Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Briard Rescue Trust 2014 Puppies Calendar

Available from the Briard Rescue Trust vendor booth at the 2013 National, Aurora, CO. $20 each.

Monday, May 6, 2013

Thank you!

Thanks to everyone who supported the Briard Rescue Trust Fundraiser.  We have an additional $681 to help people who help Briards through financial support and education! Celebrate the season! Enjoy your Briards and gardens!

Gabrielle LaRoche,
Briard Rescue Trustee

2013 Spring Flower Power Fundraiser Supporters:
 CM Arras, Kirsten Becker, Debi Bernardi, Angie Bixler, Colleen Brent, Janis Carpenter, Andy McGregor, Barbara Galecki, Lana Ginnis, Becky Goodwin, Melody Hanson, Constance Hardy, Nancy Kalish, Sarah Kephart, Gabrielle LaRoche, Elizabeth LaRue, Lorraine Nettles, Gail Oneal, Denise Partyka, Lynda Ronell, M SuDock, Erika Swerling, Sonia Thompson, Tracy Thorleifson, Maureen Visnicky, Judy Withee

Monday, April 1, 2013

Easter "Hunting"

Instructor, Barb Davenport loads the mason jars along the fence-line
On Easter Sunday, a couple of Northwest Briards participated in a different kind of  "hunt" that did not involve colored eggs. Gabrielle LaRoche & Nash and Carol Wolfram & Demi attended a one-day seminar on "A practical approach to scent work".  It was an unseasonably warm and sunny day for March in the pacific,northwest and a great day to develop a new skill with our Briards.

Basic scent work does not require any fancy equipment.  Although you can invest in a scent box, a dozen plastic flower pots, a new paint can, cotton balls, glass mason jars and essential oil (we used clove) should do the trick.  Tongs and and surgical gloves are also helpful to avoid contamination.

To begin with, each dog was evaluated for ball/toy drive (read ball/toy crazed).  Working detection dogs need to have a great deal of drive to endure long, potentially boring searches all for the love of a ball or toy reward.  Food can also be used but can be less practical for use in certain situations in the the field. There were Briards, Border Collies, German shepherds, and cattle dogs participating in the class and all passed this initial test. 

Our instructor had prepared the scent in advance by treating cotton balls with several drops of clove oil and allowing the scent to permeate the cotton balls in a sealed new paint can over night.  Unscented cotton balls were placed in each of five mason jars, the scented cotton balls in the sixth.  Then each mason jar was placed in a flower pot and weighted with rocks so the dogs could not easily tip them over.  In addition to securing the mason jars, the flower pots help to direct or "chimney" the scent and also provide a visual "marker" to help see when the dog's nose dips below the rim. The goal of this setup is to have all six pot-n-jars to look identical so that smell is the only sense that the dogs can use to detect.

At first several pots are lined up along a fence or wall including the scented pot.  Since the exercise is done on leash, having the pots against a fence or wall helps to keep the dog from wrapping around the pot and knocking it over.  The handler then leads the dog down the line of pots, "presenting" or inviting the dog to smell each pot and telling the dog to "find it" or "search it".  When the dog reaches the scented pot, the ball or toy is immediately deployed as a reward.  In subsequent tries, additional "blank" pots are added up to a total of five plus the one scented pot.  The scented pot is also moved to a different place in the sequence. Each time the handler "presents" each pot and the dog is immediately rewarded for indicating the scented pot with the ball or toy. Clear indication is determined by the nose dipping below the rim of the correct pot. It is important to wait for the dog to clearly indicate so that the dog learns to pinpoint the source of the odor.  Whether you want your dog to be employed in law enforcement or search for truffles, pinpointing the source is essential.

In the next exercise, the pots were moved to a new location, still in a line but no longer against a fence. Again the handler "presents" each of six pots and the dog is rewarded for indicating the correct pot.  In the third exercise, the pots are placed randomly in an area roughly 100' x 100' and again the same presentation, indication and reward sequence is followed.  By this point in the seminar, Demi and Nash have worked through each exercise a couple of times and are clearly indicating the odor.

Demi is in the scent cone working to the source
The final exercise for the day was performed off leash in an open field in an area about 2 acres.  The field we used was actually the lower half of the c course field where Nash and Demi had been training for a herding trial.  This time we hid six scented pots at the base of trees and in and among the leaves on the ground. There were also numerous empty pots around the field.  Each dog-handler team took a turn at searching the field.  And this was also the exercise that showed which dogs had the most solid grasp,of the concept.  When asked to Search it", Demi, as well as several of the other dogs began to work back and forth until they worked into the scent cone where a clear change in body posture was exhibited. They then worked to the source and pinpointed the source of the odor in the pot. Nash was somewhat more distracted, perhaps because he was used to working sheep,on the field or perhaps because he's a goofy boy. But for whatever reason, although he could pick up the odor, he had trouble working to the source and was easily distracted.
Nash finally makes it to the source!

Neither Nash nor Demi have plans to pursue a career in detection work.  It was however a great way to spend a sunny day and pick up some new skills and techniques that will hopefully carry-over to training article discrimination for obedience competition.

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Flower Power Spring Drive: Plant a Flower, Save a Dog!

Celebrate Spring! Support Briard Rescue Trust in helping people that help Briards. We've teamed-up with Flower Power to bring you the finest, best-quality bulbs and plants available from growers in Holland and the U.S. with an unconditional, 100% money-back guarantee, and with 50% of the proceeds going to support Briard rescue. What's even better is that we have an absolutely exciting Spring product line-up including dinnerplate sized dahlias, fragrant freesias, old-fashioned bleeding hearts and much more. What's not to like about that? Plant a flower, save a dog! It's all about the dogs! 

The fundraiser runs now through April 26, 2013. We are already a tenth of the way to our goal of raising $2,500 by April 26.

Help us reach our goal!  Click this link to order now or share the post via email, Twitter of Facebook by clicking the icon at the bottom of this post
The Briard Club of America Rescue Trust is a 501(c)(3) charitable trust formed to further the Briard Club of America's mission of protecting Briards in need of rescue. 

Monday, March 4, 2013

Canine Genetic Testing Company Opens in Spokane

Hello to all!  I am working with a newly developing canine genetic testing company.  I am very excited about this company as they have already successfully created a human genetic testing company, Signature Genomics.  The goal of this company is to provide the same comprehensive, quality controlled genetic services to dogs as is the standard for humans.  Sadly there is NO regulation of the genetic testing offered to dogs (as I think some people have sadly experienced first hand.)
I could not move to Spokane so I I doing DNA collections and  the new primary contributor to their blog with my first blog now published!
Check out Paw Print Genetic at:

Martine Huslig, MS, BCGC
Board Certified Genetic Counselor
Contractor, Paw Print Genetics

850 E Spokane Falls Blvd, Suite 200
Spokane, WA 99202
Main: (509) 483-5950
Direct: (858) 442-3791

Friday, February 8, 2013

Briard Medical Trust February 2013 NewsView this email in your browser
The Briard Medical Trust
Dear Briarders and friends,

Thanks to you, the BMT Bloat Challenge was a great success.  We sent out the call and you answered:  our original goal was $2500 and we received $4400 in donations which allowed us to contribute over $12,000 to the AKC CHF Bloat Initiative.  The AKC in turn has sent out its request for proposals which you can read about here.

Over the past year, the BMT has committed over $20,000 to research including bloat and the following projects:

01609: Probiotic VSL# 3 Reduces Enteritis in Dogs with Inflammatory Bowel Disease

01429: Mechanistic Relationship of IL-8 in Cell Proliferation and Survival of Canine Hemangiosarcoma

01426: c-Kit Mutation and Localization Status as Response Predictors in Canine Mast Cell Tumors Treated with Toceranib or Vinblastine: A Response-Adaptive Randomized Trial

01415: Development of Anti-IgE Peptide for Treatment of Canine Allergy

Research summaries and progress reports for each study have been uploaded to the BMT website and can be accessed on our activities page

Thank you for your continued support.  With your help, we look forward to doing more for Briards in 2013.

Since its founding in 2005, the Briard Medical Trust has donated over $55,000 in support of various research studies to benefit the health of our Briards. Your generous giving makes this possible.

Thank you. 


You can benefit the Briard Medical Trust any time you shop by making your purchases through the portal provided at the bottom of  the trust's "Shop Amazon, Benefit The Trust" page.

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