Nose Work looks deceptively easy: we start out hiding treats in boxes, move on to other items, and eventually transition from food to distinct odors. But while there is a devil in those details, what I enjoy most is that it is 99% improvisation. There are very few “wrong” things to do, I can’t think of any problems that can’t be fixed by simply taking a few steps back, and it’s really hard to not have fun while you are doing it. I’ve even taken to calling it “playing nose work” rather than “practicing” or “training.”
Here are a few videos from classes in both Maywood and Jersey City. A few videos have some “comments” added where I had the time.
First, here’s Harley’s first time ever. Harley is a recently-rescued dog that can be fearful at times, and often has problems dealing with the background barking and growling at the day care. In just 45 minutes of playing around, she gained some focused and was reluctant to leave the boxes to go home.
In Maywood I have a class with some more seasoned dogs.
Muneca is a rock star, and a great example of how much fun it is to watch a dog that is really having fun:
After a few classes, Muneca is starting to “indicate” that she has found the “hide,” rather than just diving in right away.
Remy is a lot of fun to watch:
He is all nose. It’s a wonder he doesn’t walk into walls is so focused on odor.
Jetta has so much drive, she tends to outrun her nose:
This is a great “problem” to have. In other words, it’s not a problem and the dog will sort it out soon enough.
K-9 Nose Work is the most fun you can have with your fur on. Give it a try! I have nose work classes starting in Maywood, Jersey City and NYC next month. If you don’t live around here, check out the nose work association web site and find a trainer near you.