K9 Scent Work - Nose Work Dog Training


What is K9 Scent Work Training?

 Canine NoseWork is a relatively new dog activity and sport that is  gaining more and more popularity. It is based on search and rescue and  tracking sports but geared to the general public and pet dogs rather  than working dogs. Any dog can do this activity and it uses the dog's  most powerful sense, smell. You do not have to want to compete in this  sport to enjoy it at home. It does not take a lot of equipment and can  be enjoyed all year around. It helps build confidence in shy and fearful  dogs and is both fun for the dog and the owner.

The instructor,  Steve Bettcher, IACP Certified Dog Trainer and Canine NoseWork Training  Instructor has been training dogs for over 20 years and has been  competing in and training NoseWork since 2012. His classes will lay a  foundation for future competition if you so choose. Steve has earned the  following titles with his Beagle Buddy:

NACSW Titles; NW1, NW2, NW3, Nw3 Elite, NW3-C, NW3-V, NW3-E, NW3-I, L1C, L2C, L1I and L2I.


SDS Titles: Excellent 

Buddy hauls in a tone of ribbons at AKC Scent Work Trial in San Jose, CA.

Buddy hauls in a tone of ribbons at AKC Scent Work Trial in San Jose, CA.

Sniffer - NoseWork Classes for Dogs

Introduction to NoseWork

A k9 Scent Work Dog

The first thing we teach in K9 Scent Work is the "Indication" before we begin searching. This is backwards for many dog training methods who teach the Search first. By the use of an operant chamber (scent box or scent tube) we condition the dog to Indicate with a sit/down. Once the "Indication" is bomb proof we move to Odor Discrimination.

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Odor Discrimination

k9 Nose Work Vehicle Search at NACSW Trial

 Once the dog is proofed on a solid "Indicator" such as a down/sit we  introduce odor discrimination. We introduce the dog to a cocktail  mixture Birch, Anise, and Clove. Once the dog can correctly identify the  correct box or tube reliably we then introduce individual odors and  start expanding the number of objects to be searched. 

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Buddy winning a placement at a NACSW K9 Nose Work Trial.

 Searching beyond the conditioning lab does not happen until a reliable  "Indicator" has been conditioned, that is the dog can reliably identify  the right sent box from multiple choices and work independently from the  handler. Once these pieces are in place we can begin real world  searches such as Exteriors, Vehicles, Interiors and containers. 

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