Barn Hunt

Barn Hunt...  dogs finding rats safely tucked away in a tube and then telling their handlers they found it.  That's it!  Sounds simple doesn't it?  Well, for some dogs it is and others, well, not so much.  This is from the Barn Hunt website:

Barn Hunt is based on the traditional roles of many breeds in ridding farms, barns, crop storage areas, and homes of destructive vermin. Some breeds were specifically created to fill this role, and for many of those breeds, Barn Hunt provides their first true opportunity for responsible breeders to test proper working traits in their dogs. Barn Hunt is also open to any dog of any breed or mix who wishes to play the game and can fit through an 18" wide by bale-height tall tunnel

And now you want to know more, right?  First thing, click here to check out the Barn Hunt website.

I was introduced to the sport at the second trial offered in Wisconsin in 2013 with Jake.  He excelled in it and was one of the first 2 dogs in WI to reach the Master level and the 1st dog to achieve a RATCHX in the sport and won a SILVER medal at the National Competition at Purina Farms.

So what was I to do with Mookie..  well, of course, see if he's interested in rats and I'm happy to report that YES he is after being introduced to them!  He has as much enthusiasm as Jake did without the ability to get his mouth around the tube to try to carry it off as Jake would!   

Following is the journey we are on to find rats in tubes hidden in bales of straw!! 


2022 October - Another day of hunting rats and 2 more novice legs toward his Novice RATNX title (10 additional Qs) He's getting more confident and more assertive when telling me he found the rat. AND...  he got a High in Trial award in one of his runs!  

2022 September - His FIRST trial and he got 2 titles!  

  • RATI (Rat Instinct) (Click for BH title certificate) 3 tubes, 1 rat, 1 litter and 1 blank.   I think he didn't recognize that there could be a rat in one because he did a great search on the bales.  Finally I took him to them and he did a tiny head shift when he went by one so I called it and YEP..  it was the one! 
  • RATN (Rat Novice) (Click for BH title certificate) 3 days of trials..  2 trials/day.  First 2 days he was figuring it out and we got one Q each day.  He identified them but didn't tell me and when we did get the Q, I was proactive in asking him and getting excited with him.  Day 3 was different.  It still was a team effort but he clearly is getting it and searching really well!!  2 Qs meaning we got the 3 for the Novice title and 1 in Novice B towards our RATNX title!


2022 August - Mookie met the rats at Oh Rats in Sheboygan Falls.  He was a wild child and his alert was a high squeaky bark added to a bit of digging. You can see a few videos and photos by clicking here.