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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
duh!

the question is: having imprinted a pad and FST on a pup last year at 12-24 wks., shall i start this year with the pad, then go on? the dog's 14 months old now (my boy... 8) ).

he hasn't been tracking since last June (formally), but ask him if he's ready to "..go to work...."--he's looking around for a flag or anything.

so: scent-pad first? that's what i'm thinking.....
 

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Nothing wrong with brushing up on the basics regardless of the dogs expierience. Especially after a long layoff.
 

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It wouldn't copy and past for me but go to DVG America. They have the rules for both 1 and 2.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
all right ppl, the last 2 days i've set up a scent pad w/tail leading to it, brix's imprinting seems to have "taken" as he's airscenting on the way toward the pad, he finds/follows the tail to the pad, picks up the bait on the pad going outside of it only after he's gotten 98% of the bait. then circles (18" maybe on first circle) downwind, cuts across wind back into pad, picks up remaining bait.
HERE'S the question: what do i do at this point other than "good Zuch!"?? i mean, tonight i just let him go with me to clean up a garden bed, made no big deal at all out of the end of the "track". i figured his reward was getting half his supper.
should i be doing something "special"?
 

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I would come in on the upwind side to keep the dog from airscenting.
Same when you start actual tracking. Keep the wind at your back.
That will help keep the dogs head down. Airscenting can create bad habits (for sport tracking).
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
we always approach from the upwind side, he just knows that when i put on his 2" collar that we're going tracking, plus he knows what the flag means, so he has his head up looking for the flag and trying to get the scent.
when he gets out of the pad he always comes back across on the downwind side, but his nose stays down, so i'm thinking that's ok.
but ending the excercise by simply walking away--is that ok?
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
he had the flag deal figured out last year when he was a baby.
now, as far as marking it: am i? i tell him "zuch" as we approach the tail leading to the pad (that gets his nose down), then, i may repeat "good zuch" once or twice while he's working the pad, but that's about it.
when he's done, i'll tell him "perfect", but nothing else happens (from me). i mean after all, he just got half his supper; wouldn't that count as a "mark"?
oh, and i'm trying to keep low-key on purpose; he goes into drive really quickly and hard, then gets hectic.
does all that help explain ANTYHING?
 

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You commented "when he's done". Do you let him finish the food on the pad? You should pull him off while he still has drive to keep searching.
 

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Why would u you use a verbal marker "Yes, Ok, Good or w/e you use" for the tracking unless you have been doing it more as an OB exercise? I've been told over and over again that with dogs that are just starting out, and w/ the dogs in general, to make it more of a self-rewarding thing so that there is less stress.

Right now (and maybe this is more what you mean) I've been pulling the dog off and saying "All done" and then I'll give him a command to come to me and i'll mark that, so that he always has success on the track and always has more drive to want to go back to the track.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
sam--that's exactly what i was looking for: how to end the excercise in HIS mind.
connie-i didn't think it would be a marker in the strictest sense of the concept, but, hey--i'm here to learn.
bob, et al, what i'll start doing is when he's done w/bait in the pad, but still looking, have him come, and mark THAT. thanks people!
 

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Why would u you use a verbal marker "Yes, Ok, Good or w/e you use" for the tracking unless you have been doing it more as an OB exercise? I've been told over and over again that with dogs that are just starting out, and w/ the dogs in general, to make it more of a self-rewarding thing so that there is less stress.

Right now (and maybe this is more what you mean) I've been pulling the dog off and saying "All done" and then I'll give him a command to come to me and i'll mark that, so that he always has success on the track and always has more drive to want to go back to the track.
So then you are using kind of a release word....... gotcha.

This part: then I'll give him a command to come to me and i'll mark that, so that he always has success on the track and always has more drive to want to go back to the track. END sounds good.

I just started tracking last year, and I learned from reading, so this is a good thing.8) Anyone else have comments?
 

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Especially comments about finishing the exercise?

When I started I was using a transcript from a panel Q&A, and one of the panelists, Orrin Eldred, made kind of a big deal about praise and encouragement after the track to keep the dog motivated.
 

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I don't use a marker or a finish command but I always pull the dog off with praise BEFORE it's finished. I want the desire/drive to stay high.
I also don't want to call the dog off the track.
If the dog is allowed to finish on it's own when the track is over, or the food is gone, the drive will come down.
 
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