Madison has a definite love of the hunt for rats, odor, critters, pretty much anything. She is so happy when she is hunting, she doesn’t even care if she gets a reward for finding what she is looking for.
The photos of her searching are from her last Open search where she earned her RATO (Rat Open) Title last month. A trial photographer took them, and we purchased them for our own use.
Madison uses a lot of her tracking skills in her search for those dirty old rats hiding in the bales of straw.
She is also a multitasking hound. As you can see, Madison is jumping off a bale while already sniffing on another. Not an easy feat! Being low and long has advantages!
Sometimes we are not even sure she is hunting. Madison really enjoys jumping around on all of the bales. Climb is one part of a qualifying round we never need to worry about with her!
The love of the hunt can be a downfall as Madison self rewards by finding the rat and then moving on…what is missing? Telling her teammate she found the rat! When finding a rat she will often start to go wild on the tube, biting on the end, which is an alert, but it doesn’t happen every time. Alerting when she has found something is a skill she is working hard to learn. In nose work she also loves to find the hides, and often moves on without telling Mom.
What happens when Madison finds a rat? The handler has three options:
- Leave it there, but if the dog goes back and gets wild with the tube, the fun is over and you are disqualified.
- Mom can remove the rat and pass it to the rat wrangler or someone outside the ring fence, but the tube must be held correctly, and the dog can’t be attacking it.
- The handler can hold the dog back with all four paws on the ground while the rat wrangler removes the rat.
One is not an option for us ever as we want that rat. Two is something Mom is trying out as it saves some time, but it depends on how wild we are when we find the rat. Sometimes Mom can’t safely remove the tube. In the photo, the wrangler was asked to remove the tube. You can see Madison wanted to keep the rat forever, but it is not happening. When Mom lets go, Madison is not allowed to jump all over the wrangler trying to get to the rat either. It can be tricky to release her, and get her to start searching again.
I’m sure my sisters will get in a rat practice or two later this summer and try another trial to see if Bailie can get her RATO, and Madison can get some legs in Senior. I’ll happily keep things running at home. No rats for me, thank you!
I love this. It really looks like she enjoys it so much.
She is only 32 lbs, but she pulls so hard to get into the ring, I can barely hold her back! She really has a fun time.
Benjamin and Zachary, the PBGV boyz says
Looks like she has great fun with this!
She sure does. Madison is a bit like a cyclone in the ring racing around, sniffing everything looking for those hidden critters.
It sure looks like sweet Madison is seriously having a big old time!
She thinks it is a super fun sport!
oh these are just fabulous!
It’s even better in person. She has so much fun.
Jan K says
That was so interesting! I can see where finding the rat and then getting it out of there could be an issue with a lot of dogs! Madison looks like she’s having a lot of fun!
Bailie went after the rat wrangler at the March trial. This time she was more mellow about it. You really have to know your dog in the moment to decide what to do.
Cindy Pearson says
She is so enthusiastic and energetic. What a smile on her face!
She is over the top with excitement and really doesn’t like having to leave when the time is up.
M. K. Clinton says
I still think Pierre would love this sport but he is such a little Terrier-ist! LOL!
He should try it. I bet he would be a natural.
The Gang at LLB says
Madison sure is a wonderful huntress, we bet she gets better and better the mire hunts she does!
Jakey, Arty & Rosy
She gets better about telling mom as she matures. Maturity is the key with her.
GREAT photos. I love it… there are no trials like that around here. I actually think that our OCD dog, R, would be fabulous at this one!
It’s a lot of fun. If we can get some rat practice in before a trial, we do much better.
Jodi Stone says
I imagine training a dog not to get wild with that tube is challenging. Especially with an enthusiastic girl like Madison.
What I really love is how your Mom has exposed you to so many different sports, and how you each seem to find the one that works best for you.
Good job all around!
Thank you. Going wild on the tube is alright if Mom can get it away safely. We are all the same yet different, so some things fit better than others.
Sand Spring Chesapeakes says
Such great photos!!!
Karen Meldrum says
Wonderful photos! Boy, my GBGV’s are hard to keep up with and get the rat away from them. I gave up because they are too fast and too tenacious, I spent all my money replacing bales the males marked and tube that were chewed.
Wow! We’ve never seen anyone have to pay for peed on bales around here. Too bad as it is a lot of fun. Leave it to the boys to be destructive.