K9 Nose Work; is it for you and your dog?

K9 Nose Work uses the dogs’ sense of smell to locate a specific odor(s) and find its source. (Image: Office.com)
K9 Nose Work uses the dogs’ sense of smell to locate a specific odor(s) and find its source. (Image: Office.com)

A new sport, K9 Nose Work was created by founders: Ron Gaunt, Amy Herot and Jill Marie O’Brien.  They used their extensive experience in the professional canine detection arena to create a fun, safe, and stimulating sport for dogs and their owners.

K9 Nose Work uses the dogs’ sense of smell to locate a specific odor(s) and find its source.  First, they start by searching for their favorite toy, or food that is hidden in a variety of places, thereby increasing challenges, as well as adding new search skills, as the dog advances.  The most common target odors that people prefer to use in Nose Work are anise, clove, and birch.  However, the owners or handlers can still use food, or their toys to keep it interesting and still progress in this fun activity.  For those whom may prefer to use essential oils, RMSAAM offers a great Essential Oils course!

Four different search elements are introduced to the dog: container, interior, exterior and vehicles.  These search elements allow the dogs to increase their hunt drive and learn foundational search skills.  For those wanting to eventually enter into a K9 Network competition, later stages will introduce advanced detection and handling skills to teams.

What are some of the benefits of this fun sport?

  • Dogs easily burn lots of mental and physical energy doing searches
  • Searches can be done anywhere you can take your dog
  • No prior training is required and no obedience is needed
  • In classes, dogs work one at a time and rest crated or safely in a vehicle between searches so reactive dogs can enjoy the activity, too
  • Shy or fearful dogs build confidence and overactive dogs put their energy into fun searches
  • Stronger bond between dog & handler as handler learns to observe, understand, and rely upon his dog

This sport truly is all about the dog and allowing animal companion and human to bond; making it possible to get to know your dog better.  Create a fun and scentsational experience with your dog!

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