Master’s of Odor Trailer
Whether they are brand new to formal scent detection or highly experienced working dogs, all dogs are masters of odor.
From scavenging food, to hunting rabbits, to noticing when a neighboring dog has just come into season, processing the complex world of scent with exquisite accuracy is what dogs have evolved on this Earth to do. In comparison, the human nose is handicapped. We tend to picture odor moving through space in a limited, two-dimensional way. Like Luke Skywalker impatient with Yoda’s cryptic descriptions of the Force, we are sometimes baffled as to why one day our dog makes a beeline straight to source, but then on another day seems to take forever to find a hide directly in front of his face.
Because scent-detection is often high stakes or timed with titles on the line, we often set hides with specific training goals in mind, such as teaching the dog not to pass thresholds, or to check every container in a row. However, in this class we will be taking a different approach. Instead of putting out hides to teach our dogs how to be more efficient competitors, we are going to set up single hide searches and let our dogs teach us about odor. Each week we will compare and contrast how different types of hide placements change how the dogs search.
Come join me on a fascinating journey into the world of scent, led by the true masters of odor—our dogs!
Pre-requisites: I am most familiar with essential oils as target odor, but if your dog is trained to a different scent, we can make it work. All levels welcome, but you will get the most out of this course if your dog has a strong reinforcement history in place for hunting for something specific. Food or toys can work as well as oils, but the dog still needs to understand the game.
In this course I will not be covering how to teach an indication behavior, or basic search skills, but I will provide a lot of guidance on how to adapt the exercises so each dog can be successful.
Masterful, again! So I have taken this course several times, repeating with the same original canine partner, and this last time with a new young one. Every single time has been more than remarkable. There are just so many incredible learning opportunities here. With Sarah’s guidance and support, and the material and tools she provides, we learned so much from every search. I also had single searches and subsequent feedback exchanges with Sarah, that made the whole course more than worth it. It’s fascinating. And for sure, it’s fun!
This class is for everyone, whether new to scent work, or experienced, whether setting yourself up to prep for competition, or exploring the world of scent for fun. It is packed with content. But there’s no pressure to follow or keep up with an exact schedule. Sometimes weather or other in life may not be cooperating with your planned searches. Or you may be at a different place in your journey than others. No worries. Sarah and the course design are flexible enough to adapt. Sarah’s ability to understand and help all learners, human and canine, advanced or beginner, is amazing. She meets the learners where they are, and with just the right feedback and support, has them bravely moving forward with confidence. So go to the registration page now, and join Sarah and the canine masters on a most fascinating and rewarding journey!
October 16, 2023
I also enrolled in the next course! We’re pretty new to nosework, and Sarah gave me so much help in learning to learn from my dog. Her analysis of what my dog is doing, what the odor is doing and what’s going on has taught me so much. I feel like I can do a much better job of supporting my dog (Finley) as we learn new skills. Sarah and I are very much on the same page – I want Finley to lead the dance. I’m there for support, coaching, and maybe redirecting when things get a little sticky, but he leads. It’s such a different way of working with my dog – it’s about what he’s telling me, how am I interpreting it, how can I help. Learning to read odor from how my dog moves is a fascinating enterprise and one I can’t wait to continue in the next class. Sarah – thank you so much! A big thumbs up, five stars, fireworks – we loved this class!
October 9, 2023
June 30, 2023
The first thing I did when I finished this course was to enrol in the next available course given by Sarah!!
I did not know very much what to expect by this course, but I was impressed by the amount of information available about Odour. I had so much fun with my dog and Sarah’s feedback. What an amazing teacher and Human Being. Sarah will make sure that you don’t feel bad about yourself for what went wrong in a session, but to look at it as precious information you can work on for next session. You know that feeling your dogs have when they know the treat moment is approaching?? That’s me in the morning opening my email and checking for Sarah’s feedback. 🙂 she conditioned me very well!
Get ready for a lot of prep work, a lot of information, it is important to have access to different locations and places where you can set up the different odour scenarios. Think in advance if you have access to different and safe outdoor spaces, take into account the weather and light conditions for your videos. Having a proper “GoPro” camera or someone to help you with recording is super helpful.
Don’t even think twice, just enrol and enjoy this amazing class where your dog will have fun and teach you so much!
Sofia & Suzy/ Premium Students
June 30, 2023