Willy has started a new class: Nose Work!
Willy is still in Agility, and has now started classes in Nose Work, as well.
Tonight was our second class. For the start, we are getting the dog to use his nose, working with food in boxes. We will progress to closed boxes, containers, and move on from there. This is a relatively new dog sport, and it is great for older dogs who aren't able to race around. It gives them plenty of mental stimulation. One member of our class is a 1 year old Bouvier who is blind from age, nothing more.
Willy really enjoys this class, he caught on to the 'game' with the boxes quickly. It is fascinating sitting watching the dogs "work."
If we continue in the program, we can go to the point of competing in trials. There, the dog is tested on indoor room searches, outdoor searches, and vehicle searches. The use oil essences for scent, not food, so we have plenty of training to do before we even think about that.
I've spent 5 years in obedience training. Even Agility is based on obedience, many of the same commands are used. First thing the instructor advises us in Nose Work: forget everything you know about obedience, you do NOT want to do ANY of that!
Here is a link for anyone interested: http://www.k9nosework.com/photogallery/classphotos.html
You can poke around on that link -- I didn't give you the home page, I gave you the page with class photos, showing dogs working with boxes in the initial training stage.
BTW Riley has also started Agility classes and it doing really well in that too!