I finally signed up for a K9 Nosework and last Friday was Hazel's first class at Braveheart Dog Training. I thought that this would be the perfect class to take one of the hounds to considering they are HOUNDS and use their nose to cause mass destruction throughout the house and often leave little half-creatures lying on the rug after their backyard hunt. Since my friend Vicki owns Braveheart and highly recommended the trainer, Michele Garlick, I thought I'd take Hazel and jump in to see what everyone has been raving about.
Hazel has been acting pretty lazy lately and since she's been to a few field trials I had high expectations when we walked in to the class. Those were shot down pretty quickly when she went to do her first run. We get up to the release cones and she looks up at me, then around the room, and just stood there. I took a step and then she took a step, I took another step and she took another step. It was pathetic. I thought that nose would take over and we would need to do some sort of exorcism to get her out of the boxes but I think I was lucky to see her (I swear it was in slow motion) make it to the cheese. By the third round she was heading out on her own and slowly, but methodically, looking for the treats in the box so I have hope for her yet.
So, our homework for the class is to feed Hazel dinner in a box so she associates good things with sticking her head in a small cardboard hole. You think this would be instinctive for a dachshund, just not mine. The past few days her tactic has been to take one piece of food out of the bowl at a time, but I figure that's progress because at least she's eating out of the box. But then so is Ernie, and Nooner, and if there's anything left then Foyle finishes it off.