Thursday, January 23, 2014

Tracking Season

 Tracking with Greyhounds is easy and fun!

Come November tracking season starts in Northern California. Unfortunately this year has been dry and warm. Not ideal for tracking or for anything. By January the hills should be covered in low green grass. So far we have only had two rains this season and are heading into an extreme drought.

This makes tracking difficult for the dogs. This year I am working on Echo's TDX. She has to work up to a 3-5 hr old track between 800-1000 yds long. The track will cross roads and various obstacles such as down trees, change of cover, through fences or water. She has to find 4 dropped objects along the way to complete the track. In addition the track she has to stay on is crossed by a stranger in two separate points. The "cross track" is a newer scent designed to pull the dog onto the easier scent. The dog must stay on the original scent/track it started on. It is okay to check out the easier scent/track but the dog must come back and continue on the original scent. It can and generally does take a couple of years to teach the dogs these skills.

Increasingly it is getting difficult to find large tracts of open land to train the dogs. I am excited though because this year I was given access to a 5000 acre ranch to practice.

Along the way we encountered curious onlookers

A happy dog is a tired dog, back to the car after training! We have months more practice before she is ready to try for her TDX


houndstooth said...

It sounds a lot like what my husband does with K├╝ster. She's doing pretty well if she's staying with tracks that aged! Well done!

Hazel said...

This sounds like it's wonderful! Thanks for telling us about it!