What happens when severe weather hits at a nose work trial? We have always wondered, but until this month, never had to worry about it. Initially the weather was supposed to be almost 100 degrees, so the trial time was moved up an hour with the hope of getting done earlier. In actuality, the weather turned cool, and severe storms became the problem.
The NACSW has policies for everything, including weather. The rule is, for lightning within a mile of the trial site, everyone must remain in their vehicles until thirty minutes has passed without another lightning strike within a mile. If things get really bad, every location does have a shelter plan in the building. Just our luck, right as the first dog was going to get started, the storm hit. There was such heavy rain, we couldn’t see out the windows of the car, the winds shook the car, there was hail pounding the car, and there was heavy thunder and lightning. The storm went on and on and on. After being in our car for two and a half hours, the storm cleared and we could finally start the trial. Bailie is the dog who is afraid of storms, so Mom was hoping she would be fine once the storm ended.
Bailie was dog #18, exteriors started with dog #16, so she was up almost right away once it was safe to leave the car. If you saw our post last week, the video shows that Bailie had no problem getting on task after the storm!
Right after exteriors, they walked around the corner for the vehicle search – three vehicles, one hide, two and a half minutes. You can see all the water on the ground from the rain, but otherwise, nothing from the storm caused problems.
Bailie jumped up on the first vehicle. Mom knows that vehicle belongs to a woman and dogs Bailie knows, so she didn’t take her sniffing too seriously.
She had no interest in the middle vehicle, but coming around the front of the first vehicle, her nose started to get busy.
They continued on to the rear wheel, where Bailie was able to find the hide in the rim.
Check out that tongue again. It seems to be a good sign to take note of.
There was a break, then Bailie was up for interiors. Sadly, no photos or videos are ever allowed for interior searches. Containers were the last search of the day. There were fifteen backpacks placed in three rows, with one hide, in the school gym. That tongue is out again as the air was moving towards the start.
Bailie did a good job checking out each backpack.
It’s a tough job having to sniff each one. At level two, bags can also have distractors in them, food or toys, so the dog needs to ignore that and find the odor only.
She did a good job of going up and down each row. There were two bags of interest on the first pass that Mom wanted her to go back and visit.
And the second bag she had shown interest on turned out to be the bag with the hide in it. The blue bag behind Bailie is the one she spent a ton of time on but didn’t alert. One needs to have patience as an inexperienced handler may have called alert too soon which would have been incorrect. Another successful container search for team purple.
**Search photos have been purchased from Caprise Adams Photography for my use only.**