Monday, July 17, 2017

the Mad Hatter Podcasts

yep -  I did TWO podcast interviews in relatively short order ...

and then started this post - and left it sitting in draft form way too long ...

the first podcast was Hannah Branigan's:  Drinking from the Toilet  (yes THAT Hannah Branigan!). Probably the best name ever for a podcast about dog stuff eh? It was a riot - Hannah wants a sitting around the dining room table tone for the conversations so she didn't share the questions ahead of time although we did bounce around some different topics to discuss. We covered a whole lot of stuff - and we laughed and talked over each other some. Whoops!  But there is a wide range of material in it - and I really appreciated the opportunity to talk to Hannah (we had NEVER spoken to each other before the podcast - which truth be told made us both a little nervous to start.)


Podcast link - HERE ... but I had to share the cover too - Hannah picked that lovely Len Sylvester Photo with no prompting from me at all <3 nbsp="" p="">

Give it a listen and tell me what you think!

Then the lovely Melissa Breau  interviewed me for the FDSA podcast. More fun was had, by me anyhow, and Melissa didn't have to work too too hard on the editing board.



We talked a lot about the human half of the team. In any sport - not just agility.
You can listen to that podcast HERE ... or read the transcript if you prefer - warning - I say "right" a LOT!

I have no idea of the reach of either podcast - and to be honest I don't much care - if I was able to give one person an idea to test that will help them be the best partner they can be for their dogs I am happy.  I suspect I might have given a few more than two people some ideas though!

Give em a listen ... tell me what you think - help me do a better job if I get another invite ever!

Sunday, July 16, 2017

Does your dog lie? What to do if they do!

What a tangled web we weave ourselves sometimes ...  becoming the best partnership possible involves a whole lot of flexibility,  thinking, learning and planning ... as well as the recognition that  things aren't always going to go perfectly. Sigh.

photo credit Len Sylvester 

Do dogs lie?
Dogs  may ignore what we KNOW they know ... ("I can't hear you"   at the dog park comes to mind)  but they don't , maliciously or  hatefully set out to lie to humans. That said, there is some pretty good evidence dogs can be deceptive. On purpose.  This flies in the face of my beliefs generally and strikes me as pretty anthropomorphic but  some evidence suggests I am wrong about canine honesty. There was a study that determined that dogs could protect their own interest by choice (they got to choose which food to take a human partner to  - that partner then (predictably to the dog) either kept the food, shared the food or with their own companion gave the dog all the food). The dogs choose which box to take which partner to carefully,  suggesting they can be deceptive to protect their own interests.. Anecdotally I  know am not the only person to live in a multi dog house where one dog is very good at distracting another away from a chew or bone. " Woof Woof - who is at the door??"  and then a sucker grab of a coveted item. Many of us may realize that our dogs will only take "forbidden" objects when we can't see them do so.  There was another study about  this which further illustrated that dogs understand humans can't see well in the dark.


The very definition of "lie" in the context we are discussing is to purposefully deceive. So if one is to believe the studies, and come on, SCIENCE ... why yes, in certain circumstances and for specific reasons (to get that awesome primary reinforcement of  FOOD) it appears dogs can, and do choose to deceive  us.


BUT .... when you *think* your dog has lied to you about a training or trialing (or filming as illustrated here!) problem  evaluate your position on this thought. The word lie has negative associations for humans and connotes a deliberation in intention that  may not be true to training or competing. The pejorative feelings the term evokes may also be unhelpful for problem solving. Anger is rarely  never a constructive solution (and to know me is to know how rarely I am that absolute)   What other words might fit the situation you are characterizing as deliberate obfuscation (fancy word eh?)?



This is an instance that applying some, or all, of the W's of journalism to process events will keep your thinking moving forward instead of spinning down a rabbit hole. Applying this framework and working through these reflective  questions will help you decide why your canine made the choices they did and determine what your part in the issue was as well as give yourself some answers to apply to a plan to move forward in the future.

Obviously we aren't story telling to ourselves , or anyone else applying this technique but it can be a helpful (and easy to remember way) to hunt for information. Often to reduce our stress and anxiety when things go wrong it can be helpful to have an easy framework to process the events. This framework is useful for instances of communication breakdown between dog and human - including "lies".

Let's look at each of the Ws and that final  H to determine how to best use them in this context.

Who matters in this situation? (free pass to working on this answer - you, your dog - you as a team - those are the answers to this one!). It's important to start here though as that reflection will ground you and remind you why you are taking the time to do this even if all you want to do is cry in your car.



What happened?  (Who misread who? What factors influenced the events of the "lie"?)  If you have video watch it carefully. If you have a friend or coach who saw it ask them what they saw. Brody once ran under an aframe instead of doing a tunnel. I was shocked, and pretty confused. I left the ring and thought hard about what part of the course he did that on and exactly what had happened. I walked back onto the course and felt the sand with my hand. It was burning hot.  I had asked him to run on  boiling sand surface and not realized. By looking hard at what happened I was able to understand why is happened. (not to get ahead of our list here) 

Brody  literally made so few mistakes on course I remember them to this day. 

Where did you first get confused? By delving into this W some unexpected answers about what caused the miscommunication to occur.may become apparent.


When did you believe the 'lie"? This matters more than you may think. I was watching a friends Nosework  trial video and  with hindsight being 20/20 her dog stopped and really was interested in the hide but then moved on and spent much the same amount of time with a similar indication on a drooly spot on a different car. Sigh. The handler believed the misinformation over the right answer  perhaps because  time was ticking? They'd moved around the whole site? The dog's style was similar to the alert? She felt badly and was wondering if she'd already missed it? I haven't asked  how committed to believing the last indication she was ... but it might make a big difference to choices she'll make going forward.

Why did it happen? What has happened in the past? Does false information end the potentially stressful search? Were you stressed and anxious?  Was your dog hot and unable to perform normally? Were environmental conditions confusing in some way? Spend awhile working on this question because it's where a plan for addressing moments like this will come from in the future.

which segues very nicely into

How are you going to use this information to become a better team?  The learning in a "lie" matters. Your canine partner is not doing anything other than sharing information. Stress (for either or both or you) , a gap in training, an off day or a simple error can all create results we don't want. This framework will assist you in your quest to be the best team you can be - even in the face of adversity.


Use the framework to decide what to test to reduce the "lies". A plan for stress reduction? More training in a skill? More generalizing and proofing? Application of these questions and reflection on the answers  will help you decide what to test and change first. This technique is easy to test, and can lead to greater clarity (and therefore results!)



Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Sometimes you just have to: Why Videoing Yourself is Hard (and what you can do about it!)

So, in one of those synchronicities of life in the last 24 hours I have been asked not once, not twice but FOUR times about the need to video oneself. Many people hate it. And I get it. On every level.

Way back before camera phones even existed I had a university assignment that involved videoing myself. I refused to do it. The prof, saint that he was, worked so hard to accommodate me. I worked so hard to stymie him. Don't film your face he offered. I said no. Think of a creative way to share your info that doesn't involve your voice he finally offered. I don't remember how we finally came to terms but I know part of the filming involved me writing on a blackboard before the camera was turned on and me holding paper with printing on it up. Sigh. I was supportive, constructive and happy to watch my peers work. I even recall thinking it was a great activity for everybody else.


Fast forward about 4 years and I was organizing a walk a thon. I got invited to speak in our local TV show,  Breakfast TV. I said maybe and lined up a partner to take on the show to do the talking part. I figured I'd do animal wrangling (cute animals would get attention in all the shots of me that way) and my buddy would talk. Um. No. They'd only let one of us on and I was the animal savvy one who would keep cats and dogs where they belonged. Thrown in the deep end I would have been quite happy had we experienced a national power failure. The event and the animals mattered enough that I did the show. Survived. Got compliments from the lovely host of the show. Adopted the animals I had shown and the walk was a success. Sigh. I did that show and others many many many times, and while I never loved it the pain was worth it by the end. I recently did two podcasts and loved doing them ... but had that old familiar sense of dread when I realized I had said "yes" not "no".


A long winded way to explain that not only do I hear the concern about video but in my own unique way I totally understand it. So, that said, how can you work through your TOTALLY legitimate concern?

Break it down my friends - break it down. "But HOW?" I hear you lament.



Think about why you are resistant.
Are you worried about your body image? Your voice? The mess in the background?  Being interrupted mid  taping? (check each of those for me - especially the second!)  Identifying why you are worried will  give you a chance to address those concerns in a way that works for you.  It will also let you decide if you might want to throw things in a box, or set the camera on an angle to minimize what people see.


Decide why you want to video at all.
Is it to improve your training? Watch for a particular behaviour?  Measure your own handling?  Record keep so you can see gaps and improvement? Take an online class and get the most salient feedback for your situation possible? Create lovely memories that you can cherish?

Perhaps revisiting your reasons - YOUR reasons  that is - not the should be your reasons - will help you decide the pain of videoing and working through your angst is worth it. It's quite possible that the reason you THINK you want to video is not a sufficient motivator for you - looking for all the reasons video is good for you in your situation may help motivate you.


Plan for your comfort and success.

(this sounds a bit like a plan for training  your dog eh?) 

Do some videoing  - use whatever  tips and thoughts below will help you take action.

Start Small ... pick something you like doing, or are curious to see, and video JUST one minute or less  of it.

Ground yourself before you begin  Do a breathing sequence, or a roots to the ground physical grounding, meditate, or stretch. Prepare your body for what's to come.


Organize your thoughts ... know what props you want and what you want to film.  10 seconds of planning can make a huge difference to your video.

Test your set up. Run film of the space you are using and see what the boundaries are - perhaps put cones or other markers in place so you can see what the camera will catch. You might want to deliberately focus on your dog - cutting off your head is fine if the resulting video suits your purposes!



Admit your concerns to the people who support you  Maybe one of them will volunteer to film for you or lend you a camera ... or simply watch the video and point out the good things instead of every little blip you may find yourself obsessing about.

and hot on the heels of above - Ask for help - if you aren't sure what to film, or how to film or anything else use your supports to find the answers. Google is how I figured out editing in iMovie.

Build from success. Sure the point for you may be to show an instructor your struggles and get feedback but start with something you like, that gives you pleasure.  Create a memory video - or celebrate a success.

Fake it til you make it ... yup - put on your acting hat and do your thing. Pretend to be a trainer you admire (I can give you a long list of names if you want!) pretend to be confident and loving it. Smile and your brain will believe you!



(yes I hate this video, Yes I share it because I hate it so. The things I do for you) 

Remember you control this - you can ALWAYS turn off the camera, change an angle, erase a video instead of showing or even viewing it. You are your own boss here.

Take your time ... there is a way to edit every movie - in iMovie, movie maker or even as you upload to YouTube ... so set yourself up to catch what you want - you can edit the pause at the beginning and the wander at the end


This is getting long ... so I am going to wrap it up but I suspect there will be questions  - feel free to ask me ... and perhaps the answers will appear in part two or three!!




Monday, June 26, 2017

Why foundations in dog sports matter ....

(sorry for the gap in blogs - June was crazy busy here ... sigh  I anticipate being back to twice monthly posting!) 



"Start them right", "Make sure you do your foundation work", "Build those blocks" are the types of things you may have heard when thinking about  foundation work for dogs.

BUT WHY? Why is it important to invest time, learning, and energy (sometimes oh SO MUCH energy) in foundation work?

It would be easy to be trite and say something along the lines of foundations lay the ground work on which all other work is born. And while that is correct it is not complete. Foundations do so much more than train your dog.

Of course foundation work teaches your dog building block skills. It's about  building those basic skills you will revisit again and again and again as you layer them into whatever sport you want to play. Pick an example - any example will do but let's look at crating just for fun. By building the skill of your dog happily being able to be in a crate  you may have beginning of stay (a la Susan Garret), a way to safely and comfortably confine your dog in a car on a warm day (in the shade, under supervision, with water - yadda yadda ). You may be building skills for confinement in case of injury, or wild small children house guests  or any number of other possibilities. Happy crating is great foundation skill not just for dog sports but for life itself !



Foundation work  helps your dog's condition by laying the ground work for building correct muscles, and condition.  I  don't mean starting puppies on equipment or even doing  whole lot with them ... but basic walking, climbing on, over and through things and learning to control their bodies  allows condition to be built slowly with dogs learning about their own bodies.

 Foundation work builds relationship  through early games, play and training you get the best opportunity to experiment. See what works for your dog, for you, and decide how to combine those two sometimes disparate points of view.  Consider, if you will. the skill of your dog  playing with toys, you and food. A dog's ability to play with whatever you are able to offer in any given moment creates  a way to appreciate each other and to reward great work. The act of building these varied skills through many different games and opportunities will help establish relationship and strengthen your bond.




Taking the time to do things right from the start is frustrating. It feels pointless - what if you don't WANT to show in dog sports at the end of the day? You'll never get the time back that you invest in lovely heeling, or great independent weaves, or staying at source  - BUT. and it's a big but - it's WAY easier to take the time to teach something right than to try to reteach it. Brody's weaves are my  most often referred to example of this. Brody weaved quite well. As long as I was on his right side and right beside him as he did his thing. I never knew there was any reason he should weave alone when I started teaching him and by the time I realized it would make both our lives easier he had hundreds of weaves under his collar done just the way he liked them. Sigh.



Rushing things, skipping steps are not doing yourself or your dog any favours in the long term.
Slow down. Think. Plan. Then Do.



Put another brick in the wall. You'll be glad you did.


Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Whispers in the Wind

FDSA has a saying "be the ripple"  it's right on the banner for the school.

 I have to tell you the students blow me away with the way they keep right on rippling and whispering and shouting from the tree tops. (The instructors are a pretty incredible group too rippling away; I am always humbled by my inclusion in that group).

I pretty actively promote good self care - I have truly come to believe that without self care you have nothing ..your well will run dry and so will your energy and spirit. So when students are having a tough time they KNOW they will hear - what have you done for you today?

Maybe it was doing laundry, maybe it was walking the dogs. Lunch with a friend, tears with family no matter what  - there should be something. I don't know what the answer will be but I push (sometimes pretty hard) for there to be something for you when things are hard.


One of my wonderful students decided that 10 minutes was all she could do - and it would work best for her to carve it out of a work break  so Self Care 10 was born.  The idea of just 10 minutes a day for HER. Listen to something, read something, watch something, put her head down and shut her eyes  - it didn't matter WHAT, just that it was.

Then she got "caught" at work and her boss asked her what she was doing. Bravely she explained Self Care 10 and discovered her boss loved it. And borrowed the idea!
Talk about a whisper ... what an awesome thing eh?


Ever grateful, ever awed by the amazing people I get to work with.

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Play is Life


Or is Life Play? That sounds sweet eh? But the reality is play is not easy or intuitive for every one.
The very definition of play includes the pursuit and attainment of fun  but there are plenty of instances when play is only fun for one participant.

Elements of play include:
  • anticipation
  • surprise
  • pleasure
  • understanding 
  • strength 
  • poise 

Each element relates to the others and can  move "the game" forward as this neat little graphic from The Strong illustrates so well.



Play has  many emotional, social and physical benefits. Canines and humans alike feel better after a game, we are better able to interact with others through play and our bodies appreciate the physicality of play. Mental challenges enrich us both as well - and can tire us out. Mutual play can be wonderful. It can also be hard work - as we learn each others rules, preferences and develop the ability to balance together in an harmonious dance of joy. An oft held belief is that humans are the "only" species that plays as adults. The dogs, horses, cats and parrots here all beg to differ. The amount of play and the purpose of play evolves as we (all!)  age and change no doubt but play is a valid and important use of time through life.

Play can be personal and individual ,,, as Sampson so ably demonstrates when he grabs a stick on the lawn or this crow does



Play can be group




and it can cross species too.

Play is a demonstrably important aspect of  learning for many species. Predators learn to hunt through play, horses learn social manners through play, and children develop all kinds of skills through games, Birds learn skills including their song through imitation and play. Creativity, ingenuity and critical thinking are all enhanced by play.

Sadly, life tends to choke some of the fun out of play as we grow. Play isn't equally easy for all children nor all adults. (Nor for that matter all horses or dogs - the two non human species whose play I have observed and worked with).   But, and this is a critical concept .... play is a skill. Yes there is an element of art to it -  intuition and guessing can work well in play - but there are actual definable skills that can be applied to principles of play. Play can be learned. Play can be taught.



Learning appropriate play is as important for young humans as young dogs. Revisiting basic play principles and learning to work together is one of the fundamental key concepts embedded through the classes at Fenzi Dog Sport Academy, Courses with names like Obedience Games, Heeling Games, Relationship through Play, Focus Games, Training with Remote Reinforcement, and so on fill the list of course offerings. Many, if not all, of the amazing instructors use play as a tool to help build relationship and mutual appreciation of the work of a given dog human team.

                             (my magic wand is STILL out for repairs - much to my chagrin!) 

This term alone (classes start June 1) there is a Toy Class,  Cookie Jar Games and my newest general offering Don't Worry: Be Happy which looks very hard at the human side of play.  It builds human play skills (which will enhance dog play skills too - have no doubt of that)  by breaking down what play is for humans, why it matters and further considers strategies to enhance play skills for people. Toy, personal and food play will all be assessed particularly in light of individual team differences. When, why and how to use play and when to call it quits with grace are also topics. I'm looking forward to taking my personal love of play and my drama teacher training and applying it to play in an online class.




There is room in gold, and there is always room in bronze.Registration is open so if you want to explore, enrich and understand play better you might want to sign up!




I have blogged about play a great deal over the years ... the word "play" in search pulls up over 6 pages of posts ... the posts range widely but cover all kinds of divergent and dog focused thoughts. 

Saturday, April 08, 2017

The Mad Hatter Learns Stuff

and so will you ... I asked a genius I know to explain the differences and similarities between barn hunt and scent work ... believing as I do that the person and dog in any sport have a relationship - both contribute and both are vital to success ... I wanted to know if she felt the same way ... 
She, Sheila, was kind enough to write a guest blog post on the subject! Enjoy - I know I did ... 

How is a raven like a writing desk?  Technically speaking this riddle has no answer – famously from Lewis Carroll’s Adventures in Wonderland, it is steeped in crazy nonsensical logic.
Alice ends up at a tea party at which one of the arguably craziest characters, the Mad Hatter, asks her this now famous question…
When Alice asks him how, he admits that he does not know – he was just asking.
This is how I felt when Andrea asked me “how is barn hunt like nosework?”  Indeed, I wanted to respond with the same chiding remarks as Alice gives the Mad Hatter: “I think you might do something better with the time than wasting it in asking riddles that have no answers.”
Knowing Andrea and her Mad-Hatter-ness, I knew she wouldn’t accept such a simple answer to her query.  (Sheila should know how simple, and lazy, I am!)

I have been involved in both sports – Barn Hunt and Nosework (or Sport Detection) – since both were first introduced to Canada.  I had the privilege of being involved in some of the first trials in each sport in the country, and work with some of the best trainers and judges in both sports.  My herdy mix was one of the first titled nosework dogs in Canada, and my terrier mix is the top Barn Hunt mixed breed dog in Canada.



Both sports are similar beasts for sure.  In Barn Hunt, the dog runs naked in a course of hay bales and must find a certain number of rats, complete a tunnel, and climb within a set time.  In nosework, dogs must find a certain number of hidden essential oils and alert within a set time.
The two sports can benefit each other heavily – often I encourage my barn hunt students with specific issues (and no access to rats) to try nosework.  I equally encourage my nosework students to branch out into barn hunt!  They are complementary.  

You certainly can’t have Barn Hunt without nosework.  To be successful in barn hunt (as my scruffy partner and I have had the pleasure of doing) you really benefit from a strong bearing in scent theory and dog behaviour around scent.  Barn Hunt is also a sport which relies heavily on those two factors that Andrea drilled into my head as a student – timing and reward placement. 

Barn Hunt is also a sport where you need to delicately balance your drive and energy level as a team – screaming at a high prey drive dog to GETITGETITGETIT is going to send them over the top.  Standing in the corner with a solemn and distracted worker is going to get you timed out.  I am not sure who first introduced me to this concept of balance (it was likely Andrea – take classes from Andrea, is the lesson of this post), but it is essentially this:  Rank your dogs energy level (when hunting/searching) on a scale from one to ten.  Your job, as an effective partner, is to ensure that when you add your dogs number with yours the total equals 11.  So my terrier works rats at about an 8-9.  I walk around the course following him, watching him, but unless he has missed an area of the course or I see something I want him to check, I rarely speak to him (other than our party at the end).  I have to keep myself at a 2.  My puppy is a little unsure in the ring so I cheerlead her more – praising her for checking areas and doing obstacles.  This is a skill that was also engrained to me in nosework training.


When I started doing Barn Hunt the sport was trained primarily as a drive / instinct based sport.  Essentially, throw the rat in front of the dog.  If they go nuts – terrific!  You get to play.  If they don’t – wave the rat in their face.  Still no reaction?  Maybe this sport isn’t for you.  Fortunately for me in those early days of training my dog was one of the naturals.  My herding mix played nosework for years, and it is truly one of his favourite games.  I threw him in a Barn Hunt ring “just to see what happened” and, based on our training in nosework, when faced with containers in which only one is different (in this case, had a rat), he did his formal alert on that container/tube.  I was surprised, but not shocked considering how similar I considered the two sports.

Fortunately there are a lot of trainers now teaching the sport with the same methods of nosework – target to scent, commitment to odour, methodical searching.  This is great for opening the sports to dogs without natural prey drive.  And in my experience many of the dogs trained with these methods are more methodical and do not face some of the struggles as the high drive dogs (especially when facing distraction tubes).  You can listen to a fantastic podcast between renowned Barn Hunt judge Liz Carter and  nosework instructor Stacey Barnett and their thoughts on this topic (which are similar to my own) here: https://scentsabilitiesnw.podbean.com/e/a-tale-of-two-scent-sports-barn-hunt-and-nosework/

REALLY, one major difference between the two sports are that Barn Hunt uses live rats rather than essential oil.  (If you are concerned about rat safety, there are manymanymany things written on this topic – I assure you the rats are well loved, cared for, and protected as central to the sport – I wont go into it here but am happy to answer questions or concerns).  The use of live quarry isn’t important in the base terms of “ find target scent, alert!” however, Barn Hunt adds the challenge of distinguishing between live rat + bedding and just bedding – so the dog must distinguish rat smell vs live rat smell.  This is a challenge that is not thrown at beginner nosework competitors.  It would be akin to distinguishing between week-aged scent and fresh scent.  Possible, for sure, but difficult.

Indeed, distractions are all over the place for the novice barn hunt dog.  In addition to dirty bedding tubes, the dogs must ignore whatever scents are present in the bales and ring.  Unlike nosework, it is nearly impossible to keep a Barn Hunt ring completely sanitary of distracting odours. When I started training nosework it was drilled into us to use gloves and never contaminate anything ever.  In barn hunt you are using bales – that possibly were pulled from storage where they were lived in by mice and cats and goats and whatever other animals inhabit a working farm.   Perhaps the farm dog marked every single bale.  Maybe mice were running tunnels through them (this has happened in trials).  Who knows how many humans or animals touched them.  The tubes move all over the course throughout a trial so there is residual odour everywhere.  Etcetera.  Your dog must ignore all of these distraction scents and only hit on live rat.  Impressive skills when you think of it that way, eh?

Barn Hunt has truly changed my perception on keeping scent areas sanitary and about how many distractions dogs can deal with. And how soon.  It really brings home that “beef stew” theory of how dogs smell (you smell stew, they smell beef and carrots and onions and garlic and…)

Along this it is also important to note that many people are often concerned that teaching their dog barn hunt will increase their prey drive.  Or that barn hunt will ruin agility because often agility is run in barns.  These are the two big hesitations I see in people considering the sport. I think to both concerns I would answer that it is quite the opposite – have a dog who sniffs in corners of barns during agility to find the mice?  This gives them an outlet.  No bales? No mice!  Also giving high prey drive dogs an outlet for that energy creates an easier to live with housemate.  I live with 6 terrier things in a house with 7 rats in the basement.  They all know they are there but is it a constant struggle to keep them away? No, they are normal happy dogs because they have a time and space for that.

The only other (major) difference between the sports is the requirement of obstacles – dogs must climb with all four feet on a bale and complete a bale tunnel at some point in their run before time is up.  These challenges seem more minor, but I have seen more dogs struggle with that tunnel than any other aspect of the sport.  Dogs are clever creatures and learn very quickly that there is never a rat in the tunnel – so why bother going there!  This is an added training challenge for sure.  And is easily remedied (pro tips here) by rewarding your dog with a rat for doing the tunnel!  Do the tunnel – boom a rat appears.  My terrier now runs through the tunnel to clear the course (a Masters level skill) because if there are no rats on course – maybe running through the tunnel will make one of those magic ones appear!



Essentially, I think to answer Andrea’s initial question – though perhaps nosework is nothing like barn hunt, barn hunt is indistinguishable from nosework from a training and dog behaviour perspective.  Andrea may not know but was just asking – and perhaps (hopefully) my answer brings up more questions and opens a dialogue between the two sports.  My ultimate goal is to slowly lure nosework people into the sport so – join us!

WHOA - thanks so much Sheila ... I learned tons .. and will have this to reference now too! Thanks!