It’s baby steps in Elite for Team Pink. Olivia and I are completely opposite in nose work, so Mom and I need to find our own groove. It is going to be a slow process, but we are not quitters and don’t intend to give up. I love sniffing and we will get better and better as a team. Sunday I had my second Elite trial in Houlton, WI at the Fred C Anderson Scout Camp. It was super foggy in the morning, thus the hazy look in the background.

Elite is all about the points. A dog accumulates points and earns titles at 150, 400, 650, and the Elite Champion at 1000. In order to keep the points you earn at a trial, you must have at least 43 out of a total of 100. Olivia earned her 1000 points in just twelve trials. Mom and I might need more like twenty. It’s alright as there is no rush, and honestly, Mom and I never thought I would even make it to Elite.

My first Elite trial was in June and it was a complete failure/disaster. First of all, it was in the 90’s and humid. We were parked in the sun on asphalt. The searches were big and complicated. Our day started with a “no” and that was about it. I found eight of eighteen hides which is pretty bad, but we also got a couple “no’s”, each of which takes away half of a hide’s points. My afternoon went pretty well, I only missed two of seven hides but with the “no’s”, we earned 38.89 points for the day. Since it was below the 43, we went home with nothing.

My second Elite trial went a little better. My first and last searches were not too bad. In the exterior searches we really struggled. At the end of the day, we had one “no”, but I found ten hides out of eighteen. My points for the day were 52.78, so I now have some points towards my first Elite title.

Olivia and Mom are both very competitive, and they run around like crazy creatures all the time. I prefer to take my time with almost everything and enjoy the moment. This makes it hard to clear large spaces in Elite trials. We are going to keep practicing and hopefully will do better with each trial, one hide at a time.

Mom is happy that I have so much fun and am really happy to go to trials and sniff. It is hard for her to not do well and move faster, but speed isn’t everything. If I can find most or all of the hides that is all we need. Olivia can have the speed ribbons, I’m happy with some nice finishes and titles. We are resigned to baby steps in Elite for me. Stay tuned to see how it goes. An FYI, we take photos a lot when we are waiting to search because it relaxes us, thus the sometimes odd shots!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *