of check cord. Today we went out to play and look over a new bit of training ground and trail. I used the shorter 12 foot check cord today instead of the 35 foot one. Whittling it down ever so slowly to no check cord. It was cool and a little damp on this trail. It is a horse trail and the horse people are so good about keeping their trails marked and not messed up. No ATVs or vech. of any kind so the terrain is still very natural. Gunner did just great. (Shh. we won't tell him so he doesn't get a big head) But he would run out a ways and then every so often he would either stop and check back to see me or run back and see me. I used the whistle today to call him back. He understood it really well and it carries farther than my voice and also has no tone. Like if I get a little Momma-ish and think he is too far away. If I call sometimes I know he can hear it in my voice. The whistle doesn't have the very slight tone of worry in it. Every time I recall him, he would come just speeding back. He was good about going in the brush and over some rocks and things to sniff around. We didn't find any birds. We did meet a guy hiking. And he was good about how to approach Gunner to pet him. Actually asked if it would be alright. Maybe because when he first came with in sight Gunner came back to me and barked very defensively at him. I had him sit and wait until the man came a bit closer. That is when we talked at a distance and I didn't get any weird vibes from him so I let him pet Gunner. He must know about dogs too because other than asking he also squatted down and turned sideways and stuck out his hand to Gunner. Gunner gave him the once over and then when he pulled in his hand Gunner sniffed his ears and hat and then let him pet him. I love meeting up with someone who knows how to approach a dog. It was a nice meeting and he went up the trail and we went back down. Gunner is doing great with his off lead work and I am getting more sure of his recall. Makes it easier and more fun for the both of us. As we got near the car I called him to me and "heeled" him to the car. Now he is eating an ice cup and watching me type. This are some pic I took. They are a bit dark because it was shady on the trail.