a very brief intro to Tracking books

This is an extremely brief introduction to the two books on Tracking that I have found the most useful.

a really brief intro to Tracking Books

THE "BIBLE" for tracking is Glen Johnson's "Tracking Dog". It is designed to get the very least talented dog and handler through their TD and will get a sufficiently talented dog and capable handler through TDX (and yes, also very much through your FH , which is somewhat easier to pass than the TDX-- in my expereienced opinion having put both titles on two different dogs)

There are also some good ideas in "Bring Your Nose Over Here" by Wentworth Brown. This was a little self-published pamphlet and may not still be available. I've borrowed some of his ideas to add to those of Johnson to make my own program.

Most people start off by following Glen Johnson pretty closely on their first dog and then on later dogs when the handler is able to trust herself to read the dog correctly then she can begin to modify the program according to the dog's actual progress. For puppies or less motivated dogs, do not do all of the 9 tracklets per day during the first few weeks -- I'd advise just the first four tracks of the day's program is plenty -- and for puppies , I would shorten the lengths. For any dog unless your dog is such an obsessive retriever that he would retrieve until your arm dropped off, you will make much better progress by using the FOOD baits as described --- and for most dogs it would be advisable to cut back on the dog's regular meals and in many cases ideal to let him earn his whole day's rations by tracking, with his main meal waiting in a container at the end of the track or presented out of your backpack after the dog gives you the last article. (Johnson says that he would use food for all dogs except that he finds preparing the baits to be a nuisance.) Note that very few Bouvs are retrieve-crazy but most Bouvs are very much food-gluttons. Of course some dogs take to tracking as a dolphin to water and don't really neeed any reward except permission to run the track, but even for these I'd recommend food bait during the first couple weeks.

some Tracking books I have not read

Here are a few books suggested to me by others and comments by those who suggested them.

A good tracking book is "Tracking From The Ground Up" by Sandy Ganz & Susan Boyd. It is easy to read & has nice, clear instructions on getting started.

Another good book is "Tracking for Search and Rescue dogs - a practical manual for novice and advanced handlers" by (????) Boguslaw (I can't remember his first name) I bought the book and really liked it. It's a bit pricey at about $38. but I think it's well worth it.


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site author Pam Green copyright 2003
created 6/05/03 revised 9/25/03
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