This is a transcript from the video that appears in the blog post, Retreat! Click, Treat, Repeat.
Mind and Scent Game for Dogs: Muffin Tin
Mind Puzzle Game for your Dog
Muffin Tin & Balls
[All text is printed on the screen. There is no dialogue or music.]
A large black and tan dog, possibly a Doberman or Rottweiler mix, is presented with a metal muffin tin on a carpet. The left cups each hold a green tennis ball. The right cup closest to the camera has a nubbly, light blue plastic ball. The one next to it in the middle has an orange tennis ball, and the cup closest to the dog and farthest from the camera has a smaller black ball, which looks like it might be rubber or soft plastic.
Text: Place a treat and ball in each cup and sit back and watch your dog think! This simple game is more complex than it looks!
The dog sniffs and nudges the balls in the tin, focusing on the black ball.
Text: There is a slightly smaller smooth black squash ball in the first cup that Jessie goes to.
Then Jessie switches her focus to the orange ball and deftly closes her mouth on it, picks it up, drops it on the floor, and eats a treat out of the cup that held it. She goes back to the black ball, nibbling at it with her front teeth, then scraping at it with one paw, then the other.
Text: She keeps working at it, despite learning that there are treats under the other balls, too!
She tries picking up the tin at the corner with the black ball, but only raises the corner of the tin a couple of inches before moving to the center green ball.
Text: She doesn’t give up easily, nor ask for help!
She removes the green ball, again in one smooth motion, by picking it up, and eats the treat.
Text: Problem solving is a good skill to build in your service dog. Playing mind games is one way to do it.
Jessie removes both other green tennis balls, using the grasp and lift method again, and eats the treats in those cups.
The screen goes blank for a minute, with this text: On another trial, she focuses on the blue dryer ball, moving it around.
Another video of Jessie and the muffin tin game is in progress. This time, two of the cups have been emptied of their green tennis balls already, leaving the black, orange, and blue balls, plus one more green tennis ball. Jessie lifts the blue ball from one cup, puts it in another cup, eats the treat where it was, then puts it back in it original cup! Next she removes the orange ball, eats that treat, and then tries lifting the blue ball again, possibly to see if there might still be a treat under it. (Or maybe she just enjoys the large, nubbly, blue ball, which is so different from the tennis balls.)
She lifts out the last tennis ball and eats that treat.
Text: Use paper balls to make it easier.
Jessie is pawing the blue dryer ball again.
The screen goes blank again, ending with this text:
Try other objects, too!
This is a great way to motivate your service dog to pick up objects he does not like, such as metal.