Flat-Coated Retrievers and Nosework

Caris doing an exterior search

Handfull doing a container search

Flat-Coats LOVE to use their noses and this sport is perfect for that!  Nosework was created from the concept of drug detection work by police dogs, but instead of drugs, the dogs are searching for odors such as birch, anise and clove. These odors were chosen because they are fairly common and easily obtained but not so common as to be everywhere. Searches at a test include interiors, exteriors, vehicles and containers.

There are three venues that offer nose work performance trials. National Association of Canine Scent Work (NACSW), United Kennel Club (UKC) and, most recently, the American Kennel Club (AKC). Each venue has similarities and differences, so it’s important to review the rules before participating. However, training for competition is the same.

Before entering a trial a dog/handler team must demonstrate they are ready by participating in an Odor Recognition Test (ORT) as it is known in NACSW or a pre-trial in UKC.  The ORT will satisfy the UKC requirements.

Ever notice how much your dog sniffs?  Dogs LOVE to use their noses so this sport is easy to train and motivate.  Any dog may participate.  Handlers can train alone at home or with a partner in a variety of settings.  Reactive dogs are welcome since only one dog works at a time.

Caris has earned her NACSW NW2 title with a 4th place overall.  She has earned her UKC Advanced Nosework title along with Master Containers and Interiors, and Elite Exteriors.  Handfull has earned her 2nd NACSW NW3 title with a 1st place overall and her UKC Advanced Nosework, Superior Exterior and Vehicles, and Master Interiors titles.

Handfull doing a vehicle search

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