June 14, 2019

Winding Training Journey

No training journey is in a straight line. Regardless of whether you are a professional trainer, instructor or an experienced competitor, there are oftentimes turns, detours, about-turns and more.

In this episode, we speak with Scent Work University Instructor, Lori Timberlake, to learn more about her own personal training journey and highlight the importance of continual learning and building a strong foundation.

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It can be difficult to think about, but all of our dogs are aging. As they do, we need to be careful and mindful of what we are asking them to do in regards to all of their activities. This includes Scent Work and is especially true when we are competing with our dogs. 

In this podcast episode, we discuss some of those considerations, the way certain competition organizations are designed to encourage competitors to make good decisions on behalf of their dogs as well as how we can better design our training exercises to keep our dogs in the game and not in conflict.

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May 25, 2019

Odor is Odor is Odor!

It may sound obvious, but odor is everywhere, NOT just within the realm of Scent Work. So, why aren't we leveraging this fact? Particularly if you are struggling on something in formal Scent Work? Wouldn't it make sense to present a non-formal Scent Work odor picture for your dog to work out, where they would need to hone the very same skills you would also need in Scent Work? That is what we talk about in this podcast episode!

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February 8, 2019

Triangulating is What?!

When you hear the word "triangulating", when we are talking about Scent Work, what comes to mind? "Nothing, I have no idea what you are talking about!". Fair enough.

In this podcast episode, we discuss what triangulating is, why dogs do it and how it drastically differs from when a dog may simply go back to a found they've already hide over and over and over again looking for free cookies.

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Ah yes, cataloging. One of the most common complaints handlers have. "UGH! My dog is not telling me about the hides when they find them, they catalog first!". In this episode, we discuss what cataloging is, what it means when your dog is cataloging, why they may be cataloging in the first place and whether cataloging is really an issue, or a training hill you should die on.

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Strap in, it's time for some real talk. As a community, we all need to do better in how we interact with one another, especially as it pertains to different training approaches. Instead of backing ourselves into a corner, ready to lash out and go on the attack simply because someone trains differently than we do, as a community we need to stay open-minded and willing to cultivate as many tools for our individual toolboxes as possible. Our dogs deserve nothing less!

The fact of the matter is this: we are all on the same team and all want the same thing - for our dogs to have fun playing the sniffy game. So, put out your torches, hang up your pitchforks and put that email or message in your draft folder to sit on for a bit before hitting "Send". Take a deep breath, and ask, "Am I being as good of a owner/handler/trainer/instructor I can be, or, am I letting both myself and my dog down by being tribal and close-minded?". We discuss this and more in our latest podcast episode.

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When it comes to training, we oftentimes want to take shortcuts or cannot wait to work on the "big dog stuff"! This is no different in Scent Work. However, the dismissal of potential training tools outright, or being in such a huge hurry to get rid of them, can be limiting the effectiveness of your training. We dive into this topic in our latest episode, specifically speaking to the use of boxes and pairing as Scent Work training tools.

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December 14, 2018

Patience, Grasshopper

In this episode, we discuss the need for all Scent Work enthusiasts - whether they are interested in competition or not - to practice a bit more patience. Doing so will ensure your dog has the skills they need to be successful in this game...and will also ensure that YOU have the skills needed to be the best handler possible!

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Strap in and get ready for some real talk! In this episode, we share the confessions of a nervous competitor...who also happens to be a professional trainer and a trial official. "What, they are not perfect?!" Nope.

By sharing her story, the hope is this will help fellow competitors who are also nervous about competing. This could be their battle with self-doubt, fears of not being flawless when they compete, or their obsession with outside forces that have nothing to do with the quality of their training (what other people think, etc.). Being open and honest about these things will hopefully be a launching point for future conversations we can all have as a community.

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October 30, 2018

So…What is a Reactive Dog?

The term "reactive dog" can mean so many things to so many people...which can make talking about this subject quite challenging. In this podcast, we attempt to better define this term, outline the types of dogs who may be included in this category, while also talking plainly about which dogs specifically should not be competing at Scent Work trials at all (ie. aggressive dogs).

We also touch upon the need for everyone to be an advocate for their own particular dog and how we can all be more understanding and use a bit more empathy toward one another. Definitely a large topic to try to tackle, but hopefully this podcast can at the very least spark some meaningful discussions and thoughts on this thoroughly sensitive subject.

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