Tag Archives: Golden Retriever

Barn Hunt Bounty

Well our first Barn Hunt trial at Prairie Dog Sports has come to an end and we had an amazing time. Great participants, volunteers, judges and hosts. To say that Brodie was absolutely thrilled with barn hunt would be an understatement. He gets to combine his love of scent work with the freedom to run around and hunt for source without the need to follow any pretty pattern. Considering the fact that we just did our introductory seminar a week ago I’m blown away at how well he did. Although we NQ’d in both our instinct runs, mostly my fault, he did so well in Novice and Crazy 8’s. On our first Novice run his dummy human partner forgot to hand her leash to the gate steward before leaving the start box. I was so excited that we had Q’d only to hear the Judge say I’m sorry I have to disqualify you because you still have your leash in you hand. Hard lesson learned but hopefully I won’t make that mistake again πŸ˜‰. Our second run earned us a 2nd place finish. Our final run was a thing of beauty. He found the gerbil, did a tunnel and jumped up onto a bale in a smoking fast time of just over 11 seconds. He not only got 1st place in the large dog class but he earned a High in Class for all Novice dogs.

We signed up for Crazy 8’s (8 gerbils, 4 litter distractors) just to get practice hunting and doing tunnels. We actually managed to Q in both runs and earn 50 points towards our bronze title.

The icing on the cake was to find out that we were chosen as the Judge’s Choice winner for our great team work and bright future in Barn Hunt. Big thank you to Judge Norm Riley for his very kind words.

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Dummy Mommy

Although we only did our barn hunt seminar 6 days ago, there was a trial this weekend so we decided to go in the ring and get a little practice. Brodie aced it, I however was a failure. Instead of following what I had practiced, I took the advice of a helpful stranger and made a change in my starting routine. The change seemed to work for Brodie but sadly it made me forget the all important step of handing my leash to the gate steward before leaving the start box. It cost us our 1st Q in novice. My reaction at the end of the video says it all. I love watching Brodie’s tail as he finds the gerbil. So happy πŸ˜ƒ

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I Think He Likes It

This past weekend we took Brodie to Prairie Dog Sports for a barn hunt seminar. To say he loved it would be an understatement. Here is a video of his first introduction to a “rat” in a tube (in Alberta we are not allowed to use rats so we use gerbils instead).

Here is his first time in a ring. He found the “rat” in under 4 seconds.

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Halloween C-WAGS Style

We spent the day at See-Spot-Run participating in their Pre-Halloween Howler scent detection trial. Both dogs were on their game qualifying in 7 out of 7 runs and we had a great time.

Spirit got two Level 2 and one Level 3 Q which earned her a Level 3 Scent Investigator title (CW-SI).

Brodie also earned two Level 2 and one Level 3 Q. He ran his first Level 4 search and qualified. So proud of both of them. We are so lucky to be able to participate in scent detection under three different organizations with different scents and rules (C-WAGS, SDDA and CKC)

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Filed under Brodie, CW-SI, CWAGS, CWAGS Title, Nosework, Spirit

SDDA Nationals

I am so glad that we were able to combine our family visits with the Sporting Detection Dogs Association’s inaugural National Challenge Cup. We had a blast meeting so many wonderful people,talking dogs and sniffing.

The festivities started on Friday with a lovely wedding. Esteemed Judge Doug Teeft and his fiancΓ© Cathy tied the knot. Their cake was appropriately topped with German Shepherds.

The Games trial came next. Originally I had signed Brodie up for all 4 games but since that time he has earned all 4 titles. I substituted Spirit in the Speed component since she needs two more Speed Q’s to get her title and championship. Since we had already paid, Brodie ran in the remaining 3 games for the heck of it. Spirit nailed Speed and Brodie Q’d in Aerial and Distance (18 seconds WTG).

Then came the Team component. We didn’t have a pre-arranged partner so Stacy Barnett and I partnered up. She wanted to split the areas up and not call a hide until the other dog came in and confirmed it. Since we already have our title I was happy to follow her plan. Unfortunately that ate up a lot of time. We had successfully called 3, Brodie had sourced the 4th hide but Brava couldn’t confirm it so we timed out. Oh so close. In NACSW they don’t have to be as exact as SDDA when they call their hides. Brava was able to say there is something somewhere around here but I had to bring Brodie in to pinpoint the exact location before I was able to call each of the hides. Although we didn’t Q (only one team did) it was an honour and pleasure to search with such a well known and respected participant, Judge and international nose work instructor.

The Nationals started Saturday morning with each team doing 4 searches (exterior containers, interior and 2 interior/exterior combos). In 3 of the 4 searches we found all the hides for full points plus bonus points. We only found two of the 4 hides in the last interior/exterior combo but since we found the two hardest hides we still earned decent points. Our two afternoon searches weren’t quite as successful. We nailed the exterior search but NQ’d on the vehicle search which cost us a maximum of 30 points. At the end of the first day we had 182 points which put us in 9th place overall

Saturday night was the banquet. We shared a table with Jane book and several of her students and had a wonderful evening. There was a very interesting speaker with 40+ years experience training dogs and handlers all over the world. He talked about how scent behaves and how he approaches a search.

Sunday morning we had 3 searches. They upped the ante by reducing our search time to only 2 minutes each. My amazing boy nailed all 3. Watching him work just made my heart sing. How lucky am I that I get to play sports and share my life with this smart, athletic, goofy and handsome boy. I could have gone home at that point completely happy with our performance.

All of a sudden people where hugging and congratulating me and I didn’t know what was happening until I actually saw the official results. Much to my utter shock, we ended up placing 4th overall. Holy cow….completely unexpected.

The top 12 teams got to participate in the finals. The dogs ran in reverse order of score so we were the 9th team to search. There were 2 search areas, 3 hides in each and only 2 minutes per search. We all started fresh with zero points.

I listened to lots of clapping and cheers for the previous competitors. By the time it was our turn my mouth was dry, my palms and forehead were sweaty and my stomach was doing flip flops. We were way out of our league competing against scent work teachers, judges and some of the best in our sport. When I walked up to the vehicle search and saw the crowd of spectators my hands started shaking. Scent detection is usually a solo sport with just you, your dog, the timer and Judge.

Our first search was not stellar. We missed the first hide right at the front corner of the trailer, found the second inside the bed of the trailer and then moved on to the second vehicle. Brodie picked up the odour and worked it back to source but we timed out just as I called alert.

Thank goodness we had a couple of minutes to wait before we started the exterior search. I was able to sit down, stroke Brodie’s sweet soft forehead and practice some deep breathing to try and relax. I told myself to calm down and forget about who else is searching and how many people are watching and judging us. Just focus on my boy and enjoy ourselves. It worked. We nailed all 3 hides. So proud of Brodie. He is the heart and soul of this team.

We ended up finishing in 7th place, way exceeding any of my dreams. We got a lovely ribbon and a bag of swag.

I wish I could have had a do-over on the first search but that’s how it goes. Valuable lesson learned. Forget about everything else and most importantly trust your dog!!!!

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Filed under Brodie, Nosework, SDDA, SDDA Games, SDDA Title, Spirit, Sporting Detection, Sporting Detection Dog Association

More Games Titles

Games night at the Manitoba Scent Detection Trial is over. Thanks to our awesome Teams partner Michelle and Neuman, Brodie and I got our 3rd Q and earned our Teams Title. I think that makes us the very first to get all 4 Games Titles πŸ…πŸ…πŸ…πŸ….

Spirit earned her Distance Title giving her her 2nd games title. She completely surprised me by earning a Q in Speed. Anyone who has seen her search knows that speed is not her forte….slow and steady is her mantra. We called the last hide with just a millisecond to spare.

Thank you to all the volunteers, hosts Michelle & Diane and our Judge John-Marc Dugas.

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SDDA Games Champion

We had a great weekend at the Alert K9 trial in Pilot Butte Saskatchewan. We started with Games on Friday night. The first component was speed, the only Q Brodie needed for his third Games title and the championship. He nailed it. According to the latest stats as of 2019SEP08, no one has 3 titles yet so he could be the first dog to attain a Games Championship but we won’t know until the updated stats are available. We were lucky to be paired up again with Darla and Jetta in Team which resulted in our 2nd team Q. Spirit ran both distance and aerial and Q’d in both.

Brodie and I did Elite on Saturday and Sunday. Our streak of passing 2 of 3 components continues. So closeπŸ˜‰. No teams passed elite either day.

Big thanks to host Christina, her amazing volunteers and Judge extraordinaire Kathy Hansen.

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Filed under Brodie, Nosework, SDDA, SDDA Games, SDDA Title, Spirit, Sporting Detection, Sporting Detection Dog Association