Last week Madison started sniffing for odor in her nose work class. This is her second of the three basic nose work courses. Until this point, the dogs have been searching for treats to build up their drive. The first odor is birch, then she will move on to anise, and finally clove.
Since Mom knew Madison was going to be doing nose work, she started putting odor around her and associating it with positive things like food and lots of love as soon as she came to live with us. We don’t know if that will help her in her nose work career, but we figure it can’t hurt. For her official searching for odor start, she has some brand new tins, and a brand new set of birch Q-Tips.
There are several different nose work organizations, but we follow and compete in NACSW and they always start with treats, move to paired hides, and then onto just odor. We are all excited to see how she does with odor and hopefully she will be able to take her ORT (odor recognition test) in August. Dogs can take an ORT starting at six months of age, but can’t compete in nose work until they are at least a year old. There is no immediate rush to take an ORT since Madison won’t turn one until August.
Right now Madison is super motivated and excited about the game, aka finding hides in nose work. This video is of her very first search using birch. For now the hides are paired, but the game has changed since she now knows that birch is what she is looking for to get paid. She is still a puppy, but growing, and her harness is a bit loose, thus the clicking now and then as she runs around. The video is a bit long, but it is her entire first search. She is off to a great start sniffing for odor!
This is all so interesting. I have been hiding cheerios for Torrey to find and she loves it. Took her about 5 minutes to understand “find”.
Nose work is based on the dogs hunting instinct which is why all dogs can do it. The NACSW uses food only the first course to build up that drive, and hiding the food in boxes on chairs, etc, teaches them to hunt in a human environment. When we switch to odor hides are always paired with food in the beginning to build the hunt for odor and then the pairing is phased out and replaced with only rewarding from the human when we find a hide. It’s a simple concept, but there is a lot to it because of the way odor travels depending on conditions.
Two French Bulldogs says
Good luck Madison. It looks like your sniffer will work just fine
Lily & Edward
She has an amazing sniffer so far!
Jodi Stone says
Well you can certainly tell from the video how much she loves this! I think she will be a super star at NW.
We hope she is as good at nose work as she is at tracking. She has a great news and awesome work ethic.
Sparkle the PBGV says
Little Madison is too smart! She is off to a great start. Let the fun begin as she is out to win! XOXO, Sparkle
She is a real smart little one and she loves working which really helps. I started later in life so it was a bit more difficult for me, and Bailie is missing the serious work ethic, but when she applies herself, she is good too.
Knotty Toys for Good Dogs says
Wooftastic work Madison ?
3 bum swings! 3 more!
You clearly love your nose work.
We love nose work at our house. It is our favorite sport!
Madison, I know you will become the golden sniffer prize once… there is something in your eyes what sparkles like a gold medal… or a trophy ;o)
I think she is out to make Bailie and me look bad, but we love her anyway.
Karen Meldrum says
Good job, puppy girl!
M. K. Clinton says
We smell another title coming very soon!
Hopefully she will pass her ORT in August and then she will also be old enough to compete if she is ready.
That looks like SO much fun! What a smart, determined doggie!
Love and licks,
It is a lot of fun. Every dog loves the hunt, especially us scent hounds.
Maxwell, Faraday & Allie says
Madison! This is so exciting! We just know you’ll be an EXCELLENT sniffer!
We think she will be great at nose work. She already is a tracking ace. Madison has a good nose on her.
Beautiful and smart Madison will be a paw in to do good with that!
She really does enjoy it!
Yay Madison! I am very excited to hear how it goes for you! You might be interested in how we are using Shyla’s positive emotions about scent to help her cope with scary places. She gets fearful in town. I take her there to do simple nosework problems, and, when something scary happens (like a train going by), I ask her to put her nose on the scent tin. I reward her and repeat, repeat, repeat until the scary thing passes. It seems to help her a lot, and that’s why we started nosework in the first place!
It’s amazing how that works, isn’t it? We took Madison to a bus station with a scary bathroom. She was reluctant to enter, but by putting the tin at the door and slowly moving it in, she was in the bathroom running around in no time. Nose work is such a wonderful sport for so many reasons! So glad it helps Shyla!
I don’t unfortunately have a dog, but things like this are why I love them so much. They’re so intelligent and primal. <3
It’s all about working with their natural instincts.
Oh Madison, we think you are going to have a great career in nosework!!
Jakey, Arty & Bilbo
We think it is looking pretty good too.
Jan K says
I would imagine starting her at this so young is going to make a big difference, and she will excel at this sport as well! Most importantly, she looks to be having so much fun, and that has to be a huge motivation too.
Bailie started at the same age, but she has never had a real serious work ethic like Madison does.
Sand Spring Chesapeakes says
Way to go Madison, I’m sure you will do great!
Mom says Madison is our little puppy prodigy.
2 Brown Dawgs says
Good job Madison. I like how her tail is always wagging.
She really enjoys the hunt.