Monday, March 19, 2012

Tracking

To pass the time, Riley and I have started tracking.  Tracking is one of those activities I start, but have yet to finish.  So I am starting it once again since it is a perfect activity for a dog that is on restricted activity.
One of the big drawbacks to tracking is the lack of space available.  Not everyone has access to a large grassy field on a regular basis.  But I do!
This is one of the fields that Southeastern Greyhound Club holds lure coursing trials at.  We have used this location for at least 15 years.
 I live about 20 minutes away, but my agility field is even closer.  The best part is that it is a hay field for a thoroughbred farm and not a pasture (so no manure or animals to deal with).
Since I am out of the lure coursing loop and had not spoken to the landowner or farm manager in many years, I asked my friend, John, to ask for permission on my behalf.
Permission was granted, but the farm manager asked that I stay off the driveway because the employees sometimes drive to fast.  She wasn't kidding!!!
It appears that these two cars had a head on collision just as the driveway crests a small hill.  It was obviously quite an impact.

Here is Riley completing a short 30 yard track.  I am holding the camera so it is a terrible video.  The track is actually a straight line and you can see the flag we are headed towards around 1 minute, 24 seconds.  She is still very green, so Riley does a lot of side to side, but she finds all of the treats on the track and is using her nose.

12 comments:

gyeong said...

Riley really seems to enjoy it. I have a friend who tracks with her English Cocker and loves it. I may have to check out one of her tracking group meets next time I'm in town.

Declan said...

Your kids lead a charmed life! Can I come and live with you? ;-) Deccy x

houndstooth said...

She's really into it! I love it. I have to show this one to hubby. He pooh poohs me when I tell him Bunny could track, too. Riley looks like she's really picking it up!

K-Koira said...

Tracking sounds like a good bit of fun. And great for a dog on limited activity. I've been trying to find ways to slowly increase Koira's activity (including building her a swimming pool in my bath tub), but hiding treats in Easter eggs for her has helped keep her brain busy when I can't tire her out physically.

And I've started teaching every trick while my dogs are perched on the balance ball. It makes them have to work physically as well as mentally.

Hiking Hounds said...

I really want to try tracking with Zephyr. It looks like so much fun. Riley did a great job. The crashed cars are nuts. Can't believe that happened, and it sounds like it's not the first time.

jcp said...

Thats pretty cool. I may have to try that out with my guys.

Claire Krigbaum said...

How neat! I want to try!

Amy / Layla the Malamute said...

Great job! I love tracking too, but don't have access to a large enough field. Well, there ARE a few fields north of where I work, but it's so exhausting to leave work, drive ½ hour south, drive 45 minutes or an hour back north (passing where I work), lay a track, let it age, have Layla blaze through it in no time at all, and then turn around for another 45 minute to an hour drive back home. After being on my feet at work all day. But now that at least it's staying light later it's a little more feasible.

PS ~ We tried lure coursing for the first time this weekend. There was a greyhound there and it was beautiful watching him run!

Susan McKeon said...

Great to see Riley enjoying herself and exercising both her mind and muscles in tracking.

I was lucky enough to attend the recent Assoc of Pet Behaviour Counsellors (UK) conference a few weeks ago that was all about the dogs nose & how tracking & scent work can be undertaken by any dog. I'm also off to see Kelly Gorman Dunbar when she's in the UK for a Sirius Sniffers seminar and hope to get Mina and my hounds using their noses too (when I've completed my uni training module) :D

Sarah Regan Snavely said...

I've always wanted to try this, but where to start? It looks like so much fun.

Tina said...

Nice to see a sighthound work this intensely with the nose! Tracking is so good for the dogs, I wish I had some good meadows to do it a lot more with my pack!

Muttsandaklutz said...

Hey, cool! I took a tracking course with Walter four years ago, in the spring. Enjoyed it, but then the grass grew all tall, and I kept forgetting where I had set the track... And with Walter being a mix there are no competitions for us to train for, so the motivation slipped away...

But it was fun! I actually signed up for another go at it this spring. Looking forward to seeing how it goes with you and Riley.