Logan’s Nose Work Journey
Logan has always been a fearful, reactive, high-strung little bundle of joy. He is a wonderful dog at home in an environment where he feels safe and secure, but take him out for a walk or in the car and he was not always so wonderful. Before Nose Work he would whine the entire ride to wherever we were going and this was not a nice quiet whine; this was an ear-piercing crying and in a small area like the car it was deafening. When he saw another dog it was all out lunging and barking uncontrollably.
We began Nose Work back in early 2010. When we started Logan wouldn’t even stick his head into a box to get the treats, even at home. It was a very slow progression at first, but then he really started to kick it into gear. I just remember the first Mock Trial he went to. He walked right into a building he had never been in before and found the hide in less than a minute. I did not think it was possible for him to do that. Boy, did he prove me wrong!
Since then he has continued to improve at Nose Work. He is MUCH quieter in the car. He still whines but only when we get close to where he knows we are going to do Nose Work. He is MUCH less reactive to dogs, especially when we are doing Nose Work as a group. He can come out of his crate and totally ignore the fact there are other dogs in the environment. He now has a job to do that he takes VERY seriously. He is much more focused on walks. He responds to cues much quicker than before. Overall he has become much calmer.
I am not saying that all of this can be attributed to Nose Work. Other training, growing older, etc can account for some of it, but Nose Work has definitely been a huge contributing factor. The best part of it is how much he absolutely LOVES to do it!! My only wish was that we would have found Nose Work before he was 4 years old!!!
Ruby’s Nose Work Journey
I am the owner of a reactive dog named Ruby. She is a redbone coonhound mix and has been a handful since she turned around two. I have been frustrated, angry and many more emotions that too numerous to mention.
Our lives changed the day I enrolled in the first K9 Nose work class at Loving Paws introduction to odor.
I was looking for anything that I could do with Ruby that was not going to be frustrating for her or myself. She just loved it. As we continued in the process, she has become more accepting of other dogs and less reactive. In short, her life, and mine has become so much better.
We have both come a long way, and I see hope for a normal human dog relationship. Our bond is so much different now. We are doing fun things together and the more we do, the less reactive she is. The less reactive she is the calmer I have become. I am no longer shying away from putting her in situations that someone with a non reactive dog would not think twice about.
The sport of K9 Nose Works is the only sport that encourages participation from reactive dogs. They have been a life savior to me. Even as I write this, I become emotional. This sport has no idea how this has changed my life.
In August, I was able to take a vacation with both of my dogs. I spent a week with 2 friends, 9 horses, and 6 dogs. I would never have even tried this before K9 Nose Work’s.
It is through K9 Nose Work that I have a less reactive dog and a calmer human.