Basset Hounds Forum banner

1 - 6 of 6 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
69 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Stonewall is 4 months old now. I've noticed he has the most amazing drive to track things! I know bassets are natural born trackers but even watching my inlaws dogs, and his sister they don't even compare! He is just incredible! I've gone as far as hiding 10 treats throught the kitchen dining and living room and then letting him in. Within about 10 minutes he had all of them found. Some I even put under furniture and hard-to-get-to places. He can find anything and he's always got his nose working.

I was wondering if anyone knew of how to get started in tracking training. We are moving from Texas to Las Vegas soon and I will want to start it when we get to vegas.

Thanks!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,902 Posts
I start my beginners on a 6 ft. leash and buckle collar. When they have a good understanding of the basic idea, I move to a harness and longer tracking line.

Teaching is pretty straightforward. I use food--good smelly stuff like hotdogs, cheese, or liver treats. I rub a bit on the toes of my shoes, take baby steps and put a little piece of food down every step or two to start. You want to lay your starter tracks in short, straight lines or very gentle curves to begin with, and they don't need to be more than 20-50 steps long. At the end of the track, you want to lay an article (glove, sock, etc.,) and put food in it, on top of it, and underneath it. Finding this article is the goal. Put a marker, like a sprinkler flag at the start of the track and at the end, and as your tracks get longer, put a flag or two along the track, so you'll know where it is. Also when you return to the dog, arc around and give the fresh track a wide berth; don't cross over it.

You'll need to figure out what to do with the dog while you lay her tracks; consider leaving her in the car or having someone hold her. Having someone hold her near the start works well to get her revved up.

As the dog progresses, tracks get longer, turns are introduced, age and more turns are added. The food also gets faded.

Here are some excellent articles by Craig Greene, longtime basset owner and tracking judge.

Craig Green's Tracking Articles

Here are some other references that are usually available through vendors like Dogwise or 4-M Dog Books

Tracking from the Ground Up, Sandy Ganz and Sue Boyd (another Basset person and tracking judge)

Enthusiastic Tracking: The Step-by-Step Training Handbook, Sil Saunders

Bring Your Nose Over Here, Wentworth Brown--hard to find, but worth the effort. Various obedience and tracking clubs have copies for sale.

You can also subscribe to the Tracking_Dog e-mail list.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
69 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
Oh I do thank you so much!!! I'm going to start this first thing in the morning and I'll definitely check out those books!! Thank you, Thank you! :D
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
22 Posts
Hi there,

I'm new to this forum, and am interested in getting into tracking with Floyd my Basset, and one of my Newfoundlands as well. I have not done any tracking work and have a lot of questions, so will certainly be reading through the articles posted.

Ive seen different articles about tracking in the snow, some saying it is easier, some saying it is more difficult. With respect to training a hound is it better to wait until Spring to start training or would it be ok to train them in the snow?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,902 Posts
I don't have experience with snow tracking, but dogs can and do track in snow. Because almost all tracking tests are held in non-snowy conditions, I personally would wait until spring to start a new dog. It depends on your goals, though; if you're not interested in tracking tests or titles, you can probably start your dogs whenever convenient.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
22 Posts
Because almost all tracking tests are held in non-snowy conditions, I personally would wait until spring to start a new dog.[/b]
Thanks, we will wait until Spring then....we've got LOTS of other training that needs to be done with Floyd over the winter anyway.
 
1 - 6 of 6 Posts
Top