The first series Thunder ran at Saturday’s training was a triple. He did a nice job and picked that up clean.
The next series was something that Thunder has never seen before…a quad or four marks.
The marks were thrown in the order numbered on the diagram.
As Thunder watched the marks fall, it was pretty clear that this combination blew his mind a bit.
As you can see in the picture, Thunder did not turn to watch Mark #4. He is used to seeing 3 marks, but not 4. He was fixed on one of the marks out in the field.
Even though he did not watch it, the first mark Thunder’s handler sent him to pick up was Mark #4.
Thunder has been trained that if his handler lines him toward something and sends him, then he should run until he finds it. Where a dog doesn’t see a mark, this can help out a bit. It took some hunting, but Thunder finally found the bumper.
Thunder’s handler wanted Thunder to pick up Mark #2 next. His handler turned his body so that Thunder would come back to heel and be ready to head in the direction of that mark.
Thunder is still thinking about those marks out in the field. In his mind, there are only three marks. He is used to retrieving three marks. He is over thinking this a bit. After a big hunt, he found Mark #2.
Next he is going to pick up Mark #3 which is out in the field and to the right.
Thunder found mark #3, but he was not really confident about it. Luckily he caught a glimpse of it as he was running by. At a test and in cover, unless he catches a whiff of a duck, he might just breeze by that mark, but today he got it. Good job.
Now the hard one, Mark #1. It is the first mark Thunder saw fall. He thinks he got all three marks so he is kind of lost on this one.
He could not find this mark, so he was handled to it. Eventually he got it.
We will definitely train these again, but all in all Thunder put in some nice effort.