About Hunter’s Heart K9 Scent Detection Training

Carla Simon photoFrom bed bugs to birds, from narcotics to nosework, Dr. Carla Simon BSc MD MBA’s motivational training has helped hundreds of K9 scent detection teams around the world to reach their potential. Since 1999, Carla has bred and trained scent dogs for Hunter’s Heart Kennels, as featured in the Pointing Dog Journal, Dogs in Canada, and Clean Run magazines. Carla is a Contributing Editor for the American Brittany Magazine, and a sought-after speaker who drew a sold-out crowd of more than 600 at UBC’s Chan Centre for the Performing Arts. Carla serves on the Canadian Kennel Club (CKC) Scent Detection Council and is a CKC Judge, Past President of Sniff Alberta, Sniffing Dog Sports Judge, and Certifying Official for UKC Nosework (the second largest kennel club in the world) and is a Scent Detection Instructor (at Kayenna Kennels, Calgary).

Carla has trained teams for detecting target odors including:

  • bed bugs detection
  • narcotics detection
  • firearms and explosives detection
  • wildlife detection
  • truffles detection
  • human remains detection (cadaver dogs)
  • handler discrimination
  • hunting dogs
  • mantrailing dogs
  • and pet dogs for scent detection and nosework competitions.

Carla formerly conducted Behavior Assessments for the Calgary Humane Society, onboarding junior assessors. She is a Long Service Member of the Canadian Kennel Club. In her capacity as a Canine Good Neighbor Evaluator, she organized Alberta’s first CGN test, and has evaluated potential therapy dog prospects and pets at events such as Pet Expo. She chaired the American Brittany Club’s Performance Committee (AKC), and was appointed to the Health & Genetics Committee of the CKC. Carla has trained with the Scandinavian Working Dog Institute, Andrew Ramsey (California, USA), Karen Kroyer (Texas, USA), John Rogerson (UK), and tracked with Calgary’s Schutzhund club.

Hunter’s Heart Brittanys have multi Elite High in Trial international wins in UKC Elite Nosework, and qualified in Iron Dog (California, USA). In 2018, Huntersheart Jager Cimex (bred and owned by Carla) was accepted into CBSA’s Detection Dog Training Program. In addition to field and scent titles, her dogs have won gold at AAC Alberta Agility Championships, National High in Trial Agility Brittany and Best in Specialty at the Canadian National Brittany Specialty. Her Brittanys have achieved numerous Top 5 national rankings in agility, conformation and obedience competition.

Carla’s scent detection students are known for their focussed attention and enthusiasm. She employs an evidence-based approach to train detection dogs of all ages, sizes, temperaments and abilities to become reliable scent detection dogs. Her experience helps teams build a solid foundation, avoid common mistakes and troubleshoot issues to produce precise sourcing, intense indications and handlers who understand the wind, and how to get their dogs to where the need to be to detect odor. She appreciates the science underpinning olfaction, scent, and statistical reliability, helping students to understand and apply the latest scientific research to their training.

  • While studying Biology at the University of Western Ontario, Carla’s projects included the social behavior of lemurs to the genetics of fruit flies and the cellular biology, neurology, anatomy, and physiology (structure and function) of mammals.
  • While studying Medicine at the University of Toronto, she studied performance in sports, neurology, and cellular signalling, and assisted numerous head and neck surgeries, including septoplasties to improve nasal airflow.
  • While studying for the Masters of Business Administration, she excelled in applied Statistics and Forecasting.
  • While managing BC Cancer Agency’s Provincial Cancer Prevention Programs, she taught physicians about prevention (where false positives and false negatives are essential to evaluate programs).

Scent detection is a fun game for sniffer dogs! If you’re not having fun from the very first session, you’re doing something wrong and you need to fix it. We’d be happy to show you how, with step by step coaching. Learn online with our international students: Or if you’re in the Calgary area, register now for classes, seminars or sniff and go (1 hour to try nosework or test your skills) at Kayenna Kennels, Calgary:


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2 Trackbacks / Pingbacks

  1. Back by Popular Demand: Nosework Crash Course Weekend, July 15/16, Hunter’s Heart (Calgary), Nosework Blog | Hunter's Heart
  2. Last chance for Scent Detection classes starting tomorrow (Calgary, Wed. March 7), Hunter's Heart, Canada

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