Here is a rundown of what I see in the video, to guide you along:
- Started in the shelter of the building – grass is evident, no wind, walking start
- We turn into the wind on turn one
- I wonder if he will cut his second corner, I place one piece of kibble on the turn itself and sure enough, he cuts it by about one body length but turns back to hit the corner (brown dirt spot)
- His next turn puts the wind at our backs again and about half way along this leg is a turn left, but I went straight first to create a dead end
- At the dead end, Ben TURNS BACK towards me as he’s been taught! When he loses scent, he has been taught to circle back
- This is where a chest harness and video camera will let me handle my line better! I encourage him verbally and as we back up, he hits the left turn and then finds his wool mitten
- We carry on, turn in the play area, then cross a road – he has a hard surface turn here on the road but the wind pushes him to the boulevard, which I let Ben figure out.
- He finds the track in the curb – then finds the step up onto the boulevard
- At the next step off, I stepped onto the hard surface and not the snow and he shows lovely loss of scent and works very hard to find the leg; I wished i had better line control here (hands were freezing) but he finds it with my verbal assistance and I tighten the line a bit
- The end! his second article indication is non-existent as a woman is walking to her car and it throws Ben off however I don’t mind after this nice bit of work, good boy!
It is not his most stellar track, but for an impromptu track after a month off, I am very happy with him. We need to work on the articles, and as always with Ben, his distraction factor as you see at the end, when he loses focus because of one person walking to her car. Sometimes he is fine and other times he really seems to be bothered by this. Lots to work on for May!
I hope this inspires you to try winter tracking!
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