Saturday, October 3, 2015

Catty says "Nose Work has changed how I experience the environment!"

While I love all the park locations for Nose Work class, I especially love class at Home Depot.  Seems a bit strange that I like this location so much... I love it because it reminds me how far Catty has come thanks to Nose Work.  Before we started Nose Work, going into new environments was a challenge with Catty.  Rewind 3 years ago post Nose Work, in new environments Catty was pretty reactive towards anything (people/moving things/objects she had not encountered before) that scared her.  She would lunge, charge and if really worked up and she would use her teeth to get rid of the scary things.  Catty is also dog reactive on leash so that was another set of behaviors to manage.  So, it was a big deal for me to bring her to Nose Work class.  I was diligent with finding an instructor who was comfortable with Catty's presentation and my anxiety about Catty being in a Nose Work class.  I was lucky to find Erica Wells who completely was on board with us. 

Since that time all we've seen is improvement in Catty's environmental behavior.  Her leash reactivity has also decreased which I attribute to Nose Work.  This is a huge reason why I love Nose Work - it build confidence, there's control around the environment and I love watching Catty blossom.  I can't say enough good things about Erica, she's 100% on board with me advocating for Catty and getting our needs met in the environment.  It's been a fun 3 years for me and Catty thanks to Nose Work!

"Oh boy it's Nose Work time!"

"Erica where are you?  I'm here!"

While waiting our turn, Catty enjoys exploring the environment.

"Did Erica call my name?"

"Not yet so, I'll keep checking stuff out"

"No problem with going up and over strange stuff!"

"Speaking of strange stuff... what are these things?"

"I think other dogs have visited this spot!"

One search area - the long aisle with all that stuff!  Of course Catty did excellent and wasn't phased by the people & carts in the aisle.  She was working!!

We are back to waiting our turn and more strange items...

Lots of creepy Halloween stuff and Catty says "No worries!"

"Mom you should let Erica know about this section - lots of good hide spots!"

"What on earth is this thing for?!"

Big weird items and Catty's just investigating with no stress!

"Mom are these things creeping you out?!"

"No more pictures - pay attention as Erica should be calling my name!"

Big search area in the garden section! 
Lots of air movement with the 3 sets of electric doors that open and close a lot.

Time for outside searches. 
Waiting our turn and this was great as we watched all the people coming in and out of the store with all kinds of carts.

More fun search areas!

"Oh I'm on the odor!"

"Up high mom!!"

Another large exterior search

"Oh Erica, today was the day of high hides and tons of fun!"

We find this cart out by the garden section and Catty jumps in thinking there might be odor.  There's no odor around but, she's in class mode so on the hunt for odor.

"Nothing here but, don't I look cute on this wobbly cart!"

"What do you mean we are done with class?"

We head back to car and Catty says:
"Where's Erica - tell her we should have been searching these sheds!"

"Erica!  These are great search spots!"

Silly Catty girl.  Last time we had class here there were hides in the sheds and you loved those searches!  Maybe next time the hides will be in the sheds.

Fun class and we love all the environmental enrichment!

Catty is tired from having so much fun.


  1. It looks like Catty had SO much fun! That's so cool Home Depot let's you do nose work there...

    1. Catty LOVES Nose Work! Home Depot is great and they don't care since we are searching for odor that is on a tiny vessel (usually the tip of Qtip). We had two employees ask us what we were doing and they were fascinated by it and they enjoyed watching the dogs work. We are advanced and will search a large area. It is pretty cool to watch a dog search and find that tiny little odor hidden amongst all the other stuff.