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Tracking& Mantrailing Seminar

March 17, 18, 19, 2023

Does your dog love to sniff? Want to see what mantrailing is all about?
Wonder if your dog would be good at Search and Rescue?
All levels of tracking and trailing teams will enjoy Hunter’s Heart weekend clinic. You’ll build a solid foundation for CKC and AKC Tracking Dog tests, Trailing, Search and Rescue training, and recovering lost items. Rather than attending once a week over six weeks of classes, you can drive less and learn more. 

What You'll Learn:

The secret is that training has to be fun! Tracking and trailing are like a dance.
You’ll practice the exact steps to succeed, without pressure, from the very first session. Hunter’s Heart motivational protocols are so clear, powerful, and fun, a 4-month-old puppy demonstrates:

Since that video, the puppy has graduated to professional deployments. 

About Hunter’s Heart K9 Scent Detection Training:
Dr. Carla Simon is a professional detection dog handler, and owner of Hunter’s Heart. Since 1999, she’s trained dogs to find everything from bed bugs to human remains, from narcotics to nosework. Carla is the Working Dog Chair for CAPDT. Her proven protocols have already worked for thousands of teams worldwide and have been translated into Italian and Spanish. Her materials have been used by African K9 Solutions (South Africa), the peer-reviewed journal of the International Association of Animal Behavior Consultants, Response Rescue International England, Belgian Shepherd Dog Club of Canada, the SDDA newsletter, and the Association of Professional Dog Trainers’ webinars. Carla has coached teams at Power Dog Training Centre (Italy) and was a popular presenter at the 2021 World Detector Dog Organization Conference (USA). Carla’s working Brittanys hold titles in the CKC field and urban tracking, NASDA lost items, and multi High in Trial wins in international scent detection competition. Carla is the Past-President and founder of Sniff Alberta, the former Sr. Provincial Representative on the CKC Scent Detection Council, and judges nosework for CKC, K9 ABC Games, and UKC.



Friday 6:00pm to 8:00pm

All Beginners (working and auditing) must attend the online Orientation on Preparing for Tracking & Trailing Training. Advanced teams are invited to attend, but it’s optional.

  • This online orientation session is included in the price for ALL participants registered for any event(s) on March 18 or 19.

  • Learn about tracking and mantrailing, and discuss the differences.

  • You’ll learn about setting up scenarios, tracklaying, motivational indication protocols, and how we use component training to help dogs to succeed.

  • Get answers to your tracking questions, so you’re prepared to start tracking and trailing at the weekend clinic.

Saturday and Sunday 8:00am to 12:00pm

Beginner Tracking & Trailing Teams

  • Maximum: 6 working spots + 10 auditors.

  • Try tracking AND mantrailing, and explore the differences.

  • No prior experience is required (for beginner teams). Suitable for all levels of trackers, and all ages of puppies/dogs, as long as puppies have at least their second vaccination. We’ll adjust the training accordingly.

  • Bring lots of the highest-value food rewards (think tripe, cheese, or rollover, not dry dog kibble).

  • If your dog loves playing with toys, bring 2-3 of their favorite toys, e.g., Andre likes the Chuckit Squeaker ball, so I get three identical copies.

  • Indoor indication training, followed by outdoor scent pads and tracks or searches for a missing person.

  • Beginners will know where the track is. There will not be blind tracks.

  • $150 + GST per dog per day for a working spot (you train your dog in the morning session and get to watch the Advanced teams in the afternoon)

  • $50 + GST per person per day for auditing one beginner session, where you can ask questions. Please do not bring your dog.

Saturday and Sunday 1:00pm to 5:00pm

Advanced Tracking & Trailing Teams

  • $150 + GST per dog per day for a working spot (you train your dog in the afternoon session and get to watch the Beginner teams in the morning)

  • Maximum: 6 working spots + 10 auditors.

  • Due to the length of time and distance required for advanced teams, please choose tracking OR mantrailing of each advanced session.

  • We may start with indoor training, followed by outdoor tracks or searches, debriefing, and Q&A.

  • Advanced teams should already be working blind tracks or segments combined with limited food, toy, or article rewards.

  • $50 + GST per person per day for auditing one advanced session, where you can ask questions. Please do not bring your dog.

What To Expect:

  • Like tracking tests and deployments, the seminar will run, rain or shine. Please come dressed in layers, for the changing weather, with plenty of water for you and your dog. The facility has running tap water, but no cafeteria or food is available onsite.

  • All fees are nonrefundable (since the facility will turn away other renters to accommodate this event).

  • Tracking and trailing is generally a vigorous workout for most handlers and dogs over uneven fields that may have deep snow or wet furrows, making them slippery or wet. All participants must sign a waiver in order to participate, including all spectators or auditors onsite.

  • We use rewards only, to build motivation for tracking. We’ll set you up for success with clear communication that minimizes confusion. We will not correct a dog with the leash or voice for making mistakes. Instead, we will focus on showing the dog exactly what is right.

  • Once you get to the start of the track, pinch collars, e-collars, no-pull harnesses, and head halters are NOT appropriate on tracks because you want your tracking dog to pull ahead on leash, working independently.

  • All dogs must wait in the car until it’s their turn to track. All dogs must be on leash and under control at all times.

  • Dog-dog interaction is never allowed. Never let your dog approach, sniff, or greet any other animal at the property, including horses, cats, wildlife, and dogs. There may be reactive or aggressive dogs onsite. All dogs must be on leash and under control at all times. Failure to follow the rules may result in being excused immediately, without a refund, entirely at the instructor’s discretion. Let’s play safe so that everyone can have fun!

  • Bitches in season are welcome, but must wear panties indoors (for sanitary reasons) and will run last in the run order outdoors, where possible.

Required Equipment:

  • Bring a hungry dog and lots of high-value food rewards, e.g., tripe, steak, rollover. Highly visible, non-crumbling pieces are easiest to work with, e.g., cheese, if your dog loves it. Cut one piece of string cheese or weiner into at least 90 pieces for a medium-sized Brittany Spaniel. Please bring double the amount of high-value food rewards you expect to use, and water for your dog. (Depending on the size of your dog, many teams require 2 Ziploc sandwich bags per day.) It’s better to have too much food and bring some home than to run out of food at the clinic.

  • Do not feed your dog or exercise until after the clinic.

  • Don’t forget poop bags. If your dog urinates or defecates, please clean up.

  • For indication training, you will need 3 to 5 targets, e.g., rubber placement from the dollar store, a coaster, the clean top of a yogurt container, a Kong/Chuckit Ball/toy, a clean metal food dish, a metal washer (which you can stake down with a 6-inch stake to minimize the risk of having the dog pick it up), or glove.

  • Bring a camping chair to relax between searches and lots of water for you and your dog.

  • All dogs must track in a buckle collar or tracking harness. (Do not use a no-pull harness with an area that tightens, and avoid front clips.)

  • You’ll need a longline. Most teams use 20-30 ft Biothane longlines without a handle. Little River YYC custom makes durable, biothane longlines and collars with stainless steel hardware, and our students get a significant discount. Email Katherine at to request pick up at the tracking and trailing clinic. (Please pay Little River YYC directly for any equipment.)

  • Panties must be worn by in-season bitches while indoors.

  • Newbees will receive ten flags to get you started.

Tracking Harnesses:

Your dog should track on a tracking harness (which distributes the pulling force across their chest). Do not buy a tightening, no-pull harness since those are not meant to help the dog pull ahead. (While you’re waiting for your tracking harness to arrive, you can try using a buckle collar with the leash passed under the front leg to help shape the head down position.) Many handlers bring their dog to the start line in obedience gear, then switch the leash to the tracking harness when starting the track.

Amazon sells many tracking harnesses, e.g., many teams use the Sure Fit Tracking Harness by Pet-Safe.


For recommendations on the best, field-tested Dog Training Vests, Bait Bags, and Aprons, check out our blog.

Click here to check out or download the PDF for more info!

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