I was working with Tommy on heeling the other day for our next heeling tutorial video, and he wouldn’t heel in one spot on the lawn. This was somewhat frustrating because there was nothing there to my eyes or nose. When I would give the verbal cue and take a step, he would dart several feet to the side, and stop or keep walking in that position away from me.
His NOSE was able to perceive a scent that I could not. It was probably some ground in dog waste that was causing him to avoid the area.
All dog people know that dogs can sense things we can’t. It is likely smell and imperceptible body language that humans are no longer capable of doing that makes dogs so knowledgable about their environment.
Because I was too focused on getting the job done and doing what I wanted to do, I was oblivious to anything else. When I realized that this spot on the ground was a problem for Tommy, I decided to take more care when setting up training situations in the future. Most of our training sessions will now take place at the 2 acre training yard.
Here is a clip of Tommy avoiding the spot on the lawn. Its actually quite funny. Silly me.