This past weekend we drove to Calgary so that Brodie could chase some more plastic bags at the Foothills Gazehound Club’s trial. He did 3 Chase Ability runs and qualified in all of them. We get so many comments from the sighthound owners about how unusual he is for a Golden…..they think his running style is closer to a greyhound. Maybe that explains why he is so fast. In 2018 he was the 3rd fastest Golden (fastest male), with a speed of 40 km/hr. At his first Sprinter run this year his speed was 42.11, moving him very close to the fastest Golden in Canada, a female who ran 42.41. Thank you to Mike Johnson for these amazing pictures.
On Sunday we went to our first Chase Ability practice of the year to prepare for a trial in a few of weeks. We wondered if Brodie would show the same enthusiasm that he had when he first tried it in October. No need to wonder….he is still obsessed with chasing and catching that plastic bag. As we sat in the car waiting for the previous group to finish their runs he was vibrating and chirping
He is virtually uncontrollable when he see’s it flying across the field. We had a harness on him with a leash clipped to the front and another clipped to the back and both of us holding on for dear life as we moved towards the field. Bev captured these beautiful photos of him. You can see the intensity in every muscle in his body and the sheer joy of the chase.
Well it looks like that beautiful sunrise this morning was a good omen. We just finished competing in the first ever SDDA (Sporting Detection Dogs Association) Games trial hosted by Canine Coaching. We started with the Distance component and we found the hide in 35 seconds. Then we moved on to the Aerial search and we nailed it in 25 seconds and came in first overall. Next was the one minute Speed search. 20 containers down a hallway and into one room. We found the 3 hides in 56 seconds and came in 2nd overall. Last and most terrifying was the Team search. We were paired with a total stranger and her dog and only had 2 minutes to chat before trialing to come up with a search plan. We started out strong with each of us finding a hide quickly. Sadly the other team false alerted so we were all disqualified. So pleased to walk away with 3 Q’s. Brodie worked his little heart out for me today…so proud of him!!
Look what arrived today. It is a plaque acknowledging the Elite title that we earned at the Sniff and Tell trial in Picture Butte last October.
We received two new official titles in the mail today. Brodie got his SD-MACH (Sporting Detection Master Champion) and Spirit got her silver level SD-E (Sporting Detection Excellent Title). They sure love this sniffing game. So proud of my “kids”.
My handsome boy got his CKC Novice Sprinter title in the mail. Only 6 weeks from the day he actually earned his title, that’s really good for CKC.
When we finished our last trial in October I thought that would be the end of our 2018 season but I was wrong. When I saw the premium for the K9 Scentinels trial in Surrey BC, I just knew we had to enter. The best dog teams in our sport were going to be there and we would have the opportunity to trial along side them and learn so much. Traveling through the mountains at this time of year can be very treacherous but we were lucky and had great weather both ways. It is very rare to be able to see the top of Mount Robson…it is usually hidden in the clouds.
Brodie only needed one more Q in Excellent Interiors so I entered him both Saturday and Sunday hoping that he would pass one of them and earn his Master Championship. I also entered him in Elite for both days but we didn’t get a spot on either day. We ended up first on the waiting list for Saturday and 3rd on Sunday. Spirit has been “off” on scent work lately so I did not enter her at all. A few days before the trial we got the great news that someone has cancelled on Saturday so Brodie would get a chance to do an Elite run.
For Excellent Interiors you have 15 minutes to search 3 rooms. One will have 1 hide, one will have 2 hides and the other will be clear. You cannot leave a room until you call it clear or finished. As luck would have it, Brodie passed his Excellent run in 2 minutes and 40 seconds and earned his Master Championship on Saturday. K9 Scentinels made a video of each dog’s run and shared it with us after the trial (thank you!).
Since Brodie didn’t need his run on Sunday, K9 Scentinels allowed me to substitute Spirit in for him and switch it to Exteriors. I was so proud of Spirit. She worked her little heart out (slow and steady) and not only got high in trial but she earned her Excellent Title. Here’s Spirit’s video It was early Sunday morning, -2C and the whole search area was on a steep frosty covered hill (concrete and grass). There were 3 hides.
We ended up getting the opportunity to run Elite on both days. Elite is so much harder than all the previous levels combined. There are an unknown number of hides, you have to deal with converging and pooling odour and it is a real head game for the handler. Unfortunately not a single team qualified in Elite either day. I was so hoping to see history made and witness the first team ever to earn their Elite Championship or Grand Master Championship. There are two teams that just need one more elite title to reach both of these milestones.