Super Sniffing Sniff-tober - Back to Basics?

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The Sniff

When was the last time you played the box game with your dog?  When was the last time you took the time to give your dog a huge reward at source?

Well, it is time to get those boxes out again and play!

Set this up somewhere suitable, indoors or outdoors, preferably with minimal distractions.   You can have as many, or as few, boxes as you want.   The boxes need to be open, with the flaps tucked in.   Set them up in a line (if you have space, otherwise, whatever works for you).  

Put out at least 3 hides, in 3 separate boxes, spread fairly evenly apart.

For dogs searching for food or toys:  put your food or toys into at least 3 boxes, spread fairly evenly apart.

For dogs on odour:  if your dog only knows one odour,  let’s say, birch (but I mean whatever odour your dog knows), put a birch hide into at least 3 of the boxes;   if you dog knows two odours, put a birch hide into at least 1 box, and anise into at least 2 boxes;  If your dog knows 3 odours, put out 1 of each;   If your dog knows 4 or more odours, put 1 of each out.

For dogs on paired odour:  Do the same as the dogs on odour, but ensure you pair your odour with yummy food.

For ALL dogs:   Before you start the search, ensure your treat pouch is FULL.    Your dog will be on lead.   When you are ready, commence your search.  When your dog finds EACH hide, you are going to REWARD, REWARD, REWARD.   You might like to do this by tossing treats into the boxes, two or three at a time, and just keep tossing.   Or you might like to have a fist full of food for your dog to nibble at.   Or whatever method you have of getting the treats quickly to your dog.  Take your time rewarding.   Your dog should get 10 - 20 - 30 treats at each hide!  If your dog enjoys  verbal praise, add that in too.  If not, don’t waste your breath.  Same with tactile - if your dog enjoys a pat or a cuddle, do it, if not, don’t.  As soon as your dog is ready to move on, stop rewarding, and move on with your dog, to continue the search.   

Variations:  Change the shape of your search - if it was a line, change to a circle, or a square, etc.   Experienced dogs might like some searches with closed boxes.  But remember to REWARD, REWARD, REWARD.

Newbies:  This is a great one to start with.

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