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Come on. Let's go. Hi, Sassy doll. Hey. Uh-oh. People are sleepy. Are you awake? Can you do this? Oh, that's a good girl. That's very well done. We're here with Ellen Griffin, our co-owner and very good friend, who is also a tracking instructor with Syracuse Obedience Training Club. And she's put a TD on two labs, and a TDX on a lab, and she's working a bull terrier now, which is quite different and has challenged her skills. And I was lucky to put the TDX on a lab and fall in love with tracking. Because otherwise putting a tracking title on a bull terrier would be a real challenge. [INTERPOSING VOICES] Yes. Yes. And also Trish Romano is here. Trish is our control group, because she brought a 10-month-old lab puppy. Is he 10 months old? Going to be? He's 10 months. 10 months old. So we're going to show you the progression of starting scent work tracking games from 5 and 1/2 weeks old up to a big puppy. I do want to point out that even if you don't have any interest ever in doing tracking, this is all great enrichment and problem solving for puppies. And using the sense that comes most naturally to them, which is smell. We're going to talk more about that later, but we're going to jump right in and start with the first game. So Ellen, do you want to talk about what we're going to do? I'm going to-- do you want me to grab the X pen here? Sure. Go right ahead. OK. So what Jane is going to do is she is going to set up a version of how we start a tracking dog. When we want to start either an older puppy or an older dog in tracking, what we do is we lay-- we start with what is called a scent circle. Where we would lay out a circle on the ground with-- typically we use-- we mark it with flags, but we did find-- we've found that the flags are a little distracting for the little puppies. But you want a mark it so that you know where the circle is. And in that circle you walk around, step down the grass, make sure the circle is saturated with your scent, while you're-- I forgot my tees. Oh, they're in the-- the striped bag, Trish. Can you bring the pen over this way? Well I already stepped here, so I can't really. Can you move the camera around a little bit? Unfortunately, I've already made my scent circle. So Jane is putting her scent in this area. Thank you. Now normally with an older dog we would not use an X pen. You would have the dog on a flat buckle collar with a leash and you would take them into the center circle that way. Here, obviously, we don't want to use collars and leashes on our little puppies. So we just set up the X pen so they can't leave. Jane is putting her scent-- and she's putting these tees down so that she knows where her circle is. Do you think, Ellen, is that-- is that big enough for them? Is that as big as we did yesterday? Or a little bit bigger? Yeah, I think you can go a little bit bigger. OK. And after she marks off her circle she is going to put bait in there. She's going to put some real tasty treats that the puppies are interested in eating. What we will be looking for-- well let me back up and say what the goal is. The goal is for the puppy to go in there-- or the older dog-- to go in the scent circle and say, wow, there's food in here. This is awesome. I'm sniffing around. I'm finding pieces of food. But at the same time they're doing that, they're subtly picking up your scent-- that your scent is saturating this area with food. We're simply trying to make an association between your scent and a very rewarding thing to them. Eventually, you're hoping in tracking to translate that to them being willing to follow your scent without it always having food. Where they will go from footsteps to footstep and get a reward at the end. But that's obviously a process that we build up to very slowly. So-- Yeah. Go ahead. I was just going to say, in this situation what we are going to look for is, the puppy will come into the scent circle. They will sniff around a lot. They'll get very excited. They'll eat pieces of food. And especially as the food starts to diminish, they will occasionally wander out of the scent circle. They're still looking for food, that's all they're looking for, but as soon as they go out of the circle-- I think you still need to be a little bit bigger. I think it's small, yeah. I think it's small, yeah. Because you're not-- the puppies almost going to span the whole thing. Yeah. He won't be able to-- so I'm going to make it a little bigger. Oh, excuse my derriere. That's for you in France, Coreen. Derriere. So we-- so what we're going to look for is, the puppy wanders out of the circle and says, oh, there's no food out here, but there's also no-- none of Jane's smell out there. And then they will voluntarily find their way back to the scent circle and find the food. So all we're-- all we're looking for them to do is to do a voluntary behavior, looking for the food, and they're associating it with her scent. We're just trying to get them excited about how wonderful she smells. So, Ellen, I mean, how do you know that they're following my scent and not just crushed grass or just smelling the food? Like, how do you know that? Well I would say-- I mean, definitely even in the older dogs that I start, that's all their-- they are following the food. They're thinking the food is the most wonderful thing. But what you're doing is you're creating an unconscious-- you'd probably have a more technical term for it-- but you're creating an unconscious association between your scent and the food. And what's wonderful is once we start to actually lay a trap-- I've got a lot of stuff here. And you can-- do you want me to hold anything? No, I just-- I'm looking-- just what I'm looking for is my-- we've got all kinds of bait, because you never know which one's going to really turn them on. So we mix it up. We'll talk more about what we've got in here. I'm sure people are wondering. Go ahead, Ellen. So once we start to make a path or a track for them we are looking for them to start to track. They will have started to figure out that if they follow your scent they will continue to find more food. And we can use food-- What do you think about that? -- for a very long time. Pretty good? Yeah. It's OK? Yeah. It still could be a little bigger. All right. Yeah. OK, I'll make it a tiny-- I would-- I don't think you need a lot more food. Yeah, just a little bit bigger. They're going to be in there forever. Yeah. But just-- OK. So we're trying to create enough space so that you can see if they come out, and we can see if they go back in again. Now can you see these tees, honey? Are they-- are they visible, Mark? Can the people see the tees? The white dots in the grass? Uh, just a little bit, yeah. Yeah. Because we did-- we tried flags, and it was kind of cute, but of course the puppies wound up playing with the flags a lot. And that happens even with a 10 or 12 week old puppy when you start them. Sometimes they're just biting the flags. They're just like, wahoo! This is fun. OK. How's that? We good. That looks good. I think we're good. OK. So now we have to be a little bit nimble and step out. Because she's trying to not leave her scent where she-- that's why she didn't walk out the door, because then she would leave her scent on the outside of the circle. Thank you. Oh, we have Luigi Meatballs. So-- so aptly-- aptly named. So Luigi-- we fed them at 8 o'clock. We're hoping they're hungry enough, because that's what we call establishing operations. They need to be motivated to find the food. So I'm going to put him right in the middle of this wonderful area. Wow. Look at him go. He's like, I don't even need to stand up. I can just eat in here for a while. This grass is a little bit longer, too than the grass-- I mean, ideally you would have a littler shorter grass so he's not all-- Yeah, typically, even with an older dog, we will start them on a lawn. Although to me, an ideal tracking field is ankle to calf high. After their actually tracking. After they're actively tracking. But when we start them we absolutely start them in shorter grass. So that, a, they can find the treats. And b, you can see where the treats are. And you can tell whether they are staying within the circle or not. So I'm just going to say, Ellen always says it's OK even if you step on the food a little bit, but I think in this case maybe it wasn't the wisest for me to step on the cheese, because it kind of ground it into the ground. And he's going to be busy in there for a long time. So it's not going to be as action packed as it might otherwise be. But he's kind of waking up now. Now he's going to go around. Oh, that's fun. So again, you know, for those of you that saw our shaping emotional responses broadcast, this is a really fertile time for creating these classically conditioned associations. So just the idea that humans scent, food, tracking, to just imprint sort of a love of this, just to do these little games is fantastic. The other thing, and probably very profitable in the sense of currency down the line for loving tracking and wanting to stay on task, because, Ellen, what's the hardest part of tracking? I mean, can the dog sometimes, like, not smell very well? I mean, what are you really training them? Are you training them to smell, or what? When you're doing tracking, what's the hardest part? Well actually, they-- I mean, when you think about their senses, and you mentioned it being kind of their most critical, their most innate sense, is their sense of smell. I think about puppies being in the whelping box, and how are they finding their mothers teat? Right. They are smelling her. Their eyes are still closed, their ears are still closed, but their noses are working. And they're kind of crawling their way across to try to eat. He's going to start-- watch him, honey. Watch him. Yeah, go ahead, Ellen. Keep talking. So-- He's got-- what the heck? I think he's just getting some grass. Yeah. So all we are teaching-- we are not teaching them to smell, by any means. We are teaching them that-- what scent we want them to follow, which is the human scent. And so it's really just a transference of their natural ability onto the scent that we want them to follow. What about work ethic? I mean, do-- you know, did you-- is-- are all dogs kind of equal as far as wanting to go down the hole? I mean, how long is the track? In AKC-- at the basic level to earn the tracking dog title, the track is going to be between 440 and 500 yards. So it's about a quarter of a mile. That's-- oh, wow. That's-- There's a certain number of turns. There's a certain degree of difficulty to it. Certainly dogs who are blood hounds have unique physiological characteristics that make them better suited to scenting. They also may have more of a work ethic. They were bred to do that. They were bred to be that type of working animal as a companion to people. So it's naturally reinforcing for them to follow a scent trail. Exactly. You don't have to teach them that-- or make it reinforcing for them, it just is. Not as much. Yeah. Whereas with other breeds you need to find-- Ooh, that was nice. Did you see him hit the edge there? Yeah. Yeah. Yeah. With other breeds you may need to find something that's really uniquely motivating to them, because it may not-- Jane, what's the edge mean? I'm sorry. What did you say, honey? So what we're looking for here is-- Oh, oh. Oh. Somebody asked what the edge means. Yeah. Now that his food is starting to run out in the center, what's occasionally going to happen, like right now-- Yeah. See that? He left the scent circle. He came out here. He said, there's no food out here, but there's also no Jane out here. So then he whipped back around and found where the food was. Again, he's just looking for the food, but that food and that grass is all saturated with Jane's scent. But I think that was a really good illustration of what you want to see. When somebody asks, what's the edge? The edge of the scent circle. So he hit the edge of the scent circle. He came out of it. And he immediately was like, no, I understand. I got to get back in there. I want to make sure people can see those tees. Can they see the tees? There's a circle of white golf tees there. Yeah. Yeah. Again, we-- with older dogs we typically use a short-- He's peeing in there. Oh, and there's also bees. Now so that might be enough for him. I mean, I think we-- I think we saw him-- We-- Yeah. Absolutely. And by the way, somebody from France wrote in and said that she has a big problem with, like, really vicious hornets outside. And she can't-- thank you Trish. He's done. And she can't set this up outside. I mean, you can see even here that our bees are-- At this time of year. At this time of day, actually. We did this-- we did this with some of the puppies at four o'clock last night and had no problem, but it's the middle of the day and they're out. So we are going to show you some modifications for things that you can do indoors. Yeah. So this would be how you would start any dog. And that was the perfect amount of time for a little puppy like that, too. A couple minutes. You know he was running-- he was running out of food. He-- we saw him come out and go back in. He passed. And again, just to reemphasize-- oh, you know, I can imagine people saying, well, I mean, the dog's just smelling food. And he maybe is at this point, but now we're going to start showing you the progression of how Ellen works them down the line to start-- to start having them connect the dots between the food and the human scent. But here it's just the baseline association that we're making. And we-- we have-- yes. So we're going to have-- we're going to go two more with the puppies. And then we have Finnegan, who is our lab, who is a Shill, because he's a lab. So-- he was quite good at this. We started him yesterday. So this will be his second time out. Yeah. We'll come right here. Jane, put it right here. Well we can't, because it's going to-- it's going to bud up onto that were the other puppies been. So right here. Can you see it OK, Mark? Oh, yeah. Oh. You have to move the whole thing down. OK. But I have an extension cord. Or we can just go down that way a little bit if you'd prefer? Want to go up to the left of you? It's fine. Just go to the left. OK. OK, so-- OK. OK. OK. OK. So Ellen, now direct me on this one. OK, so typically if I was doing a beginning tracking lesson with a student, what we would do-- and we did this with Trish and her lab yesterday-- is we would do the scent circle. Let them get experience with that and then we-- we put them away. We put them back in the car, put them in the house, or wherever you're working, and let them kind of process that for about 10 or 15 minutes. Because that thinking time really helps things click in for them. So then the next time we bring them out we see how they do on a very basic straight out track. So we would-- again, lay the scent circle, put the food in it, let them come out and experience the scent circle. And then we would take them a couple of steps away to a very short track. I mean, it might be 10 paces-- it kind of depends on the size of the dog. But it might be 10 paces, it might be 20 paces with, again, a lot of food at every step. And then gradually thinning it out as we get a little bit farther. Just to see if they're starting to make the connection. So Jane is going to take that to the next level here. But you want a very smaller-- Little bit smaller than what you did before. Saki knows were tracking. Saki is not happy. Yeah. A little bit-- so you think just like about the size of my feet, like this? Is that good? Or do you want a little bit bigger? A little bit bigger. But I would say you don't need a ton of food. Because we want it to run out. You want it to run out so their motivated to-- And we want to move on. And again, ideally, you know-- you'll probably have shorter grass. [INAUDIBLE] OK. Yeah. Hold on. Let me grab your bags, Jane. Yeah. Can you just grab that food? Thanks, Trish. So are those special tees? Are they wood tees? No. They're-- Blair Academy Tee. Blair Academy Tee. I just didn't know if there was a special tracking tee? I'm going to leave them sticking out a little-- no. I'm going to leave them sticking a little bit more and hope that she doesn't-- hope that she doesn't kind of notice them and want to play with them. So actually here we probably could use the flags, right? Going down the line. Yeah. Hopefully once she gets going she won't notice them quite so much. OK. So you want me to unclip this? Yeah. Unclasp that for me. And I'll take my food bag. So why are you unclipping those? Oh, we're going to-- we're going to give her a pathway. We're going to add this extra piece of X pen on. And actually there are ants here. So we'll just go-- we'll just go right to about there. OK. Is that good? Sure. Yeah, so you can actually just kind of-- Oh, yeah. Yeah. Here, why don't you hold those and I'll set up the X pen. I'll take the flags and the food bag. OK. Sorry about my rear end. It's just the way it worked out. OK. I think we're going to leave the cheese, because the cheese wound up being a little too soft to work out quite well. OK. I just dropped the hot dogs over there, which probably wasn't the greatest thing. Oh, my gosh. She is mad. Saki is furious. She really is mad. She's furious. She's like, you guys are tracking. I see the flags. So, yeah. I put down-- Ellen, I put down about that much. Is that right? Yeah. So this is how much I put in the scent circle this time. I had put a lot more before. So I'm going to now-- Yeah, so, Ellen? You want me to do continuous down here to start out with-- I think that's what we did. Is that? Yes. OK. And For a tiny puppy like this, you are going to put your first piece of food at about your arch. Right here. So halfway up your foot. OK. So you guys-- With a bigger dog-- Can they see that, Mark? With a bigger dog we might put it all the way up at the toe. But with a tiny puppy like this-- We have a bunch of questions. Can you zoom in on my feet while I'm doing this, babe? [INAUDIBLE] Yeah. Sorry. So how much food do you put in it? So-- well the first piece is going right here. Are you zoomed in on that? Where it is? I'm zoomed in. You are? OK. So then I'm going to put another piece about at that toe. And then I'm going to go heel to toe and put another piece about there. Pretty continuous. You want some flags to mark this? I think you should. OK. So that people-- So that people watching can see where it is. OK. So I'm going to put a flag in there. Ellen knows there's like a professional way to do this that I'm not doing. Ellen's-- Ellen's the real tracking person. When we track, and when we train our dogs to track-- yeah, that's the most important thing. That it stands up so that they don't see it as much. You may want to take questions, because there's some that-- I think-- there's a lot of great questions. Yeah. So as I do this, why don't you go ahead and take some questions? Sure. You can just come on over here. Oh. You want me to read them over here? Should I read it out loud? Oh, yeah. So everybody know the question. So, you mean, I'm supposed to have some glasses out here? No. Some old lady glasses? How long does it-- Cheryl asked, how long does it take to transfer from food to humans scent? What's the time line for training? I think, actually we'll have Trish read them. OK. Um-- And you're really good looking. So get over there. That's a great question. And as with anything, every dog is different. However, and-- and again, most of my experience is with starting older puppies and older dogs. This is something fun that Jane let me-- we decided to come and try an experiment with her puppies. With older dogs and older puppies, we actually often start to see them making that connection by the second lesson. So we will do what she just did the first time, and then this in one lesson-- in one day. You know, the dog will go rest and then come back out and do this as their second attempt. And then either the person will get back together with me, or I will tell them to do it at home. And very often by the second day they-- and we try to repeat it fairly regularly early on so that we're really reinforcing that connection. Often by the second day they are already-- we can-- we can move out our-- space out our feet a little bit more, and space out the food a little bit more. And they are starting to literally follow your smell on the ground to find the next piece of food. So it's astonishing, frankly, to watch, and really exciting. It's something I really love. Do you have another question, Trish? There's another one from Bridget. As an SMR man trainer it is an interesting way to start a puppy. What are the pros of this method comparing to puppy trail? In puppy trail the owner runs away, the puppy follows and gets rewarded. OK. So I-- and I think that's a perfect differentiation between trailing and tracking. And, of course, my love is AKC tracking. In AKC tracking the dog needs to literally follow the path where the person walked and they find an article at the end, they find a glove, typically. What did you find? Did you find another thing? Good girl. I just want to repeat that question, because I'm not sure that everyone heard it-- Oh, I'm sorry. So the question was, that-- what is the advantage of starting this way? Because another way in man trailing that they start puppies is somebody runs away-- how did it go? They'll run away and, like, hide behind a tree. And then just have the puppy follow their scent-- And the puppy runs. Yeah. So again, now go back to what Ellen-- Ellen was saying. So what I was saying was in man trailing the dog is-- can very readily air scent. They-- the odor of that person behind the tree-- well first of all, they see them run away. And then they say, I need to find them. And they run and-- I'm going to put her down-- Sure. But you keep talking. Go ahead. And the puppy runs and goes and finds the person. In AKC tracking they're not looking for a person, they're looking to follow a person's scent to an article. So it's just a different behavior. I wouldn't say anyone is better than another. I think that-- frankly, there's also Schutzhund-- she's peeing. Following the track. That's right. She's doing great. She's doing great. I mean, she came right in. She's looking for it. You know, I'm just going to chime in. As a-- I totally understand and can see what Ellen is saying, is it's a different behavior. But I'm also going to chime in just as a breeder and puppy raiser, that one of the things I like about this method is it teaches them to problem solve and deal with frustration. What you'll see-- like this puppy has had one turn on this already, so she's pretty confident about staying in the circle. Yesterday when we started her, there was a lot of whining. There was a lot of frustration, because when she couldn't find the food. But-- oh, look at her go. But-- but today she has learned to be much more methodical and problem solving. There's a lot lower frustration level here. So I think there's an abstract concept that they learn of solving their own-- except sometimes being with people's more reinforcing than food. And that can be an issue. I'll move out of the way, because she's like, that's my mommy. So, you know, what you might be seeing here is that the food just is not reinforcing enough compared to the opportunity to come out and play with us. And at this age, this can happen. What is really interesting is she's using her nose to try to figure out where we are, too. She's sniffing out through the joints. Yeah. And so, you know, if this happens it's like-- the puppies just not that interested in doing it today, you know? You just try another day. The other thing that we can do is we can walk down here a little bit. Just to draw her attention this way, and see if she catches the scent. Yeah. See? She just caught the scent of the food. Now normally you would not do that with an older dog or an older puppy. Because if you're trying to teach them to track you always want to be behind them, but this worked perfectly with her. Oh. Oh, a bee. There's a bee. there's a bee. There's a bee. There's a bee. That was a bee. She's OK. She's like, yeah. I got stung there. So-- that's the flag. Now we would not really expect her to be able to do this whole track. I mean, that would be a lot for 5 and 1/2 week old puppy. But again, just the core concept of following a track a little bit. All right. This is Bijoux B, by the way. That's her name, is Bijoux B. Bijoux B, which is why-- Should we let her work on it more? Or not? I-- it looks pretty random right now. Yeah, it looks pretty random. It doesn't look like she's-- Yeah. She looked around and found the trail again. She's working a little bit. Yeah, and, you know, again a point that often comes up on the Puppy Culture discussion group on Facebook is that a lot of times with puppies this age you really don't think anything's happening. It does not look like they're learning anything, or much, I mean. I think that Luigi was pretty methodical and obvious on the circle, and she's not. But she is learning. She still is learning. Oh, yeah. And again, because yesterday she did a lot more frustrated whining looking for the food than she's doing today. She's-- Can we do some questions? Yes? Ashley asks, if I use the lawn at my house, would the entire lawn have my scent? Or would laying the scent as described make that scent stronger so that the puppy would find it? Ellen, I'll let you take that one. Yeah. That was a great question. Do I need to repeat it, Mark? OK. Maybe summarize it. So, Yeah. So the question was about using your lawn, which is what we're doing here. When I teach tracking, or if you were just doing any kind of scent work, I would suggest that you want some virgin land, especially if there is land where your dog's potty. You don't really want to go there. So we actually came out to the front lawn, where Jane and Mark don't hang out very much because they're too busy-- In the back yard. --filming and working on the computer. So we came out here, because this would not have a lot of their scent, or scent of other dogs, because the other dogs are confined to the backyard. I often-- if I do it as a lesson-- will take someone to an office park, or someplace where there's kind of clean grass. Obviously, you don't want something that's been sprayed with pesticides. But if-- but if it's a real tiny puppy and you don't want to take them someplace where, you know, new where they might be exposed to things that you don't want, I would say either look for a spot in your lawn where you can do it, or we're actually going to show later an exercise that you could do even in your house. So we'll see-- we'll see how that works for you. So the third-- the third one you're going to see is Bob, who was probably the most proficient yesterday. So let's hope he doesn't make a liar out of us. That was-- so you've seen Luigi Meatballs, and Bijoux B, because people kept asking if we would say the names of the puppies. So-- Now with Bob, Ellen, we had success on a trail similar to what we did for Bijoux B yesterday. Yes. So what's our next step here? So the next step-- what-- as you progress with working with them, you are continually making that initial scent pads smaller. So that they spend less time kind of working on where all the food is, and then hopefully starting to work out on that trail. So Jane will now put in a very small scent pad just to get him started. And then she will lead him right out onto the track. So now are we going to progress to trying to connect the dots a little bit with him? Absolutely. And the way you do that-- I think I started to explain it earlier, but didn't do a very good job. Is where she-- where with Bijoux she was putting the food here and here, so that Bijoux would smell her foot up to the food here, and then smell her foot up to the food here after she had walked away. She was taking very small steps, because it's a little puppy and putting food there and there, there and there. As we work along, what I will have her do, after she does a few of those-- maybe she'll do one where she puts the food all the way up at the end. So now there's some blank space in there. There's some empty space that does not contain food, it contains nothing but Jane's scent. And that's when you start to, hopefully, see the light bulb go off with these dogs. And they keep their nose down and they keep following it to that next piece of food. Ellen, so Dan wants to know, does the two minute training session guideline apply to these lessons as well? I would say two minutes is-- oh, I'm sorry. You asked about the two minute training session guideline, which is-- is that something from-- That's Puppy Culture. That's something from Puppy Culture. I think Jane has a great number there. Two minutes seems to be about their attention span. I mean, I sometimes let them work a little bit longer if they're working well. Especially if we're talking and we lose track of the time. Yeah. And we leave them in-- Questions in here. So I don't know how you want to-- Yeah. Yeah, but-- but, yeah, two minutes, I think, is plenty for these guys at this age. Does that change in age? As they get older will they-- As they get older, they can definitely work-- Yeah. They're going to have to go to a-- You-- first of all you can make a bigger scent circle. You can put a little more food in it if it's an older puppy. Or as you start to do longer tracks, obviously, it stretches out. Adam asked about the X pen. With an older dog we would not use an X pen. We are only using the X pen here because we can't put these little baby puppies on a collar and leash. With older dogs we simply let them walk up to the scent circle on a flat collar, not a choke collar. We can show that later with Finnegan. Because Finnegan's had that experience. You want me to start continuous and then start straight thinning it out? Because I'm tipping over. Yes. Yeah, do your half-- do your halves first. Halves. OK. So I do-- So, yeah. So that was-- So arch and toe. That was arch and toe here. So I did one-- I would give it one more-- at least one more arch and toe. OK. I'm going to switch-- Yeah, do you want me to close her up? Well I want her to be hot. She doesn't give up easily. We're getting close. We have a question here. Well, wait. Wait. Let her give me direction first. So we did arch and toe for four steps? Or three-- three steps. Yeah. And now what am I going to do? Why don't you-- Try and do a toe? Yeah, try and do a toe. Let's see what happens. Do about-- do about three toe only. Or you could-- actually you could do some random reinforcement, you know? OK. You could do another arch and toe, and then another full toe. And let's just see-- I got you. I got you. And then give them a little jackpot at the end-- a little pile of food. OK. OK. Betsy is asking, could the scent pool from the standing bodies be more reinforcing than the track? Yes. I totally agree with that. And in fact, when we actually progress to tracking, if the dog does progress to tracking, you are not encouraged-- you do not want to stand in a place at any one time very long, because that tends to-- whatever it is they're smelling, you are sloughing off a lot of scent there. So we try to keep moving. And-- but absolutely, the scent circle is going to be more reinforcing, because of the standing body, the amount of food that you put there, the amount of time that you spent in there stomping the grass. So, that's a great question. Very savvy questions, actually. Yeah. It's a sharp group of people in this culture. There's no messing around. It's top notch people. Yeah. Absolutely. Now again, I mean, this is probably super ambitious for a 5 and 1/2 week old puppy, and so we would not necessarily expect to have success here. But we're putting it out there. See what happens. So, I mean-- but in some cases can it be-- you know, back to scent pooling thing, I mean, this is a real question that I have. It can actually be more difficult when it's a hot track? Like when it's really fresh? Yeah. Some-- Is it a little easier when some of the excess-- And, in fact, like wind can sometimes-- can be your friend in tracking, because it can blow all of the kind of ambient scent away and make them want to put their nose down into the grass to search. This Is Bikini Bob-- well now known as Zucchini Bob, or Bobby Z. You ready Bobby Z? What you got here? Wow. Now yesterday he was definitely the most methodical puppy. He absolutely was. He we just worked very methodically. In fact, it did take him a while to even leave the scent circle, but he didn't get upset when he did. He just would turn around or would throw himself into reverse. They do a lot of reverse. --and would get back into the scent circle. And this is a much smaller scent circle that Jane has out here now. Just to give him the idea of what he's doing. And then we're hoping that he will move out along the track and start to be rewarded by moving forward. So now this is his third exposure. So we did the-- we did the scent pad, and then we came back and we did, what? About 20 minutes later-- again, distributed learning, gave him a chance to nap on it and think about it. We came back and did a very short almost continuous food trail out. Oh, and a poop. Suzanne asked if there was a scent pad at the beginning of an AKC track, and if that is judged as part of their performance. The reason I said it's an interesting question is because I haven't been tracking since the old, old days, because I'm not that old. But apparently-- [INAUDIBLE] Apparently there used to be a scent pad and no start article. And that is the way they-- they still do it in Canada in the CKC. They just lay a small scent pad and then start off on the track. AKC decided to start with a start article. So, no, there is no scent pad. You just walk up to the scent flag, put down your article that smells like you, and start walking. I think either method, frankly-- I'm watching him. Oh yeah, He's coming right down the line. I think either method is completely valid, frankly. She also asked, I'm starting a baby puppy. Would you try to use the wind direction for any teaching aspect for such a small puppy? So Suzanne asked, with starting a baby puppy would you take wind into consideration? We do take wind into consideration typically when we get to-- farther along with older dogs. A strong wind, a strong cross wind. You might find that instead of working down the track that they're parallelling the track, you know, five feet downwind or 10 feet downwind. My feeling about a tiny baby puppy like this is, they are so low to the ground that the wind isn't impacting them to a large degree anyway. And you're putting so much food, which is encouraging so much of a nose down behavior, that I wouldn't worry about it here. I would only think about it-- and you probably wouldn't take them out in a gale force wind anyway. So what about the fact that now he's tracked up and he's going to track back down? So ideal tracking behavior would-- if-- again, if this was an older dog, I would have had the dog on a collar and a leash, and if they tried to go backwards I would kind of impede their progress. I would either block their path-- You'd be like a hitching post. Yeah. Or I would just hold the line so that they could not go backwards. We want to teach them to follow the forward scent. With this puppy, you know, if he wants to work backwards it's not going to-- Oh, he's doing a good job, Ellen. Look at this. It's not going to kill his career. Look at this. Look at him go. See? Because he's skipping over food. He's also going out and sniffing out here. And then I'm watching his nose go out and then swing back, go out and then swing back. He's not really having a terribly hard time staying right where you walked. And see, when we get up to this end here, this is where I was taking a full foot. So-- The only thing I would say I didn't totally see from him was that tracking along the foot step. Yeah. Yeah. Yep. And he may be too young to comprehend that. He may need a couple more exposures. I've never worked with puppies this little before. So I don't know how long it takes them to make the connection. And on that theme, Adam asked, will these puppies be trained everyday? And if not, how often? What frequency? Oh, great question. Yeah, that is a great question. I think I mentioned earlier, with a new dog-- Good job, Bobby. Sorry. The training. How often do we train tracking? Bye. I think Bobby's done. Don't you think? Yes, I think so. Bye, Bobby. Bye, Bobby. He did very well. He's the star. How often do we train tracking? As with any other new behavior, when you first start you definitely want to repeat it frequently so that they make the connection. So a new dog, we would encourage someone to continue to practice every day, every other day. You know, at least a few times a week to kind of continue to build and reinforce that connection in their brain. Once they get proficient at tracking and understand what the job is, frankly, you can burn them out if you track them too much. So we often drop down to once a week, sometimes twice a week, but-- but then also varying the difficulty. With a little tiny puppy like this, I think-- I mean, you could probably-- Jane says they practically change every 12 hours. You could probably do it twice a day for a week just to see kind of what progress they're making. And they're going through such emotional changes as well that you have so many other factors playing in here. Suzanne wants to know, would it matter if the baby puppy skips food in the track and goes straight to the jackpot? So Suzanne's question was, if the puppy skips food in-- as they're going down the track and goes straight to the jackpot? No, I would not have a problem with that at all. Particularly if they are continuing to stay on the line. If they're-- that shows that they kind of know where they're going. Sometimes they're just scenting the jackpot at the end, but if you give them enough distance they literally have to do the work to get from point A to point B. OK. So the question was about a bull terrier in particular-- tracking with a bull terrier. Honestly, there's a lot of distractions out there, particularly if you start to work in a field. There's very often inadvertent cross tracks that you're not even aware of-- a deer has walked through the field. There's often I see deer beds out in the field. And I'm walking along laying my track and there's a big giant deer bed. There's woodchuck holes. It's a very scent saturated hole in the ground. Especially for a terrier. Yeah. So what do you use to motivate her? What's her big pay-off? So Saki, through a lot of trial and experience, I found was a tennis ball. And she just loves her tennis ball so much that I literally show it to her, and I tell her I'm going to hide her bally. I'm going to hide this. You're going to find it. So I show it to her every time before I go out and lay the track. And I lay the track and under the final glove is her tennis ball. And she gets to play fetch with it. And I try to, frankly, limit the tennis ball at other times. She doesn't get it, except for tracking. That's her special treat. I think the thing with bull terriers is that-- it's the good news and the bad news is that they have that OCD about things like varmints and balls, but if you're lucky enough that the OCD is something that you can control, you can really get them motivated to work. It is a challenge, though. And people talk about being creative with-- really, with any breed. You don't want to bore them with what you're doing with the repetitiveness, and always using the same treats, and always using whatever. So, you know, I've heard of people putting a fish bowl with a goldfish swimming out in it out on the track, just to surprise and delight. It was something they knew would surprise and delight their dog. That's amazing. I wouldn't do it for a bull terrier, but, you know, people will put toys out there. They will put a big can of tuna fish. I mean, it could be-- it has to work for your dog. So that's knowing your dog. So I just want to-- just-- I think we've said it a couple of times, and I want to be sure that people understand that probably this set up would be what you would use for any puppy that is not yet on a leash, so probably under eight weeks old, right? And then once they're eight weeks old, would you use a collar or would you use a harn-- you would probably use a harness on an eight week old, because you don't want to choke them, right? Yeah. We actually start with a flat buckle collar. You do? Yeah. Obviously you don't want a choke collar of any kind. Because you also don't want it-- it's-- That's Saki complaining. It's more that you are maintaining-- you have a way to stop them, but you don't want to punish them. You don't want it to feel like punishment. And we're going to see that with Finnegan. Yeah. So this is just to limit their choices, because if they go too far off they're-- Their brain is this big, and if they-- they'll forget. With a bigger puppy, you might need a bigger-- slightly bigger scent. Slightly bigger space. I just want to, while I'm thinking of it, bring one more point up that's very important, which is water. When-- even for these puppies, which they're not really drinking water because they're still nursing a little and they get milk with their food, but I did make sure that they had water, because the whole sniffing-- well first of all the hot dogs are salty, but that whole sniffing really dries out their-- I mean, you could talk to that more. I mean, Ellen even carries a bottle of water to refresh her dogs. I carry a pack that has a bottle of water in it. And sometimes if they're starting to struggle or it's a warm day, I will stop and I will squirt a little bit of water into their mouth just to refresh their olfactory senses. You can't do that on a test. You absolutely can. Oh, you can? Yep. Oh, wow. I didn't know that. That's interesting. Yeah. You can stop and water them. In fact, you know, the AKC is so concerned about dogs not being treated harshly, or, you know, that we're training not being-- or trialing way too harsh. On a day like today. Yeah. They actually will encourage people to carry water if it's a hot day. So the question is, how often do you do the scent pad and how quickly do you move on? The scent circle. --the scent circle and then move on. And typically Ellen does the scent circle once, and then puts the dog back in the car to think about it for about 20 minutes. If you've seen Puppy Culture you know distributed learning. So that mental consolidation happens. She takes the dog out, and she does the smaller scent pad with the short track out with food about every half a foot. Then the next day when they come back, or the next session is when she will do an even smaller scent pad and start spacing out the food even more. Maybe start it-- again, every half a foot at the beginning, and then maybe space it out more as she goes along. But that would really depend on if the dog is having success or not, because not every dog is going to have immediate success with this. Again, I think the thing is that, typically that would be a good plan, but if you see a dog just really not getting it or getting lost and not connecting the dots between the food, you might have to back-- back down. But that's where Ellen-- where having a great tracking instructor like Ellen really helps, because they can sort of troubleshoot, diagnose what needs to be done. I think the thing you should talk about a little bit, Jane, though is that, yes, I love tracking, and, you know, we've talked a lot about tracking here, but how this might be just a general enrichment activities for a puppy, or else other venues where this might translate. Right. Right. And that is-- I, mean that's something that we-- because we have that Ellen here it's so, you know, great to be able to ask her all these questions. We got into a lot of very specific tracking questions. But I want to emphasize that this is great to do with any puppy. I mean-- Ellen, what was it? We have five million olfactory? Humans have approximately five million olfactory cells, and dogs-- receptors-- and dogs have 300 million. So 300 million versus five million, that-- to them-- and there was a NOVA on this where they said that what we can see at 3,000 feet is what-- if it were scent, is what a dog could see at 3,000 miles. So imagine, at 3,000 feet, it's 300 miles. That's how much more powerful their scent is. So to them, vision is very secondary. Everything is scent, scent, scent. So anything we can do to give a puppy a problem solving, fun game that uses his primary way of relating to the world, which is scent, is fantastic. It's great problem solving. It will help-- its enrichment, help build their brain. And to help them deal with some frustration, learn how to work things out. Really great. And actually that brings up another thing while they're laying that out. Ellen, so do you want to tell them-- what are we doing? She's doing two steps? Right now she's doing every toe. Then we're going to space out and she'll take two steps and put it at the toe. So now there's a little bit of that empty space I was talking about earlier between the food drop. So I'll have her do that about five or six times, yeah. You can do-- yeah, you can do-- you can do a good, like, three or four more of those. And then we will try three steps. So there will be actually three steps worth of space before the next food drop. The idea being that he needs to put his nose down during that time and follow her scent to the next food drop. So I think what we saw yesterday with him was he was a genius on the scent circle. I mean, he was just very-- he's a 10-month-old lab, I hope he doesn't make a liar out of me, but the most-- I mean, you would think he's two years old. He's just the most sensible, level-headed dog. And he worked that problem really well. When he started going down the line he did well, but he probably wasn't 100% getting-- following the scent to it. So what we're going to see today is if that rest, that overnight consolidated learning, is going to help him. So I also want to point out though, vision versus scent. I think a lot of people watching the puppies might think, well, I mean, can't they just see where the food is? And can't they just visually follow it? And if you remember in Puppy Culture I have some footage in there of Warthog running into the food dish in the kitchen and completely running past it. And then like hitting the edge of the scent cone around it and coming back to it. I mean, literally, it's like as big as a barn in front of him, and he does not see the food dish. He smells it, he catches it, and he bounces back. So they really-- I'm sure they-- yes, they can see, but they just do not really rely on that as a primary way of navigating the world. So even things like the flags. You might think, well, I mean, isn't the flag a clue to where the track is? And maybe an extremely advanced dog might be able to figure that out, but, I mean, I wish I could teach my pole terriers to follow a line of flags. First of all, the point of the flags is for the human. It's-- the dog is not looking at the flags. The dog is using their nose. The point of the flags is for the human to know where the track is. So that you know whether the dog is staying on the track or wandering off the track. Again, as the dog gets more proficient we tend to-- [INAUDIBLE] We tend to reduce-- Am I showing a little bra strap? Keep talking. I'm just going to-- As the dog gets more proficient we reduce the flags. Sometimes we use clips, like clothesline clips with a little bright tape on them so that we can see them. We always want to make sure we pick up anything we put out in a farmer's field, which is the other reason it's important. But initially in training, the most important thing is that you, as the handler, knows where the track is so that you're not correcting the dog when they actually are right, and you are also standing still if they are wrong. So what we're going to see with Finnegan is-- what we did with him initially in the scent circle was he went in on a-- this was yesterday-- he went in on a flat buckle collar. He sniffed, and sniffed, and sniffed. Trish stood in the middle. If he would leave the scent circles she wouldn't say anything to him, she wouldn't correct him, she would just not give him enough line to get very far. But he would get out there and he would realized that there was no scent out there. There was no food out there, and he would come back involuntarily. It's going to be the same thing on the track. He's going to start down the track. He may wander off. As long as she stands still, she's not going to correct him. She's not going to say anything to him. She is going to praise him when he's right, but not correct him when he's wrong. So you saw his nose-- that was a nose hook, right? What we call a nose hook. He hooked his way-- and if he starts down the track, don't hesitate to go with him, Trish. If he wants to, you know, investigate the scent circle for a while, that's fine, too. Sometimes we need to help them go down the track and we will get them started. Other times they will do it voluntarily. You can see the difference here, though. He-- this is an older dog. So we're using a collar and a leash. And now the handler is coming in to play a little bit, in that she's not going to let him get too far. He's not having any trouble. Ooh. Yeah. OK, so he's-- Oh, he's going right over there. He's now investigating down the track. The only thing that she is going to stop him from doing is go backwards, because we want him to follow the direction of travel. Now he see's-- That's really exciting. Look at that. Now he's going to start to get into-- he's skipping some food. He's following the scent. And then he's getting out to the very end here where there's about four steps where there's no food, and he's going to have to follow that. See him using his nose? Right there. That was beautiful. That was great. Wow. That was really nice. And what-- how amazing. Like, again-- that yesterday when he was on the track, I mean, you know, he was kind of almost happening on some food. That was real, like, cognizance of-- I could hear him scenting from all the way over here. Oh, yeah. I could, too. That's really exciting. Yeah, the snuffling and the scenting. Yeah. Yeah. Really exciting. Yeah. And somehow-- we left him a wonderful jackpot. It's jerky-- bacon jerky. It's human-- Not made from humans, but made for humans. --bacon jerky. Made for humans, not made from humans. Wow. Great, Trish. So, you know, we left him a wonderful jack-- and, you-- [INAUDIBLE] I was going to say, this-- I don't know if you caught that, Mark. That is very common. They get their jackpot, and they're like, this was so great. I want to keep going. And they continue to follow where the handler left the track. That is com-- that is beautiful. Great job. Once we can even space the food out even more, you really start to see that behavior kick in, where they're just like, yeah, I got. It I'm following this smell, and it's leading me to that next piece of food. And it just makes my heart go pitter-patter. It does. It does. I mean, it's thrilling to watch. It's thrilling to watch them do something that is so innate. That we-- we can't tell them how to smell. We can't tell them what they're smelling. We don't know how they're doing it. We just have to kind of get out of the way and let them do their job. Yeah. It's great. OK. There are some other good questions, but I do want to get to our last piece. And then we'll have-- we will-- because these are wonderful, wonderful questions. So we're going to answer them all. And-- so let's do our last-- OK. So-- OK. This is for the people-- actually, Coreen, in France, had said that she has wasps, really apparently mutant wasps that will hurt her puppies. And so she can't do this outside. And you did see the bees a little bit in there. So-- so we brainstormed. And we came up with something that is going to, we think, teach the same concept. But-- why don't you tell them about our creative idea-- your creative idea, I should say. Ellen woke up first thing this morning. She's like holding a plastic bin. I'm like, she has something. So what we decided to do is we are going to set up-- we're going to do it out here, but it's something you could do in your house, or in your basement, or again, I would pick a room that isn't ridiculously saturated with your scent, which can be hard in your house, but if you could do it in the basement, or if you have a garage, or someplace like that. Again, what we want to do is give the puppy the idea that if they find their humans scent they will find food. It's, again, a beginning exercise. So I gave-- I decided that we would take two plastic containers, poke holes in the lid-- we worked with what we had. We'll have to see if the size of the containers and the number of holes is good. But we poked holes in the lids of both of them, but only one of them will contain food. That container that contains food will go on-- I asked Jane to bring me her pillowcase that she slept on last night. So she will lay the pillow case out on the ground, put the food container on that. And then we brought out a control piece of fabric. She found a place mat that she said she has never used-- a brand new place mat. I wouldn't even let her touch it. I put it in a bag. It contains a little bit of my scent, but I put it in a bag. I brought it out here. And we will put the container that has no food on it-- you might need a little more space. You think that-- well I can do it this way. Here we can do it-- ow. I just want to make sure they're spread out enough that-- because you're going-- now you're air scenting a little bit more. You know what I mean? The food wafting out of the container. I don't know that these little puppies have the wherewithal to even really travel around. OK. So I think-- I think-- This is an experiment. It's an experiment. You are seeing it live for the first time. Oh, no. Sorry. It was the striped bag. I've actually never done this before either, because-- So here's the pillowcase I slept on last night. And I-- Yeah. Yeah. So that's completely saturated with Jane's scent. OK. I'm-- hand me-- Well Ellen has to hand me the right one. Yeah. Why don't I grab-- Yeah. And then these are the-- Ants. You ready for a container? Yeah. Give me a container. Because Ellen's going to touch the other stuff, just so that it's not-- doesn't have my scent on it. OK. So this is her-- this is her food container that I punched holes in. She's going to put lots of lovely bait in there. It's a good way to take you your frustrations. Thank you. --poke holes in there. And then-- whoops. The sticker fell off already, but that's all right. And then this is going to be an empty container that I also poked holes in to make it theoretically identical to that one. Except it will contain no food. And then this is a blank piece of fabric, meaning it has no one's scent on it. Other than, unfortunately, I touched it with my fingers, but it does not contain Jane's scent. So we're going to put that over here. And what we're going to look for is, does the puppy self reinforce? Will they go to each container at first? And then basically, we hope they will scent food here, and we can reward them. What would be very interesting would be to do this more than once. So do you want me to-- So let them scent the food, open it up, and reward them. Do you want that pillowcase open-- I was thinking a little bit more. And then actually, ultimately go to even a closed container and see if they would just immediately go to the thing that smelled like you. But this would be-- so this would be the way you would start. I would say if they keep going back to that two or three times, eventually I would just open it up and give them some treats. So you wouldn't do it the first time they go to it? Or-- if they, like, really-- You might want to see that it's really-- Yeah, if they-- You might want to see that it's really purposeful. That they're getting that that's where they want to be, not there. And then-- and reward them. And that'll probably be it for one time. But then the second time I brought them out, you know, I would do a little, maybe fewer holes. You can make the fabric a little smaller. I mean, you're going to do a lot. Each time you would repeat this you would go to less and less. You would eventually-- just like with tracking where we're looking for them to follow the scent to find the food, I would eventually go to a completely closed container. It would still smell because you touch it with your hands, and all that. But now see if they just keep going to the fabric that smells like Jane. Wow. That's great prep for utility work, isn't it? Oh yeah. Absolutely. Yeah. Yeah. And he-- honestly-- for when-- For when Saki does utility. This-- I have to get a bull terrier to carry a dumbbell first. Yeah. Number one. So now, do you recommend that I bring the puppy in, or someone else brings the puppy into this? I Hadn't thought about that. I hadn't thought about that until this second. You brought them in every other time. OK. So I think-- I'll do it. You carried them in every other time. I'll go get Sassy. OK, Sassy B. What are you going to do? So this is Sassy. She has no idea. She's happy about it, but she has no idea. Oh. Yeah, that's nice. That's very good. That's very good. You want that? Whoa. Look at that. Well-- That was pretty cute. That was pretty cute. I would-- oh, I don't know if we have time, but I would love to see her do it again. Yeah. Or take one of the other puppies? I actually would love to see her do it again. But don't you think she knows where the food is at this point? We could even switch it on her. Move the two around? OK. I'll turn my back. I bet you a minute in puppy time is equivalent to 10 minutes in big dog time. She'll probably get in here and have completely forgotten what she's doing. That's true. That's why we have the X pens. In fact, I'm going to go-- maybe not going to even-- we'll totally change the angle here. OK. Are you ready? Yup. Come on, Sassy B. Should I put her in, like, maybe closer this one so she's-- Yeah. Just put her in right in the middle and see-- All right. In the middle. Here we go. Sorry. Stepping on things. I liked her reaction even just to your pillowcase. Yeah. And it might have been just because it was the first thing she found, but you was-- No. Oh, she says, I got to poop first. That's OK, too. That's what she thinks of that empty container. It might have just been because it was the first thing that she found was your pillowcase, but she was very excited about it. Well she wasn't that excited about this, so let's see how she acts when-- she's like, hmm, OK. I mean it's interesting, but-- So maybe if I were to do this again, I would put them closer together so it could be more of a decision. You think so? You know, the two things closer together so that they can almost sense that they were both there and make a decision. Oh. Oh, that's very-- Good girl. Yeah, why don't you feed her? That's very reinforcing right there. There you go. Right there. Wouldn't you want to move the circle, too? Being that the pillow was laying on the ground [INAUDIBLE]?? Oh, that's true. Yeah, the pillow-- yeah. I mean, technically you would-- Yes, good point, Mark. Very Good point. Excellent. Excellent. I mean, already I was very specific with Jane about not touching things. But I mean, I-- it could be my imagination, but I did feel she perked up on the pillowcase. Even just to the pillowcase. Yeah. Now, she may have been picking up-- again, she may have been picking up just scent wafting out of the container, but that's fine. Yeah, but here's the thing is that the didn't get excited here. She got excited when she actually hit the pillowcase. We'll have the replay. We'll be watching That. And you're-- ' you're building that-- this is no different than that very-- than that scent circle. You're building that association. The pillowcase, your scent equals food. And then as I said, you could eventually-- you kind of can increase the complexity there. So the other thing that we-- did you talk about the tarp in the basement and stuff like that? For people that-- Yeah. We were talking about trying to pick a room or a location where you're scent already doesn't kind of saturate it. And one thing we just threw out was put a tarp on the ground, or Jane uses vinyl flooring under the puppy pen. Linoleum. Linoleum to protect the hardwood floors. Anything that you could roll out and that's just kind of a zero-- Sorry. You got upstaged by the puppy. She did great. She was very good. Thank you, Sassy. Go ahead, Ellen. The only thing about the vinyl that we talked about too, though, if it's new vinyl-- It could have a vinylly scent. Yeah, it could have a lot of vinylly scent. So preferably it would be an older piece of vinyl. [INAUDIBLE] Or just have one that if-- you know, if you have one from a previous lid or something that you can open on, but I think a tarp would work. Yeah. As long as they weren't afraid of the tarp. Oh, that's a good point. Yeah. I mean, because that could be an issue, too. You'd have to think about something fairly flat. So Heidi wants to know, at what time do you add a command? That's a great question. So actually, with-- not with a tiny puppy, probably. You're just trying to create some positive associations here. But with an older dog or an older puppy, I would do it right at that very first scent circle. You will say, good, good-- you know, good boy. Good track. Good track. If they leave the scent circle you say nothing. You stand still. When they come back in, good. Good track. So-- and then you could certainly could use it-- even though, again, they're not following your command-- but you could certainly use it as they start to move down that first track. You could say, track. Good track. Some people don't like the word track because they think it sounds a little too harsh. Yeah. Yeah. It's such a sharp word. Find it, is what you say, right? I say find it. Yeah. I-- again, I don't-- I honestly don't think that command is-- yeah, I'll say get your bally, to Saki. I'll say, go find your bally. I was going to say, probably more-- and, you know, this is something that we might-- we'll do-- we're hoping to do more of these, you know, if we can get Ellen down. And we can go more on the cues, which is more like the getting out of the car, the putting on the harness, the clipping to the leash. So it's probably not so much a verbal cue, as situational cues. Yes. Frankly, the only commands that I think are really useful is, if you have a dog that is either futzing around, they've gotten off on a side scent or something like that, people will teach the dog, back to work. You know, they'll just say, back to work. And the dog is supposed to know to get their head back in the game at that point. The other one command that I did teach, again, my lab, was I would tell him to circle. If he had gone past a corner on the track and was kind of lost-- you know, kind of stand out there lost, I would say, look around. And I originally taught it like this. I said, look around. And he would start circling around me. And very often I was standing somewhere near the corner and the next-- the turn was behind him. So he needed to come around me and all of a sudden he would smell that next line and he would take off down it. Oh, that's really interesting. Now you're not allowed to point in tracking. You're not allowed to direct the dog. Technically, but-- So I taught him-- I taught it to him this way. But then eventually I just said, look around. Look around. And he knew-- That's amazing. --that he needed to circle and find-- You know, every AKC tracking judge that' listening to this is like, Ellen Griffin, she says that-- She cheated. She cheated. So Betsy C, nice question. Do you find that puppies learn by watching other dogs work? Or should the be out of sight of the activity while they're thinking about it? I think that when they're thinking about it I think they need downtime. I think they need-- somehow that connection gets made in their brain while they're having that time with their brain shut off a little bit. I don't think you want them sitting in the car being frantic and upset because they are not the one that's out working right now. Now, for people who are having dogs who are having motivational problems with tracking, that is very common. You heard Saki, you know? Rah, rah, rah, rah, rah. She was really mad. So many people will take their unmotivated dog and make them sit-in the car and watch the other dog track. And then they come out raring to go. You've done that with Rosie, haven't you? Yeah, I've done it with Rosie. And the other thing that people do to build motivation with dogs, not even necessarily unmotivated, but more unconfident dogs, is they will put them on the same track that another dog has already run. A good-- a good that did a good job. So if you have an older dog and a younger dog, and the younger dog isn't as confident, you let the older dog do the track, then you get your dog out. And it's not that they watched them do it, it's that they're getting all that additional scent, from the other dog and the fact that you've already walked with the other dog. So it's been walked on a bunch of times. To clarify, because I can't tell, is the food placed inside the footprint in the toe? Or are you placing the food in front of the actual footprint right up against the toe edge? OK. So again-- I'm sorry. I said it, because I read it. Nice recovery, though. With an older dog a full foot print is not too much to ask. So you can put the food right at the toe-- with an older, bigger dog, like Finnegan. We never-- we did a full-- he-- the food just went at the toe. So he had-- so if this was the size of my step, can you see that? He had food here and he had food about 12 inches away. With the baby puppies, we were putting food here and here, because they're so small they can't-- it takes them a while to span that distance. Oh, my goodness. Let's see guest Gunnar, JP in Oden, England wants to know why there is not one Fleet Feet logo anywhere on Ellen's body? Ellen and her husband, Ed-- I'm just going to go out on a limb and say your husband in London, that might be him. Yes, I'm guessing. Nice, Ed. They own a-- two Fleet Feet stores, which is why Ellen is so elegant and in shape, because she's a runner. Is it important to move the circle between each puppy so they don't have the scent of the previous pup? Yeah, that's why we were moving the X pen, because we were just trying to control the variables out here as much as possible. Now there could be animal scent, there could have been a deer out here last night. You can't control every variable, but we were trying to give each puppy a theoretically clean environment. And I think, maybe more to the point, is that-- it's not so much that the scent of a puppy would be there, it's that the puppy might have tracked that food scent. Like I was trying to be really careful, you know, to keep the edges clean as much as possible. And the puppies will-- yeah. OK. So Suzanne Chilton says, any thoughts on introducing corner serpentine or other such challenges in the initial baby puppy tracks? Well now when-- Suzanne, I'm not sure if she's talking about, like-- I think the difference between a 5 and 1/2 week old puppy and an eight week old puppy is a world. Yes. So-- would you want to answer both? Or if they're different? I don't know if they're-- To me, I wouldn't use probably a sharp corner for any new dog starting out. But, as I was just saying, if you are not wanting-- even if you're balance challenged and you're not one of those people that can walk a perfectly straight line, if your line, as long as you are doing your-- spacing your food drops-- if your line happens to curve because you lean to one side, the puppy should be able to follow that just as easily. Well you know we're live, UPS is here. UPS is delivering puppies. No. We're stuff-- we always have stuff coming from UPS. We live off it. OK. So Sergio wants to know, what books can you recommend to start on tracking? There are a lot of wonderful books out there. And Adam, by the way, says, that they love the session. Thank you. Oh. That's great. OK. So just off the top of my head. Two of my favorite books would be a book by-- these are mostly self-published books. So you have to work really hard to get them. You can't just go on Amazon, unfortunately. So Warren and Susan Eldred, E-L-D-R-E-D, are tracking instructors in Michigan and have written some wonderful tracking books. If you Google their name, it's called Fascinating Scent, is the name of the workbooks. And you literally would buy it directly from them. Also a book by Judy Adler called The Audible Nose is a wonderful-- and it's about this thick. And when you first get it you think, oh, my gosh. I will never learn everything in this book. And that's not the way I use the book. I use the book as a way to problem solve. So when I'm having one particular issue, or want to take one particular step, I go to that chapter in her book. So it's a wonderful book. Judy Adler, The Audible Nose. That one might be available on more public web sites, but I would just-- What about journaling? Would you recommend journaling? Oh, Mark asked about journaling. To me, I used journals with every venue that I participate with my dogs in. I will-- literally at the end of each track, I will make a note of-- well first of all I draw a map of what my track is, and then at the end of the track I will-- after we've run it, I will make a note of what my dog had difficulty with. He prefers to turn right and does not-- has trouble with left hand turns. So then I will write on the next page, work on left hand turns. It's just a wonderful way to remember. Because, boy, a week goes by and our life goes by and we forget, Especially when you have more than one dog you're working with, too. How many times that happens to me in agility where I take a dog out, and I think I'm going to train them something and they already know how to do it. And I'm like, I trained you to do that? I forgot. I mean, I have nine dogs, so-- seven now. So-- Ron mentioned the book by Carolyn Krause called Try Tracking. And again, a great kind of starter beginner baby book. There's a lot of great books out there, and I'm not trying to push any one book over another. I own them all. So-- and I refer back to them on a regular basis, kind of depending on what I'm working on. I want you to talk to them about, OK, so if anyone is now bitten by the bug-- Yeah. Like, what's the next step? Like, where-- how do they find a club? Get started. So you can talk about that. So the beauty of tracking is you can do it completely on your own. You can train all the way up to a test if you want to by laying your own tracks and following a book or a plan. Probably just right before entering a test you would want another person to lay the track, because in the test the dog is going to follow a stranger. And you need to make sure that they know they have to follow this stranger as readily as they have followed you. But the best place to learn, frankly, is from other tracking people. Tracking is a very social sport, a very social venue in AKC. Part of the reason for that is because it's a pass, fail test. I don't place in a tracking test. So if I pass I don't take anything away from another exhibitor. So we tend to go out, we watch each other. We help each other practice. We watch each other in tests. And everyone is encouraging everyone else to be successful. Tracking with another person who has some experience, they're going to give you feedback. They're going to say, you-- help-- you steered the dog. You didn't-- you know, the dog wasn't making the decision, because that's truly what's tracking is all about, is the dog following the scent, and you basically handling the line, and following along, and maybe giving them encouragement. But you're not telling the dog which way to go. So finding a club, track-- in the US, tracking-- there are some actual just tracking clubs. And you can usually just Google that by state. You know, tracking-- Or AKC I would think has-- A list of clubs. It's like [INAUDIBLE] and AKC club? Are the AKC clubs these track-- they have to be to have a test, right? Yes. So you can probably go to the AK-- in the United States, you can go to the AKC web site. Yes. And they usually have like try it days and stuff. Yep. They'll-- That's how I got started. Yeah. They'll have-- they'll have a little lesson, or a seminar, or a series of lessons. Sometimes they're free, because people are just so encouraging of new people starting tracking. Sometimes an instructor is charging for their time. But it just helps to hook up with other people who know what they're doing. But-- but that being said, if you're in an area where there just are not people tracking, you absolutely can get a book, try it yourself for a while. The only thing I would say is at a certain point you might need another set of eyes on you, just to make sure that it's going the way-- there's an AKC, CKC, and ASCA, which is the Australian shepherd club of America all three of those clubs offer tracking as a title. There is a discussion group on Facebook called AKC, CKC, and ASCA tracking. And that's a fabulous resource. People put-- just like with Puppy Culture, people put questions up there all the time. My dog is doing this, what should I do about that? You do need what the AKC calls is a nonrestrictive harness. So, you know, obviously not one of the ones that goes across the nose, or-- I don't even know if those ones that go sideways across their chest is right. Probably not. Because that's supposed to slow down a hard pulling dog. You need a line. And in AKC tracking you have to follow the dog at at least 20 feet. You cannot be closer than 20 feet. So that you are not directing the dog in any way. You have to be 20 feet back on the line. This is a line that I happen to like a lot. I've got a couple of them. It's called-- it's made out of biothane, or sometimes people call it pleather. It's like an artificial leather. What I like about it is, whereas if I come out of a wet field, this will be soaking wet and I'll have to hang it up for a long time to dry, this is dry, you know, almost instantly, and doesn't snag on trees, and bushes, and things like that. And I have this line marked with a rivet at 20 feet. So that as it-- Did you put that in or did they? I had them put it in. I actually have one at 10 feet and 20 feet. 10 feet is kind of the warning strip. Yeah. Yeah. Yeah. And then 20 feet is the next one. So that as it's running through-- as the dog walks away from me and I'm letting the line play out, when I get to 20 feet I don't have to stop, but that's the minimum distance that they have to be for me. Other than that and a good pair of boots, and-- Gators. Gators to keep you from getting wet. A pack to carry water and pick up things, but it doesn't have to be anything fancy. And it's a great way to be outside with your dog. And as Mark got to experience for the first time the other day when he went out and filmed us, being out on a-- Let's go tracking. --cold or cool morning, with the dew all on the grass, and it's so quiet at that time, and sometimes the sun is just coming up and the birds are just starting to chirp. And you're out there with your dog, and your dogs working. And you're mostly being quiet and just giving them occasional praise. It's just the most amazing experience that I have with my dogs. And really makes it worth getting up early in the morning. Nice. She's going to cry. She loves it so much. I do love it so much. What did you find? What did you find? What did you find? This is so good, Saki. This is wonderful. What's this right here? What's this? What's that? You found your bally. You found your life.

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Posted by: norabean on Apr 5, 2018

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