday. It wasn't even really a class, just a bunch of interested folks and their dogs, and one woman who has been to one trial But I got to introduce Silas to birch, his first scent, and I got to take home some birch-soaked Q-tips! And some cardboard boxes.

On Saturday, the gal just set some boxes up in a ring and let us, one at a time, walk our dogs around the boxes. We rewarded every time they came close to the box holding the scent. Silas was a bit too distracted (it was a very small yard and a lot of very excited dogs) to really glean anything from it, but I think he's figured it out now at home

Would any of you mind watching these short videos to give me feedback? In the first one, the scent is hidden in a cardboard box. In the second and third video, it is in an open glass jar. (I didn't want him to think this is just a "find the box" game, but I don't have any vials or tins yet, just the Mason jar.)

First video
Second video
Third video

The video quality is terrible, I know, and doesn't have any sound because I don't know how to work my phone. My apologies.

So far, Silas thinks this game is AWESOME. Am I doing anything terribly wrong, any missteps that I'll need to correct later? Am I going too fast? He seems to understand the concept and he's already offering a sit (or at least a look) when he finds the scent.

I'm planning to sign up for the Fenzi nosework class in December, but I want to make sure I don't goof up between now and then. Would love any thoughts you guys have!

Last edited by SilasPup; 11-10-2014 at 07:55 PM.
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post #121 of 867 (permalink) Old 11-10-2014, 08:13 PM
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I'm planning to sign up for the Fenzi nosework class in December, but I want to make sure I don't goof up between now and then. Would love any thoughts you guys have![/QUOTE]

We are going to take that clas too, it will be fun to encourage each other.
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post #122 of 867 (permalink) Old 11-10-2014, 08:47 PM
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Just make sure you treat right AT source. Since he's so new, you may want to work on short easy hides at first. My instructor called it the shell game, work with only 3-4 boxes and move them around each time. It really builds drive and lets them know that when they smell that scent they get a tasty treat!

Quote:
Originally Posted by SilasPup View Post
Silas and I went to our first nosework class on Saturday. It wasn't even really a class, just a bunch of interested folks and their dogs, and one woman who has been to one trial But I got to introduce Silas to birch, his first scent, and I got to take home some birch-soaked Q-tips! And some cardboard boxes.

On Saturday, the gal just set some boxes up in a ring and let us, one at a time, walk our dogs around the boxes. We rewarded every time they came close to the box holding the scent. Silas was a bit too distracted (it was a very small yard and a lot of very excited dogs) to really glean anything from it, but I think he's figured it out now at home

Would any of you mind watching these short videos to give me feedback? In the first one, the scent is hidden in a cardboard box. In the second and third video, it is in an open glass jar. (I didn't want him to think this is just a "find the box" game, but I don't have any vials or tins yet, just the Mason jar.)

First video
Second video
Third video

The video quality is terrible, I know, and doesn't have any sound because I don't know how to work my phone. My apologies.

So far, Silas thinks this game is AWESOME. Am I doing anything terribly wrong, any missteps that I'll need to correct later? Am I going too fast? He seems to understand the concept and he's already offering a sit (or at least a look) when he finds the scent.

I'm planning to sign up for the Fenzi nosework class in December, but I want to make sure I don't goof up between now and then. Would love any thoughts you guys have!

"Remember this - if you are trialing with a dog you love, you have already won."


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post #123 of 867 (permalink) Old 11-10-2014, 08:54 PM
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Well, personally, I'd wait for the FDSA class to start, and not go to this class again. The FDSA class introduces them to scent as the very first lesson, and teaches them that the best thing in the world is to find that scent. (The NACSW method teaches them to search for food first, and introduces scent later.)

In the videos you posted, it looks like he's just randomly wandering around, wondering what you want him to do. When he comes across the scent by accident, he just goes "Huh, what's this?", and you're not rewarding him for finding it (that I could see, anyway). They should be rewarded " at source", meaning they should be given their treat (ball, tug, whatever) right on top of the target scent.

No offense to the person running the class you went to, but it doesn't really sound like she knows what she's doing.


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post #124 of 867 (permalink) Old 11-10-2014, 08:58 PM
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Thanks Meldrew I wasn't coordinated enough to capture any of the rewards, but I am treating him right on the box or right over the mouth of the jar, so he gets a big whiff of birch every time he gets a treat.

I started out just holding the scent in one hand, and the treat in the other hand, treating and clicking every time he poked the scent. And then we moved to a few boxes lined up in a row, treated every time he nosed the right box, and then shuffled around the placement of the boxes. I thought I might be going too fast, spreading boxes throughout different rooms, but that's how we play our regular "find it" game with treats so he's already familiar with that concept.

But maybe I am jumping a bit too far ahead.
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post #125 of 867 (permalink) Old 11-10-2014, 09:07 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rosemary View Post
In the videos you posted, it looks like he's just randomly wandering around, wondering what you want him to do. When he comes across the scent by accident, he just goes "Huh, what's this?", and you're not rewarding him for finding it (that I could see, anyway). They should be rewarded " at source", meaning they should be given their treat (ball, tug, whatever) right on top of the target scent.
This is the downside to not knowing how to work sound on my phone. Silas starts wandering around when I release him from his stay and, when he does happen across the scent, I'm clicking it. He is searching through the rooms, but I don't know if I would say he is searching for birch yet — he might still be searching for treats, which is how he's used to playing this game. I am rewarding him for paying any attention to birch, at this point. He is getting marked when he finds the scent and treated at source as quickly as I can make my way over to him

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No offense to the person running the class you went to, but it doesn't really sound like she knows what she's doing.
And yes, absolutely The woman running the "class" isn't an instructor and she doesn't pretend to be. There aren't any more "classes" — she just agreed to share what she knew with us on Saturday.
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