Advanced Nosework Elements

Don’t Miss Out! World Detector Dog Organization – Setting the Standard, April 8-9, 2021

Join us to learn about the latest advances in canine scent detection, and take your scent detection to the next level at the WDDO 15th Annual Conference. There’s only one week left to register for live online seminars on April 8-9, 2021. You can’t beat the price, at $50 for two days of K9 Scent …

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Photo of a scent cone

Scent Theory: How Scent Cones Move

Scent is a moving target, carried and distorted by the wind. As a handler, one of the most challenging parts of your job is figuring out how to help your sniffer dog get to where they need to be to find odor, rather than hindering them by blocking or pulling them away from scent. Therefore, …

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Clever Hans was presented to an audience in 1904

Avoiding the Clever Hans Phenomenon in Scent Detection

This blog has been updated in the IAABC Journal, Spring 2020: https://spring2020.iaabcjournal.org/the-clever-hans-effect-scent-detection/?fbclid=IwAR28KpQBKKbCRY5GyAy73ssB2pWiEyyokkwxYJIZ0jHDeN556UsObQ3fHhg Clever Hans was a horse who became famous for answering math questions by counting with his hoof (1). For example, when asked what’s the square root of nine, he tapped his hoof three times. He was featured by the New York Times and …

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Sourcing, Residual Odor and Preventing False Alerts FAQ – Part 2

In Part 1, I explained why your dog should be working to source in every search i.e. getting his nose as close as physically possible to the highest concentration of odor. Hopefully you took the sourcing tests and videoed yourself. In today’s blog, you’ll observe students working through sourcing exercises at class. RIZZI 0:2 The first …

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Sourcing, Residual Odor and Preventing False Alerts FAQ – Part 1

Question: Carla, can you suggest training exercises to help work through dogs (false) alerting on trace or residual odour? I assume that for the most part it’s team inexperience but now that the sport of nosework is getting so popular facilities have multiple people placing hides and I’d like some pearls of your wisdom/experience to help …

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Converging Odors and Single Odor Hides vs. Cocktail FAQ

Lori’s question: Is there ever an advantage to using single odor hides? For example, one hide is wintergreen, another hide is birch with anise, etc.. (We started training using a cocktail of Birch + Anise + Clove + Wintergreen cocktail.) Answer: Cocktail allows us to train several odors at the same time so we rarely …

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Triple Bunk Break Down | Components of Elite Searches + Double Blind Tests

Be a splitter not a lumper! To succeed in double-blind scent detection tests (e.g. narcotics certification) or elite searches with clearing in scent work competition, you’ll be required to clear rooms, ignore distractions and face an unknown number of hides with potentially unlimited elevation. Set your team up for success by breaking down the individual …

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Table Distraction Game for Sniffer Dogs

Reliable scent dogs must ignore food, toy, and environmental distractions to find target odor. This video shows the Table Distraction Game we play with our scent dogs away from odor, to teach them to ignore a bowl of food by default. It’s a stress-free complement to training sniffer dogs to pass by distractions, go to …

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Welcome to Hunter’s Heart Scent Detection Training

Welcome students!  We’re looking forward to meeting you and your scent dog. We’ve inspired hundreds of students internationally, including dogs of all ages, breeds and sizes. Whether your target odor is bedbugs, narcotics, or nosework scents, we’ll help you to succeed with our proven protocols. Lessons are packed with hands-on practical experience so your dog can …

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Zane, a nosework student, waits for his serch to begin

Upcoming Scent Dog Training with Hunter’s Heart

Classes at Kayenna Kennels, Calgary Learn nosework at Kayenna Kennels (near Southland and Macleod, Calgary) with a 6-week class. Level 1 – We’ve inspired hundreds of students internationally and can help motivate your dog to find target scent. No previous experience required. Puppies are welcome after their second set of vaccinations.Learn more: https://youtu.be/wC9MRR7ui70 Level 2 – …

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Scent Dog Training Classes Start Wed.

While it’s cold outside, come join us for some fun nosework! Classes start this Wednesday evening Dec. 13, 2017.  at Kayenna Kennels (near Southland and Macleod, Calgary). Wednesday Evening Classes Level 1 – We’ve inspired hundreds of students internationally and can help motivate your dog to find target scent. No previous experience required. Learn about how …

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Amp Up the Fun! Hunter’s Heart Fall Nosework Seminars

Interested in trying nosework? Join us for the most fun you’ve ever had with your dog. We’ll motivate your dog to love searching for odor at our hugely popular half day introduction to Scent Work. Learn how we’ve trained dogs of all ages, sizes, temperaments and abilities to become reliable scent dogs. No experience required. If your …

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Fear, Fender Benders and Following Your Fearless Dog

My Brittany Spaniel, Boo, and I spent our summer competing in nosework on a cross country road trip: from Calgary to California, Seattle to Wisconsin. The experience was thrilling sometimes, and punctuated with scary moments. We tested our limits, and I learned to approach uncertainty more like my fearless dog. For those of you who …

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Back to School Survey for Hunter’s Heart Nosework Classes (Starting Sept. 20, at Kayenna Kennels, Calgary)

Nosework classes resume this week and we’re going to have some fun motivating your dog to search for odor! If you’re registered, please complete this survey in advance, to get the most out of your experience: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/8WMBQW7. It may take up to 10 minutes to complete. We’ll use your responses to customise the searches for your unique dog. Even …

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Join Us for Summer Nosework Fun Events, Calgary

Hi everyone, I hope you’re staying cool, and you can join us for some summer nosework events. NOSEWORK DROP-IN NIGHTS AT KAYENNA KENNELS, CALGARY Test your skills in fun, informal nosework matches, following loose Sniffing Dog Sports (SDS) rules for containers, area searches and games (except your dog does not to be registered in any …

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SDS Judge’s Summary by Level | Sniffing Dog Sports Nosework

Brain overload? Sometimes keeping track of multiple hides is enough to keep your brain busy. Print this summary of SDS rules and you’ll be sure to set up practice searches that abide by Sniffing Dog Sports rules: SDS Summary by Level (PDF) The same information is pasted below. SDS JUDGE’S SUMMARY: REQUIREMENTS BY LEVEL General …

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SDS Distance Game Demonstrations

Can your scent dog search independently at a distance? Watch demonstrations with coaching as our students test their skills with the fun SDS Distance Handling Game Version 1, the game we’re playing at Sniff Alberta’s SDS (Sniffing Dog Sports) nosework competition on Oct 7-8, 2017 (Calgary): https://youtu.be/oc6mg59V1Wc We begin with a blind search at the Excellent …

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Back by Popular Demand: Nosework Crash Course Weekend, July 15/16, Hunter’s Heart (Calgary)

Take your nosework to the next level Juno’s video demonstrates strong commitment to odor in scent work. Sometimes blind searches are confusing for the handler. Juno returns to show the location of target odor repeatedly, making it very obvious where target odor is located, until the rewards appear at source. Even newbies in the audience can …

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Top 5 Scent Work Tips on Training Your Down Indication

Here’s our Top 5 Tips on proofing your down indication for K9 Nosework. Tip #1) Always mark or reward finding source. Then you can give extra rewards for the down indication. Watch what happens at 0:18 seconds in the video if you don’t reward the dog for finding source. He offers undesirable behaviors, including looking …

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Delayed Rewards Are Missed Opportunities in Scent Dog Training

From the dog’s point of view, rewards are the most important component of dog training. Sadly, many handlers are lousy rewarders and dogs are left confused and rewardless. Is your dog in this miserable majority? Has he ever shut down, or had trouble understanding a seemingly easy behavior? Has he ever found source and left …

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Patterning for Systematic Searches and Faster Times

Do you have trouble remembering where your scent dog has searched and where he hasn’t? When you’re searching large areas for scent work, it’s a common problem. Novice dogs can demonstrate a lot of frenetic activity, often skipping thresholds, frequently skipping objects or hides. Patterning trains dogs to search systematically, from the start line and around …

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Calgary Nosework Classes – Video of Keata (Border Collie) Learning to Indicate Scent

Only 6 days left! Register now for Nosework classes starting April 5, Calgary Info: https://www.kayennakennels.ca/nosework-classes This video features Keata at our Level 2 (Show Me) Nosework class. Keata (a Border Collie) still indicated the location of scent when we moved containers to a distracting new location. She ignored unplanned distractions when we introduced vehicles and …

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Scent Maze Video: Can Your Dog Find His Way to Source?

This fun scent maze challenged our advanced nosework students to navigate around gates impeding access to the box containing odor to get to source. Teams were allowed perform this blind search off leash at a distance, and ignored pork distractions near the camera. Thanks Carma, Joe, Pat, Katherine, Mike, May and Theresa for being good sports! …

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Work for the Whites of His Eyes

Scent work is a game, and some rewards are better than others. You know you’re on the right track when your dog is so excited you can see the whites of his eyes. What did it look like when you saw your dog that excited? Was he chasing a bird? Or would he rather chase …

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Scent Work – How to Train Distractions with Fun Nosework Games

Scent work is a game, with its roots in hunting and finding prey. In nosework, dogs must learn to ignore distractions to search and find the target odor. We use games to train scent work, and harness the dog’s natural drives. To train a rock-solid detection dog, introduce easy distractions and gradually work up to …

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How to Enter a UKC Nosework Trial

This 33 minute tutorial explains how to enter a UKC Nosework Trial, using Sniff Alberta’s Premium list and entry forms as examples. It answers FAQ’s including how pre-trials work, whether to enter A or B, and going through all the boxes on the entry form. We complete the entry form for 2 example dogs: a …

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Scent 101 SCENTSCAPES Presentation

Get a glimpse into your dog’s fascinating world of scent – Fri. Jan. 5, 2018, in Calgary Scentscapes & Scent Theory 101, presentation (no dogs) – $50.00 There’s a whole world of scent, which allows dogs to detect everything from bombs to cancer. But because air is invisible, humans are generally unaware. Scentscapes videos show …

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Welcome to Calgary Scent Detection Classes at Kayenna Training Academy

Welcome students!  Hunter’s Heart is excited to offer Calgary scent detection classes, seminars and events at Kayenna Training Academy. Register at: https://www.kayenna.ca/scent-detection. We also offer an online scent detection course for training sniffer dogs. We’ve been sniffing since 1999. From bed bugs to birds, nosework to narcotics, we’ve helped hundreds of students internationally, including dogs …

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How to have the most fun with your dog? Nosework/Scent Dog Training Compilation 2016

Nosework can be the most fun you ever had with your dog!  We’ve received many requests to help nosework students explain why they love nosework to people who don’t even know the dogsport exists. A picture’s worth a thousand words, so we hope you enjoy this video compilation. Nosework is an exciting new dogsport. We …

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Comparing SDDA and UKC Nosework

In today’s blog, I’ll compare and contrast nosework competition under the Sporting Detection Dogs Association (SDDA) and United Kennel Club (UKC). Please note that I’m competing in UKC (in the USA and Canada) at the Masters level, while I’ve only titled in Started SDDA in Canada. This blog represents my opinion. There are many nosework organizations and they …

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Photo of a hide under a vacuum, by Furever Reflections

K9 ABC Games – Adventures in Nosework

(Adopted from an article featured in American Brittany Magazine, 2016) I recently had the pleasure to attend the K9 ABC Games nosework event hosted by Kinetic Dog Training, in Calgary, Canada with my two Brittanys. What a blast! Founded in Washington state, K9 ABC Games nosework keeps the emphasis on games. While legs and titles are …

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Photo of a Chihuahua puppy playing with a tennis ball

How Close is Close Enough?

How close should your dog get to source? Will you know it when you see it? After your dog indicates and you call “alert”, the judge can ask “where is it”, so you should be prepared to answer (either with words or showing with gestures that don’t involve touching anything or contaminating source.) Current UKC Nosework …

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Types of Nosework Events

Types of Nosework Events (Printable PDF File) The main types of searches in Nosework include: Container searches, Interior, Vehicle and Exterior and Handler Discrimination. They are explained in detail below. PRE-TRIALS (1 pass required/title) Before you compete in United Kennel Club (UKC) Nosework, the first thing you need to do is a Pre-Trial. During the Pre-trial, your dog …

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UKC Nosework Requirements by Level

I confess: I can never remember the requirements for nosework searches at different levels of UKC competition. This table helps me and my students when we’re planning searches and preparing for trials. Click here to download the PDF version. Novice Advanced Superior Masters Elite Odor[i] 1 odor: Birch (B) 1 odor: Anise (A) 2 odors: …

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United Kennel Club Nosework Links

United Kennel Club (UKC) Helpful Links (As of Feb. 26, 2016) Register Your Dog with UKC               http://www.ukcdogs.com/Web.nsf/WebPages/Registration/ApplicationSingleRegistration 2 main types of UKC registration number: Permanent Registration (purebred dogs) Performance Listing (PL) – mixed breed dogs (Temporary number is rare) http://www.ukcdogs.com/Web.nsf/WebPages/DogEvents/TLRules Blank Nosework Entry Form        http://res.ukcdogs.com/pdf/NoseworkEntry.pdf Nosework Rules                              http://res.ukcdogs.com/pdf/2015NoseworkRules.pdf Find UKC Nosework Events          http://www.ukcdogs.com/Upcoming.nsf/EventView?Open&Group=DogEvents&Type=M Search by …

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Vary Everything But The Odor

Over time, you should vary all aspects of the hides besides the odor itself. For example, don’t just use metal tins. You should practice with hides made of many diverse materials: steel and burlap, wood, cotton, water, plastic, glass, etc.. You should also vary the ageing of the target odor. Sometimes you may place the hide and …

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Photo disposable pipettes

Making Cocktailed Hides

Once your dog is searching for odor, you’ll need some hides in order to practice nosework at home. (A “hide” is the package of target odor inside a ventilated container that is hidden in the search are for the dog to find e.g. pre-scented piece of blotting paper inside a metal tin or a cotton …

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Photo of hide in nosework box, nosework kit and essential oils stored in tackle box

Storing Scent

Storing your scent properly is important to your success in nosework. You always want to know where odor is, and where it isn’t. Here are some key tips. One of the first things you’ll notice is the importance of labelling everything. Always label cold boxes and mark the odor on all containers with scent. For …

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