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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)

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Nice job. Keep up the good work.

Yes it can be a lot of fun for the dogs and - hopefully - for the handlers as well.

Just a few suggestions if you don't mind - 1. if your dog is food motivated, get those food rewards out really, really fast - put them as close to the target container or hide as you are allowed to get without compromising the search area - and make sure you jackpot for a successful blind search.

2. if your dog is not food motivated, carry the toy or whatever reward you are using with you and play with the dog at the target.

3. if your dog should return to or make a move to the target container or hide a second time (or more) after the alert, reward him EVERY time he does that.

4. try to avoid tightening on the lead or using a command to get your dog out of the search area.
 

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Nice job. Keep up the good work.

Yes it can be a lot of fun for the dogs and - hopefully - for the handlers as well.

Just a few suggestions if you don't mind - 1. if your dog is food motivated, get those food rewards out really, really fast - put them as close to the target container or hide as you are allowed to get without compromising the search area - and make sure you jackpot for a successful blind search.

2. if your dog is not food motivated, carry the toy or whatever reward you are using with you and play with the dog at the target.

3. if your dog should return to or make a move to the target container or hide a second time (or more) after the alert, reward him EVERY time he does that.

4. try to avoid tightening on the lead or using a command to get your dog out of the search area.
what is the reasoning with rewarding more than once at the same find? I have always seen just verbal praise on a second alert, then moving the dog on to continue searches, so she doesn't get focused to just return to the same spot. Maybe something I'm missing here?
 

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what is the reasoning with rewarding more than once at the same find? I have always seen just verbal praise on a second alert, then moving the dog on to continue searches, so she doesn't get focused to just return to the same spot. Maybe something I'm missing here?
Well, this is the way it was explained to me.

Nosework is all about rewarding a dog for recognizing a target or hide. There is really nothing else that the dog has to do. You want to reward your dog every time he recognizes a target or hide. Whether it is the same one that he found previously - or a different one - he's done his work and deserves to be rewarded for it.

At a trial, returning to a hide is not a fault, but it does mean time lost. You know about that, but your dog doesn't - nor should he have to figure that out.

As the handler, YOU set the search pattern for your dog. It's YOUR job as a handler to keep your dog away from, or to attempt to keep your dog away from, a previously alerted hide within the same search area. If you don't - or if you can't - maybe it's your fault for poor handling, or maybe it's just an artifact of the way the search areas were set up. In any case, it's not the fault of your dog. He did what he was supposed to do.

Keep in mind that as a sport, canine scentwork is very new, and we are still learning the best ways to do it. It started out from detection/sniffer dog training, but it is evolving away from that. For example, in detection training, they almost never use food rewards, even for a food-motivated dog ( I don't think I'm revealing any secret information by telling you this). But in scentwork, we use food rewards whenever we can.
 

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Thank you for the explanation. I don't know much about the sport of it, but it seems much the same. I have started lots of young pups with food. Only not rewarding at the source with the food already there, but provided by me. That way I don't need to go back and proof from eating on the scene. Many law enforcement trainers don't use food, you are right.

I see your point, as the pups figure it out, then wonder why when the return right away why they don't get rewarded. It only takes a couple of times of "find more" and they don't go back.

I can only think of two reasons why the dog should have access to the find a second time. Detailed work, such as finding small bones or teeth close together. Then the area search, where the dog must work without being handler dependent and work the grid mostly on his own.

The scent work sport seems pretty cool, I think its a great way to work the dogs.
 

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That's awesome. I've tried teaching Wally scent matching using tasty food but it didn't work very well and I haven't been able to teach it using objects. Guess I need to get some hides or stuff scent trialers use.

Scent is such a natural concept for dogs and I am not doing much with it. It's something I need to work on.
 
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