Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: New Hampshire, USA
Police Dog Tracking/Trailing
OK: Another conversation starter...
How do you start your police dogs on their tracking/trailing?
There seems to be a wide variation in how people start their dogs, from an IPO style track, that they then expand to hard surfaces, to "scent in a bottle", to HITT, to laying tracks barefoot, to various combinations thereof.
Some don't like the hydration, but I have my own opinions on it...
How we do it:
We use a modified version of the HITT method, for police dog type tracks/trails.
We start them on a scent pad with heavy bait, to reinforce good nose down behavior, and as soon as that is solid, we transition right to a hard surface track.
Pavement, concrete, hard pack, dirt, grass, then woods. (leaves, pine needles, forest floor material in our region) The theory is train them on "most difficult to least difficult", so the dog starts tracking on the most difficult surface it will ever encounter.
We also track in snow of course, if in season.
We start the dogs on hard surface as soon as they exhibit good nose down behavior, and concentration for the task. Very dependent on the individual dog, but they usually progress quickly.
What are you using?
Police K9/Explosive Detection/IPO/Ring
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