Scent and Search Dogs

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Scent Theory Books

These two books provide a good, yet brief overview of scent theory.

Scent and the Scenting Dog
  • Amazon Kindle Edition
  • Syrotuck, William G. (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)

Last update on 2024-06-18 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

In Search of Scent: Basic K9 Scent Theory Training
  • Wnuk, Lorrie (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 56 Pages - 07/17/2010 (Publication Date) - CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform (Publisher)

Last update on 2024-06-18 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

The following books are very scientific/technical, but definitely worth reading if you want a thorough understanding of scent theory and search dog capabilities.  They are more expensive so also check your local university libraries.

Detector Dogs and Scent Movement: How Weather, Terrain, and Vegetation Influence...
  • Amazon Kindle Edition
  • Osterkamp, Tom (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)

Last update on 2024-06-18 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Canine Ergonomics: The Science of Working Dogs
  • Amazon Kindle Edition
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 366 Pages - 04/28/2009 (Publication Date) - CRC Press (Publisher)

Last update on 2024-06-18 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Predator-Prey Dynamics: The Role of Olfaction
  • Amazon Kindle Edition
  • Conover, Michael R. (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)

Last update on 2024-06-18 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Search Dog Training Books

There are many books available on training scent-detection dogs, tracking dogs and trailing dogs.  These are a few of my favorites.  

Kat's Albrecht's book is the only one that I'm aware of that is specifically for training cat detection dogs and lost pet tracking dogs.  

Dog Detectives: How to Train Your Dog to Find Lost Pets (Dogwise Training...
  • Used Book in Good Condition
  • Albrecht, Kat (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)

Last update on 2024-06-18 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Following Ghosts. Developing the Tracking Relationship
  • John W. Rice (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 06/19/2024 (Publication Date) - Relationship Centered Training (Publisher)

Last update on 2024-06-18 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

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K9 Trailing The Straightest Path
  • Schettler, Jeff (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 204 Pages - 10/01/2011 (Publication Date) - CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform (Publisher)

Last update on 2024-06-18 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Susan Bulanda also has a good series of books on scent dog training and Search and Rescue work.  She integrates a lot of scent theory into the training books.

Ready!: Training the Search and Rescue Dog (Kennel Club Pro)
  • Amazon Kindle Edition
  • Bulanda, Susan (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)

Last update on 2024-06-18 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API


K9 Search and Rescue Troubleshooting: Practical Solutions to Common Search-Dog...
  • Amazon Kindle Edition
  • Bulanda, Susan (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)

Last update on 2024-06-18 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Bulanda, Susan.  2002.  Scenting on the Wind: Scentwork for Hunting Dogs. Doral Publishing.  Unfortunately, this one seems to be out of print.

This last book doesn't have training instructions, but it provides a useful perspective on how search & rescue dogs are used in different types of searches for missing people.

Bulanda, Susan.  1999.  Ready to Serve, Ready to Save: Strategies of Real-Life Search and Rescue Missions.  Doral Publishing.  Unfortunately, this one seems to be out of print also.

Search Dog Training Programs

The Missing Animal Response Network offers virtual search dog training for both cat detection dogs and lost pet tracking dogs.

Pet Search and Rescue offers some resources on lost pet search dog training.  In 2024 they also offered several conferences.

Though not specific to lost pet tracking, John Rice (author of Following Ghosts) offers tracking/trailing workshops in upstate New York.  I have been to a few and enjoyed his insight and training style.  Check Events listed on Suzanne Clothier's website.  He may also be offering virtual tracking and scent work consultations though I've never tried them.

For training on becoming a Pet Detective or Missing Animal Response Technician, see the Pet Detective Training page. 

Search Dog Training Webinars

Unfortunately, there are not any websites specific to training lost pet search dogs. Here are some related webinars on scent work theory and search dog training. 

E-Training for Dogs offers a series of webinars on scent dog theory and training called Seeing Through a Dog's Nose.  They also have a course on Natural Ability Tracking Training

Tawzer Dog has some recorded webinars on different aspects of scent training including reading your dog, clicker training, and search strategies.  Check under "Working Dogs" in the category filter. 

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