Red Rock RIver
On April 27, Iona and I participated in one day of the Turner Trials. Here is our first search of the day. We had 3.5 minutes to find 2-5 hides. Also, one boundary of the search area was a swimming pool. I was a bit apprehensive going into this search, because I honestly did not know how Iona would perform. However, Iona took the lead and found 4 hides quickly and then we cleared the rest of the search area, eventually finding the last one.
At the beginning of the video, you can see me start my watch. Good Boy! The wind is blowing toward the camera here.
Iona caught odor immediately off the start line (0:19) and veered toward the metal cart thingy. When she started trying to crawl under it, I knew that the hide was innaccesible and safely called alert. Ramona said a lot of teams got stuck here.
She then just kept on nailing hides one after another. I think that we had four hides before a minute was finished. The fourth hide we found was actually pretty cool, she caught odor on the other side of the fence and we had to go around to source it. I had to read this situation correctly and guide her through it (although Ramona was taking alerts on the other side of the fence).
Hides like the first 4 (large scent cones, fairly low, without much convergence, without pooling) are really Iona’s jam. Her sweet spot is racing from hide to hide at top speed. Her strategy for searching is just to run until she she hit a scent cone so it is nice when there are big distinct scent cones. The high wind really helped us here by creating these huge scent cones and then blowing away all the pooling odor.
The hide placement here (and throughout the trial), show how well these judges understand scent theory, they used the consistent wind to create these wonderful puzzles for our dogs to solve.
For the last hide, we basically had to search the whole area again till we found it. Note how I had her search down wind from the entire search area to catch a hide that may have been along the edge of the search area (which went halfway out into the grass).
I should note that Iona is scared of pools, you can see a little of this at 2:39 and 2:52. However, when she is working, she has her superhero cape on!
Eventually we located the last hide. You can see her COB at 3:04. This scent cone was much smaller than the others because the hide was trapped in a neoprene sleeve and Iona really had to be in just the correct spot to hit odor.
Overall, Iona just nailed this search. What a dog!
Enjoy the video, Stephanie and Matt Reed shot it and edited it. You can find their website here. Incidentally, they have a handsome male French Brittany named Nero!