What is Scentwork?
Scentwork training uses the dog’s sense of smell to identify and locate a scent which it has been trained to detect. Olfaction (the sense of smell) is a natural behaviour which is essential to the health and wellbeing of dogs used in behaviours such as hunting and finding prey.
It has been developed into a popular dog sport derived from professional detection style nosework practised by law enforcement, customs and excise, explosives detection, search and rescue and medical detection dogs . It strengthens a foundation of trust between the handler and dog, increases confidence, builds optimism, enhances the enjoyment of learning and can be done at all ability levels.
Practising scentwork allows dogs to express natural behaviour and easily improves the dog’s ability to work independently building autonomy. Using positive reinforcement right from the start of your scentwork journey moulds neurone plasticity and builds a dog’s emotions towards finding scents. It activates the release of dopamine as you trigger part of the dogs natural predatory motor pattern which your dog will find hugely rewarding!