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Amparo Bertram

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09:45 am: Canine training: Week 5
Finally, we have reached the halfway mark.

Bag searching exercises are going well. Now we're making the transition to having the dogs work at the airport. Benny got a chance to model his official CBP trainee uniform. His first day of work was fraught with difficulties, such as a passenger transporting a pet puppy and part of someone's waffle that had fallen on the floor to tempt him. He even provided me an opportunity to use a bit of Japanese as he showed interest in bags arriving from Narita.

Luckily, he's friendly toward people, not showing any signs of anxiety or fear around small crowds or moving objects like carts and wheelchairs. He just needs to figure out that he's supposed to be sniffing the bags, not all the people's legs.

On Friday we all took a field trip to let the dogs explore the woods at nearby Line Creek. Benny was thrilled to have so many trees available for him to mark.

Outside of class, I had a request to share the details of the cooking setup in my hotel room. I do all my food preparation on one cabinet that houses the waist-high refrigerator and the microwave, along with a small cupboard for storage. The top of the cabinet is where I have my cutting board, slow cooker, and a small towel where I can set dishes after I wash them in the bathroom sink. It's cramped, but it seems to be working well enough.

Comments

[User Picture]
From:collarnojutsu
Date:February 20th, 2011 09:41 pm (UTC)

no waffle for you!

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part of someone's waffle that had fallen on the floor to tempt him

This made me laugh. I can just imagine! Poor doggie!
[User Picture]
From:wednesday_10_00
Date:February 22nd, 2011 02:33 am (UTC)
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Aww, Benny looks so handsome in his uniform!

What kinds of foods are you cooking for yourself? Have any favorites you'd like to share?
[User Picture]
From:spacealien_vamp
Date:February 22nd, 2011 12:24 pm (UTC)
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What kinds of foods are you cooking for yourself?

So far I have made
  • potato/kidney bean soup
  • steamed brown bread
  • enchilada casserole
  • caramelized onion quiche
  • split pea soup

Have any favorites you'd like to share?

My favorite is probably the bread, because it's versatile and can be eaten without dirtying a lot of dishes or utensils. The recipe comes from the cookbook I linked earlier:

1 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup whole wheat flour
0.5 cup rye flour (I substitute more whole wheat, because none of the stores here sell rye)
0.5 cup cornmeal
2 T sugar
1 t salt
1 t baking soda
1.5 cups buttermilk
0.5 cup molasses
2 T olive oil

Combine dry ingredients in a mixing bowl. Combine wet ingredients in a smaller bowl and pour into dry ingredients. Stir until well blended.

Pour into a greased baking dish (I used a 1.5 quart Corningware casserole dish), cover with aluminum foil, and place in slow cooker. Add water to slow cooker until it comes at least an inch up the sides of the baking dish. Cook on high for three hours.
[User Picture]
From:wednesday_10_00
Date:February 22nd, 2011 02:55 pm (UTC)
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Yum! I've never made bread in the slow cooker, I'll have to try that!
[User Picture]
From:mangaroo
Date:February 22nd, 2011 05:24 pm (UTC)
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How do you discourage him from legs and encourage more bag-sniffing? Has he discovered any contraband? Does he mind his dapper uniform?
[User Picture]
From:spacealien_vamp
Date:February 22nd, 2011 09:49 pm (UTC)
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How do you discourage him from legs and encourage more bag-sniffing?

He only gets rewarded for sniffing bags, not for legs.

Has he discovered any contraband?

We got our first seizure today. Technically, another dog hit on the bag while it was revolving around the carousel. Our instructor took it off and put it on the floor. Then I brought Benny over, and he hit on it too. It turned out to contain vegetable seeds for planting, which are not allowed without proper paperwork.

Does he mind his dapper uniform?

He doesn't seem to mind at all.
[User Picture]
From:megory
Date:February 23rd, 2011 05:17 pm (UTC)
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This is really exciting. You know, when I'm walking through a place and see dogs doing their job, I never think about all the training that went into their ability to do the right thing. They just make it look so natural.
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