Scent Work 5-2 Introducing Elevation: Slightly Above Nose Level

So far we have been doing Interior searches at nose level or below.  We are about to introduce elevation to a small extent.  We don’t want to go too high as that is a very advanced skill.

Instead, we want to introduce the idea of elevation by giving the dog a hide slightly above his nose.

We want to make sure that the hide is not “suspended”, meaning no structure underneath.

Here’s Asha searching an elevated hide.

Another option is to place the hide slightly above nose height in a corner with no clutter beneath.  In this case, the walls “corral” the odor, making the scent cone easy for the dog to follow.

Here’s a very simple corner search. Notice that I release her into the area I want her to search. Also, I play Red Light/Green Light. As soon as her nose leaves source, I stop my forward movement. I want her to stay as close to source as possible regardless of what I’m doing.

 

It’s okay at this point for the hide to be somewhat visible to the dog.  Dogs search with both their eyes and their noses.  As a part of scent training, we help them to shift away from using their eyes, although we don’t necessarily require that shift to happen all at once.

HOMEWORK:

Set a hide just above your dog’s nose on an object.  Then set a hide (different search) with your hide in a corner without clutter underneath.

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