What is Nose work?
Nose work is a sport that uses your dog’s natural instincts of hunting to train your dog to identify and locate food/toys and odor.
Nose work is a recreational form of the long standing use of dogs as scent detectives. Dogs learn how to identify and search for specific odors and to find the source. Training begins with treats and other “reward” based odors. Your dog will quickly develop a keenness for the hunt and can be trained to search for almost anything.
Introduction to Nose work
Prerequisite: Dogs must have completed Basic Obedience Level One
Class cost: $165 – 5 week one hour session
This class teaches your dog the game of searching and builds your dog’s desire to hunt. Positive reinforcement is used for the dogs while you learn how to recognize your dog’s hunting signals and reward your dog’s searching/hunting behavior while keeping the game fun for you and your dog. The training begins with simple exercises where dogs search boxes for the treat or toy. Eventually, the dogs start searching through different objects with different distractions and different elevations, thus becoming more confident and skilled at this sport.
Your dog will learn to find the source of odors in different locations including boxes, containers, interior spaces, exterior spaces, and vehicles. After these techniques and the hunt drives are established, dogs can continue to our nose work level 2 class.
The bond between owner and dog is the most important benefits of nose work. As you develop the ability to rely on and understand your dog in specific situations, key elements of trust, communication, and direction increase will spill over into other aspects of the owner-pet relationship.
If your dogs enjoys smelling things, they will have fun doing it as a sport. All size dogs can participate. Nose work mentally challenges your dog so that they are more focused and balanced. Nose work also encourages your dog to use his natural hunting drive for picking up scents and locating the source.
It’s a fun sport for both you and your dog! Many dog owners have found nose work to be a great supplement to a behavior modification program. Nose work helps shy timid dogs to grow more comfortable and confident with their surroundings and it encourages distracted dogs to stay on tasks. Nose work is also beneficial for senior dogs, dogs recovering from surgery or an injury, dogs with hearing loss or eyesight problems and retired service , working or competition dogs. Nose is a great outlet for hyperactive dogs.
The class teaches your dog the game of searching, and it teaches you the ability to recognize and reward your dog’s searching skills, drive and enthusiasm while honing your handling skills. The class covers containers, interiors, exteriors and vehicle searches along with increasingly difficult searches.
We begin training the dogs to search for food or toys depending on your dog’s desire. We use boxes to begin with and then move to various containers as the dog realize what the search is all about.
While your dog is learning to search, you will learn the behavior and body language of your dog searching and smelling. We show you how to read your dog and learn to trust their behavior. Safety is always a first and important in training. We will show you how to be safe while searching.
Once the dogs are confident with the searching, we move to exterior building locations and vehicles then transition them to odors. There are three distinct odors/ oils used in the sport: Birch, Anise and Cloves, all of which are easily found naturally or in the house.
As we practice with the dogs, the search will become more challenging. Nose work is fun search and scenting activity for you and your canine. This easy to learn activity and sport builds confidence and sharpens focus for all dogs. It provides a safe way to keep dogs fit and healthy through mental and physical exercise.