NW 1 Trial Reflections

I recently attended another NW 1 trial with Lily. Everyone at the trial did a wonderful job and was very welcoming. We have both come so far in our nosework journey. We got all of the elements except for the vehicles. Best of all we received third place in containers doing that element in nine seconds and got pronounced. Even though I don’t trial for time intentionally it was very nice to come home with a ribbon. I was very proud of how Lily worked. 

In the first photo (Thanks to Pawsitive Impressions) we are getting ready to cross the start line. Notice the tongue flick I think she was slightly annoyed saying can we go yet and also she may have detected odor and was thinking yay TREATS! In the second photo Lily was very interested in the cones marking the edge of the area… She never alerted on them but I did have to encourage her to move on since I knew that the odor could not be in the cone marking the end of the exterior. The final photo is Lily checking the chair that she alerted on. 

A few things that I learned that may help others:

*Find a way to destress at the trial- for Lily and I we’ve started dancing while we wait. Silly but it does help to loosen up before the run.

*Practice and proof what happens when other dogs go before you- we had the benefit of being first up but I’ve made a note proof dog drool on boxes for later when that may not be the case. 

*Build endurance- Lily was tired at the end of the day, with vehicles as our last element and the wind was gusting you could see she was having a hard time working. I’m planning to work more with multiple vehicles (3) so we have longer searches in the wind.

*Watch the temperature- toward the end of the day we were both warm even though the outside temperature was reasonable I will be looking into a reflective jacket for Lily during the waiting periods.

© Abby Razer 2014