Yesterday (Thursday), Grit had her two daily sessions again. In session 5, I introduced the It’s Your Choice Game: in one hand, I have food, and in the other one the coaster. In order to get the food, Grit has to put her nose on the coaster. She’ll then receive the food out of the food hand, and I’ll have her eat it off the coaster. I love how if you pay attention to Grit’s eyes and facial expression in this session, you can see the wheels turning! Duration isn’t a criterion for now – I want to click the moment she makes the right choice. Teaching the dog to choose the target over the food is not a game I invented – there are lots of variations on the It’s Your Choice theme. I’ve learned this particular version in the Nosework classes at FDSA, where Phoebe learned to put her nose on top of a hot container in order to get the food from the other hand.
In session 6, I got rid of the food hand and focused on duration again. I want to make sure Grit doesn’t loose her duration when I introduce other criteria! You can see her duration has already deteriorated, so it’s a good idea to build it back up. I’ll work on duration some more in the next session before I go back to It’s Your Choice.