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Taylina

Geocaching with pets?

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I was just wondering if many people take their pets (mostly dogs I would assume) with them while they are geocaching?

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I've cached on horseback, which was good fun although getting on and off all the time was exhausting :) And I used to do a lot of trails with me dog, but she was useless at the stealth aspect and would let every muggle near and far no where I was :(

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I was just wondering if many people take their pets (mostly dogs I would assume) with them while they are geocaching?

 

I pretty much just discovered geocaching and I'm finding it very very interesting and fun. I'm moving to Japan here at the end of the year and that's where I'll get started as there are many around Okinawa so I've researched!

 

I have a Great Dane and am in the process of clicker-training him which is just a technique to get him more behaved for geocaching out on the beaches/rocks/coves/caves with is what I will be sticking to. My goal is to have him off-leash trained so we can walk together and explore.

 

I've been thinking of making a FB page for Geocachers with pets as I'll be making videos with my GoPro 3+, I even found a dog harness/mount! I may buy it eventually. I shall omit the actual destination and exact location of the caches obviously.

 

Here is Apollo.

 

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I cache with my rough collie Alva. When I visit a cache with her I draw her face next to my signature in the log book. Some cachers purchase TB accounts for their dogs and dip them in caches.

 

In fact, I started caching partially for Alva. I wanted to do agility and such but her hips are not good so I had to quit. I still needed a hobby. I like puzzles and treasure hunting and had heard about geocaching. Alva's issue was perfect excuse to start. Finding caches has led us to new walking paths and offered us some change in our routines. I have discovered places and tidbits of history I would never have known without caching.

 

I do not cache often so I might do this even if Alva was healthy. It just might have taken more time to trigger me to start.

 

I have tried to teach Alva to find caches. Unfortunately I pressed her too hard too early with a difficult search and she lost motivation. She just checks the closest rocks and holes. But she does check them more eagerly every time and I learn to interpret her behavior (no cache, fake alert, not interested, there is something, cache near, cache here). Usually I have already spotted the most promising hiding place when she remembers that she has to look around.

 

Alva has been my best camo ever. Everybody thinks I am just a dog walker and cachers fall for that too. If I want to look around I just let her sniff the ground while I study my surroundings. Or she sniffs around looking for a cache but people could think she has found squirrel's tracks.

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My dog used to dig around the cache site. Every time. I tried to persuade her not to do this. "It's against guidelines!" - I said. She used to reply: "You just found something interesting for yourself with tons of descriptions, hints and photos. I've got nothing of this stuff but you're expecting me to be your companion. Why should I just stay aside then? I also wish to find some treasure for myself, perhaps a mouse or two". We haven't agreed on this matter yet.

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I forgot to mention that Alva is supposed to indicate found caches by lying down or sitting down if the cache is above knee-level. I discourage her to dig, scratch or grab the cache to avoid erosion and damage but these behaviors still occur occasionally. She remembers to lie down better every time we make a new find.

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