We took a break from puppy play and socialization this morning to attend our team Eagle Valley search dogs team training and took K9 Abby K9 Annika and K9 Emeline in tow.
K9 Abby got to refine her skills and worked a few nice areas, even at 8 years old this girl still navigates,puts the miles on and searches like the genetic champ she is.
K9 Annika Abby’s niece worked a very nice area search problem, with little breeze and only a scent pool to work out.
And lastly K9 Emeline rocked her trail and found her subject!
In a few weeks we have a local training coming up in Sullivan County, come on down and check out the dogs, meet the members, and get lost!
Yesterday we decided to let Eme work a real life scenario trail to keep her tuned up in her trailing work for run away teens. Her last few real trails Eme was amazing, and resulted in us saving a life in one, and showing her skills in an urban trail with a car pick up in another. The nose on this girl, her work ethic, and the results we get are nothing short of a combination of genetics, training, and our relationship!!!
So yesterday i gave a student my GPS for the day, to track where he went from 7am till 3pm when he laid the trail which we ran about 3 hours later at 6pm. She overshot one turn, and gave a beautiful negative, casting back around and hitting the trail again. Watching her problem solve is one of my greatest joys! Attached below is our track, the subject is blue and Eme is pink.
May 1st 2014
Eme is pink
Our subject is blue
13 hours old
Last night we did a quick hot trail for Eme as i had to deploy her in the morning for 2 runaway kids. She gave me a negative all around the perimeter of the school, and she was correct as the kids were hiding on campus no where near where we had checked. So as her reward later in the day she got a nice fun hot trail!
And then of course i decide to squeeze in laying a track last evening to motivate myself to be up early and run today. And well it worked!! Beth was my subject and i dropped her and Jaime off with basic instructions. Just as the rain started pouring down around 1830 they had moved out of the woods and were heading in quickly. They finished laying the track at 1842 and we left.
6am this morning came quick and just before the girls went to get into place Eme and i were dropped off at our starting road. Figuring our trail was 1.25 miles it would take us at least 20 minutes to scent it all out and run it (yes i said run as in the pace we move, Eme does NOT walk her trails) 22 minutes on the dot we were up at the subjects location and Eme happily indicated (barked at her subject that she was scented on) and proceeded to eat her steak and play with her ball. Success before 730am i think so!!!!
Eme is a certified trailing K9 through International Police Working Dog Association (IPWDA)
Trailing has increased Eme and put her into overdrive! We did a short bite pillow play session with her and the students the other day and found out she has a naturally beautiful bark and hold! Also included is a short video clip from my new GoPro of her in a short double blind trailing start. Enjoy!
Team training sunday brought about a wonderful and encouraging experience for Eme and I. We did our first sign off on our 12 plus hour old wilderness trail. It gave me the confidence in my trailing dog I had all along, it was just buried deep. This was the first time we had a long arduous trail, it was aged 16 hours and was 1.75 miles long. We ran it blind, the trail layer had supplied a GPS that my flanker had but even he didn’t know where it was.
Blue is our subject
Purple is Eme and I
We got a rough start on the road with the rock salt burning at her paw pads, so she took off quick barely casting and made a beeline across a very busy intersection of state route 97. She trailed along the pavement and gave me a brief head pop right alerting me to a turn that direction up ahead. This girl banged out the turn perfect and cut up and in behind the house, she worked the scent out that had collected there and in the field overnight and proceeded across and back to the road. We had 8 different changes in direction, multiple surface changes including asphalt to grass which is very difficult after that many hours and we had contamination to deal with at the start and in the middle sections. I think the point that astounded me the most is how true to the trail she was even after that long ageing. She dipped up and off the paths and milk road multiple times which is exactly what our subject did, and even checked out a few footsteps in the snow that were our subjects. Eme is a trailing dog, but she does not work off fringe scent, this girl is true to her trail and i noticed that we have very little problems to work out even during old trails. If she gets pulled into collecting scent she pops a negative within 20 feet and circles around until she has reacquired the trail and works it out, I’ve seen time and time again no matter the age that she will only reacquire within 20-30 feet of the actual footstep trail.
I never wanted a trailing dog, never even thought about what it would be like to train one, but i have to say that i have learned a ton. Eme has really taught me how to do it right, actually she has taught me how to trail! I didn’t make Eme a trailing dog, she made me a trailing dog handler i just made sure we did it right and set her up for success like any good handler does!!!!
Our weekend team training took place in Walton with Amigo Search Dogs this week. Due to the hunting season we are forced to find an odd variety of places to train that are not the woods! Thanks to Amigo that was the Walton fairgrounds on Saturday It was the first real cold training day of the season, so our goal was to stay warm and keep moving. Abby and Raina both worked some unique search scenario’s which helped us all use our heads!! Jordis, Sören’s sister, worked on her airscent training in the new environment and searched barns and stables. Amigo laid a trail for me around 1pm in the town for Eme to run once we were complete our other training. By 4pm we were heading out to what appeared to be a very busy Walton! Unbeknownst to us Saturday evening was the Walton town Christmas parade and the town was hopping!!! I was given my starting location and quickly set Eme to work in our pre-ritual trailing start. I walked her around the bank which was our LKP (Last known point) and let her take in the sights and smells and sounds of the Christmas carols being piped throughout all the streets!!!!
She indicated on the front door of the bank which i confirmed was where he touched and i began to cast her until we had a confirmed direction of travel. The number of people who had walked the same streets over the last 4 hours was overwhelming to me but she cut out all other scents, focused in on Dick’s (her subject) and went to work. We encountered a lot of windblown scent in the parking lot behind the bank and she cut against the building (where the scent was pooling and most likely stronger) but took all her turns perfect, giving me appropriate negatives once she had ruled out other directions. Near the end you see the other place our trail deviates from the subjects and that is the parking lot of the grocery store across the street from the McDonalds our subject was waiting in. Both parking lots had a lot of activity and a good open space where the 20MPH winds had worked the scent all over. She came out of both parking lots effortlessly working her way around speeding cars, people and dogs all around, and vendors setting up for the parade.
Red is our subject. Blue is Eme and I