I've started to dabble in SAR training with Jake my BH. We aren't involved in any groups, and are just doing this for fun. The woods are limitless, and I have plenty of friends who will go get lost for me to find them. Right now all I'm looking to do is train something new and have fun.
He has his basic OB commands down: come, sit, down, heel, stay. I messed up in the beginning of his OB training, and didn't enforce the sit until I say OK policy. We're working on that right now.
We've been doing agility work for both his mind and physical stimulation. He's very athletic, will climb/jump over anything for a piece of food, and seems to really enjoy it.
Now, we've started to play the "Runaway" game.
When we go to his kennel, we put the tracking collar on him before he comes out. I'm trying to get him to associate the collar with "Its time to work." Scott takes him on leash to the middle of our field. I come over with a tug, play with Jake, get him excited, then run off and hide behind our barn. Scott then lets Jake loose, he finds me, and we play a game of tug.
We repeat this 2 or 3 times, then put Jake up promptly afterwards. Yesterday was gorgeous here, so we did this 3 different times throughout the day.
There are numerous articles and books you can get to see if you want to go further in tracking. Just a fun book to start with is "Try tracking!" the puppy primer by Carolyn Krause. If you get serious about SAR there are some really good books out for that too.
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