Reply To: Shannon & Cricket (DRTDT)

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Alana McGee

First off- yay for getting casts off! It will feel so freeing!

It?s always great to show us the videos/ hides you feel not as confident about. We are here to help you problem solve and work through what may be happening, so those are the videos that tend to, in the end be more beneficial, so that?s good. Although we always love rockstar moments 🙂

In regards to the harness- yes, it and the combo of the long line could very well make her feel a bit off. We agree that you should try to practice with the Harness on inside if you plan to use it, as you suggested.

Just as an example, just so you know and to provide perspective, Callie doesn?t love the jacket she wears. She really doesn?t. If it wasn?t for her protection and safety Kristin wouldn?t insist, but we do. It protects her from cold, branches etc, and has more than once protected her from other puncturing/ ripping/ unfriendly obstacles she has encountered.

Kristin says this, but I also see it, and it is true: Callie really doesn?t love her cloud chaser (and the body signals are dramatic to tell us this) despite all the counter conditioning that has been done, but the game of hunting triumphs the jacket. They built to that. But Callie needs that jacket on when hunting, and has become accustom/conditioned to the fact that the jacket means FUN BALL TRUFFLE TIME.

The game, it?s all about the game.

The other thing is we think Cricket may find benefit, and enjoy ?scoping out an area? before you ask her to work. We have seen it in multiple videos (she does it in this one too- albeit brief), and it allows Cricket more time to get comfortable with her environment. This is totally ok! Just be aware that this may be her preferred method of entering a scenario is to check things out first, and then start to play the game. Perfectly ok- just be aware that she is doing that. She may not do it every single time, so just be aware. Some dogs after they have done the initial checking out the scenario can begin working rather quickly. Some take more time. Some, like Kristin?s Cash, are extremely formulaic. He must smell, pee, and poop before they can start. Seriously. It?s a routine for them. Every single time in a new space that is his routine. Like clock work. Not all dogs are that literal with it. Cricket likely is not quite like that, but we have seen her check out the area several time in different scenarios before she goes back to the hot box. It will likely manifest more commonly in new environment as opposed to familiar ones.

Speaking of boxes?. We are suggesting you try (outside) once just using the tea balls, no Boxes. Cricket seems to really enjoy playing with the tea balls and depending on how she reacts in this scenario outside and how she interacts with the cold tea balls as well as hot, it might be a nice alternative. She has never seemed all that excited by boxes in general. Curious and interactive yes, overwhelming pumped, no. She does however demonstrate focus and heightened awareness/ stimulation (i.e. anthropomorphizing here: enjoyment) by the movement, and anticipation of the tea balls.

Truffle hunting is not Rally or OB where you have strict rules you must follow in order to succeed. Truffle hunting successfully is all about connection and communication with your partner. The most successful teams are those that work with one another and understand what is comfortable and natural (for them!) and to build on those tendencies as a foundation for more confidence and even better, more clear communication.

We think your video was actually great! We do think that cricket likely will be a dog who needs a minute outdoors to acclimate and adjust. That?s ok! Her alerts, when she?s ready, and her re-alerts are great 🙂
Being one of your first times outside doing this, honestly you shouldn?t be frustrated, we thought the video was good.


Before you began this search did you prime Cricket for the scenario?

[quote] She was able to move between the first and second hide with no problems! She got a bit stuck between the second and third, but she got it – rock star![/quote]
Awesome! Go Cricket & Shannon! That?s a big step 🙂 Glad you recognize it and enjoy it. Just takes a bit of time!

This looked really good tho. We think your plan you came up with is good, and yes, try working with the harness inside, and outside try the tea balls- we are curious to see if there is a difference in animation/stimulation levels. Also remember, outside, she likely will want to smell around a bit. That?s ok, let her. You did a good job in this video of being patient. Keep that up.