Tracking Class Week 4 1-5-09

Here we are into a new year and on to class #4 of tracking. We did not have class last week because we were at an agility trial. We did do several days of practice tracks at home. Dixie is getting more focused on her tracking but still is casting over the track, can become silly or stress fairly easy. Today we will be tracking on Spruce Road. We again arrive early and watch a couple of other teams working their tracks. Deb and I draw the task of laying our track. It is to be a track of dog legs in a smaller field. There is food on the track and we were suppose to flag it, but did not bring enough flags to do a good job with that part. After laying the track the track Dawn decides maybe I should try my dogs on one of the tracks that they have already run on that is a little harder. Dynamite goes first and then it is Dixie’s turn. This track is not flagged and only has a few food drops after 90 degree turns. This will be a very good test for Dixie.

While we are working this track Michelle is working her dogs on the track that Deb and I laid. It is directly across the street from the lower end of our track and proves to be Dixie’s hardest obstacle. She starts of the track very well. She does great as the track turns right but has a little more trouble with the left turns. As I described earlier she tends to cast to the right side of the track which means when we approach a left turn she runs out of scent well off the track. She does work it out with a little stressful barking and scratching. She is not nearly as fast making up her mind as Dynamite was. She continues around the track until she notices Michelle dog in the other field. I think she thinks it is her old friend Biff. She stands starring at them and not even thinking about the track for what seems like forever. But then she remembers what she is doing and goes back to tracking. I am very pleased when she picks up and carries the glove back the cars. She continues to improve every week and really seems to enjoy our outings.
After working my dogs we head up to watch Deb and Alex do their much harder track. Alex is getting so much better at changing cover and committing to his track. It is interesting to see the struggles Deb has reading him and learning when he is on the track and she needs to go with him and when he is confusing, goofing off or unsure when she needs to wait it out.
Happy Tracking!

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