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Do you have a dog training or equipment question?
Leerburg's Q&A database has 3318 entries from multiple categories.

 

Categories: Search & Rescue

Q. I want to get into S&R - there seems to be so many different opinions. What should I do?
I am a civilian trying to learn how to train my dog for search & rescue work. I have already spent quite a bit of money on instructors, videos, & classes. I have an 11 mo. old GSD who learns very quickly. The problem I'm having are so many opinions on how to teach tracking, air scent; AKC, SCHUTZHUND, etc. Who's right??? After reading some of your articles it seems to me you make the most sense. Fortunately, my dog hasn't had enough training with any particular method of search training as I have taken my time trying to find someone that "fits the bill" to teach us. We've been working on obedience for several months while I also researched S&R. My dog has an incredible prey & play drive & will do anything I ask of him. Right now his reward is with a toy, not food. I've treaded cautiously with him as he & I are both "green" and I want to mold him, so to speak, the best way I can without having to go back & retrain a different method. Do you recommend the TTD videos for a civilian search dog? The other question is "what about rubble piles where the dog isn't at a dead run?" Can you recommend what training/tracking method to use? I'm so frustrated. Can you help?

Thanking you in advance for your attention in this matter.

Sincerely,
Margie & Echo

A. You should read the Q&A sections on my web site about S&R and on tracking.

You are correct - there are a lot of people in this country that are clueless on this subject. Most S&R groups fall into that category. They screw up and teach air scenting before tracking or worse they don't train tracking at all - hence they only find a small percentage of what they could find if they had done it properly (train tracking first and then air
scenting). I have written about the reasons on my web site.

Here are the tapes to get:

Training a Police (S&R) Tracking Dog - Level One - This video was filmed in Canada with the RCMP (Royal Canadian Mounted Police). In my opinion they are some of the best tracking dog instructors in the world. S&R trainers in Canada cannot be called out until they have passed a level one certification by the RCMP. This training tape shows how dogs are trained to this level.

Track Laying for a Police Tracking Dog - How to lay a good training track is critical in training tracking dogs. This tape goes into a great deal of detail on track laying. There is an art to laying a good training track. This tape shows how the experts do it. If you are new to S&R or police tracking, or if you are constantly having to retrain track layers, this tape can save you a lot of time and energy.

Training the Police Tracking Dog - levels two and three - This tape deals with Urban and Suburban tracking. It was done with the RCMP in Canada and is now used to help train new their K9 handlers. I would recommend that you go to my web site and read the training articles I have written on Tracking Through Drive (TTD). You can find them in the list of articles at http://leerburg.com/articles.htm.

When you have finished level one tracking 60 to 80 tracks and your dog can do the work then you can start air scenting. That's rubble work.
  
Recommended Products
Training Tracking Dogs for Police S&R
Training Tracking Dogs for Police S&R
$50.00
2 Hours
This video was filmed in Alberta, Canada at the police dog training center for the RCMP. The RCMP instructors are the best tracking dog instructors in the world. The RCMP (Royal Canadian Mounted Police) catch 45% to 50% of all the people they track (this includes suburban and urban tracking). If a suspect runs in the country, they catch 95% of them. If you are a K-9 officer who trains his service dog with food & a ball you know that you only catch 3% or 4% of the people you track.

$50.00
 
Urban and Suburban Tracking
Urban and Suburban Tracking
$50.00
2 Hours, 5 Minutes
This video was done with the RCMP in Canada. In it we train a dog to track in a suburban and urban environment. In Level 1 Tracking (Video 205) we taught the dog to track in the country. The reason all police dogs must first learn to track in the country is because the country is relatively distraction free. We actually teach the dog to track in the country and then use a large part of that work to train in Level II & III teaching the dog to deal with the distractions of the city.

$50.00
 
Urban and Suburban Tracking
Urban and Suburban Tracking
$50.00
2 Hours, 5 Minutes
This video was done with the RCMP in Canada. In it we train a dog to track in a suburban and urban environment. In Level 1 Tracking (Video 205) we taught the dog to track in the country. The reason all police dogs must first learn to track in the country is because the country is relatively distraction free. We actually teach the dog to track in the country and then use a large part of that work to train in Level II & III teaching the dog to deal with the distractions of the city.

$50.00
 
Training a Competition Tracking Dog
Training a Competition Tracking Dog
$35.00
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This tracking dog DVD was filmed over a 3 year period in Germany and America back in the 1990s. It is one of the most comprehensive studies ever done on sport tracking (foot step tracking). This video only uses motivational methods to teach a dog to track. While we discuss the difference between motivational tracking and forced tracking, we do not teach any force in this video.

$35.00
 
  

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