This past Saturday we held our first ever Doggy Easter Egg Hunt. With the amount of eggs we littered the ground with it was a very poor attempt at hide and seek since we made close to no effort to hide the eggs. I later put a couple eggs in the backyard for Riley and he eventually found one of them (sometimes I wonder about his hound dog nose). He also had no idea we were playing a game at the time or that I'd hidden the eggs. I should have shown them to him and let him sniff them before hiding them but we have plenty of eggs left.
As I was saying before I got distracted by my tangents the Doggy Easter Egg Hunt is a version of hide and seek. It is a great game to play with scent hounds like Beagles, Basset Hounds, American Foxhounds, Coon Hounds, etc. and Terriers. This is what they are bred to do. Their job in this world is to find creatures and either alert us to their presence or exterminate them. The Doggy Easter Egg Hunt and other versions of hide and seek play to this nature. All the games we play with our dogs are geared towards their natural inclinations. Even the toys we give them flop and squeak like wounded animals.
I would label the first Doggy Easter Egg Hunt as a success. We had two weeks to plan and organize an event. By this time all the partners we asked to come were either booked with other activities or working. We only promoted it with a small Facebook post and it helped us to make a few connections, and most of all it was fun to see the doggies running around looking for eggs. Many were overwhelmed by other scents and didn't pick up that the eggs were even there and some figured out they'd have to work to get the eggs opened and thought that would be too much work. When a dog did figure it out though it was fun to see the understanding and them look at the field of treats and start popping open egg after egg.
The big lessons we learned were to set the date much earlier. This year we had no choice but in future years we need to start planning the event at least a couple months out to get partner businesses involved and then announce the event about a month out. For the actual hunt let the dogs smell and have an egg before they enter the hunting ground so that they are more likely to figure out what behavior we want from them. And finally be a little more interactive within the event page so that people can see the game of hide and seek in action before the event. Riley can demonstrate it quite effectively.
It was a fun day on Saturday and I know the dogs that came out enjoyed it. We do have plenty of left over Easter Eggs so if you'd like some feel free to ask or we can come and do a private Easter Egg Hunt for your dogs if you'd like. Either way contact us if interested.