The smart Retriever in this video guessed which cup is hiding the treat, and she is so good! Even though her owner shuffled the cups several times, she was accurate for the most part. The last time, she used her nose. Teaching our dog to use her nose to find things benefits her in more ways than one. Jen Gabbard in Puppy Leaks shares that dogs like to have a job to do. They like to keep their mind busy and stimulated. Training our dog to do Nose Work meets these criteria. To do this, you can use what you have at home. Start with “Which hand is it?” While your dog is watching, put a treat in one of your hands. Then make a fist with both of them. Hold out your hand and say, “Which hand is it?” If your dog chooses the correct hand, praise her profusely, and give her the treat in your hand. If she choose the incorrect hand, simply open the empty hand and try the game again. Make sure you don’t discourage her by a disappointed tone or scolding or disapproval. The point of the whole game is for your dog to feel entertained and have fun.
After your dog’s got the hang of the basic nose work, you can up the challenge. Start to hide the treat. Not in difficult places at first. You can even let your dog see where you are putting the treat at the beginning so she knows that you expect her to “find it.” Maybe you can put the treat just around the corner while she is watching you. Then say, “Find it.” After she gets the hang of this, make it a bit more challenging. Hide it when she can’t see where you are putting the treat. If the treat has a scent, and if your dog needs help finding it, you can drag the treat along the floor so she can follow the scent. And when she finds the treat, praise her and make a huge deal out of her success. And let her have the treat she finds. You can read Jen’s entire article here.
Article source: Jen Gabbard in Puppy Leaks