My original post had the details of starting the building search that was timed out.
With a green, new dog, I start the building search with the dog searching for the handler. The handler teases the dog and then runs into a building with a toy. The dog is then sent to search for the handler. This accomplishes several things, the dog learns to search in a stress free way. The dog immediately switches to it's "nose over it's eyes" faster. The dog also learns to search for human odor before learning to search for equipment, because sleeves and suits stink to a dog and have associations.
I do this for about two weeks. The searches get longer and more complicated and the dog works in drive with out conflict to find the handler. With a green dog and new handler, this helps to develop the bond. IME, if you start with a decoy and a green dog you will introduce a lot of conflict and hectic behavior. I prefer to break training down into small components and modules. This does that quite well.
Once the dog has the idea and is biting well on the suit, I add the decoy in. This is done in a very systematic fashion. I start with a decoy in the first room in the right side of the door. The dog finds the decoy, then we repeat with the decoy deeper in the right corner. Then the left corner, then next to the door on the left side. I go in a counter clockwise fashion. This teaches the dog to enter a room, go right and then check every corner and the left side before the dog exits the room. Trust me, if a dog is searching with it's eyes it can enter a room and miss a person concealed in the room. I understand that the olfactory system of a dog is 1/8 of it's brain and it's most reliable sense. But, many dogs rely on their eyes and are slow to switch to their nose or use their nose over their eyes. This is a skill that must be taught and proofed.
We start with area searches outside and high finds in trees, on top of containers and buildings, etc. We do tracks that end in high finds and make the dog work it out. Tracks at night that end in a tree with no equipment teach a dog to follow it's nose and check high if that is where the source of the odor is.
During building searches, we leave all th equipment outside and will pass a sleeve or a suit through window or exterior door after the dog alerts on the person with no equipment.
Then we go to muzzle work and searches for a passive person with no equipment with a muzzle.
One thing we do in the beginning is to use along line to force the dog to search every room in a systematic fashion. The long line also prevents the dog from leaving a door or a find to check for an alternate way to the decoy. Initially, the dog hits the odor behind a door and barks, then the door opens and the dog gets a bite. The dog learns to open the door to get in by strong barking.
I hope this makes sense?
“Beware of false knowledge; it is more dangerous than ignorance”. George Bernard Shaw