As humans we tend to be very visual creatures and depend on our sense of sight to experience the world. Dog's are different. They rely heavily on the sense of smell.
Smell receptors located in the nose are what give us, dogs and many other animals the ability to detect odours and thus the sense of smell. The average human has about six million of these receptors. Depending on breed, dogs can have up to 300 million. Relative to humans, a much greater proportion of a dog's brain is used to analyze smells -approximately 40 times greater.
Studies suggest a dog's sense of smell is 10,000 to 100,000 times more acute than ours. At just 10,000 times better this is still a remarkable difference. According to says James Walker, former director of the Sensory Research Institute at Florida State University, "If you make the analogy to vision, what you and I can see at a third of a mile, a dog could see more than 3,000 miles away and still see as well."
Unfortunately many pet dogs have not discovered the full potential their nose
Air scenting and tracking are different ways a dog uses it's amazing nose to gather information. In the wild, a dog would hunt by using a combination of "air scenting". Detecting the smell of it's prey in the air. And sometimes exclusively by "tracking". Putting nose to ground and following the footprint of his prey. As pets generally have lost the need to hunt for food, many have not yet fully develop their sense of smell.
Benefits of Scent Detection Training
Teaches a dog how to better use its nose. Therefore, improving the sense of smell and significantly enriches its life.
Provides increased level of mental stimulation. Not only is this highly rewarding but also helps to drain energy and relaxa the dog.
For many canines, exploring the smells of a dog park or a new environment can be of great interest. Of much greater interest than socialising with other dogs or chasing ball.
Engaging in nosework activities also helps to build a dog's confidence. It becomes much more aware of what is in the surroundings and less prone to surprises. It is a training technique we often include into a therapy program when helping dogs that are nervous and anxious.
It's a great bonding activity between owner and his furry friend. At Hong Kong Canine we set up fun games and challenges that require the participation of both owner and dog. These activities are very flexible and not constrained by the weather. They can be done both indoors and outdoors.
An improved sense of smell also has a very practical purpose. It helps a dog locate and find its way back to her owner. It's especially useful for dogs walked off lead in areas that limit the dog's ability to see or hear. Heavily vegetated or noisy environments can prove challenging when recalling your dog.
Interested in learning more about the activities we offer? Contact us directly to schedule a session.
$ 880 per lesson
$ 4,500 for package of 6 lessons