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So after tracking my own dog my "student" showed up.

He is catching on to tracking even though it looks messy. Beginning tracking often does. He did his first 10' track (did two) from the scent pad to the where there is a jackpot of food. Each footprint has food in it and the "game" is to methodically go forward to each foot print and eat every piece of food. He cannot go forward until each piece is picked up. Most dogs like this "game" and this dog is no exception.

In obedience his handlers are learning "basic" or heel position with focus. Of the two people handling the dog one is doing better and I think she just sounds more excited when there is success. The dog is ALMOST to the point of offering basic with attention. I think he will be offering by next session.

This dog also needs to engage with a toy and he has not been doing so. We put a harness on him and his handler held the line and remained stationary. I tried different toys with the Flirt pole... bouncing them around just out if teach.

At first the dog was just watching... but eventually it became "too much" and he tried to "get the toy." After a few lunges where he did NOT get the toy I put it close enough to grab... He grabbed it, I turned sideways not looking at him (less confrontational) and went to the end of the flirt pole and we tugged briefly. Dog gave a good pull and I "let him win." Handler trotted dog in circle. That dog was very pleased with himself.. carrying the toy.. tail up, ears up... Then he dropped it so we started over again with frustration followed by success. Each repetition he kept that toy longer.

After a few times we stopped, figuring he had enough and as started to pick up toys and flirt pole the dog BARKED. Immediately he got the toy back and a brief tug and the I let him win showing him the "game."

The object of the "game" is the dog learns by certain behaviors he can "make the game happen." In this case if the toy is still and the dog barks, he starts the toy moving. More barking and he gets to grab the toy and if he tugs he "wins" the toy because I let go.

The toys used in this the dog only gets when working with the handler. They are "special." The object is to build desire for the toy through some frustration and showing the dog he will "win." The dig must ALWAYS win if you want to build desire for the toy. The toy becomes "important."

We got done and my "student" was happy and relaxed laying in the shade at his handler's feet. I told him "Don't worry buddy. We will get your Handlers (owners) trained. You just need to be patient."
 
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