Roberta Bottaro

A world of scent

A journey into the dog's sense of smell for professionals and pet owners

course starts
1 December 2020


Level 1

Previous editions

July 2020

May 2020

And 3 more

Next editions


‘Sense of smell?’ he says. ‘I never gave it a thought. You don’t normally give it a thought. But when I lost it — it was like being struck blind. Life lost a good deal of its savor — one doesn’t realize how much ‘savor’ is smell. You smell people, you  smell books, you smell the city, you smell the spring — maybe not consciously, but as a rich unconscious background to everything else. My whole world was suddenly radically poorer … (“The man who mistook his wife for an hat” Oliver Sacks)

Although they share a thousand-year-old coexistence, men and dogs orient their interests in the world in a substantially different way.

We as humans are sight-oriented animals this means that sight is our dominant sense. Dogs are, above all, smelling oriented animal. Sense of smell is the dominant one, followed by hearing and then sight.

This is a self-learn course aimed to cover the main topics related to the dog’s sense of smell.

The first problem that is faced by anyone who decides to train a dog to search for people or detection is the difficulty in defining what they are working on.
In recent years science has focused on many areas that may be useful to those who work with the dog’s nose. Today we have more knowledge about the physiology of smell, scent perception, theory of learning, and how odours behaves.
During the course we will try to combine theoretical knowledge with dog training.


What to expect 

  • Self learn course
  • Forum and Facebook group where you can discuss and interact
  • Six weeks of lesson

Topic 1: scent and scenting dogs

  • Scent and scenting dogs
  • Dog cognition: drives and motivation
  • Theory of learning
  • Memory
  • Odours: an overview
  • How the nose works
  • Perception

Topic 2: dogs that works with human scent

  • Human scent
  • Theory of scent
  • Dogs that works with human scent (mantrailing, tracking, scent ID, air scent, rubble, detection)

Topic 3: dogs that works with other smells

  • Detection dogs
  • Tracking and trailing dogs

Topic 4: A bridge between theory and practice 

  • Learning theory and scent training
  • Training phases



  • course lasts 6 weeks
  • lectures
  • access to other Premium member's threads
  • video tutorials
  • certificate of attendance
  • 24 hours, 7 days per week access to course materials
  • access to Tromplo: students group on Facebook
  • access to materials after the course is finished
  • 4 points to spend on future purchases



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