As many of you know, Will has a bad shoulder and he can’t play fetch or flying disc without problems. If I just work him on sheep and take him on long walks we can keep it under control, but the “short stopping” associated with fetching aggravates whatever is wrong with his shoulder. (I haven’t discounted surgery completely, but we are still in the ‘gather information’ mode.) That means that most of his exercise is working sheep, which works great when I’m home and feel like scrambling up the hill. But when I’m gone? You can’t just have anyone go work your dog on sheep, that would be a disaster, so it is important to find ways to keep Willie exercised when I travel.
Here are 2 videos of the game I’ve talked about in earlier posts. It’s really not that new, just another version of the inside “Go find it!” game that Karen London and I talk about in Play Together, Stay Together. However, being just as dense at generalizing from one context to another as any dog, it took awhile for me to think of playing the game outside. Now we do it every morning and I’m not sure who enjoys it more, me or Will.
I put Will on a stay, and then move to where he can’t see me and hide a toy. One week when we first started, I hid a stick I had handled in a huge pile of brush in the orchard pasture. It was fascinating to watching Will switch from using his eyes to using his nose–all sticks looking pretty much alike after all, and an entirely different proposition outdoors in a breeze. It took him a good 3 minutes to find the stick, but when he did I’m not sure who was thrilled the most, him or me. Playing this game with your dog will teach you more about how dogs perceive the world than anything I can think of. Susannah gives the best analogy of dogs searching out a scent that I’ve ever heard in The Scent of the Missing, in which she asks you to imagine walking down a quiet street at night and hearing the faint sound of music, coming from… where? Dogs track down scent much the way we track down sound.. moving toward it, playing the “louder, softer, louder” game of localizing sound by moving toward the area where the sound (or smell) is strongest. But although sound can move through space differently depending on the environment, it is no where near as plastic as scent, which wafts on the breeze and flows this way and that like a smoke. How scent travels is affected by temperature, humidity and a butterfly in China for all I know.
I can illustrate far better than describe: This first video is of Willie finding the toy in a ditch. The toy is completely out of sight, and I thought this would be a hard ‘find’ because I’ve never hidden toys in this area before and it seemed to me that the scent would stay in the ditch and not rise above the vegetation. More proof of what a total novice I am at scent work….
Here’s Willie searching for a toy that a novice to dog training (of any kind) might think is an easy find. After all, the toy is in full view (for us! It’s the blue disc in the shrub about 3 feet up). But, it’s above Willie’s head and dogs don’t tend to look up until they’ve been trained, as most trainers well know. Will’s first hidden object that was over his head was last week, and it took him three times as long a time to find the toy. He followed his nose all the way to it. In this video, it seems to me that he actually does see the toy as he’s turning back toward the scent. Trackers? Trailers? SAR experts? I’d love to hear any comments from experts on scent work about what Will is doing. I am LOVING learning about the world of scent (beyond my personal girlie obsession with lavendar and myrrh!)
I could tell exactly what part of the ditch Will thought the disc was in during his first pass at it. His body language completely changed and slowed down, and his nose dropped…exactly how tracking dogs usually look (though of course each one is a bit different).
I’ve done tracking for just over a year now with my Aussie and I have to say, it’s the best exercise he ever gets. Completely exhausted after and happier than anything:)
In your videos, you’re using a really hard object to find – something plastic. Plastic doesn’t hold scent as well as fabric, leather, etc. Then the conditions would also further challenge him: wind direction, humidity, terrain and where you put the disc. The scent would be pooling just underneath where the disc was in the bush and again, you can tell he knows where it is b/c of his body language – slow movements, nose dropped. Because the scent is so strong below, it can be a challenge for dogs to look up, but they do evetually cause they are tracking the scent vertically.
I think Will would be a great tracking candidate! I still find it awe-inspiring with my dog every time I go out for a track and I clearly love to talk about it!
Sirius Scientist says
So glad you shared these, he’s such a clever boy! The hop at when he finds the toy in the ditch is priceless.
I’m unsure how great Sirius’ vision is, but he responds well to finding things with his nose. I’m very interested to learn more about the subject as well and am also very thankful you’ve written several posts on the subject lately.
Susannah Charleson says
Wow! I’m loving the Willie videos. Having watched them both and clicked through them moment-by-moment(and having run behind — hoosh, quite a few Border collies in SAR, such lovely, telling dogs, bless ’em)it appears to me that your boy is very clearly defining the boundaries of the scent as he runs into and out of it in both cases.
When scent is faint or not present, his tail elongates in both videos. As it grows warmer, his tail goes more vertical, eventually curling over his back. In the second video, when scent’s warmest of all (right below the disc), he begins to wag. We would call that pretty clear messages of interest, indication, and alert or … here, Here, HERE.
Each time he runs out of the scent, the tail elongates again. The video’s freezing on me now, but I’m thinking you could pretty easily, second-by-second, trace where scent existed for Willie and the quality of it by the position, rigidity, and movement of that tail. In the second video you actually see his head pop as he runs out of the scent, discards the edge of the boundary (he puts his nose down and then pops it up) and he wheels on that nose, turns back to hone to scent, and just after that he catches sight of the disc.
I can’t see well enough to tell which way the wind is blowing (curse my netbook’s tiny screen), but certainly if wind was blowing across that ditch in the first video, and Willie was downwind of it, scent would churn and blow up the side of the ditch right to him. And it would be lovely and sticky *on* the vegetation and moving nicely to him just beyond it. Kind of like someone in the ditch firing Ben & Jerry’s Cherry Garcia with a paint gun. Lots of ice cream on the leaves, and quite a lovely bit right in the face. 😀
Heidi Loganbill says
Some very nice people in Los Angeles are starting to popularize K9nose work for pet dogs. You might check out their website: K9nosework.com
My dogs and I are just starting to play their games, and the dogs LOVE it!
Scent games are fabulous for dogs . . . they really force the dogs to use their brains (along with their noses) and it reinforces their natural ability for scenting. When I walk my youngest dog, his nose never comes up from the ground . . . he LOVES “looking” for things with his nose. I know that some days he’s tracking our scent from the day before, because he often veers off in the direction that we went the previous day (we don’t follow the same path all the time).
I’m glad you’ve found an activity for Will that he really enjoys and that doesn’t put undue strain through his shoulder. It’s all about keeping these guys occupied and happy.
Jennifer Hamilton says
On the second video…did you throw the frisbee into the bush or did you walk up to the bush and place it up high? If the latter, I suspect Will is tracking you and less so the toy. This would also explain the focus on the area beneath the bush as that looks where your feet may have been standing while you placed the toy. And with respect to the toy, he’s probably tracking a combination of both of your scent as it falls off the toy while you walk. What I mean by all of that is that he may be tracking the scent of “mom + Will slobber + toy” in that order of priority. The toy may be the least important part of the scent…or more like the reward for tracking your scent to a specific place. I’m guessing you’ll get a totally different result if you fling the frisbee into a tough hiding spot and walk off and stand for awhile in a totally unrelated location. He may follow your trail to the spot you paused at and then wonder why he didn’t find the frisbee there as his reward. I notice my dog totally changes her strategy when she is tracking my scent to a location where I’ve hidden something versus finding a specific object when there is no human scent trail to it. One looks like following a human path to a point at where the person stopped and paused, the other looks like managing the space like a grid and smelling for the specific scent in that grid.
Funny you’d ask that Jennifer, I was going to mention that I have seen little sign so far that Will is actually following my track. I wondered if he would begin to do that on his own, or if that is a completely different way of finding the object that might never occur to him unless taught. I imagine it’s partly the difference between a tracking and a trailing dog (she said ignorantly? experts?) FYI, I always place the object, never throw it. He’ll run in the general direction I moved into, but he doesn’t seem to follow my track as much as move into that side of the house, then start casting around for the scent of the object. I’ll usually walk a path, hide the object and then continue to walk and he usually shows no sign of following where I’ve been. But maybe he’s starting? I’ll have to watch again!
Thanks for sharing, those were neat! I, too, have noticed my dogs will miss stuff in plain sight (for humans) that is elevated from ground level.
I love this thread! We play “find it” almost every day with our dogs (2 Aussies) with various things all over the house. We’ve only moved outside once because we tend to focus on more physical activities out there (although I’m rethinking that!) I’ve noticed that when I hide the treats over their heads it’s much harder for them, and they have to have several more passes by the treat to find it. Bananas and salmon treats work the best as they leave a stronger scent I think. Duck jerky takes longer. They are so excited to play this game and they quiver in their down stay’while I’m hiding all the treats. We do it about 4 times before there’s just too much scent everywhere. It reminds me of easter egg hunts with my sons when they were little.
Susannah Charleson says
Willie looks to me like he’s working air scent around the area and yep yep possibly trailing beneath the bush. He isn’t nose down enough or path-oriented enough to appear to be tracking to me (in the narrow sense we use the term ‘tracking,’ anyway), but I completely agree he’s probably got a desirable hash of scent he’s seeking: the toy, your scent, and his own delightful slobber. And there’s probably a good scent-soup right beneath the toy — as Jennifer points out, not only your scent from where you stood (a clue! a clue!), but also any downwash from the toy. Jennifer’s last two statements reflect exactly the point-of-difference we’d use to describe trailing versus pure air scent work in a generous space. Sounds like her dog is able to do both, and it looks like Willie is, too.
For future experiments: in general trailing will “tell.” If the dog sticks reasonably close to your path — head up/ head down/head up/ head down in a swath along your route = your scent on the ground and your scent on raised objects/vegetation — there’s probably some good trailing action going. If the dog varies widely from your path, is mostly head up, and drops the nose just before a course reversal and then goes head up, that’s likely air scent work going on. The dog has identified where airborne scent has fallen or where (s)he’s run out of the cloud of it and noses ground to doublecheck the boundary. This would show you the difference between him trailing your scent to the toy and him air scenting the toy as he works the space.
Many dogs do both, crossing into and out of each technique with the ease a great pianist might segue from classical to jazz in the same performance. Beautiful and seamless, though this is one of those points I’d always like to be able to talk to the dog afterward and say, “Now at what point did you decide to search X way rather than Y? And … why?”
This is great! I have a JRT with neck/disc issues and have been trying to figure out how to exercise his mind and body without stressing it too badly. This is perfect! He loves hunting out a wayward tennis ball so I’m sure he’ll love this. His tail goes like a metronome on speed when sniffing- I can’t wait to see if there is a difference as Susannah above points out.
When I watched the videos, the first thing that caught my attention was Will’s tail (not sure why?!?!). And I am not sure if this is because of his shoulder injury, but he carries his tail mostly to his right. Even when he does a wag, it mostly stays to the right. Before thinking of his injury, I was wondering if dogs move their tails or position their tails differently when working. Like his brain and mind are working overtime, so the tail does this. I know I have seen in the past that there was a study of dogs’ tails when greeting familiar and unfamiliar scent (their owners or strangers) and the dogs’ tails seem to have all when in the same pattern (can’t remember if it was more left or right), but has there been anything like that with working dogs? I do love the find the toy game though. I had to do it when my first aussie was six months old and broke his leg. Trying to tire out a puppy, who isn’t suppose to move much is hard : )
Jennifer thanks for your insight on the dog following my scent vs. finding the scent of the toy. I will be changing my hiding strategy just to see what scent my dog is using to find his toy.
I love this game, I play it all the time with my dogs at home. My older dog is quite good, so I’ve started hiding toys inside cabinets and drawers and other ‘tricky’ places, and he never has any trouble finding the object.
Plus this ‘game’ translates into a very useful real world skill, when their dog toys get scattered about the field at the park. It’s quite nice to ask the dogs to find their toys, and then watch as they sniff the ground in search of lost tennis balls and kongs. The only tennis balls they seem to lose are to the cavernous unknown under the couch.
Jennifer Hamilton says
I am most definetly a novice in the “scenting” field , but the most useful thing I learned is that dogs are assessing the scent as a “scent cone”. By scanning the boundaries and determining whether the distance between the edges is getting wider or narrower, that will determine which direction to go to narrow in on the target. Each step you take is laying a new scent cone that is dispersing over time. It doesn’t surprise me that Will is varying widely in the beginning since the first steps you created in your path may have created a very large scent cone over time and with wind. As he determines the boundaries and hones in, each step you took will have a smaller scent cone given less time and wind have passed for it to spread out. That’s why it looks to me like he is trailing you because the closer he gets the straighter his line is…and the narrower the scent cone would be. In my experience, this trailing becomes optimized with experience and the beginning of the search looks less random with more experienced dogs…or with less wind.
My dog has gotten so good at it that she just walks the exact same path that I took. The only way I can switch her technique is to do all kinds of circle eights and path crosses…then she has to switch back to her “grid” technique to focus on finding the scent cone of the item versus the scent cones from each of my steps. Also, I use kitchen spices in small baggies that I let her smell before each search. I use plastic gloves and new baggies so she isn’t just tracking her slobber or my scent. P.S. If you try the kitchen spices, I recommend avoiding my novice mistake of using spices that I could easily smell, like cinnamon. I put a small baggie up to my dogs nose and she leaped backward…as if to say, “do you think I’m an idiot, are you trying to blow my brains out?”. Since then, I only use mild spices that I can hardly smell and some with hardly any odor at all…like salt. It took Isabelle a while to trust me to put a spice baggie up to her nose again after my big newbie faux pas. It’s amazing to think about how little we understand their point-of-view.
Thank you so much for posting this! Scent work has been something I was interested in trying with Ranger but unless I wanted to train him for Search and Rescue there aren’t any classes or training available where I am. After watching the videos and reading everything posted here I felt brave enough to try some experimenting. I started by placing a treat under a piece of fabric and then when he got the idea that treats could be found under there added two more nearly identical pieces of fabric with the hidden treat being randomly placed under just one. It took Ranger almost two seconds to figure out the new variation and begin placing his chin on the fabric with the treat. Today we’ve tried hiding treats outside out of his sight. Ultimately, my goal has been that Ranger would be able to find my current book wherever I left it in the house. I’m starting to think this goal might be achievable without having to find a training class. Thank you!
Haha, I love Will’s celebration on the first video when he finds the frisbee.
Is there a good book for beginning scent tracking?
Sirius Scientist says
I agree with Kat! I am so thrilled you’ve decided to bring this up in your last few posts.
Having no real knowledge of SAR or tracking I’ve been trying to read up on the subject the last few weeks, with an interest in getting Sirius involved. Susannah’s comments were wonderful too and I watched the videos a second time to see exactly what she was talking about. I can’t wait until your book comes out!!
Does anyone have any [training/theory] book recommendations for those of us new this? What about good starting points for games or activities (like the ones mentioned) which might be built upon later?
Mary Beth says
Trish, I have a new read for you….William Syrotuck “Scent and the Scenting Dog”. Very dry read, but amazingly detailed on how scent works. And for fun, go get a colored smoke bomb and set it off in the ditch, then watch where the smoke travels. It might give you an idea of what the wind is doing.
The old standby book on tracking is by Glen Johnson. I think the book is called “Tracking Dogs”. Since that was written there have been lots of new and inspired writings,but I can’t say enough to give a good review of any of them. Mr. Johnson is very step by step and his methods bore my smarter dogs but have worked well for my, um, shall we say, less intelligent, though equally talented hounds.
I have trained with Orrin and Susan Eldred and they have a self published book out. They are both so much fun and they truly love dogs and working dogs. Lots of fun to track with them.
Very fun to watch Will with his tail. My Weims don’t have much tail to watch and the hounds don’t use theirs like that at all…although they do signal quite a few things with their long tails.
Susannah Charleson says
Keli — I don’t know about formal studies on tail action in scent work, but individual dogs’ tail behaviors are certainly something we learn to watch in the field from training Day 1. (Puzzle’s tail behaviors now are identical to those she exhibited on her very first training search.) I know one handler who used to describe himself as “tail gunner on a Husky,” and because my dog behaves very differently on boat work than she does on land, there have been times in training on the boat that while I watched her head, I asked my assistant — “What’s her butt doing?” Some of the signals of tail and haunches are very subtle — particularly on a boat where they can’t move much — and if you’re busy watching up near the dog’s head, those cues are easy to miss. (Much easier on boats where the handler isn’t crammed up on a tiny bow shoulder-to-shoulder with the dog.) I used to assist another handler, sitting behind her Pit Bull, a fabulous water dog. I could tell when he was getting the first wafts of scent from the water just by watching his haunches tighten and his swaying tail begin to slow.
I know the collies on my team and others I’ve run with — Border, roughcoat, &tc. — seem to have the tail-curving-up-over-the-back tendency when moving from indication to alert. (Ending with a wag on the alert to a live find. Unless, curiously, they’ve been taught a bark alert. Some will wag and bark, but quite a few will let go of the wag to bark instead.)
My Golden’s tail changes as she progresses through scent, but she doesn’t carry it high over her back in the same way a collie does.
And there is a definite difference in Puzzle’s tail movement when she’s on human scent versus when she’s in an area where there’s none available as she works. There is a different tension in the carriage and a less aimless sway (sort of like the difference between idly tapping a pencil on a desk and tapping it to the rhythm of a song — same basic action, but … but … different, the latter expressing more focus?)
This is the joy of any kind of scent work; you watch it all, “see” the nature of the dog’s invisible gifts and learn the grammar of them. How lovely to have that language open up to us.
Jennifer Hamilton says
FYI…Whole Dog Journal’s August issue had a great article called: “Your Dog Nose No Bounds. Fun Nose Work is a New Dog Sport That Any Dog Can Enjoy.”. It discusses the interest that is developing for scent work for fun. It is to tracking/SAR work what Rally is to traditional obedience…something that any dog team can do for fun with other fun-minded participants. It is not as intense and industrial strength as many of the hard-core tracking classes that are out there. Also, the sport focuses on activities you can do at home in your house or backyard with just you and your dog, versus traditional tracking where you need a field, multiple people to lay tracks, and other conditions to ensure success. So far most of the classes are taught on the west coast, but I here it is spreading east. I haven’t started the classes yet, but plan to later this year.
This is great. I love the videos. Can you talk more about how you taught him to do this? More videos! It’s very fun to see your pups in action! Thanks so much.
Daphne Robert-Hamilton says
Someone just sent me an email that they know of a K9 SAR dog that had stem-cell treatment for arthritis and it helped. See article: http://www.livescience.com/animals/080123-dog-stemcell.html
Awesome videos, fascinating comments! I’ve just started doing this, somewhat inadvertently, with my Lab. I’ve been taking her out in the sagebrush to throw the ball, and once the ball is covered in slobber and sand it’s invisible when it lands. She watches the general area where it lands, but then really has to use her nose to pinpoint it. I love watching her work. Now I’ve got some new body language to pay attention to – thanks!
Liz F. says
The world of scent work is so interesting , I loved the videos and every comment. Happily read more, especially about scent work in water… seems so tough, like water would dilute scent, how does that work?
Just to add another level of appreciation for ‘find it’ games: they seem to have helped tremendously in managing my young Nala’s arousal level. At eighteen-months-old she is starting to mellow a bit, but she’s still a super energetic Border Collie/Keeshond mix (?) who appears to have learned a lot about healthy breaks from ‘find it’ games. (She can have that “I demand we play more” attitude…Can’t count the days I’ve wished for additional knowledge, time, a farm and sheep, lots and lots of sheep…)
Nala’s “I found it” celebration is similar to Willie’s, but dialed up a notch or two. When we first began scent games, even if I asked for a ‘drop’ and she released, she’d saunter around a while without settling down. She would, however, keep her eyes fixed on our designated hiding toy (a hunting dummy named ‘Fred’), and I used her interest as leverage for the sit/stay portion. In the beginning, she’d follow me often and we’d have to start over. But in short time she caught on to the process and now quickly goes on a sit/stay, apparently knowing “this is how I will get to search again.” (example of the Premack Principle?)
In regards to ‘Fred’, I decided to use one specific toy for this purpose to try to maintain a calmer play session; this toy is for finding only, not for tugging, fetching, chewing, etc. Now all I have to do to get her nose wriggling and nostrils flaring is grab Fred from the bookshelf.
Maybe I misunderstand dogs’ ability to generalize from one context to the next, but I think practicing the start/stop of ‘find it’ games has increased Nala’s patience threshold overall. In other exciting-but-soon-to-be-very-exciting situations, like in between a walk and swimming, or between playing with a new friend and reuniting with an old one, she is more likely to make to the transition with a pause and slow grace instead of an “I’m so happy I’m about to blow a gasket” approach.
Mary Beth says
Trish, I judge sporting dog hunting trials http://www.ufta-online.com and I invite you to come walk with me while I’m judging any day. I got to judge off horseback last weekend, so instead of huffing and puffing along on foot, I had the time to just sit and watch handlers and dogs. One area of interest is the retrieve. So many handlers take on horrid body postures then wonder why their dog bounces away on the retrieve. some of those handlers corrected themselves and the dogs retrieved. Some did not. There is a whole array of skill in handling and training for dogs and humans alike and its a fascinating study!! Even better was the thick cover down low, the mix of dried fall grasses and green grasses, and the high swirling winds as the storm front was moving in. I knew where the birds were planted and I knew where earlier birds had been planted and I knew where some feather piles were. I didn’t always know when a bird was walking away from the nest leaving a complex trail for the dog to follow. So watching these dogs solve the scent puzzle was awesome.
I love the find-it game with my border collie. She recently made me laugh while playing, thought I’d share:
I sometimes feed Aspen dinner in a treat puzzle toy, and the other night I went another step and “hid” the toy for her to find. It’s large, so I just placed it in the middle of the floor in our living room. Aspen went to work looking for her prize, but she was ONLY looking with her nose and walked right past the toy, sitting out in plain sight, not once but several times, with her nose high in the air sniffing around, before she stepped on it and found it by accident. And I thought she was so clever to be using her sense of smell to locate treats…
Maybe next time she’ll use her eyes AND her nose!
Have loved reading your comments. I’d write more now, but feeling a bit under the weather and think I’d best take myself to bed for a few hours (symptoms suspiciously like those in the news right now. oh dear.) But, hey, I can’t resist a few comments.
What I love about this process is how it feeds into my love of communication (one of the favorite subjects of study of ethologists like me). I realized, after reading this discussion, that my primary focus on Will when he was searching was on the movement of his head. It is pretty easy to see his head turn and change when he’s left the ‘cone’ of scent and finds it again, as well as watching it go up and down. Now that I’ve read all the comments (thank you so much!) I watched the videos again and focused on his tail. I had previously noticed the tail up/tail down but not the wag, so that was a great tip for me.
I though you would all be amused that I did notice his tail posture while I was recording, but not the way you might think. The worst thing (beside hurting a sheep) a herding dog can do while working is to throw his tail up. “Tail up” means he or she is no longer herding, and is more in “chase” mode–very, very different internal affects, and the last thing you want when working sheep. So when his tail went up as he followed the scent in the ditch, I clearly remember a visceral reaction, somewhere between “oh dear” and “eeeeeps”. Of course, I didn’t say a word, Will did nothing wrong and I knew that, but apparently I am classically conditioned to have a reaction when his tail goes up! I think I’ll write my next blog on tail positions. It was gonna be today, but I’m feeling shivery and achey… so off to home I go. (Cross your paws for me!)
Susannah Charleson says
Oh, feel better soon, Trish (if I may?). I’m so sorry you’re sick. Hope rest will knock the epizoodix straight out.
Liz F. You wrote: “The world of scent work is so interesting , I loved the videos and every comment. Happily read more, especially about scent work in water
Mary Beth says
Susannah, in Ohio most lakes have old christmas trees and even some houses and roads deep down, so there is a whole lot of debris to endanger divers, so absolutely, a search dog can do phenomenal things! Its amazing how deep the victim can be and still give off scent the dogs can trace (think old quarries or the Great Lakes). I hated water work. It was so HARD and the frustration of waiting for the boat to turn and trying to teach my dog to have a less “active” alert on the boat…he’d leap over me to bark in the boat drivers face if the boat wasn’t turned quick enough. Now there’s a fond memory.
Trish, interesting comment about chase. I’ll have to watch closely with my coonhound puppy. He’s learned slowly but surely that he is absolutely allowed to interact positively with my house cat, but he is not allowed to exhibit any prey or chase behaviors around her. I watch his eyes mostly, and his overall body posture, but I haven’t focused on the tail. He has his tail up, his tail neutral down or slightly out, and his tail out but curled to the side instead of straight, and his tail tucked when he’s very unhappy(which I may see a lot more if we can’t work through his adolescent phase together…brat!!!)
Liz F. says
What a concise (and tactful) description of how water carries scent. The confetti idea helped, as well as the idea of gesturing, to communicate the conditions the dogs are up against. Seems like the Mt. Everest of scent work.
I am left in total awe of dogs’ abilities.
Fascinating discussions on dogs working scent, thank you all! I’m fortunate to have hundreds of acres of woodland behind my farm, and dogs (two border collies) with an excellent recall. Occasionally on our morning walks, if I know the dogs are focused on some chipmunk elsewhere, I’ll climb a tree and wait. I’m always amazed, at my elevated vantage point, to watch my dogs run up the trail past my tree, turn on a dime when they realize they’ve lost my scent, and zero in on my hiding spot as though there are neon signs pointing the way…doesn’t matter if I’m 30 feet up, they’ll find me.