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Reflections on Talking with Amy Herot

Today, Stacy, Robin, and Crystal reflect on their recent conversation with Amy Herot, co-founder of K9 Nose Work alongside Ron Gaunt and Jill-Marie O'Brien. Amy has over 20 years of experience under her belt as a trainer, handler, and educator. She has certified teams in Narcotics and Explosives and has logged over 1,500 instructional hours in detection dog training.

Our hosts touch on the differing standards between the professional handling world and that of the sports world. They agree that, to get the best out of both your dog and yourself, you as a trainer must be 1) commit to being fully present with your dog on the current task rather than treating the activity as a series of checklists to be rushed through; and 2) willing to embrace both our dog’s unique temperament as well as ours as trainers.

Stacy, Robin, and Crystal also highlight the importance of embracing wonder and curiosity to spark innovation and growth in our training, and how the Nose Work program encourages just that.

“Having that level of curiosity to look at the whole picture and break things down is excellent dog training. Every time you can rehearse that—when you can build your imagination and your questioning and your curiosity bone—you’re going to become a better trainer.”

All-in-all, through the Nose Work program, Amy taught us the value of training the dog in front of us and of recognizing the dog that we have now, with all their quirks, strengths, and unique personality.

“Nose Work has helped a whole lot of people recognize that the dog they have is pretty awesome!”

Key Topics:

  • How being with your dog in the “now” can free you up (01:45)

  • Differences in standards between the pro world and the sport world (08:31)

  • Finding the right profession for your dog based on their temperament (13:00)

  • Our thoughts on the Nose Work program (21:09)

  • The importance of wonder and curiosity in dog training (27:15)

  • Focusing on the handler’s needs and ensuring the dog has fun during training (33:22)

  • How Nose Work creates many avenues to exhaust dogs (43:06)

  • How Nose Work skills carry over into other activities (48:12)

  • Our closing thoughts (56:50)


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