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Thoughts on Dog Directed Searches

What to listen for:

“When you’re thinking dog-directed search, try to be aware of the fact that you are a very important part of the team. You’ve really got to be thoughtful in your handling.”

In this episode of K9 Detection Collaborative, our hosts Robin Greubel, Stacy Barnett, and Crystal Wing unravel the concept of dog-directed searches, the role of the handler, and how to efficiently navigate through the search process. They explore how body movement, body pressure, and body language can be used to guide your dogs, particularly when moving out of odor pools. An actual leash or an “invisible tether” can be used when directing the dog and helping them dismiss scents.

Further into their discussion, the Dames of Detection unravel the mysteries of recognizing and using body language to identify and navigate odor pools. As they highlight the importance of the handler's responsibility for their dog's search pattern, they also shed light on the ineffective outcomes of a handler being overly directive. They underscore the importance of aging hides and how essential oils can expedite the process and share some effective dog scent detection handling techniques that can make your dog’s search process efficient and fruitful. All this and more in this episode of K9 Detection Collaborative!

Key Topics:

  • Search Strategy and Calling Areas Clear (03:00)

  • “Pulling” the Dog Out of the Area without a Leash (07:57)

  • Preparation and Plan B for Odor Pools (13:06)

  • Odor Pool Work - Online vs Offline (18:14)

  • Odor Pool - Teaching Concepts (22:55)

  • Teaching the Dog to Be Directed and Coachable (28:43)

  • Sourcing Independently (34:12)

  • What Really is Dog-Directed Search if the Trainer is Involved? (39:02)

  • The Act of Searching as Reinforcement (44:33)

  • Takeaways (45:03)


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