Tracking / Blood Trail

Over the years that I have been involved with tracking in Search and Rescue, and teaching the art of tracking to many clients, the question has always been, "Is the dog tracking, trailing, or air scenting?" The answer to that question is "Yes!"

Every dog will do all three when working on a track, and what difference does it make if you are locating the source of your search? The question of tracking type may come up in a courtroom, but it really makes no difference if the source is located. The exception to tracking method would be article searches which are discussed in the Search and Rescue section.

Here is a simple explanation of the various types of tracking:

  • Tracking is the ability to follow a scent trail with their nose to the ground and following that trail by each step taken until the source is located. This was the origin of the Bloodhound tracking humans.
  • Trailing is the ability to follow a scent trail with their nose to the ground and follow that trail by coursing (moving from side to side) to determine the direction of travel and to locate the source.
  • Air Scenting is the ability to follow a scent that is in the wind. This is seen when the dog lifts his head and sniffs the air. He is testing the air for scent and follows that scent to the source.

Each of these simple explanations indicate that the dog is attempting to locate the source, so what difference does it make? None, unless you're performing work in a law enforcement atmosphere and are expected to explain your dog's actions in a courtroom. If you are not in a law enforcement environment, it really doesn't matter.

The majority of our clients are interested in having a dog trained to locate wounded animals, commonly referred to as "blood trails." In my book The Canine Tracking Guide, I've explained that the dog is not actually tracking the blood spill, but is tracking the scent accumulated in the blood as it rolled off the skin of the animal. Scent is developed on the outside of the body, while blood is contained on the inside of the body. It isn't until that blood comes into contact with the skin via an open wound that it acquires any personal identifying scent.

If you are looking for someone who can train your dog to locate the source of scent, whether it is blood train, animal, human, articles, competition, or search and rescue, we can do it! All instructions are under the direction of Don Abney, court certified expert in the fields of canine training and tracking.

Our course is presented in a simple, easy to understand format, so that you are aware of what you and your dog should be doing, and why. You will learn how to read your dog's body language, and you will receive written material explaining how the dog uses his nose, as well as the extent of his scenting abilities. You will learn to "read" your dog's body language and understand what he is trying to convey to you. We will instruct you on how to store scent and scent articles for future training use.

The course length is 6 weekly lessons where you are taught step-by-step training. You will be expected to return home and practice what you've learned and return for the next lesson. We don't just take your money, give you instructions, and send you home, we provide the "training" for you and your dog to ensure your confidence in "reading" your dog, and in determining that your dog is actually working toward the source.

We also offer boarded training at our facility which takes approximately 4 weeks of instruction. Your dog is cared for as if he were our own, and we provide food, water, and exercise for the length of his stay. Afterward, you will be expected to continue training with your dog to keep his interest in the game. Tracking must be a game to the dog, or he will not want to perform.

Our success record speaks for itself. Regardless of which type or style of tracking you choose, we can help you to achieve that goal.

Blood Trailing Dog

Hunters wanting a Blood Trailing Dog may want to view the website I've dedicated to Blood Tracking Dogs.

Blood Dog is just another name for a dog that is performing a tracking function. For example, if I were to say that I train tracking dogs, most hunters wouldn't pay me a bit of attention. But, if I say I train Blood Trailing Dogs to find wounded animals, I have their undivided attention, immediately! The fact is that the Blood Trailing Dog is performing the same discipline as one that tracks human beings.

Learn More About Blood Trailing Dogs

All courses are pre-paid prior to the start of the course. For more information on training or scheduling, please utilize our Contact Form or call 985 892 6773 between the hours of 8 am and 9 pm CST. If we miss your call, leave us a message and we will respond within 24 hours. The facility is closed on Tuesday, Sunday, and Holidays.